Preparing Your Lawn for Winter

Colder days are just ahead, and before you know it, you’ll be swapping out your lawn mower and rake for snow blowers and shovels. And as we begin to feel the shift from fall to winter, there are several steps you need to take to ensure that your lawn can make it through.

With the right and somewhat minimal care, you can ensure that once the last bit of snow is melted and gone, your lawn will be ready to tackle spring with ease. Here are a few things you’ll want to keep in mind. 

3 Steps to Take for Winter Lawn Success

1. Keep Your Lawn Clean and Clear

From those leftover fallen leaves to branches and trees left from a windy storm, keeping up with cleaning little by little can make it less time-consuming in the long run. Now it might seem like a minor task and something that you can neglect, but doing so can leave your lawn smothered and damaged. 

If you leave a lawn covered in leaves and branches, and the first snowfall hits, it could be hard to see and lead to a trip or fall. So please make an effort to keep it clean continuously. Not to mention, a debris-covered lawn can lead to unwanted pests and insects. 

2. Change Your Mowing Habits

Your last few mows should be a bit shorter to help it last through the season. Lower your mower by a notch or so your previous few mows. You want to make sure you’re not cutting it so low that you’re exposing the crown of it to the harsh winter weather ahead. While you’re at it, don’t forget to aerate before the season hits too. 

3. Consider Safer Snow Removal

Connecticut homeowners know that snowfall can come quickly and somewhat unexpectedly, leaving us to scramble to prepare. Though you might rely on the shoveling and salt, did you know that you could be doing damage to your lawn in the process? That’s because salt and deicers have chemicals that could lead your grass to damage and disease. So as you salt walkways and driveways, be sure to keep it as far from the grass as possible. 

HOME EXTERIOR CARE IN NORWALK, CT

Need help making your home and property look its best? The experts at Landmark Exteriors are here to help your home’s exterior look and perform its best this fall season and all year long! Give us a call at (203) 838-3838 to learn more. 

Thanksgiving Prep Tips

The holidays are here, and first up, we have Thanksgiving! Enjoy your small gathering this year around the table with your closest family or friends to enjoy some delicious food, quality time, and give thanks for all you have in your life.  

Don’t let the anticipation and stress of the big day get to you. Now is the perfect time to plan and prep for Thanksgiving so you’re ready and the festivities go off without any problems. Remember, even if you’re the one doing the hosting, cooking, and work, you deserve to have a stress-free, enjoyable holiday just the same!

Plan Out The Menu

The worst thing to do would be to wait until the last minute to decide what you plan on cooking. Look through your recipes, think about what you did last year, and what is realistic for you to be able to cook in your kitchen and with your time. You’ll be thrilled you planned this all out ahead of time.

Make A Grocery List

Now that you’ve got your meal planned, it’s time to make your shopping list! Right down every ingredient and item, you need to bring your Thanksgiving meal to life, so you don’t find yourself confused at the grocery store, or even worse, you forget something!

Do Some Cleaning

Make sure your home is all clean and tidy before the big day. This will save you lots of stress and help put you in the right mindset the day of knowing everything is already clean and clear. This includes clearing space on your kitchen counters for all the food, cleaning out your oven so it’s ready for all the food you’ll be cooking, and getting rid of any clutter that can get in your way or distract you from enjoying the holiday.

Prep Your Fridge And Freezer

Another essential part of your home to prep is your fridge and freezer! Whether it’s to keep items cool before the big meal or store all your leftovers, you won’t want to be fumbling to make room with the food already in your hands. Take some time beforehand to move items around and clear out space in both your fridge and freezer.

Plan And Set The Table

Why wait till the day of to set your dining table? Knock off another thing on your list by clearing and setting the table you plan to dine at ahead of time, so it’s one less worry on the big day, and you can focus on your cooking and other responsibilities. 

Schedule The Day

If you haven’t already, make a list and schedule everything you need to do on Thanksgiving day. Having this list to refer back to will keep you on track and distressed so you can focus on enjoying the holiday as well.

We hope you all have a wonderful Thanksgiving!

Home Exterior Care in Norwalk, CT

Need help making your home and property look its best? The experts at Landmark Exteriors are here to help your home’s exterior look and perform its best this fall season and all year long! Give us a call at (203) 838-3838 to learn more. 

How to Repair Wood Siding

Wood siding is a beautiful addition to any home! It’s a classic look that can up your home’s value. However, because of their natural state, decomposition likely will occur, and if ignored, that once valuable and stylish home could look dated and unkempt. 

Though we’d suggest contacting a professional to get the job done right, there are certain situations where it could be a simple DIY project. If you’re handy and looking to make some minor repairs on your wood siding, here’s what you’ll want to consider for a job done right:

Collect The Correct Tools

Before you begin replacing your siding, you’ll want to be sure you have every tool you’ll need to get it done right the first time. Some main things you’ll want to ensure is on hand include: 

  • A utility knife and replacement blades
  • Pry bar
  • Hammer
  • Speed square
  • Carpenter’s pencil
  • Safety glasses or goggles 
  • Dust masks
  • Tape measure
  • Your replacement boards
  • Nails (stainless steel meant for siding)
  • Caulking labeled exterior-grade
  • Primer and paint

Decide What Makes The Cut

Knowing what needs to be replaced and where the cuts will be made is the next step. You’ll need your speed square to mark your cutting lines, which should be centered on a stud. You can identify this by where the current nailheads are. 

How to do a Job Done Right 

You’ll want to slice away any paint and caulking that might connect the board to another. Use your knife to ensure this is fully complete. When it comes time to make your vertical cuts, you’ll want to be sure, precise, and careful and stop as soon as you make it through the board. Next, you’ll want to safely remove the nails with the back of your hammerhead. You can then use your old siding piece to measure the new one. When nailing the new board in place, you’ll want to ensure that the nails are piercing through the bottom panels.

Lastly, you’ll want to caulk and paint. All horizontal seams that lie between the boards should be caulked; anything vertical, inject caulk, and forced farther into the seams by rubbing with your fingers. Let the caulk cure and prime, and paint. You’ll want to ensure the paint is exterior and that you do a minimum of two coats. 

When to Call a Professional 

A job like this requires attention to detail, and a strong knack for outdoor work. If you are unsure of what’s damaged, what should be replaced, or how to remove or install a new piece of siding properly, it’s best to call an expert to come to get the job done right. 

Landmark Exterior Siding 

Looking to keep your wood siding in the best shape it can be? The experts at Landmark Exteriors can ensure that your siding is at its best and help you fix any problems. Give us a call at (203) 838-3838 to learn more.

Trees to Plant This Fall

While spring is the season that comes to most people’s minds when talking about planting or gardening, fall is another great time of year to redesign your home’s landscape. 

Don’t wait till the warmer weather arrives to make changes to your property. Fall is the perfect time to plant some beautiful trees you’ll be able to enjoy all year long. Roll up those sleeves, and get your planting started now!

Benefits of Fall Planting

Taking the time to plant new trees in the fall allows for extra growing time before the warmer seasons when you’ll want to enjoy the trees’ presence and beauty the most. The combination of the cooler temperatures and heavy rain totals throughout the fall season helps trees establish their roots well into the soil, allowing them to adjust and grow easier when the summer arrives. 

While many believe that most trees aren’t capable of handling harsh winters, that is for sure not the case. Trees go dormant, similar to an animal’s hibernation, in the winter months. This sleep-like state allows trees to slow down their growth and metabolism to survive. When the warmer weather returns, they leave this state and continue their development.

Types of Trees To Plant During The Fall Season

Consider planting these trees on your property this autumn for a new, beautiful addition to your landscape:

  • Honey locust – These trees produce beautiful fall colors each year and grow to heights of around 30 feet. Common around New England, honey locust can be planted any time between the spring and fall and require much care, water, and sunlight to grow to its potential.
  • Weeping willow – Elegant and classic, the weeping willow is a tree that impresses with its beautiful sweeping, bright, falling branches. Plant this tree during the fall as it can last through freezing temperatures, but be careful to avoid planting near pipes or septic systems since they have an aggressive root system.
  • October glory red maple – This type of maple tree will indeed brighten up your property in the fall with its bright red leaves. This tree is also reasonably low-maintenance and can survive the harshest of winters.
  • Thuja green giants – Known for their bulky green branches that make the perfect ready-made privacy fence, the thuja green giant tree is suited for planting all-year-round. Thuja trees are also easy to plant and not challenging to grow.
  • Jane magnolia – If you’re already thinking spring, consider planting a jane magnolia tree that blooms beautiful, delicate flowers in the warmer seasons. This easy to grow, low-maintenance plant will live through the harsh winter, making it a perfect cold-weather tree to plant.
  • Bloodgood Japanese maple – Unlike other maples, the bloodgood produces scarlet-colored foliage all year-round that will be sure to boost your curb appeal. As well, the roots are well-behaved, and they can grow in either full or partial sun.

Home Exterior Care in Norwalk, CT

Need help making your home and property look its best? The experts at Landmark Exteriors are here to help your home’s exterior look and perform its best this fall season and all year long! Give us a call at (203) 838-3838 to learn more.

The Pros And Cons of Copper Roofing

Choosing the best roofing material for your home is no easy task. There are many important factors to consider including price, maintenance, safety, and look.

More and more homeowners each year are more selective when choosing a roof to match the rest of the house’s aesthetics, and one of the more popular choices is copper. With more than just good looks, this metals shiny, pristine finish, copper offers many benefits when considering a roof’s function.

Your roof is there to protect the rest of your home. Here’s why you may want to consider choosing copper for your roof:

Pros of Copper Roofing

Copper is truly a unique choice for roofing on your home, but there are plenty of other advantages to this roofing material:

  • Aesthetic appeal – Copper roofs are genuinely one of a kind and will set you apart from all other homes. Their bright, shiny, smooth appearance offers timeless beauty and can elevate historic homes or accentuate the modern feel for a contemporary house.
  • Minimal maintenance – Roof maintenance can be costly and time-consuming. Still, unlike other roofing materials, copper will not rust or corrode or require any additional re-painting and coating during its lifespan.
  • Long-lasting – Copper is considered the longest lasting roofing material and will remain looking impeccable for centuries!
  • Safety in severe weather conditions – Snow, wind, rain, heat, and more severe weather can cause a lot of damage to a roof. Copper roofing is an excellent choice as it can withstand these harsh conditions better than most other materials.
  • Fire-resistant – Copper roofing will never catch fire and can even help stop a fire from spreading.
  • Lightweight – Consider copper roofing if you are looking for a lightweight material that will not put pressure on the structure of your home.
  • Increased home value – Planning on selling your home soon? A copper roof will undoubtedly increase your home’s resale value and helps offer a competitive advantage over similar properties.
  • A sustainable material – Copper is an excellent choice if you are looking for a material that is more environmentally-friendly since copper is easily reused or recycled.

Cons of Copper Roofing

While there are many amazing benefits to copper roofing, there are a few cons that you should be sure to consider when making your roofing material decisions:

  • Price – Being a premium roofing material does come with the expected premium price tag. Copper roofs are certainly one of, if not the most, expensive roofing materials to choose from and is an investment.
  • Noise – Especially if the roof is installed over an open frame, the metal does not buffer noise as well as other materials.
  • Occasional repairs – Though maintenance and repairs are not needed frequently, it is possible that in a case of sudden weather changes, that the fasteners can become loose from the copper expanding and contracting and require repair.

Copper Roof Installation in Connecticut

Ready to get a copper roof, or is another option better for you? The experts at Landmark Exteriors can install any roofing material you want and help with any repairs. Give us a call at (203) 838-3838 to learn more.

Tips for Safely Cleaning Your Gutters

Owning a home can feel like a never-ending list of chores and to-dos. And with every season comes a new list of priorities to consider. 

When the autumn weather starts to turn the outdoor leaves, and they slowly begin to fall, many of these to-dos involve cleaning up—one of the major ones being your gutters. Though you might be spending most of your weekends raking and bagging these leaves off your lawn, now is the time to ensure they are removed from your gutters too. 

However, like any other household project, you’ll want to keep some safety measures in mind, especially if you don’t plan to hire a professional for the job. 

So, before you get out the ladder and begin your season cleaning, you’ll want to keep these three gutter tips in mind: 

1. Remember Proper Ladder Safety 

No matter what the task at hand is, when you take out your household ladder to use, you should always inspect it for any damage. Look for any dents, loose parts, and sturdiness. A wooden ladder should be avoided, as they are often challenging to balance.

Before you start, inspect the surrounding area, make sure you have a dry, steady surface to place it on, and consider always having a spotter or someone nearby if an emergency arises. 

Chances are, the leaves you’re cleaning from the gutters are sitting on the ground around your home, too. If it recently rained, these wet leaves can create the perfect environment for a careless ladder slip. So, make sure that you inspect your surroundings and take all safety precautions before your climb. 

2. Consider Protective Gear

Leaves might not be the only debris living up in your gutters; a good pair of gloves will help ensure your hands stay dry and unharmed through the process. Consider wearing your spring and summer garden gloves to get the job done.

Proper footwear is also a must. In some cases, you might need to take a few steps on the roof, making rubber-soled slip-proof shoes the best and safest option. Not to mention, it can also help your feet stay sturdy as you climb the ladder. 

3. Look for Signs of Damage 

As you begin declogging your gutters, keep a close eye on the shape they are in, and check for any damage. Look for any leaks in the seams, and if there is any standing water, your gutters might not be adequately sloped. Check that they are securely attached and schedule a repair before winter hits. 

Gutter System Install in Norwalk, CT

If you notice any damage during your seasonal gutter cleaning, the team at Landmark Exteriors is here to help. From professional gutter cleaning to custom systems, Give us a call at (203) 838-3838 or contact us to see how we can keep the exterior perfect for the season to come. 

Tips for Raking Up Leaves

It’s about that time of the year; time to get out your rakes! Fall can be one of the most exciting and beautiful seasons, but it can often be overshadowed by the overbearing chore that is raking. Raking up all the fall leaves can be time-consuming, challenging, and put a real strain on your body, but we want to help!

We want you to spend more time enjoying the outdoors with friends and family, so here are some useful tips to make raking less of a hassle: 

Health And Safety Come First

Raking can be a real workout and strain your body, so make sure not to overexert yourself with this laborious task. A few ways to take care of yourself include wearing gloves to protect your hands, wearing a mask if you suffer from allergies, staying hydrated, taking frequent breaks, and not doing more work than you can handle; it’s not worth pushing yourself too hard and getting hurt.

Divide Your Lawn Into Sections

Make a plan and consider dividing your property into sections before you start. Take on one area at a time, and if you have a large lawn, don’t do it all in one day.  

Use a Tarp

Rather than bending over every few minutes to pick up leaves and strain your back while doing so, take out a tarp and rake the leaves onto it. Grab the tarp and drag all the leaves into the area you want to collect them.

Rake With The Wind And Downhill

Raking is already a tough job; don’t make it more difficult than it needs to be. Leaves are light and can easily blow in the wind. Make sure to rake with the wind, so they don’t blow away from you, and rake downhill to let gravity help out too.

Pull The Leaves Toward You

Don’t twist or turn as your rake. Be conscious to pull the leaves toward you and stand more straight. You want to be careful not to bend your back over too much. Your muscles will thank you later.

Stomp On The Leaves Before You Step Away

Don’t let the wind ruin your hard work! If you need to take a break or step away from your leaf piles before collecting them, walk and step all over them to prevent them from blowing away.

Utilize Your Lawnmower

If your lawnmower has an attachment that can shred leaves and collect the clippings, use it! This will cut down heavily the amount of raking you need to do, which will be a lifesaver for your back. Collecting the leaves will also be a breeze since the clippings will go right in the bag attached to your mower.

Happy raking!

Home Exterior Care in Norwalk, CT

Spend your autumn season focusing on family fun and not taking care of your property. The experts at Landmark Exteriors are here to help your home’s exterior look and perform its best this fall season and all year long! Give us a call at (203) 838-3838 to learn more.

Family Fun Fall Activities

Colder weather may be quickly approaching, but that doesn’t mean the fun has to stop! Autumn is a wonderful season filled with many exciting activities to do as a family. The colors of the leaves are changing and Halloween is nearing; it’s time to get started on enjoying all that fall has to offer!

Give these family fun activities a try this fall season: 

Visit an Apple Orchard

Apples are in season, and you can’t go wrong with this delicious and nutritious fruit. Take a family trip to a nearby apple orchard to get some fresh air and pick out or buy some fresh apples. The perfect fall family fun day!

Pumpkin Picking

You can’t have autumn without some pumpkins! Visit a Connecticut farm or your local store to pick out a variety of pumpkins and gourds. Use them to decorate your home or maybe even cook with. 

Pumpkin Carving

Now that you have gone pumpkin picking, why not have some fun and test your carving skills? Clean out your pumpkins, get the proper tools, pick out your best design, and carefully, of course, begin your carving. Don’t forget some candles to show off your beautifully carved pumpkin to the neighborhood.  

If making jack-o-lanterns isn’t your forte, try painting your pumpkins instead!

Go Picnicking

While the nights are getting chilly quick, the weather during the day is perfect for a relaxing outdoor picnic. Head to a local park with your packed autumn treats, snacks, and drinks for some outdoor enjoyment. And who doesn’t love a good meal with family?

Go on a Nature Hike

Autumn is filled with so many beautiful surprises to find in nature, starting with the color-changing leaves. Take a family hike on one of the many trails throughout Connecticut to enjoy some leaf-peeping, bird watching, fresh air, and exercise. 

Bake a Fall Treat

Autumn is filled with so many wonderful flavors and foods to eat. Enjoy a day of baking some yummy fall treats as a family! There are so many wonderful and delicious treats to indulge and enjoy making together in the kitchen from apple, pecan, or pumpkin pie to caramel apples and pumpkin cookies.  

Roast Marshmallows

Enjoy some warm time by your fireplace or fire pit on those chilly autumn nights. Grab all the marshmallows you can get your hands on and have some fun roasting them over the flames. Don’t forget the chocolate and graham crackers to make the perfect s’ more!  

Home Exterior Care in Connecticut

Spend your autumn season focusing on family fun and not problems with your home. The experts at Landmark Exteriors are here to help your home’s exterior look and perform its best this fall season and all year long! Give us a call at (203) 838-3838 to learn more.

What Questions Should I Ask my Roofing Contractor?

Picking a roofing company can be a hassle, but it doesn’t need to be. Knowing exactly what to ask and look for can make this process much easier and help ensure that you’re getting the best work done possible. 

Here are the most important questions to ask a roofing contractor before you hire them:

Are you a licensed roofing contractor?

Codes and licensing requirements vary from state to state. It’s good to ask and be certain that your roofers are licensed, their license is up to date, and they abide by all codes.

Do you carry general liability insurance?

Workman’s compensation insurance covers the employees while working on your roof. However, you still have to worry about potential damage to any part of your property that can occur during the installation. Don’t be afraid to ask them to verify that the roofing company has general liability insurance that will pay for repairs if part of your property is damaged in any way during the work process.

How will you protect my home’s exterior driveway and gutters from damage?

A lot of equipment, tools, and people are required when redoing a roof. On top of insurance, you can ask what exact measures the workers will take while working to protect your gutters, driveway, and house from damage.

Will you remove my old roof?

In some cases, roofers will make the call to shingle over the existing roof, leading to problems such as soft or rotten spots throughout the roof. If these issues aren’t resolved, severe damage can occur to your home. Make sure that your old roof is being completely removed before replacement.

What is your physical address and phone number?

Make sure your roofers have a physical location and local phone number before hiring them. It’s important to make sure that they are a legal operation, and if there are any problems, you can contact and locate them.

What is the warranty for my new roof?

Don’t forget to ask about your roofing material’s longevity and the warranty time for the roof. A properly installed roof with shingles should last at least 25 years.

Will you provide a written estimate?

Before you sign or agree to anything, make sure you have a detailed estimate in writing for all the different aspects of the job. You’ll want to be aware of any surprise costs when the work is finished.

Will there be someone on-site that I can speak with and ask questions?

It’s logical to have questions while the work is happening. Be prepared ahead of time and know who will be on-site that you can ask any questions you have.

Roof Installation in Connecticut

Hire a roofing company you can trust, is reliable, and will do an exceptional job, so you don’t have to worry. The experts at Landmark Exteriors can help you fix any problems or fully replace your roof without any hassle, and you’ll be more than pleased with the results. Give us a call at (203) 838-3838 to learn more.

Why Do The Leaves Change Color in the Fall?

Autumn is here, and there’s so much to look forward to such as pumpkins everywhere, Halloween decorations, spice-scented candles, and the leaves changing color! From red to yellow to orange to purple, there are so many gorgeous and vibrant colors that will be taking over the trees soon. Especially in beautiful Connecticut, it’s impossible not to be surrounded by the fantastic fall foliage.

But why exactly do the leaves change color this time of year? And why do they fall at all? Here’s the reason for this nature phenomenon: 

Why Do Leaves Fall During Autumn?

It takes a lot of energy and water for trees and plants to maintain healthy leaves, and this water and energy can be hard to come by as the temperatures drop. Winter is cold, dry, and there isn’t as much needed sun for healthy leaf conditions. 

Instead of struggling to hold on to their leaves, trees and plants drop them and seal the spots on the branches where the leaves were attached so that new ones can grow when there’s more sun, water, and optimal weather available.

Why Do Leaves Change Color in Autumn?

The pigment, chlorophyll, is what gives leaves their bright green color. Chlorophyll is essential for plants to make food from sunlight. Trees and plants make a lot of this chlorophyll during the warmer seasons, but as the temperatures start to drop and the sun is out for less time, they have to stop this production.

When autumn starts and the weather gets colder, trees and plants instead break down the chlorophyll into smaller molecules until it goes away entirely, and new pigments begin to show, like yellow and red. The colors will change just before the leaves fall off.

Home Exterior Care in Connecticut

The experts at Landmark Exteriors are here to help your home’s exterior look and perform its best this fall season! Give us a call at (203) 838-3838 to learn more.