Preparing your home for spring — inside and out

Published 6:44 pm Thursday, January 20, 2011

Jack Horton, owner of Horton Home Improvements, washes the walls of a house. He suggests that homeowners regularly look around the outside of their homes to check for problems.

Spring is when most people begin making yearly home improvements, but it’s important to maintain your home even during the winter months.

Whether you are making repairs or just preparing for spring home improvements, there is plenty that you can do during the winter months, local home improvement experts say.

There’s not much that homeowners want to do outside during the cold winter months, but it is definitely a great time to plan and budget for springtime projects.

Email newsletter signup

“Be aware of the condition of the house,” said Jack Horton, owner of Horton Home Improvements. “Go out and look around. Look at the house. Most people don’t look until there’s a problem.”

“A lot happens during storms in the wintertime that most people overlook,” said Bobby Masters, owner of Husband For Hire.

Horton advises that homeowners go around the house and make sure that the doors, windows and caulking are air tight. If your windows are old, Horton said, you should consider replacing them with thermopane windows that protect you from heat and cold.

Both Masters and Horton advise homeowners to clean their gutters, even during winter. Gutters are important to maintaining the foundation of the home.

Winter also is a good time to place a vapor barrier under the house to trap moisture to the ground, Horton explained.

“There are not as many critters in the winter time,” he said.

The vapor barrier helps to prevent the wood under the home from rotting.

Now also is a good time to wrap your pipes with insulation if you haven’t done so already, Masters explains.

If you are concerned about the outside appearance of your home, Masters said it is fine to pressure-wash your home as long as the temperature is not near freezing. Masters explains that the outside of homes become filthy during the fall and winter months. It’s a good idea to clean off the filth before the spring sun bakes on the grime.

Inside the home, Masters recommends changing heating and air conditioning system filters. In most cases, this should be done once every three months.

Both men recommend that winter is a great time to select paint colors and begin prepping the walls for future painting projects.

Vinegar is an excellent medium to use to clean the walls, “If you can stand it,” Horton said.