Get a Jump on Spring Cleaning
This is the time to clean areas of the house that often go neglected. Dust or vacuum chair rails, window casings, tops of wall-mounted cabinets, and ceiling fans. Launder or dry-clean fabric draperies and use a damp cloth to clean wood and vinyl blinds. Removing dust, mites, and allergens will make for a cleaner and healthier home.
Related: How To—Clean EVERYTHING
Organize a Closet
Clean up your act storage-wise by organizing a closet or two. Big-box stores and specialty shops offer storage options that run the gamut from strictly functional wire systems to highly decorative cabinetry. The time spent creating order can yield abundant daily and long-term benefits.
Lowe's Creative Home Ideas
Plant Some Seeds
Get a jump on your garden by starting seeds indoors. There are plenty of seed-starting kits out there, but almost any flat, shallow container will do. Sow the seeds according to the packet directions, position them in a sunny location, and water frequently. Before long, your seeds will become seedlings eager to move outdoors.
Related: Starting Tomatoes from Seeds
Give Something a Makeover
There’s nothing easier or more rewarding than applying a fresh coat of paint, but don't just stop at the walls. You can use paint to give new life to just about anything—furniture, kitchen cabinets, even a lackluster stairway.
Megan Tucker from Estuary Designs
Rake the lawn to remove any branches, debris, and leaves that you might have missed in the fall; if left, they can suffocate the grass beneath. Even if you can’t see weeds, they are more than likely waiting for optimal conditions to propagate. If you want to prevent them from germinating, consider an organic herbicide; fertilizers are better suited to the fall.
Take a Walk About
Spring cleaning is by no means confined to the indoors. Take a walk around the exterior of your house to evaluate the condition of your home’s roofing, siding, and foundation. Snow, ice, and fluctuating temperatures can take their toll on your home's exterior. Also, check to see if weatherstripping and caulk have remained intact. Making sure your house is still tightly sealed will help keep your cooling costs down this summer.
Refresh Lawn Furniture
If you stored your lawn furniture for the winter, bring it outdoors and give it a rinse with the hose or wash it with a mild detergent. For metal furniture, check for signs of rust or paint erosion; a simple remedy with spray enamel will prevent further damage from sun, rain, and humidity in the months ahead.
Related: Care and Repair of Outdoor Furniture
Whether you choose to use a store-bought or homemade window cleaning solution, improve your outlook by cleaning your windows inside and out. Apply cleaner with either a squeegee or a soft cloth. If screens were on all winter, remove them and clean with mild detergent. Lay them on a dry surface (for example, a driveway) to air-dry before putting them back in.
Related: How To Clean Windows
Daylight saving time begins this month, so observe the occasion by changing the batteries in your smoke and carbon monoxide detectors. If you have a fire extinguisher, check to make sure it is accessible and operational—in other words, make sure the pressure is at the recommended level. If you don't have a fire extinguisher, get one.
Related: Smoke Detectors for the Design Set
Prep the Deck
If you have a deck or patio, give it a good sweep and check for any minor issues in need of repair. You can remove a year’s worth of grime and mildew in minutes with a pressure washer and an oxygen-based bleach solution. If your deck finish is faded or worn, revive it with stain and a top sealer.
Related: Planning Guide—Wood Decks
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