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Check Your Deck
Now that it's the perfect weather to spend free time entertaining outside on the deck, perform an annual inspection on the whole structure to ensure everything is safe and in top shape for your family and guests. While well-built decks will last for decades, some that are 15 or more years old, when building codes were different, or possibly the work of a DIYer who owned the home before you warrants careful inspection for certain key things. Problems to look for are rotted or wobbly posts, weak post connections, properly-fastened ledger boards, and missing flasher ledging. Most of the fixes are inexpensive and you should be able to complete them yourself. Click here for the full inspection checklist, as well as detailed steps to fix each issue.
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Exterior caulking is imperative for keeping water out of susceptible areas around the outside of your home. In the spring, it's a good idea to walk around the outside of the house and look for areas in need of caulk where water may be working its way inside, or signs of existing but failing caulk. When you've identified the problem areas, you'll want to clean out the area and apply either an acrylic or polyurethane formula. Acrylic is easier to use and clean up, and is a good choice for cracks narrower than 1 inch. Polyurethane, which is more difficult to work with, may be worth the effort for concrete, roof, or gaps wider than 1 inch. Once you've picked your product, thoroughly clean the area before application. Learn how to make exterior caulk last longer here.
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Patch Driveway Cracks
Not only are driveway cracks unsightly, but if left unattended, they can take years off the life of your driveway. The most surefire way to repair cracks for good are by using melt-in filler, which, unlike squeeze bottle and caulk tube-type products, will not shrink over time. Plan on spending a full day to repair several cracks, and wait for a warm day with no rain in the forecast. It's important to widen hairline cracks first with an angle grinder and diamond wheel so the filler will last. Thoroughly clean the cracks of dirt and debris with a leaf blower or air compressor before applying the filler. The prep may be time-consuming, but it's worth it in the long run. Check out the full directions for patching and repairing asphalt cracks.