November 11, 2017
The approach of winter comes with various responsibilities for homeowners. You must prepare the place to adjust to the cold temperatures to minimize damage and one area that needs proper care is the yard. Your yard has been a flurry of activity during summer with barbecues and children running around. It was a beautiful sight in fall with leaves and flowers all over the place. The cold season, however, is not very gentle on lawns hence the need for maintenance. Water is particularly a big issue during this time of year whether it’s from rain, storms, or melting snow. How can you ensure moisture doesn’t ruin your flower beds or get into the house?
Clean the Gutters
During fall, your roof gutters may have collected a lot of debris, leaves, twigs, and branches, which cause blockages after a while. Clogged gutters are dangerous during the cold season, especially if it rains heavily in your area. Without proper drainage, the system will restrict flow, and that interferes with the outside drainage. Use a scoop or other tools to remove the debris and then flush the gutters to eliminate any gunk that is stuck on the surface. Gutters should also be securely attached to the roof to accommodate the flow of water when it rains.
Check the Downspouts
Just like the gutter, downspouts are responsible for drainage when it rains. Before the season starts to get wet, conduct a thorough check of all your downspouts. Look for any blockages caused by debris from the roof. Downspouts should also be directed away from the foundation of the house. Ensure that when it rains, the flow will not end up in the ground under the property or your garden, if there is one.
Don’t let the cold season begin with your yard full of leaves. When the leaves are not too many, you can mow over them so that the grass receives the nutrients it requires. However, too many leaves will interfere with drainage, which is critical in winter. Additionally, when layers of leaves accumulate in your yard, they present the perfect breeding ground for moss and other microorganisms when it gets wet. Therefore, rake the leaves and clear the lawn of other debris. Leaves make good compost so collect them in one part of the compound.
Remove Stagnant Water Points
Most homeowners don’t consider the threat of mosquitoes when preparing their yards for the cold season. Any area or object that can potentially allow rainwater to sit should not be on your lawn. Check for holes in the ground and containers (even bottle caps) that can act as breeding environments for mosquitoes. Look at your garden to ensure nothing can collect standing rainwater or ice.
Cover your AC
Winter also means trouble for your appliances so don’t forget about them. When snow collects on your outdoor AC unit, it eventually melts and results to damages when it gets into the machine. Rain has the same effect. Use a waterproof cover to protect the outside unit of your air conditioner.
The cold season brings its share of problems for homeowners, but with the right prep work, you can prevent or mitigate the damage particularly from moisture.
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