Maintaining your home after a long winter in New England can do more than save you some green. It can help your home run greener and more efficiently, too. Getting started early on spring home maintenance puts luck in your favor, helping you spot problems before they begin. Here are 3 ways to save money by tackling spring home maintenance while helping out the environment, too.
Prevent water damage
Save some green
Melting snow and debris are the enemies of gutters and downspouts. As the snow and ice that has collected on your roof and in your gutters begins to melt, it can carry with it twigs, decomposing leaves, dirt and more. This slurry can create clogs that divert the melting snow and spring rain to other areas on or around your home.
In addition to the damage this can cause to your roof and your home’s interior, water that’s not properly diverted can build up on window sills causing rot, form pools that lead to big problems and can channel around your foundation causing accelerated settling and other landscaping issues.
Being proactive and cleaning out your gutters and downspouts before spring showers arrive can help you save a lot of green. This process will ensure that water will be drained properly and diverted away from your home. And considering that water damage is not always immediately visible, preventing problems now can save you even more money down the road.
If you’re growing flowers or fruits and vegetables this spring and summer, consider arranging one or more of your downspouts so they drain into your garden. Making the most of rainwater can help you save a little money as well as prevent water waste. If it’s legal in your area, consider collecting rainwater to maintain indoor plants, as well.
Maintain your home’s optimal temperature
Save some green
Nothing wakes you up quite as fast as walking by your front door on a cold winter morning and feeling a blast of freezing air on your feet. It’s a sure sign that some of the warm air you’re paying for is escaping out of your home. Air can just as easily leak out of or into your home through the sides or top of your exterior doors. Measuring these gaps then adding a door sweep and some weather stripping can effectively block these leaks without the cost of replacing the door.
While these gaps may be more noticeable in the winter, they can be just as costly in the summer months. Take a walk around your home on a bright sunny day and take note of the places where you can see light beaming in. These are the spots where costly cool air will escape when you turn on the AC.
Use your curtains and blinds to your advantage by closing them during sunny days in the summer and opening them in the winter. Saving cooling and heating energy is good for your wallet – and the environment.
Check in on your appliances
Save some green
As winter winds down and you get ready to spend more time outdoors, making sure that everything is running smoothly when you’re away can grant you peace of mind and help you save some green. Simple maintenance such as cleaning your refrigerator coils and the mechanisms in your dishwasher can help these appliances run more efficiently, saving you money.
The Family Handyman also recommends cleaning window air conditioning units before installing them this summer to help them run smoothly and safely.
As temperatures outside rise, lowering your home’s maximum water temperature can do more than protect unsuspecting hands from being scalded at the sink. According to energy.gov, lowering your water heater’s thermostat can also achieve up to 22% in energy savings each year. These energy savings are good for the environment and your household budget, potentially reducing annual expenses by $30 or more.
Getting a head start on spring home maintenance puts luck on your side by helping you tackle winter wear and tear before it impacts your home and your budget. Start protecting your home and the environment so you can enjoy the warmer weather to come.
For more budgeting and savings tips, visit the FutureTrack blog.