Importance Of Spring Cleaning

Every spring people start to talk about spring cleaning, not only to discuss how much they hate it, but also their plans for when they will do it. With such contrary discussions you may start to wonder what the importance of this tradition is, if any. After learning more about the history of spring cleaning, and how it is done today, I can tell you why this is still an important tradition in our households. see here

Before most homes were heated by gas or electricity they used to be heated with other methods, such as burning coal, wood and kerosene lamps to give light and some heat. These heating methods not only warmed the home (at least somewhat), but also left behind a layer of soot, dirt and grease on everything in the home. All winter the family stayed close together in a couple of heated rooms, which progressively got dirtier and dirtier, and smellier and smellier, from the heating method and the room full of people. Therefore, when the weather finally started getting warmer, and they could go outside and enjoy it, and also begin using more of the house again, they wanted to get everything cleaned up.

That is how the tradition of spring cleaning began. The house really had gotten filthy, dirty and smelly over the winter and the spring was the first opportunity they had to get everything clean and back in order. These days most of us don’t use these older heating methods for our home and at the end of winter our houses are no dirtier than they were back in the fall. However, to replace these old problems involving dirty ways of heating our homes we have a new problem — stuff.

The same technology that helped us get our modern methods of heating and cooling our homes also caused industrialization, and the easier accumulation of objects and things coming into our homes, that are now manufactured by machines. Now, by the end of the winter, especially after the holidays, our houses are not dirty from soot and grime, but instead have become even more jam-packed with stuff and junk and clutter. Therefore, today spring cleaning isn’t really about scrubbing grease off carpeting anymore, but instead about plowing through all the things we’ve accumulated throughout the year and winnowing everything down to a more manageable amount.

You’ve probably seen the television shows about hoarders? Well, thankfully most of us know how to get rid of stuff better than these individuals, but most likely each of us still has too much of it in our homes. The reason we shouldn’t have so much stuff in our homes includes that it is more difficult to keep everything clean with all the clutter around, that we can trip and fall over it, and that we can’t enjoy all of it anyway because there is just not enough time in the day to really use and appreciate everything we own.

So, the importance of the tradition of spring cleaning today may be different then it was in the past, but it is no less important. Today, each spring we make sure to rid our houses of junk and stuff we don’t want or use, and thoroughly clean and polish everything we prize enough to keep and use. This helps us appreciate what we have, and actually enjoy our homes. Put in that light spring cleaning is no less important today than it was in the past, even though it serves a different purpose now.

Tips on maintaining the exterior of your house

If you are planning to paint the exterior of your home, your first decision is do I hire a painter or do the job myself. More than half the cost of using a professional painter is labor so doing the job yourself can be a big savings. Painting your home is a dreaded and labor intensive job but a little preparation and hard work can produce very satisfying results. If you decide to do the job yourself the following tips will help produce a great looking cost effective job.

Tips:

  1. Tools and Equipment

Using the proper tools will help produce a safer and higher quality job. Make sure you use the correct ladder or scalpel for the job. Follow the recommendations for ladder and scalpel safety. Most ladders have warning labels posted on the ladder tips on maintaining the exterior of your house.

Use a good quality brush and roller. Good quality tools last longer and help make the job easier. Make sure you have drop cloths readily available to cover areas that need protection such as sidewalks, driveway, porches, patios, decks and shrubbery.

  1. Surface Preparation

Surface preparation is a critical step to producing a quality, professional looking job. All damaged wood should be repaired. Use a paint scrapper, putty knife and sander to remove all flaking, peeling and blistering paint. Minor damage to wood surfaces can be repaired with a quality wood repair product from your local building supply store. I recommend using goggles, gloves and a dust mask while scrapping and sanding. This is hard, time consuming work but it will help produce an outcome that will make you proud.

  1. Choosing Paint

Choose high quality paint. Choosing a lesser quality paint may save you a few dollars now but you will pay over time. A high quality paint is easier to apply, easier to maintain and more durable than the cheaper paints.

  1. Painting the Exterior

Paint from the top down to avoid dripping paint on surfaces you have already painted. Start with the gutters, fascia and eaves and work your way down the wall surface. Using a good quality 4 or 5 inch brush will make for an easier faster job. Check for and correct drips and runs as you go along.

Painting the main walls can be painted with a brush, roller or both. If you have grooved siding, the grooves should be painted first. Paint the grooves in a 4 to 5 foot section and then roll or brush the flat surface before moving to the next 4 to 5 foot section. If you have lapped siding, paint the underside of each lap in a 4 to 5 foot section and then roll or brush the flat surface before moving to the next 4 to 5 foot section.