Tag Archives: spring cleaning

Spring Cleaning – Going Green

Signs of spring burst all around the Cape back in February. Although it may not be time to start packing away your winter clothes just yet it is a great time to start on your annual cleaning & organizing. This year why not go a little greener with it?

Spring_Flower_CleanYour Air
Nix the air fresheners and open up those windows! Toss the scented aerosols and freshen things up with fresh cut flowers instead. Forget chemicals and use mixes of baking soda and essential oils for deodorizing. Use low-VOC paints.

Your Papers
Register an address and you start getting paper solicitations and direct marketing cards. Open a line of credit and you get loads of other offers. On average the amount of paper waste we make every year adds up to over 2000 pounds! What can you you do to go green here? Of course you can recycle the paper but start lessening the amount delivered in the first place. Call the sources of all of the unwanted mail and opt out. You can also sign up for paperless billing invoices and save your receipts digitally. Not only will you be saving the environment you’ll be saving yourself the time you would normally spend filing it all away!

Your Water
Use less and keep it clean! If you’ve been putting off fixing that running toilet do it now! Check all of your faucets for drips and adjust them accordingly. A faucet that drips 1 drip per minute actually wastes up to 34 gallons a year and you’re paying for it. Consider swapping out your shower heads for low-flow models. Be conscious of how much water you’re using when you’re brushing your teeth and doing dishes (turn it off while you scrub!).

Your Stuff
Recycle and donate. Old tattered clothes can be used as rags or kept for messy projects like painting the ceiling. Donate clothes in good condition to your local Goodwill, Salvation Army, church group or homeless shelter. Donate old pillows and towels to your local animal shelter. Buy a trash can that helps you sort out your plastics and bottles from your trash, and sort and recycle all of your boxes.

Your Energy
Vampires are everywhere! Think of how many things are still plugged in at your home right now. The coffee pot? TV? Phone chargers? Computer? All of these things are still slowly using electricity. Put a stake in it and unplug any electrical devices when you’re not using them. For areas with multiple devices use a power strip so you only have to pull one plug from the outlet.
Have you had a home energy assessment done yet? Mass Save offers them for Massachusetts residence. They gave homeowners all new energy efficient light bulbs and power strips for their entertainment centers (for FREE!).

Share with us how you are going green in your home!

May Home Maintenance

Welcome, May! So good to see you! As you work your way through this month’s checklist, think Memorial Day, beach weather, the smell of fresh-cut grass, longer days, and warmer nights!

  • Test all of your smoke detectors and carbon monoxide detectors.
  • Clean and inspect your gutters. Make sure the clips and straps are all tightly fastened. Run a garden hose in them and make sure the water is directed at least 3 feet away from your foundation.
  • Don’t let the beauty of spring and sunshine be clouded; make those windows sparkle! Streak free tip: don’t work directly in the sun.
  • Air-conditioning season approaches. Have your unit checked, clean the condenser or heat pump of debris, and replace the forced-air filter.
  • Reset your thermostats and automatic sprinklers as the weather changes.
  • Paint your patio and deck furniture to enjoy it all season long. If there’s no need to paint, coat metal pieces with auto polish before placing them outside for the season.
  • Put away your winter clothes. Have articles you didn’t wear even once this year? Donate them and don’t forget to keep track of your donations for taxes next year.

May Home Maintenance Checklist Printable Version.

April Home Maintenance

For a beautiful, bountiful summer, start your preparations in April! Run through our maintenance checklist, then start a list of your own of all of the things you’d like to accomplish next season.

Cherry_Blossoms

  • Test all of your smoke detectors and carbon monoxide detectors.
  • Clean your window screens with a bristle brush, a mild detergent and a garden hose.
  • Check for sales on winter maintenance equipment like snow shovels, generators, snow blowers, etc.
  • Prepare your winter equipment for storage and your gas powered lawn equipment for use.
  • Inspect your home’s exterior for signs of rot. Use a small awl to probe for any soft spots on railings, window sills, and posts.
  • Prepare to Grill! Grills can be cleaned with soapy water and a brass bristle brush. You may need to also clean the gas hose, and don’t forget about the drip tray. See your manufacturer’s instructions.
  • Re-caulk open joints around windows and doors, and replace weather stripping where worn.
  • Clean your range hood and either clean or replace the filter.

April Home Maintenance Checklist Printable Version

March Home Maintenance

It’s officially March! Here on Cape Cod, we know that means we’re in for some yo-yo weather patterns and little hints of spring. Start your monthly maintenance to-do’s early and enjoy what the rest of the month has to bring!

spring march maintenance checklist

  • Daylight savings begins this month. Replace the batteries in your smoke and carbon monoxide detectors when you change your clocks.
  • Clean out your medicine cabinet. Safely dispose of dated prescriptions and over the counter medicines (please not in the toilet!). You might find a local collection drive by calling your police department.
  • Examine your washer machine hose washers. Shut off their water source, remove the supply hose, and replace any worn or damaged washers. Replace the hoses every 5 years.
  • Clean out the garage. Gather all hazardous materials to be tossed (paint thinners, cleaners, pesticides, etc.) and contact your city’s Department of Public Works to find out when the next collection date is.
  • Clean your refrigerator inside and out, removing all food, shelves, trays, and old ice from the ice maker. Replace the baking soda.
  • If you have one, test your sump pump by pouring water into it and making sure it pumps out.
  • Garbage disposal cleaner: Grind two trays of ice cubes made of 1 cup of vinegar and 1 gallon of water.
  • Planning on planting a garden this year? Start drafting up a diagram of the space you have. Research how much space each plant is going to need, and the best season to start them. You may even be able to start some of your seedlings indoors.

March Home Maintenance Checklist Printable Version