Proud homeowners spend a lot of time taking care of their yards. Your weekends are full of mowing your lawn, weed-eating, repainting your shed, and tending your garden. On top of your regularly-scheduled summer projects, you have to contend with extreme heat, intense thunderstorms, and keeping insects out of your lawn, flowers, and vegetables.
While your neighbors aren’t likely to marvel over how clean your outdoor lights fixtures are, or how evenly your outdoor taps flow, you should devote some time to their maintenance anyway. If you ignore your outdoor fixtures for too long, you’ll be without light and water when you need them the most.
Watch Your Outdoor Lighting
Outdoor lighting creates ambiance in the evening and provides essential illumination when you walk around your home at night. Perhaps because the fixtures are self-contained, we often assume that they don’t need yearly maintenance. However, an annual scrub can increase the light output from your fixtures.
If you haven’t changed your bulbs in years, it’s smart to change them even before they burn out so that you don’t find yourself stuck in the dark when you really need a light. When you’re inside the fixture, check the wiring. If it looks dry and undamaged, you’re all set to go for another season.
Bugs and water can get inside your fixtures, so if the wires look like they’re wearing out, you might need to replace the fixture. If the water seals look like they’re degrading, but the wires haven’t sustained damage yet, you can easily reseal the light to give it a few extra years of life.
Outdoor Plumbing Fixtures
Outdoor water maintenance is probably the very last thing on your mind in the summer. You expect to attach your hose to the house tap and have it run properly. However, freezing in the winter can damage pipes over time and cause cracks.
Before you attach your hose, let the water run out of the tap for a few minutes. Watch the flow to see if it seems strong and consistent. If the flow fluctuates a lot, or if it’s a low flow, you might have a cracked or collapsed pipe. Never ignore a broken pipe. The water damage can affect the exterior wall of your home, and it can also leak inside your home.
If you have outdoor sinks, make sure that they’re free of debris and disinfected before you run water through them, especially if the sink is part of your outdoor kitchen. You’ll want to maintain your outdoor sinks just as diligently as you maintain the sinks inside your home. Also, it’s prudent to cover the drains of your outdoor sinks when you’re not using them. Little critters like small, dark spaces, so keep them out with a drain cap.
Replacing Your Outdoor Lights
Eventually, you’ll need to update your outdoor lights. Sometimes, the style is outdated. Other times, the lights malfunction. Look for the following signs to determine if it’s time to invest in new fixtures:
- If the glass has cracked, it’s time to replace the light. It might still work now, but water can get through the crack. Over time, the water will damage the wires. If you want to preserve any of the wiring, you should replace the fixture before moisture has a chance to damage it.
- If you accidentally severed the wires while working on a landscaping project, it’s time to replace the fixture. A professional might be able to salvage the fixtures by replacing all of the wiring, but in most cases, it’s easier to replace the fixture.
- If the light socket has corroded, the safest option is to replace the fixture.
- If you replace the bulb multiple times, but it keeps burning out within a couple of days, the fixture is faulty, and you should purchase a new one.
Still Have Questions?
If you have questions about what maintenance you need to do, or if you know that you don’t have the time to do the maintenance yourself, give is a call to schedule an appointment.