LAWNCARE

4 steps to wake your lawn up for spring

Before your lawn can return to the lush, green state of the previous summer, it’s crucial to wake it up in the spring. To do this properly, the lawn experts at Lowe’s have provided these four steps.


Tune up your equipment: Make sure your mower has a fresh tank of oil, no loose bolts, fresh spark plugs and a sharp blade.
Evaluate your lawn: Once the snow has melted, walk your lawn and note any dead spots and bring a rake to break up any thatched areas.
Reseed where needed: Overseed the bald spots by spreading seed over the affected area, adding fertilizer and about a half inch of topsoil, gently raking the mixture together and watering every day.
Plant while it’s still cool: The cooler temperatures in spring are ideal for roots to take hold before hot summer weather arrives.

AIR

Simple things you can do to improve indoor air quality


Improve your home’s indoor air quality with these tips from Tom Tasker, product manager at Luxaire.
Vacuum and mop at least weekly to remove dust that settles on floors. Remember to clean under and behind furniture regularly.
Dust furniture and vacuum upholstery with the brush attachment.
Before vacuuming, turn on the HVAC fan, so the filter can catch stirred up dust particles.
Check the HVAC filter regularly. When replacing, check its MERV rating (Minimum Efficiency Reporting Value). The higher the value, the better it is at catching smaller particles.
Make sure fireplaces and wood-burning stoves are properly vented outside, away from windows and HVAC intakes.
Keep outdoor particles out. Remove shoes at the door and close windows on windy days.
Maintain a healthy humidity level, between 30-50 percent. Too much creates an ideal environment for mold and other allergens.

TIP OF THE WEEK

Don’t re-roof until you do these things

Consider the following before you re-roof, according to TAMKO Building Products Inc.:


Check contractor qualifications. Choose a local, reputable contractor.
Determine layover or tear off. Although tearing off existing shingles is more expensive due to increased labor costs, there could be advantages.
Research the warranty. It is important to understand the warranty.
Assess ventilation needs. It is generally recommended to incorporate proper ventilation into the re-roof.
Check the weather. Avoid starting a project with wet plywood or underlayment, or when the forecast indicates a strong chance of rain.

OUTDOORS

Ways hardscapes can add value to your home

Outdoor hardscape projects add resale value to a home as well as bring extra enjoyment to homeowners while they are living in the home, according to a National Association of Realtors and National Association of Landscape Professionals report. Here are some ways they help, according to Versa-Lok:

Curb appeal – Simple updates, such as adding retaining wall units or paving stone edging, and more ambitious projects, like a patio, add value and curb appeal.

Making unusable space usable – Retaining wall systems can help retain the soil excavated to create an outdoor living space.

Prevent erosion – Retaining wall systems are essential in preventing erosion, controlling grade changes in a yard, and preventing damage to the landscape, and, in certain environments, even damage to your home.

Safety and privacy – Seat walls can add privacy and protection against the elements, and energy-efficient landscape lighting can be installed for nighttime ambiance and functionality.