Staying on top of your home’s required maintenance is critical whether you are in the process of selling or you’re planning to reside in it for many years to come. Proper cleaning and repair is necessary to maintain the baseline value of your property, just as going above and beyond can make the difference of thousands of dollars.
Keep reading for some helpful home maintenance tips to keep your place in excellent health and ensure the best return on your investment.
1. Clean out your gutters
This often-overlooked task is one of the easiest ways to protect your home from both adventurous pests and the power of the elements.
Gutters channel rainwater away from your walls, landscape, and foundation.
A clog from leaves or other debris can create big problems fast. Standing water in your gutters can leak into both the exterior and interior of your home, as well as provide a haven for unwelcome creatures to flourish.
2. Re-caulk windows
Having a proper seal on your windows has many benefits.
For one, caulking will keep moisture out of window frames, foundation, and your home itself. A proper seal on your windows will also help save you energy.
The cool air that is produced stays inside of your home and the HVAC unit doesn’t have to work as hard to maintain room temperature.
Remember to remove the old caulk from your windows before applying a fresh layer of sealant. The seal will be much stronger when there are two clean surfaces for the caulk to adhere to.
It’s best practice to replace caulk whenever you start to notice it fraying significantly.
3. Clean and replace furnace and air-conditioner filters
Keeping clean, fresh air moving through your critical home systems is a necessity for their longevity. Dust and debris build up over time, making it difficult for air to pass through. This will have your furnace and HVAC working extra hard to keep your home at the right temperature.
Changing your HVAC filters also has great health benefits. Air filters act as a barrier to impurities in the air that are brought in from outside.
The cleaner that your filters are, the cleaner the air that is circulating throughout your home.
4. Clean range and sink filters
If you have never had the pleasure of cleaning the filter for the range over the stove – you’re in for a special surprise.
Food particles and grime get stuck throughout the filter over time. Cleaning this part of the home can be a daunting task, however regular upkeep will deter pests that are attracted to the grease and food particles stuck in the filter.
Keeping it clean will also increase the air quality inside your home and allow your stove to last longer.
Cleaning the filter can be as simple as running it through the dishwasher.
To clean your sink filter, drop a dash of baking soda into a sink full of warm water. Add a squirt of dish soap and scrub gently with a brush.
Your filter will be good as new in no time.
5. Wash your roof
A dirty roof that is stained with algae really does not cause any actual damage to the roof itself; but has a negative effect on the look of your home.
Cleaning the roof is actually an uncomplicated process.
The best way is to get a sprayer container/nozzle with a pump. You can usually find these along with a good, biodegradable, eco-friendly roof cleaning solution at your local hardware store.
Simply fill the container per the instructions on the bottle and apply to the roof. It’s recommended to spray the shingles down with water first to cool them.
Many homeowners will mistake a dirty roof as one that needs to be replaced.
This can end up costing thousands of dollars in unnecessary repairs and replacements.
When shingles flap in the wind or become brittle to the touch, however, it’s time to begin researching a roof replacement.
6. Flush out the water heater
Mineral build-up like sand, magnesium, iron, and calcium can build up on the bottom of a hot water heater.
These elements cause rust and discoloration of the water that you use daily to drink, bathe, and brush your teeth.
The build-up of minerals can also form a layer between the water and the heating element on the appliance. This makes the water heater work extra hard.
7. Clean the chimney
When you burn wood in your fireplace or wood stove inevitably there is a buildup of a compound called creosote.
Creosote is an extremely flammable substance with a barbecue-like aroma that collects over time from the chemical reaction of wood being burned. Once creosote is built up it has the potential of being a huge fire risk to your home.
Clean the chimney once or twice during the colder seasons with a sharp-bristled brush designed for removing the crusty substance.
This has the added benefit of removing nesting places for rodents and other pests that perish and clog the flow.
8. Keep an eye on the foundation
Seal holes where insects and other rodents can enter. This includes breaches around the foundation of your home, as well as openings for wires and pipes. Usually a can of spray foam or similar will do the trick.
It is smart to keep standing sources of water away from your home’s foundation as well to keep cracks from forming and to discourage pests. Termites alone cost American homeowners over $5 billion worth of structural damage per year.
Let’s face it, we could all use a little downsizing. It’s never a bad idea to go through the storage areas and get rid of things that you no longer need or use.
You will feel more organized and greatly reduce the likelihood of pet habitats.
10. Check for high water pressure
Having high water pressure can cause unneeded harm to the home’s pipes, their connections, and appliances that use water. High water pressure can also be very wasteful and raise utility bills.
A water pressure gauge can be bought cheaply at your local hardware store. If the water pressure is too high, consider installing a pressure relieving pipe or valve to help reduce the pressure.
Home Maintenance Tips Wrap Up
Following these home maintenance tips will have you resting easy at night. Another way to rest easy is by having a home warranty.
Purchasing a home warranty from a reputable home warranty company saves you money on repairs or replacements to critical home systems should your maintenance efforts fall short.
Stay tuned for more fun DIY projects and other home maintenance tips for your home.