If you are considering a purchase of a mountain home in Mammoth Lakes, June Lake or the surrounding areas, there are some added maintenance items to be aware of due to the harsh environment in which we live. Whether you own a single family home or a condo, here are some of the basics of ownership and minimum maintenance requirements to protect your Mammoth Mountain home or condo investment:
1. Exterior paint every 2-4 years as opposed to every 10-15 years in mild weather areas.
2. Decks and all exposed wood treated and painted every 1-2 years. Trex decking will last longer as long as it is shoveled regularly.
3. Roof patched and professionally maintained every 2 years minimum.
4. Chimney professionally swept every year & gas and pellet stoves professionally maintained yearly at a minimum. With heavy use, some units may require 2 maintenances per year.
5. Insulated pipes around water heater & water heater insulation for lower energy bills.
6. Winterizing the home for winter absence: Use a professional plumber! It is very important not to turn off heat to the home from October-July in order to avoid frozen pipes and costly repairs to plumbing, and the real possibility of flooding.
(This is a very real danger in Mammoth and shouldn’t be taken lightly and is something that should be performed by a licensed plumber.)
7. Check the home for any access for wildlife, small and large. Black bears like to use the undersides of decks as winter dens and rodents and birds will find entry through holes in siding.
8. Caulking and silicone around window seals, every 2-3 years for heat loss prevention.
9. Leave doors under kitchen and bathroom counters open to allow heat to enter while away.
10. Keep thermostat in home at a minimum of 50 degrees year round to prevent frozen pipes.
11. Clean out rain gutters every summer.
12. Roof shoveling when snow load reaches 24″- 48″ to avoid roof dams and moisture entry in from them. This is common during big snow years and can be avoided by early and regular roof shoveling. A better option for snow removal is installing heat tape at the roof or gutters to allow for snow to be melted from the edge of the roof. Snow breaks can also be installed on roofs to prevent shedding dangers. (I would advise some type of roof maintenance to prevent roof shedding altogether as it is very dangerous and has been attributed to deaths in the area especially of small children & pets and also to property damage of vehicles parked under the roof.)
This is a partial list of mountain home care basics specific to our area in the Eastern Sierras of California. If you own here, you will be familiar with these necessities. If you are considering a purchase here, you will have a smooth and enjoyable time in your home as long as you are aware of the essential home maintenance items here. Good luck and enjoy!