April Home Maintenance Tips: Wildfire Season
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Prepare for Wildfire Season
Spring means warmer weather, outdoor activities and improvements around the house. As you plan updates or basic spring cleaning and repairs, be aware that wildfire season is approaching. These quick-moving fires won’t give you much time to act if they head your way, so be prepared.
If you are planning renovations or sprucing up the exterior of your home, here are some suggestions for added protection.
- Use only noncombustible roofing materials.
- Cover exterior walls with stucco, stone, brick or other nonflammable materials.
- Choose dual-paned, tempered windows, which don’t break as easily as single-paned glass.
- Install mesh screens on vents to prevent embers from entering the house.
- Add protective barriers made from masonry or metal between your home and an attached structure, such as a wood fence.
- Remove dead plants and branches and tall, dry grasses and landscape with fire-resistant plants.
- Clean leaves and debris from your roof and gutters and under and around porches and decks.
Around your home, look at your landscape as three zones — the area immediately adjacent to your home, the area 30 feet from your home and the area 30 to 100 feet from your home. Make Sure Your Home is Not a Wildfire Victim offers tips for preparing each zone.
Don’t forget to include your gutters in your spring cleaning. Improper drainage can lead to water in basements or crawl spaces. Fix loose or leaky gutters, and make sure downspouts drain away from the foundation and are clear of debris.