Top Ten Expert Tips on Maintaining the Home Exterior

Your home is a very major asset and you need to keep it in good condition at all times. When you are maintaining the home, you should not just think of the interior. Here are useful tips on how you can maintain the exterior of your home.

1. Roofs

There are different aspects that you need to consider when you are maintaining the roofs.

Flat roofs:

You should check flat roofs for any flashing details, bubbles, and blisters. In case of gravel and tar roofs, check for any sections with gravel erosion. Ensure that no tree branches touch the surface of the roof.

Shingle roofs:

Check for any missing, lose, or damaged shingles, focusing more on such areas as places on which downspouts discharge from upper to lower roofs and places with lots of foot traffic. You should also give more attention to plumbing stacks, flashings at dormers, and valleys among others. Prune any nearby tree branches.

Gutters & downspouts:

Check for any leakage or blockage and sections that need to be re-secured. Take note of any fading paint. Check for splitting in downspout seams, which is likely to carry debris.

2. Chimneys

Check for any loose bricks or worn out mortar. Likewise, check for broken parts on the chimney caps and protruding liners. Check for any efflorescence, which indicates the presence of moisture, showing that there is some leakage. Take note of any lost rain caps or rust in case of metal chimneys.

3. Walls

Check for any worn out mortar and brick, as well as cracks in stucco walls. In case of walls made of wood, take note of any signs of rot, caulking, damaged or loose boards, and any contact with soil. Find out what has caused deterioration of paint.

Check for any loose, missing, or damaged components in shingle, insulbrick, vinyl, and metal sidings. Check every wall for signs of settling. Cut vines to keep them away from wood trim and monitor them to check for any damage to wall surface. It is better to check deciduous vines over the winter season when they do not have leaves.

4. Doors & windows

Check for weather-stripping and caulking as well as paint deterioration on the finishes. Replace any cracked or broken glass panes. Use screens during Spring and storms during Fall. Clean the window wells.

5. Exposed foundation walls

Take note of any cracks and check for deteriorated mortar, brick, parging, or block.

6. Grading

As much as possible, ensure that the initial six feet from the house slope at an angle of one inch per foot. Clean and test catch basins.

7. Porches & decks

Check for any sign of insect attack and rot on wooden parts. Stain or paint the wood as necessary. Secure all steps and railings.

Check automatic garage doors every month. Clear and test floor drains.

8. Driveways & sidewalks

Check for any signs of deterioration and cracks. Also check for and repair any settling that will cause water to flow towards your house.

9. Eaves

Note the condition of the paint and check for any rotten or loose sections on fascia and soffits.

10. Retaining walls and fences

Check for any sign of movement as well as rot or insect infestation.

Following through these 10 tips would keep your home from deteriorating and save you from expensive repairs.

Scott Lane enjoys managing luxury residential properties. He offers his services through Luxury Home Concierge, a Paradise Valley home concierge service provider. To learn about all his services and download a free "All You Need To Know About Concierge Services" E-Book, please visit Home Concierge Services portal.

This article was published on 19 Jul 2010 and has been viewed 542 times
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