8 Tips to Prepare Your Home for Spring

C&S Insurance

Spring is on its way—and in addition to bringing warmer weather, pollen, and the Easter bunny, it also reminds us of the tradition of spring cleaning—in other words, getting rid of all that junk you’ve been holding on to.

While you have spring cleaning on the brain, you might want to add a few other items to that to-do list. Your home’s safety should be one of your top priorities as we enter this new season, and there are some tests and quick fixes we recommend for preventing damage, maintenance issues, and safety concerns down the line. You also don’t want to spend these beautiful days coming up filing insurance claims—so, let’s see what preventative measures you can easily take.

With that in mind, here are eight tips on our spring maintenance checklist.

Replace Air Conditioning Filters

Changing A/C filters is an important step for keeping your house safe, and it can also benefit your wallet. It’s also pretty quick and simple—it can typically be done in under an hour.

You should ideally replace your A/C filters every three months. However, if you have lower-quality fiberglass filters instead of pleated air filters, they need to be replaced every month. If you have pets or children, you should replace them more often—every two months for high-quality filters. If you suffer from allergies, change them out every 50 days.

You don’t need to replace your filters as often if you’re not running your HVAC system every day—for instance, if it’s a vacation home. If you’re only running it for a few days out of the year, changing the filters every six months to once a year is sufficient.

If you don’t replace your filters often, the HVAC system has to work a lot harder, which can raise your energy bill. Dirty filters will also cause health concerns, as they circulate dust and allergens. The strain on your HVAC system can also cause it to break, which would be much more costly to fix than replacing your filters.

Check Your Smoke Alarms

Testing your smoke alarms is important for preventing fires. Typically, smoke alarms have to be replaced every 10 years. However, their batteries have to be replaced more frequently. While smoke detectors will usually chirp loudly when they need new batteries, it’s still important to ensure that they’re working. The U.S. Fire Administration recommends testing them once a month and replacing the batteries once to twice per year.

If you’re unsure of how to test your smoke detectors, refer to your manufacturer’s instructions. Always start by alerting the other members of your household that you’ll be testing them. Then ask someone to stand at the furthest point in your home from an alarm—then you can check to make sure they hear it. Then, press and hold the test button on your alarm. It should emit a very loud beeping sound. If it doesn’t, it’s time to replace it or the batteries.

Prevent Leaks

Leaks in your plumbing system can cause rotting, mold growth, discoloration of your walls and ceiling, peeling paint, sagging floors, decreased water pressure, and an increased water bill.

A few ways to prevent leaks include unclogging your drains (it’s recommended that you clean them regularly), installing a leak detection system, inspecting your water supply lines, and regularly opening and closing your water valves. Even if you decide not to invest in the more expensive sensors and other technologies, simple checks of your sinks, toilets, and appliances can go a long way in preventing water damage before it happens.

Clean Out Your Dryer Vent

Not only does a clogged dryer vent reduce your dryer’s efficiency, which could increase your energy bill—it’s also a fire hazard. If you’ve noticed that your clothes are taking longer than usual to dry, it’s likely time to clean out the vent. Clogged vents are one of the leading causes of dryer fires, and it’s a problem easily prevented.

You can hire a professional to clean out your dryer vent, but you can also do it yourself. Step one is to unplug and cut power to your dryer. It’s important to make sure the appliance is receiving no electricity while you clean the vent.

Next, locate the vent and disconnect the hose. To clean the vent, you can use a few different tools—a dryer vent cleaning brush, a hose attachment on a vacuum, or a leaf blower. Or, you may want to utilize all three. Then, make sure you discard all of the debris into your trash can and reattach your hose. Lastly, clean the exterior vent cover with your hands or a vacuum.

Have someone help you if the dryer is heavy to avoid injury. You should also wear a mask to avoid breathing in dust, lint, and debris. Test the dryer carefully when you’re done, especially if it’s a gas dryer, as an improperly connected gas dryer could cause a buildup of carbon monoxide.

Clean Your Gutters

Clean gutters make your home look nicer and also prevent damage. It’s recommended that you clean your gutters at least twice per year, and with the nice weather rolling around, now is a great time to tackle this task. If you have a lot of trees in your yard, this may be a task that needs attention on a more regular basis.

Cleaning your gutters is something you can do yourself, but be sure to read up on safety tips first. You can also hire a professional. Cleaning your gutters is important to prevent structural damage that clogged gutters can cause, and it allows you to inspect them for cracks. You can apply gutter sealant to fix these. Also, you should watch out for infestations of wasps and termites, which might make nests in leaf-filled gutters.

Repair Cracks

Wall cracks are fairly common in both new and old homes. Some cracks can be repaired quickly and inexpensively by re-taping the seams where the drywall panels meet. However, some cracks can signal larger problems with your house, which should be fixed first.

Cracks can result from the house settling, fluctuations in temperature and humidity, faulty taping, leaks, or a shifting foundation. Try to determine the source of the crack before fixing it so you know if you have any larger problems to address.

It’s not recommended to just fill cracks with spackle. The better option is to re-tape the cracked wall’s joints.

Watch Out for Trees

Pay attention to the trees around your house and determine if any pose a risk of falling and causing damage. It’s generally recommended that all trees should be more than 20 feet away from your house. It can also be dangerous if large tree limbs are growing over your roof or if roots are surfacing too close to your foundation.

It’s dangerous to cut down trees or tree limbs yourself, so we recommend that you consult a professional for help.

Inspect Your Roof

Inspecting your roof regularly is key to preventing damage and collapse. Your roof is key for keeping out snow and rain, but it can also get worn down by the weather. Many roofing companies perform free or inexpensive roof inspections, so it’s recommended that you get in contact with a professional to get the best opinion.


Going through this whole checklist at once may seem daunting, but it can be broken up into small, manageable tasks. Don’t be afraid to consult professionals if you are unsure or have questions about your home—your household’s safety is paramount. Have a happy and safe spring!