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Top Outdoor Home Improvements to Make Before it Heats Up

Posted by Josh Kennedy

Jan 23, 2014 12:15:00 PM

gutter cleaning Jacksonville, FLFrom pressure washing to roof repairs, it's more practical to undertake some outdoor improvements to your Jacksonville, FL home while temperatures are cool.

Caulking – It's more effective to complete exterior caulking while it's cool outside. During hot weather, caulk and wood both expand, and they both contract during colder weather. So, in order to prevent gaps from appearing between the caulk and the wood in winter, do exterior caulking during colder weather.

Insulating and Weather-Stripping – Insulating crawl spaces, garages, storage buildings, and other areas exposed to uncontrolled temperature variations, also presents the issue of wood surfaces shrinking and separating from the insulating material during cold weather. Therefore, as with caulking, insulation projects are more efficiently done during colder weather when the surfaces are already contracted. The same principle applies to weather-stripping around wooden-framed windows and exterior doors.

Roof Replacement and Repair – Even if you are among the healthiest and sturdiest of individuals, you're well-advised to avoid exposure to the extreme conditions that develop on rooftops during summer heat. Direct sun and heat emanating upward from the rooftop present risks of severe health effects, including heatstroke, sun burn and dehydration. Additionally, some roofing surface materials can scorch skin on contact during very hot days. Roofing work is simply better left to professionals, and it should be done during cool weather, if at all possible.

Gutter Cleaning and Protection – In Jacksonville, FL, water flows into your gutters in thousands of gallons annually, gutters are a primary defense against water damage to your home. For added protection, install a mesh material designed to guard the tops of your gutters against falling leaves, twigs, acorns and other kinds of debris that can clog gutters and cause water to build up in the troughs and flow over the sides. It's essential to ensure proper installation in order to prevent significant potential water damage from faulty work on this important task. For this reason, many homeowners prefer to hire a professional for this type of exterior cleaning work. Additionally, the amount of time required for the climbing and moving a ladder and the relatively dirty and wet nature of this particular job make it commonly one of the least favorite home improvement projects.

Garden Preparations – Many gardening tasks should be completed prior to the planting season. Tilling soil, mixing soil, shoring up planting bed borders, and fertilizing are all preparatory projects to be done during the colder weather that precedes the ideal planting period. Planting some types of grass seed also must be done during cold weather. For best results, check online or at your garden supply store for recommended seasonal schedules for your intended garden work, and plan your projects accordingly.

Duct Cleaning – With the relatively heavy use that your HVAC system incurs during cold weather can come increased buildup of dust and debris in the ventilation system. Cleaning ducts and vents before warm weather permits easier removal of buildup. With changing temperatures, moisture produces condensation that can cause accumulations in the ductwork to harden a bit and more firmly adhere to the interior surfaces of the ducts. Vent covers should also be cleaned before the seasonal change to warmer temperatures to prevent the increased adhesion of dirt that makes cleaning more difficult and promotes corrosion of the grilles.

Pressure Washing – This important project is essential to preserving the exterior surfaces and finishes of your house. Completing the pressure washing near the end of the cold weather season will give your home a fresh appearance, and it will clear away any muddy residue on the exterior of your house before hotter weather begins to bake it onto the surface of your home.

Driveway and Sidewalk Repairs – During cold weather, cracks may appear on surfaces of driveways and walkways. Damage may emerge that can present new safety hazards for your family and others who must walk in these areas where the safety of the surfaces is compromised. Of course, these repairs should be executed by a professional. They also should be addressed in a timely manner, not left unattended throughout the season.

Fireplace Repairs – As with most functional features of your home, your fireplace is most likely to present issues during the season while it's actually in use. In Jacksonville, FL, even if your fireplace is not very frequently used, it's wise to have a follow-up safety inspection of the flue and dampers conducted at some point during the cold season to assess the extent of creosote buildup.

Please contact us at First Coast Home Pros to speak with a professional regarding pressure washing, window cleaning, roof cleaning, gutter cleaning, gutter protection, screen repair and replacement, deck refinishing, and other seasonally-recommended home improvements in the Jacksonville, FL area.

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Topics: Gutter Cleaning, Air Duct Cleaning, Home Improvement

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