Your home is probably one of your biggest investments. Of course, you want to take care of it, and you’re aware that proper maintenance will keep everything in good working order for longer. Plus, a home in good condition is worth more when it’s time for resale. Life can get pretty hectic, and it’s easy to let some tasks go by the wayside. Here are four crucial areas to inspect when maintaining your home. Adding these to your list of chores can save you a lot of hassle down the road.
One of the top tasks on your annual home maintenance checklist should be cleaning the gutters. Your soffits and fascia, those areas beneath and at the ends of your rafters, should also be included here. Cleaning these areas at least in the fall and in the spring will cut down on the buildup of branches, leaves, and other debris that can lead to problems. If you have pine trees nearby, you may need to take care of things more frequently because the needles tend to clog gutters easily. Clogged gutters don’t allow the water to flow properly. Pooling water could cause leaks to your roof, rotting of wood, or foundation damage. These types of repairs are quite expensive. Remove debris from gutters and from around the rafters. It’s also a good idea to make sure your gutters are draining away from the foundation. If this doesn’t appear to be the case, you can purchase a drainage extension for very little money at any hardware store. After removing all the big stuff, it’s time to get down to the finer details. You’ll want to scrub any serious grime and attend to any cracks, holes, or missing caulk. If heights are not your thing, you can hire a professional.
When many homeowners hear the word “plumbing”, they start to panic. Plumbing tasks can often be overwhelming, requiring the assistance of a professional to perform. However, there are some plumbing issues you can take care of yourself throughout the year to prevent the need to call in a pro. For instance, you should remove small clogs as soon as you notice them so that they don’t cause big messes like leaks and water damage. Take care of the hair in your shower drain, for instance. Don’t forget to look in the cabinets beneath the sinks for puddles of water that might indicate slow leaks. When it comes to your toilet, you’ll want to clean away the buildup around the toilet valve and replace the flapper if it looks worn.
This is one that many homeowners aren’t aware they should be doing. At least once a year, it’s important to drain the water that builds up at the bottom of the tank. Sediment collects here. Such buildup can cause your appliance to work much harder, potentially damaging the tank or causing elements to fail. Draining the tank will increase efficiency, lowering your utility bills. It can also extend the life of your water heater. You’ll appreciate the monthly savings, and replacing a water heater could cost you thousands of dollars.
You should have your heating and air conditioning checked by an HVAC professional at least twice each year. In the fall, you’ll want to have your furnace inspected and in the spring, your air conditioning. A professional can look for issues like worn electrical wiring or clogged ducts. Their trained eye can end up saving you a lot of money. You can take care of small system upkeep like changing the furnace filters or cleaning the air vents yourself. Don’t forget to remove debris from your outside unit as well.
Keep these tips in mind when it comes to maintaining your home. While it may seem your job as a homeowner is never done, you won’t regret taking the time to take care of the small things regularly so that you can enjoy your home all year long. These tasks are easy to forget. Now you can add them to your list. You’ll be glad you did.
Samantha Higgins is a professional writer with a passion for research, observation, and innovation. She is nurturing a growing family of twin boys in Portland, Oregon with her husband. She loves kayaking and reading creative non-fiction. If you are interested in maintaining your HVAC system consider these furnace filters from Atomic Filters.