Think Twice Before Planting These Trees In Your Yard

Let’s face it, trees are absolutely gorgeous. I may have fallen a little bit in love with every tree I’ve ever seen in my lifetime. Just because all trees are beautiful that doesn’t mean that all trees are great to have in your yard. Some trees make better yard trees than others.

You have to weigh the pros and cons of any tree that you want to introduce to your garden. Keep reading to find out which trees may create more problems than they’re worth.

Birch Trees Take Over Your Space

Straupitz: A birch forest with its distinctive white-black trunks in a forest on the edge of the Spreewald is coloured in autumn.
Photo by Patrick Pleul/picture alliance via Getty Images
Photo by Patrick Pleul/picture alliance via Getty Images

Birch trees are absolutely iconic. We would recognize that white bark anywhere. They are picturesque and painterly and everything good about trees. However, they are also quite invasive. Once you plant them, nothing will grow near that tree. Birches have shallow roots that make the surrounding soil super hard.

Birch trees also attract a garden-destroying pest called the bronze birch borer. These beetles lay their eggs in birch trees, and their larvae feed on the insides of plants.

Eastern White Pines Leak Sap Everywhere

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DeAgostini/Getty Images
Arterra/Universal Images Group via Getty Images

Eastern white pines can grow to be huge and absolutely stunning, but some gardeners think that they’re more trouble than they’re worth. nature didn’t skimp on the sap when it came to creating white pine trees. These deciduous trees will leave a sticky mess all over your yard, your car, your house, basically everywhere.

This tree will drop sticky debris that can damage car paint as well as clothing. You definitely wouldn’t want one of these trees hanging over your driveway or back patio.

Sycamores Make A Huge Mess

Fall Color Pops Along The Santa Ynez River
Photo by George Rose/Getty Images
Photo by George Rose/Getty Images

We love sycamore trees for so many reasons. We love that Pocahontas sings about them in that old Disney movie, we love the way the word sounds, and we love how their little seed pods look. We don’t love to clean up those seed pods, though.

These trees are notorious for dirtying homes with seedpods and leaves. Sycamores are also prone to fungal diseases like anthracnose, which can drop more leaves. Basically, don’t plant a sycamore in your yard unless you have hours to dedicate to cleaning out your gutters.

Ash Trees Are Under Attack

Sunlight Through An Ash Tree, UK
Photo by Tim Graham/Getty Images
Photo by Tim Graham/Getty Images

Ash trees are beautiful to look at, however, they can be super difficult to maintain. While these trees are generally pretty resilient, a new predator is threatening to wipe out the whole species. Ash trees are currently under attack by the emerald ash borer. Across 30 states, these beetles have destroyed tens of millions of ash trees, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

As of now, there are treatment options for ash trees rotted by emerald borers, but there is no cure.

Certain Ginkgo Trees Can Pollute Your Garden

Golden Ginkgo Leaves In Beijing
Photo by Wang Baosheng/Qianlong.com/VCG via Getty Images
Photo by Wang Baosheng/Qianlong.com/VCG via Getty Images

Ginkgo trees are absolutely stunning. They have uniquely shaped leaves that are instantly recognizable. However, it’s good to note that some Ginkgos are friendlier than others. For example, you probably don’t want to plant a female ginkgo biloba in your yard. These trees drop smelly fruit that quickly pollute your garden, driveway, or patio.

Stick to selections like “Fairmount,” “Autumn Gold,” and “Saratoga” Ginkgos to guarantee that there’s no fruit. Ginkgos can live for over 3000 years, so you really want to be careful with your initial selection.

You’re Going To Have To Do A Lot Of Raking If You Have Honey Locust Trees

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DeAgostini/Getty Images
DeAgostini/Getty Images

Honey locust trees are big and stunning and colorful, but when considering getting a honey locust for your yard, make sure to choose one that doesn’t drop seed pods. There are multiple types of honey locusts, and some of them drop seed pods that are far more difficult to rake than cleaning up leaves.

Do your research and pick a variety that isn’t going to leave you with a mess in the fall. Trust me, you don’t want to spend your free time raking pods.

Staghorn Sumac Trees Cause Skin Reactions

staghorn sumac
Vince Talotta/Toronto Star via Getty Images
Vince Talotta/Toronto Star via Getty Images

Who wouldn’t want a gorgeous red sumac tree in their yard? Plus, you can harvest the flowers and using them in cooking. However, you might want to stay away from this plant if you have sensitive skin. The deciduous shrub, which can reach 15-30 feet in height, is related to poison ivy.

Although Staghorn sumac isn’t poisonous, some people may have an allergic reaction to it. Pick a different red tree if you want to add color to your yard but you’re worried about skin reactions.

Sweetgum Trees And Their Terrible Seeds

Woman reaches up to touch a sweet gum tree.
Winson Wong/South China Morning Post via Getty Images
Winson Wong/South China Morning Post via Getty Images

In the fall, there are few more beautiful sights than sweetgum trees in their full glory. Is that beauty really worth all of those seeds, though? Sweetgum trees drop seedpods that have tough, spiny exteriors. These pods can easily get stuck in your grass and any surrounding plants. They also attract a large host of birds to your yard.

Also, because sweetgum trees have invasive root systems, they can damage your home’s foundation, patio, garden, and driveway.

Weeping Willows Have Aggressive Roots

Student studies her report under a weeping willow tree
In Pictures Ltd./Corbis via Getty Images
In Pictures Ltd./Corbis via Getty Images

Weeping willows are super romantic. They make any outdoor space look a whole lot more serene and majestic. Still, willow roots are strong and aggressive, and they’ve been known to damage pavement and water lines. Also, the roots absorb all the soil’s water.

Also, because willow roots are so moist, they attract a whole lot of bugs which can leach onto your other plants. You might want to think twice before getting your very own willow tree.

Eastern Cottonwood Trees Are Prone To Disease

eastern-cottonwood
poacewave/Instagram
poacewave/Instagram

Some homeowners love cottonwood trees because they’re aesthetically pleasing and low-maintenance. However, they’re also fragile. They have shallow and soft root systems that are prone to disease. If the roots rot, the tree will fall during the next big storm.

True to its name, Eastern cottonwoods also produce cotton-like spores that stick to everything. The trunk is brittle and easily rots from insects and diseases. If you don’t want to risk a huge tree falling on your car or home, don’t plant a cottonwood.

Chinese Flame Trees Germinate Like Crazy

A Chinese flame tree is near the University of Hong Kong.
Twitter/@CUHKofficial
Twitter/@CUHKofficial

Chinese flame trees have a lot going for them: they’re drought-tolerant, pest-resistant, and bloom beautifully in the summer. But one tree quickly turns into a forest. After blooming, the seed capsules blow everywhere. Once the seed hits the soil, it germinates. And that’s an issue.

That’s why The Grumpy Gardner Steve Bender called Chinese flame trees the “Worst Tree I Ever Planted” in a Southern Living article. The seeds spread to every corner of your yard and, according to Bender, your neighbor’s yard. Once you plant this tree, you’ll spend the rest of your days working to stop it from spreading.

One Eucalyptus Can Destroy Your Soil

The minaret of the Lakemba Mosque photographed through Australian eucalyptus trees
Cole Bennetts/Getty Images
Mikel Bilbao /VW Pics/Universal Images Group via Getty Images

Eucalyptus trees are largely admired for their honey-like smell. But don’t plant one in your yard, or else your soil will suffer. Eucalyptus trees require a lot of nutrients and water. Not only do they dehydrate quickly, but they also rob the earth of all its nutrients, causing your other plants to wither.

From an environmental perspective, eucalyptus trees have little to offer in yards. Their canopy is too fragile to support nests, and their leaves don’t feed many species of animals. Additionally, a eucalyptus tree in drought conditions could suddenly drop one of its heavy branches, which is very dangerous.

Tulip Poplars Drop Twigs

A tulip blooms on the branch of a tulip poplar.
Pinterest/Emily Brown
Pinterest/Emily Brown

Tulip poplars look gorgeous, especially when their leaves turn orange. However, it’s best to never sit under this tree. Tulip poplars tend to drop branches and twigs throughout the year. Their leaves drip sticky honeydew, which will rip off your car paint should you park your vehicle under the tree.

Unlike hard-wooded trees, tulip poplars can easily fall in storms. This becomes a significant problem when the tree grows over 80 feet tall. Since these trees require a lot of caution and maintenance, they’re not the best choice for a home’s yard.

Leyland Cypress Trees Are Easily Uprooted

Leyland cypresses line a road.
Twitter/@planpathva
Twitter/@planpathva

The Leyland cypress is a fast-growing, hassle-free tree. Many people like planting this tree to keep their yard private, but it quickly grows too large for most yards. Despite its size, Leyland cypresses are easily uprooted during storms and strong winds. In short, they’re a safety hazard when planted near houses.

Leyland cypresses are also susceptible to many different types of fungi. These can cause dying bark and root rot. Also, spiders and mites adore this tree. The bottom line is that Leyland cypresses are unsafe.

Bradford Pear Trees Have Stinky Flowers

Bradford pear tree sprouts white flowers.
Twitter/@moorejh
Twitter/@moorejh

After being imported to America, Bradford pear trees became incredibly popular. They often appear around homes built around the 1960s. But if you have one, beware. Like the cottonwood, Bradford pear trees are incredibly fragile due to their pyramid shape.

To make matters worse, Bradford pear’s beautiful white flowers stink. This tree grows to over 50 feet tall and almost as wide, so it engulfs your entire yard in a fish-smelling tent. Bradford pears will only make your yard worse, and they may damage your house if they become too weak.

Black Walnut Trees Produce Toxic Chemicals

A squirell enjoys black walnuts from a tree
Brian Brainerd/The Denver Post via Getty Images
Brian Brainerd/The Denver Post via Getty Images

Black walnut trees may be pretty, but they produce a toxic chemical that can eliminate your entire yard. This chemical, called juglone, can stunt the growth of grass and wilt certain vegetables. To keep your yard alive, you’d have to replace all plants with juglone-resistant vegetation like tall fescue grass.

If you remove fallen leaves and nuts, you can reduce the juglone problem. But that doesn’t stop black walnut trees from dropping carpets of leaves and seeds over your yard. Stay far away from this tree.

Mulberry Trees Make Birds Act Drunk

Person picks mulberry fruit off of a tree.
Andrew De La Rue/The AGE/Fairfax Media via Getty Images
Andrew De La Rue/The AGE/Fairfax Media via Getty Images

If you don’t want rotting fruit or pests, stay away from mulberries. Although these trees are sturdy and shady, they attract a range of hosts from silkworms to birds. Once the fruit ferments, it makes birds act tipsy. Expect some birds to fly straight into your kitchen window.

As mulberry fruit falls and rots, it attracts fruit flies that will wander into your home. Many mulberry trees, especially white mulberries, develop aggressive roots after a couple of years. These roots will crack the pavement and overrun landscaping.

Mimosa Trees Have A Lot Of Problems

A mimosa tree blooms pink flowers.
Reddit/u/bluish1997
Reddit/u/bluish1997

Mimosa trees are attractive, especially for insects. These trees draw webworms, moths that don’t harm your plants but also don’t look great. Expect caterpillars roaming around on this tree. On top of that, mimosa trees are prone to breakage, especially their branches.

Mimosa trees produce six-inch long seedpods that germinate very quickly. Even after the leaves have fallen, these seeds persist through the winter. If you’re not careful, you’ll end up with an army of mimosa trees littering your yard. Stay safe, and don’t plant this tree near your home.

Magnolia Trees Attract Bugs

John Dukes passes by the blooms of the southern magnolia tree
Mark Wallheiser/NCAA Photos via Getty Images
Mark Wallheiser/NCAA Photos via Getty Images

Many people love the magnolia’s wide, white flowers. If you plant one, you’ll have to keep a close eye on it. Magnolias attract a wide host of insects, including caterpillars, thrips, and aphids. Most won’t harm the tree, but aphids and thrips will cause the leaves to fall prematurely.

Speaking of leaves, deciduous magnolias shed their leaves year-round. So you’ll constantly have to rake your yard if you want to maintain this tree. Even if you plant an evergreen magnolia, the bugs will likely create piles of leaves. Don’t plant a magnolia unless you’re prepared to give it a lot of maintenance.

Silver Maples Destroy Your Pipes

Men watch as a silver maple tree has one of its leaders trimmed after it was damaged in Tropical Storm Irene.
Yoon S. Byun/The Boston Globe via Getty Images
Yoon S. Byun/The Boston Globe via Getty Images

Despite being one of the most common trees in North America, silver maples don’t help your yard. They’re easy to grow, but hard to kill–which you might want to do when the roots destroy your sidewalk. Silver maples have invasive roots infamous for clogging water lines and destroying landscapes.

Silver maples require an enormous amount of water and space, which can rapidly rob your garden of much-needed nutrients. The only cure to this problem is removing the tree, which is difficult and can only be done by a professional. Spare yourself from the trouble.

Red Oaks Make A Mess

Camera catches a close-up of red oak leaves.
DEA / C.SAPPA/De Agostini via Getty Images
DEA / S.MONTANARI/De Agostini via Getty Images

Northern red oaks appear elegant with their large and intricate leaves. Unfortunately, these leaves are the same source of this tree’s problems. Red oaks shed massive amounts of leaves throughout autumn and spring. Even their tiny flowers, catkins, fall in enormous numbers.

Red oaks are also susceptible to insects, bacteria, and fungi. They’re not as sturdy as they appear to be. If you’re willing to clean up after your trees frequently, you can manage a red oak. But if you don’t want the hassle, look for another tree.

Be Careful About Pecan Trees

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Edwin Remsberg / VWPics/Universal Images Group via Getty Images
Edwin Remsberg / VWPics/Universal Images Group via Getty Images

Pecans are delicious and having a pecan tree in your yard can be a real blessing. You can harvest the pecans each year and it might even save you some money. However, these trees are very difficult to maintain. They drop tons of twigs and leaves and branches whenever it gets the least bit windy outside.

The small leaves of the tree seem to fall by the dozen, making raking a constant chore. Just don’t plant one anywhere near your gutters or your driveway or anywhere you might want to park a car.

The Tree Of Heaven Isn’t So Heavenly

Close-up shows the leaves of the tree of heaven.
Andrea Innocenti/REDA&CO/Universal Images Group via Getty Images
Andrea Innocenti/REDA&CO/Universal Images Group via Getty Images

Since the tree of heaven was introduced to North America in the 1800s, it has threatened to overwhelm wildlife. This tree grows too quickly to contain, and it can easily consume other plants and concrete. It also produces an excessive amount of seeds that could endanger your garden.

To top it off, the tree of heaven produces a chemical that harms surrounding vegetation. Plants’ growth can be stunted or killed from one tree. Nature organizations are already struggling to contain this tree, so don’t add one to your yard.

Russian Olive Trees Suffocate Other Plants

Branches of a Russian olive tree stand out against the sky.
Twitter/@Massimoguerrera
Twitter/@Massimoguerrera

With its silvery leaves and cool-colored trunk, the Russian olive tree looks like a nice garden staple. But this tree quickly suffocates other plants. When birds eat their fruit, they spread the seeds across the garden, which slowly consumes the area. Russian olive roots don’t make the soil any more habitable.

Like all olive trees, the Russian olive is tough to kill. If you cut them down, they’ll resprout. It’s no wonder why Russian olives are considered an invasive species. Do your home a favor and keep this tree out of your yard.

The Roots Of Quaking Aspen Trees

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Wild Horizons/Universal Images Group via Getty Images
Wild Horizons/Universal Images Group via Getty Images

Quaking aspen trees have beautiful leaves that change to golden and yellow tones in the autumn and are the state tree of Utah. Although quaking aspen trees can be found all across North America, you don’t want these trees near your home.

What makes these trees so dangerous to your home and yard is their strong and fast-growing root system. These trees are known to quickly regrow and spread after wildfires. That same resiliency comes into play when its tree roots are getting into your plumbing.

The Lombardy Poplar Isn’t So Pretty

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DeAgostini/Getty Images
DeAgostini/Getty Images

If you want to keep your landscaping looking pristine, don’t select a Lombardy Poplar for your yard. You likely see these trees everywhere, as they’re a popular addition to yards across America, due to their elegant column shape and ability to grow around 6 feet in just one year.

Homeowners should know that Lombardy poplar trees are highly susceptible to being damaged by insects and tree diseases. This typically means they end up looking damaged and unhealthy, while remaining a large fixture in your yard.

Mountain Cedar Trees Spread Pollen

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PATRICK BAZ/AFP via Getty Images
PATRICK BAZ/AFP via Getty Images

Typically found in the south-central part of the U.S., mountain cedar trees are bushy trees that you don’t want to be anywhere near during the winter, especially if you’re prone to allergies.

In the late winter, these trees release heavy amounts of pollen at a wide range. Not only will it disturb your yard, but it’s likely to affect others on the block as well. You’re better off finding another bushy tree to plant.

Catalpa Trees Don’t Last That Long

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Peter Macdiarmid/Getty Images
Peter Macdiarmid/Getty Images

While many of the trees on this list are tempting to plant due to their beautiful changing leaves in the fall, that’s not the case with catalpa trees. Many people are drawn to these trees for their beautiful flowers, that appear similar to orchids.

But when the leaves of this tree start to die, they don’t change to a beautiful color. Instead, they’re blackened by frost before falling on the ground and covering the yard. These trees will only bloom for a few months between spring and early summer, but require a lot of clean up.

Redwood Trees Can Destroy Your Home

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Michael Macor/San Francisco Chronicle via Getty Images
Michael Macor/San Francisco Chronicle via Getty Images

If you’re lucky enough to live in a climate that allows redwood trees to thrive, it might be tempting to add one of these gorgeous plants to your yard. However, there are several downfalls to having one of these trees around.

Not only are they extremely messy, but redwood trees’ strong roots can damage sidewalks and even the foundation of your home. After a storm, your yard will be littered with redwood needles. They also block a decent amount of sun, which could take light away from your other plants.

Bottlebrush Trees Drop Their Leaves

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Creative Touch Imaging Ltd./NurPhoto via Getty Images
Creative Touch Imaging Ltd./NurPhoto via Getty Images

Although their spikes of flowers are beautiful, they’re also a major reason not to plant a bottlebrush tree in your yard. The soft, needle-like leaves that constantly fall from the tree are difficult to clean up.

These trees can grow up to 15 feet, which can lead to a lot of clean-up in its mature years. You’re better off selecting a shrub with leaves you can easily rake, or you’ll spend every weekend in the yard!

Linden Trees Produce A Lot Of Sap

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Alexander ShcherbakTASS via Getty Images
Alexander ShcherbakTASS via Getty Images

Another tree that produces a sticky mess is the linden tree. These trees seem to be sap-making machines, as they are constantly secreting sap.

Keep linden trees far away from your driveway and street, as the sap will be awfully hard to clean off your car, and will likely damage the paint if you don’t clean it off. It’s one thing to be cleaning up leaves, but sap is an entirely different beast.

American Elm Trees Have Invasive Roots

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DeAgostini/Getty Images
DeAgostini/Getty Images

American elm trees are another tree that you don’t want to plant near your home, and might consider an inspection or removal if you already have one in place. These trees have extremely invasive root systems that can threaten sewer lines and drain pipes.

One place you’ll see a ton of these trees is Central Park in New York City. The park is home to around 1,200 American elm trees!

Chinese Tallow Trees Are Invasive

tallow-tree
Talko / Wikimedia Commons
Talko / Wikimedia Commons

Chinese tallows, otherwise known as “popcorn” trees because of their distinctive flowers, are appealing to people because of their attractive bright coloring and the fact that their broad leaves provide great shade.

Don’t be fooled into planting one of them in your yard, however! They’re commonly ranked among the most invasive tree species and they can grow to enormous sizes. You can expect a Chinese tallow tree to reach up to 30 feet in width and 40 feet in height — that’s not a root system most people will want in their yard.

Norway Maples Produce A Lot Of Shade

Ecological Collapse of Toronto Ravines
Andrew Francis Wallace/Toronto Star via Getty Images
Andrew Francis Wallace/Toronto Star via Getty Images

Another gorgeous tree that can end up causing homeowners problems down the road is the Norweigan maple. This specimen has a shallow, fibrous root system. That, combined with the fact that they provide tons of shade, meaning that it’s pretty much impossible ever to grow grass underneath one.

Also, this is a non-native tree with aggressive roots that can quickly displace native trees and shrubs. The roots also release a toxin that can be harmful to other plants.

Empress Trees Can Cause Damage

Empress tree specimens (Paulownia tomentosa)...
DeAgostini/Getty Images
DeAgostini/Getty Images

This tree, also known as a Royal Empress Tree, has an impressive name but people shouldn’t let this fool them. Empress trees have fragrant flowers and they typically remain at a reasonable size (about 30 feet tall as a maximum height). There’s where the benefits end.

These trees are very weak and tend to break in storms, creating a huge risk for nearby structures or cars. If you live somewhere that’s prone to big storms, this is probably a tree to skip.

White Birches Are Unstable

Birch Trees Copse in France
Tim Graham / Contributor
Tim Graham / Contributor

There are many different types of birch trees and they’re quite popular among homeowners as a backyard feature, but some varieties of birches are more appealing than others. The white birch, in particular, is one that a lot of homeowners might be advised to steer clear of.

For one thing, white birches do not do well in dry, hot climates. And they’re also highly susceptible to bronze birch borers, which are beetles that kill birch trees. A third problem with white birches is that they have shallow roots, making them unstable and a threat to your home.

The Callery Pear Isn’t Calm In A Storm

Arbor Day
Keith Getter / Contributor
Keith Getter / Contributor

The Callery pear tree, scientific name Pyrus calleryana, is considered beautiful by many because it has bright red leaves in the fall and eye-catching white blooms in the springtime.

However, just as with every other tree on this list, this species is also one to think twice about planting. The Callery pear has an inherently weak branching structure which can cause a lot of damage, especially in regions with snow, ice, or heavy winds.

Siberian Elms Are Aggressive

siberian-elm
Tiarescott / Wikimedia Commons
Tiarescott / Wikimedia Commons

The Morton Arboretum in Lisle, Illinois, classifies the Siberian elm as “not recommended” and states that these trees “have invasive traits that enable them to spread aggressively.” As we know, that’s not usually something to look for when selecting trees for landscaping a yard.

In addition, Siberian elms are “highly susceptible to ice damage” and have a weak wood and branch structure. All of these qualities together mean that homeowners need to think twice about planting this particular species.

Black Locusts Are Only Good For Firewood

Black Locust or False Acacia...
DeAgostini/Getty Images
DeAgostini/Getty Images

Black Locust, also known by the scientific name Robinia psuedoacacia, is a fast-growing hardwood tree that grows lovely and fragrant white flowers. The heavy wood is prized as firewood so some people plant black locusts for this reason.

However, these trees are brittle and have sharp thorns. Additionally, they seed themselves quite generously so are considered an invasive pest by many people. Unless you need a lot of firewood handy, it might be best to steer clear of this one.

Bois D’Arc Trees Have Many Thorns

Osage-orange...
DeAgostini/Getty Images
DeAgostini/Getty Images

Maclura pomifera, otherwise known as Bois d’arc or Osage orange, has a valuable wood that has long been used in bow-making by Native Americans. They have lots of beneficial traits including the fact that they’re easy to grow.

Many people enjoy this tree, but it does have a downside to consider before planting in your yard. The Bois d’arc tends to be very thorny and produces a fruit that’s not edible and might end up littering the lawn. Overall, though, this is far from the worst tree on our list!

What Needs To Change About Home Barbecues

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Miles Willis/Getty Images
Miles Willis/Getty Images

Something that has been bringing friends and families together for years is the celebratory backyard barbecue. People are able to sit outside and enjoy some freshly cooked food with their loved ones. Even though BBQ grills are considered to be a fun and practical thing to own, they can be dangerous.

People should not place their barbecue right up against their home. The National Fire Protection Association blames both charcoal and gas grills for almost 10,000 fires in the United States every year. Not only can barbecues start fires, but they can also warp and melt the sides of a home.

Bleach Should Not Be Used To Clean This Surface

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Justin Sullivan/Getty Images
Justin Sullivan/Getty Images

Bleach may be considered a safe all-purpose cleaner by many people, but that is a myth. Bleach is usually used to get rid of stains and should only be placed on certain surfaces. Using bleach on hardwood flooring to remove a stain will end up making the mark even bigger and damaging the wood.

Hardwood floors usually have specific cleansers that will remove any wear and tear and not warp the wood. There are also professional services that will come and remove any dirt, dust, and common household allergens that stick to the floor.

Wet Towels Do Not Belong Here

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Guido Kirchner/picture alliance via Getty Images
Guido Kirchner/picture alliance via Getty Images

If your parents ever told you to pick up your wet towel after a shower it wasn’t just because they thought you were a slob. Leaving wet towels on the floor is not a good thing.

Doing this traps moisture on the floor, which can cause it to rot, stain, and warp. According to Amba Products, damp towels make the perfect environment for mold to grow, especially if left in a dark location. Mold and mildew can also lead to serious health complications.

Why Hydrogen Peroxide And Vinegar Don’t Mix

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Military Art/YouTube
Military Art/YouTube

Some of the most common household items include hydrogen peroxide and vinegar. On their own, they are capable of doing an effective cleaning job, but they should never be combined. When hydrogen peroxide and vinegar are mixed together they create a toxic peracetic acid.

This acid changes the color and texture of soft surfaces and can leave visible chemical burns. People who come into contact with peracetic acid can also develop respiratory issues or skin irritation. Make sure you know the uses for each of these cleansers on their own.

Vacuuming Should Be The Go-To Method For Cleaning Floors

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Hauke-Christian Dittrich/picture alliance via Getty Images
Hauke-Christian Dittrich/picture alliance via Getty Images

Getting out the vacuum when there’s a mess on the floor may seem like a huge chore, especially if a broom will quickly sweep it up. But constantly relying on a broom or mop to clean floors can actually shorten their lifespan. This is why you should start with a vacuum.

Vacuuming prevents the microscopic particles, dirt, and dust from spreading along the floor’s surface. In order to get the most out of your vacuum, you can try some clever hacks such as using a box cutter to remove hair from the brush roll or adding cinnamon or vanilla powder to the vacuum bag to leave a sweet aroma.

Remember To Regularly Close The Blinds

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Stuart Palley for The Washington Post via Getty Images
Stuart Palley for The Washington Post via Getty Images

During the day it may be tempting to let the light in through the blinds, but there’s an important reason they shouldn’t be left open all day. The harsh UV rays that come through the windows can damage your flooring by causing premature fading and discoloration.

To avoid damage, flooring experts recommend either closing the blinds before you leave for the day or covering them with blackout curtains. It’s also crucial to clean and dust your blinds regularly, either with a vacuum or with a microfiber cloth or duster.

The Right Way To Place A Nail In The Wall

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Education Images/Universal Images Group via Getty Images
Education Images/Universal Images Group via Getty Images

All homeowners should have a stud finder readily available. Nailing something to the wall is not an easy task and nails should only be placed in studs. If this is not done, the sheetrock or plaster that covers the studs won’t offer enough support.

When nails aren’t placed on studs the wall can break open and the items that were hanging could fall and break, even accidentally hitting any people below. Using a stud finder is relatively simple. It will beep every time it hovers over a stud, so you can always find the best place to drill the nail.

Unruly Vines Need To Go

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Attila Kisbenedek/AFP/Getty Images
Attila Kisbenedek/AFP/Getty Images

While vines may make a house look like an enchanted cottage straight out of a fairy tale, they can end up doing some damage. Vines have the capability of ruining the structure of your home. They can trap water, vermin, and insects inside and spread to unwanted areas of the exterior.

If you choose to keep vines on your home they require extra attention with consistent care, pruning, and upkeep to prevent them from running rampant. They can rot wood, wear off the exterior decor, and grow rather quickly.

Gutters Need All The Attention They Can Get

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Marlin Levison/Star Tribune via Getty Images
Marlin Levison/Star Tribune via Getty Images

One part of the house to never neglect are the rain gutters. Some may think they only seldomly need to be cleaned, but that couldn’t be more wrong. Debris, dirt, and other outside particles fill up the gutters and block them from letting the water flow.

If the gutters are blocked it can lead to water damage in the home, cause the gutters to fall from the extra debris, or exterior wood to rot from prolonged exposure to moisture. Gutter experts recommend cleaning them at least three times per year.

Don’t Pour This Down The Drain

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Alex Kolomoisky/AFP via Getty Images
Alex Kolomoisky/AFP via Getty Images

There are plenty of substances you shouldn’t stick down the drain, but one that can really do some damage is cooking grease. This includes any type of oil, fat, or grease because they will solidify to form blockages in the pipes. Not only does this create issues within the septic system, but it’s also horrible for the environment.

Instead, try and pour any of the remaining grease or oil into another container that won’t go down the drain and scrub the dish with soap and water outside of the sink.

This Needs To Be Done To The Water Heater Every Year

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Smith Collection/Gado/Getty Images
Smith Collection/Gado/Getty Images

Something that everyone needs to do to their water heater every year is have it drained. Not doing this could potentially cause a huge disaster. The mineral deposits in the water heater can form a thick, crusty coating and when that chips off, it can clog faucets, drains, and the water heater valve.

Also, not draining your water heater can cause the inner lining of it to crack, which would require you to replace it altogether. The DIY Network warns that the water will be scalding hot, so it’s best to turn the thermostat down and shut off the water supply before opening the drain valve.

Make Sure You Know How To Properly Install Cables

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Sally-Ann Norman/Construction Photography/Avalon/Getty Images
Sally-Ann Norman/Construction Photography/Avalon/Getty Images

Sometimes the only way people can use utilities such as television and internet services is with cables that are drilled in through their home’s exterior. This is a job that should only be done by professionals. If they’re installed wrong it can lead to major problems.

Experts advise that an experienced maintenance person should do this job because an improperly sealed wall can slowly and invisibly rot the wood framing and attract damp wood termites. Although there are plenty of video tutorials on running cables through walls, the job is tougher than it looks.

Always Shower With This Feature On

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Trendy Ideas/YouTube
Trendy Ideas/YouTube

There’s a reason why many bathrooms have exhaust fans on the ceiling. When you take a shower, the room fills with moist air, which can cause mold, mildew, and other damage to the interior. Running an exhaust fan during and after a shower can prevent that hot, damp air from sticking around.

It’s important to keep the fan on for a little while after the shower because most of the moist air is still in the room and it thrives in darkness. Another way to reduce humidity is to keep a window open in the bathroom.

You May Have Been Cleaning Your Carpets Wrong

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Jeff Greenberg/Universal Images Group via Getty Images
Jeff Greenberg/Universal Images Group via Getty Images

It’s crucial to regularly clean your carpets in order to protect them from dirt build-up, stains, and more. Vacuuming sometimes isn’t enough and people have to use special cleaners such as shampoos to get a good result. While shampoo usually does a great job of cleaning up the carpet, using too much can produce some negative results.

Overdoing it on the carpet shampoo might cause mold to grow because of the excess moisture. One way to prevent this from happening is to vacuum up as much as you can to remove any damp spots on the carpet.

Outdoor Extension Cords Can Be Tricky

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Adam Lacy/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images
Adam Lacy/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Plenty of things need to be plugged in outside with extension cords. Those who aren’t familiar with the different types of cords may not know that only certain ones are suited for outdoor use. Technical experts explained that extension cords that don’t belong outside have the capability of causing a fire.

If you’re wondering how to tell if an extension cord will be safe outdoors, make sure to check for the letter “W” printed on the cord jacket. Also, remember to never cover an extension cord because it can cause it to heat up and become a fire hazard.

Don’t Let The Lights Flicker

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Angela Weiss/AFP via Getty Images
Angela Weiss/AFP via Getty Images

People are bound to see some flickering lights in their homes and think it’s a normal occurrence. If it keeps happening it’s something that should never be ignored. Letting flickering lights go unchecked can be a big issue because it could be an early warning sign of dangerous wiring problems.

There are a couple of ways to make sure the wiring isn’t messed up. First, check to see if the bulb is screwed on correctly. If it seems to be fine, call an electrician who can inspect the wiring in your home.

How To Keep Your Kitchen In Tip-Top Shape

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Quick Image/Construction Photography/Avalon/Getty Images
Quick Image/Construction Photography/Avalon/Getty Images

Anyone who has a stove in their kitchen should make sure there’s a vented exhaust hood directly above it. Exhaust hoods get rid of the smoke and other cooking smells to help purify the air in your home. They also remove moisture left by cooking fumes, which can damage your kitchen.

If you have windows in or near your kitchen, be sure to open them to allow for cross-ventilation. This reduces moisture, smoke, and improves the indoor air quality almost as effectively as a vented exhaust hood.

What To Do Before Remodeling Your Home

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John Patriquin/Portland Press Herald via Getty Images
John Patriquin/Portland Press Herald via Getty Images

Remodeling a home can be such a rewarding experience because the homeowner has a lot of control over how the house will turn out. Not doing research beforehand can lead to major trouble. Certain remodeling projects require permits and not having them can lead to heavy fines, shut down of all construction, or having the house torn down completely.

Not having the proper workers doing the remodeling can also lead to severe structural damage to your home, which can cause foundation problems over time. Some tips for a seamless remodel include making a proper budget, having a clear vision, and to know who you’re hiring.

The Proper Way To Protect Your Attic

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Melanie Stetson Freeman/Getty Images
Melanie Stetson Freeman/Getty Images

While not everyone has an attic in their home, those who do need to take proper care of it. Leaving an attic uninsulated is a set up for trouble. And Energy Star found that at least a quarter of a home’s heat is lost through an uninsulated attic.

Failing to insulate the attic creates serious risks such as burst pipes, weather-related damage, and an increase in electrical bills. Not only does insulation keep heat in the house, but it also cools it off during the warmer months. Insulation will prevent you from overusing the air conditioner and the heater.

Get Your Fireplace And Chimney Cleaned

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Pat Greenhouse/The Boston Globe via Getty Images
Pat Greenhouse/The Boston Globe via Getty Images

Some may not think to clean certain areas of the house and that can potentially create larger issues. Both chimneys and fireplaces need to be regularly cleaned. Chimneys get a build-up called creosote, which can cause a fire and bad indoor air quality.

Not only do fireplaces need to be cleaned, but they also need to be inspected. Inspectors look at the venting system to check for dirt, blockages, cracks, leaking chimney flues, and whether it was installed correctly. If you don’t know what you’re doing when it comes to chimneys and fireplaces, please hire a professional.