Spring is here and at this time of year, many of us give the house a thorough clean to remove the cobwebs of winter and get the home ready for the warmer weather. The heavy duvet goes into storage, winter coats are put away and every nook and cranny get a good going over.
Whilst you are cleaning and clearing, you may as well add a few more checks to your list that will not only tidy the place up but will also stand your property in good stead and help prevent potentially costly home insurance claims. A few tweaks here, a bit of TLC there, and you can keep your home, possessions, and most importantly, your family safer this springtime.
So, if you want to spruce up your home and improve safety in the process, here are seven spring cleaning tips, which can help prevent home insurance claims too!
Fix Bathroom and Kitchen Caulk
Caulk is the flexible sealant that you find around the top of the bathtub where it meets the tiles and between a kitchen countertop and tile backsplash. Over the freezing winter, caulk can crack and water can leak in or out and can cause nasty water damage. So, inspect the caulk in your bathroom and kitchen around the bathtubs, showers and sinks and replace any that is cracked. Luckily, recaulking is easy to do yourself and relatively inexpensive. You can pick up caulk and a caulk gun in most hardware and DIY shops.
Repair Windows and Doors
Check the seals on your windows and doors and repair any gaps or cracks in the caulk, weather stripping and seals. This helps prevent condensation build-up, mould and heat loss. Again, this is another quick and easy fix and you’ll find all the materials you need in your local hardware.
Clean the Tumble Dryer
If you have a tumble dryer, give it a thoroughly good clean. Clean the vent hose and remove all lint, dust, and any pieces of material you find. Clean the area around the exterior hose vent the space under the dryer and make sure you remove and clean the condenser unit too. Dryer lint is extremely flammable and a single spark can ignite this material. Tumble dryers have the potential to catch fire but cleaning them properly will help reduce the chances of this happening.
Replace Smoke Detector Batteries
It is recommended to change the batteries in smoke alarms every 6 months to ensure they’re in working order. So, a handy way to remember is to replace them when you adjust your clocks for Day Light Savings. Make sure you have at least one smoke detector on each floor of your home and check they are in proper working order once a month.
If you have a carbon monoxide detector, be sure to check it at the same time.
Switch to Safer Sockets
Inspect electrical plug sockets to make sure they aren’t overloaded. Scorch marks or blackness around the socket or plug, sparks coming from a plug or appliance, and the smell of hot plastic near the plug or socket are just some indicators that a socket is overloaded. If you use double adapters, it is recommended that you stop using them and use a surge protected extension lead instead.
Trim the Trees
Give your garden a going over and make sure you trim back trees and hedges especially any that touch or lean on your house. This can cause mould or rot on your home’s exterior. Cutting back shrubbery also ensures that burglars don’t have cover to break into your home.
Check the Gutters and Roof
Gutters and downspouts direct water away from your home and prevent water from pooling and leaks. It is important that water can flow through these easily, so make sure you clean out your gutters to get rid of any debris that might have built up over the winter.
Whilst you are checking the gutters, examine the roof for any leaks or cracked or missing slates. If you’re unsure of what to look for, or are unsure if your roof needs repair, call out a professional. This could save you money in the long run by preventing a water claim because of a leak in the roof.
As you can see, a little spring cleaning can go a long way to help make your home cleaner, safer, and less vulnerable to damage.