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Cleaning your home's exterior

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Pure white snow covers all, right? You think it’s going to last forever, especially with the winter we’ve had, but eventually it will all melt and what is left will not be so pretty. Come the spring thaw, we will all have to do our part to clean up the exterior of our homes. The task can be overwhelming, but if you break it down into smaller parts, you may find that it’s not so daunting after all.

House exterior

Cleaning the windows is a given in any spring-cleaning scenario, but there are other tasks that need to be done as well. The gutters will need some attention, as there is sure to be some debris stuck there. Arm yourself with some gloves, a bucket and a ladder and get up there. You know what they say about April? Showers! So, your gutters need to be cleared.

Think about the siding of your house because it may need some cleaning. Borrow or rent a power washer to clean away any debris that may have clung to it when winter started. If your garage door is looking worse for wear, give that a power wash too so that you can give it a fresh coat of paint on a dry, warm day.

Porch and deck

One of the nuisances of winter is all the salt that gets tracked into your home. You wipe off as much as you can outside the door, but now your mat is clogged with little bits of salt and gravel. Give it a shake and sweep up the debris into the garden or lawn. If you’ve left any patio furniture out over the winter, you will need to give it a scrub down. Take care around any glass top tables, especially if you do leave them out year round. Prolonged exposure to the elements can result in cracks. Otherwise, stored pieces of furniture just need a simple brush down. Check any lighting you may have set up around the perimeter of your deck. The weight of the snow may have loosened some of the fixtures.

Lawn and garden

This is where we see the most debris because recyclables can get blown around quite easily in the winter. You can form a litter squad with your friends and neighbours to help clean up your neighbourhood. With everyone pitching in, you’re more likely to keep up with the spring-cleaning on your own property. Rake up any leaves or twigs, as well, including ones stuck in the garden. Stock up on plenty of garden waste bags because you will need them. Prune and weed as needed. If your lawn is compacted, you will need to aerate with a garden fork. Lastly, fertilize your lawn and add mulch to the garden. Don’t forget to uncover any plants or shrubs when you’re sure the risk of frost is gone.

Once everything is clean, you will find maintaining the rest of your home less daunting. You can take care of any repairs and outdoor projects as the warm weather continues.

By Meagan Dieroff

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