Your Spring Maintenance Guide

Our spring maintenance guide includes a breakdown of items for inspection so that you can be sure your home is always running as smoothly and efficiently as possible. 

Clean or replace furnace filter, humidifier and heat recovery ventilator (HRV).

Furnace filter: A clogged furnace filter will impact air flow throughout the house; be sure to replace it every three months.

Humidifier: Ensure the equipment is off before servicing (consult user manual). Remove the white cover plate on the front of the unit, then detach filter. Gently clean so as not to remove the protective coating that helps retain moisture, then reinstall.

HRV: Ensure the equipment is off before servicing (consult user manual). Gently clean and dry HRV filter before reinstalling. A light vacuuming of the HRV unit may be required, as some dust and debris from the exterior can make its way in.

Check sump pump (if installed) for discharge, and clean.
Your sump pump is the heart of your basement’s waterproofing system. To check for discharge or clean, locate the pit inside the house. Open pit and use a shop vacuum (or a machine that can tolerate water) to remove any build up of stone or sediment, which can clog the pump over time. Once pit is cleaned, pour a bucket of water in to ensure that the pump is operational, then seal and close the lid. If uncomfortable with cleaning the sump pump pit, consult a professional plumbing service for maintenance.

Check and reset ground fault circuit interrupter (GFCI).
GFCI outlets help prevent you from electrical shock, as they are specially designed to cut power from the outlet when an imbalance or power surge flows through them. To test, locate the two rectangular buttons between the cord slots. Press the test button with your finger; you will hear a snap that trips the outlet and cuts off the power to the two plug connections. Once confirmed that the safety function is working properly, press the reset button to restore power to the outlet.

Test smoke alarms and carbon monoxide detectors.
Test your smoke and carbon monoxide detectors to ensure they are working correctly. Cachet homes feature dual function smoke alarms (hard wired with battery backup) that should be replaced only when the unit’s lifespan has been exhausted, approximately every 10 years. Check your fire extinguishers to ensure there are no leaks and that the pin is in place.

Check air ducts, remove covers and vacuum dust from vents.
Have your air ducts cleaned if they are visibly contaminated with mold, pests or vermin, or are clogged with a significant amount of dust and debris. To lightly clean your vents, turn power off to your heating and air conditioning system, unscrew the vent and vacuum to remove dust or dirt.

Remove snow and ice from overhang and vents.
Ice dams form when the snow melts, runs down your roof and refreezes near the edge. To prevent injury, consult with a professional to clean snow and ice from your home’s overhang and vents.

Check eavestroughs and downspouts.
During the winter, gutters and downspouts often cease to work as they fill with ice; this can potentially damage eavestroughs. Check them in the spring for leaks and pooling, and to ensure that no sections are only loosely attached to the roof. Remove debris and use a hose to flush out eavestroughs. Using a hose will prove if all downspouts and their extensions are functioning correctly (if the extensions are weak, water will soak into the ground right at the foundation, and lead to a damp basement).

Inspect basement or crawl spaces for moisture.
The use of a dehumidifier and air conditioning unit greatly help reduce moisture levels in the home. Cold cellar vents should not be obstructed or blocked to allow air flow (it is not recommended to use a cold cellar to store organic goods, as it can promote mold growth).

Check roof for loose or cracked shingles.
Examine your roof’s shingles to see if any were lost or damaged during the winter. Shingles that are cracked, buckled, loose or are missing granules need to be replaced.

Check water heater for leaks.
For gas heaters, if rust is present without signs of a leak, condensation may be forming inside the tank. Call Enercare for any servicing matters.

Turn on exterior water supply which was previously shut off.
Ensure that your system is properly winterized before the first frost (late in the year) to ensure no damage to your exterior water supply occurs during the winter months.

Plan landscaping to avoid soil settlement and water ponding.
For a verdant lawn, fertilize the grass in early spring and re-sow to replace dead patches. Remember that freshly-laid sod needs to be soaked to ensure the roots catch; this should be done daily until the roots successfully take (this can be checked by gently trying to lift a small section). Routine lawn cutting should also be practiced; the spring is a good time to sharpen your lawnmower blade and to change its engine oil.  

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