Spring cleaning is something many of us associate with the cathartic process of brushing away the winter and getting home and garden ready for the lazy, hazy days of summer. In addition to this, such a process is a great opportunity to not only ensure everything is beautiful to look at, but to double check that your home protection also passes muster.
Carrying out the following security checks and simple end of winter tasks ensures your home will be the safe haven it should be, leaving you free to relax and enjoy the lengthening days as the mercury begins to rise…
Inside the home
- Clean your security equipment: You’ve spent good money on security devices, but once they’re in place there’s a tendency to forget about them. Spring is the ideal time to clean sensors, light fixtures and camera lenses, as well as double checking that all sensors are working as expected. If you have security cameras or CCTV, ensure that they still point in the direction you intended.
- Clean your windows: Not only is this aesthetically pleasing, but windows with obscured views can be detrimental to security.
- Check window and door locks: Both the traditional kind and the smart kind. Check for any that might have come loose or not work correctly. Tighten or replace as necessary.
- Test your alarm or home security system: How to do this will depend on the system you own. If you’re unsure then the owner’s manual should provide instructions, or the maker will probably have instructions online. If you still don’t know how to do this or are uncomfortable in doing so, give your installer a call and ask how. Alternatively, organise an appointment for them to visit and do it for you.
Interior security isn’t solely about alarm systems and locks, there are other aspects that should be considered on a regular basis. These include:
- Checking smoke & carbon monoxide detectors: This certainly shouldn’t be an annual task: monthly or even weekly is what’s necessary, especially for standalone units that run solely on batteries. For more advanced and hard wired detectors these should still be checked regularly, both to ensure they’re working correctly and that the back up batteries are fully charged and not degraded.
- Clean any fireplaces, flues and chimney: Log burning stoves and fireplaces are gorgeous features, but they do require a little TLC – especially come spring. Clean out the grate or stove and take advantage of the fact that this is a chimney sweep’s quiet time and get your flue swept. That way you’ll avoid the rush come the end of the summer, and all it’ll require before use is a quick check that no birds have made a nest during the warmer months.
Outside the home
- Check outside CCTV and security cameras: The same as you did for inside the home, clean camera lenses and sensors, and ensure cameras are facing the required direction. Check mounts and tighten if necessary.
- Inspect security lighting: Ensure all bulbs are working and that batteries have plenty of life in them.
- Trim overgrowing vegetation: Of course, you want the exterior of the house to look great, but there’s also a more practical aspect – that of reducing the opportunity for a potential intruder to hide. While you’re at it, make sure all fences are secure and that no holes have appeared, and inspect gates and exterior doors to confirm the latches close properly.
As an aside, whilst you’re on a roll outside, spare a moment to check that your house number and/or name is clearly displayed outside. That way, should you ever need the attention of the emergency services, they’ll be no delay from not being able to find your address.