Everybody loves spring! The warmth of the sun on your skin, the chirping of birds back from their winter travels, nature beginning to bloom again. Spring is a celebration of the renewal of life and nothing says spring quite like spring cleaning.
That’s right, spring cleaning.
It might not be the first thing that springs to mind – pardon the pun – when thinking of this time of year, but it is part and parcel of the season for many Americans.
In more than a few households, spring cleaning follows a set pattern, starting with putting away the winter clothing and bedding to doing a thorough house cleaning. It also happens to be a great opportunity to make some energy efficient changes around your home.
1. Improve Your Indoor Air Quality
This isn’t as difficult as it sounds; start by opening up your doors and windows, and airing out the house! Cool, spring breezes will introduce a welcome freshness to your home, giving it a healthier and cleaner feel after the enclosed stuffiness of winter. Also don’t forget to clean or change the filters on your HVAC system and to check your ducts and vents for air leakage or blockage either!
2. Check Your Appliances
Spring is the ideal time to give your appliances a good inspection to make sure they’re functioning at optimal efficiency. A few examples include:
- Refrigerator interior, coils and drain pan should be thoroughly cleaned out
- Accumulated lint from dryer vents removed and the washing machine checked to make sure there aren’t any drainage issues
- The oven completely cleaned and the exhaust checked to ensure there’s no blockage
3. Windows and Doors
Winter can be harsh not only on you and your family but on your house as well! Inclement winter weather can take quite a toll on doors and windows and with the coming of warmer weather, there’s no better time to fix any damage that may have been done. Check for gaps in the weather stripping and, if necessary, replace it altogether. Look for air leakage – not only is this important in terms of energy efficiency but also for your comfort and quality of life. Keep in mind that spring also heralds the arrival of the allergy season for many, and that means trying to block pollen from entering the home becomes a major issue.
As with your doors and windows, roofing can take a beating over the winter as well. Check for any damage such as missing shingles, holes, tears or buckling in the flashings (pieces of metal used to seal any penetrations), especially near roof stacks, vents, skylights and chimneys. In addition, also clean out all the drains and gutters, and make sure they’re firmly secure.
Finally, clean out your garage! Chances are that after a long and cold winter, your garage is now stuffed with all kinds of clutter that is in desperate need of sorting such as old furniture and appliances. First of all, get rid of all that stuff you don’t need, including that old fridge where you’re storing drinks (it’s an energy monster!). Then, check for any moisture and air leakage issues, and fix them!
So instead of just spring cleaning, think about energy efficient spring cleaning. You’ll enjoy a happier and healthier home, lower energy costs and an improved quality of life!