Maintenance /

A little elbow grease

beats a pound of flesh.

Owning a home means adding a few line items to your to-do sheet. Spending a few hours on home maintenance throughout the year will save you thousands of dollars in potential repairs. So do yourself – and your happiness – a favor, get familiar with this recommended new home maintenance list so you’ll take good care of the biggest and best investment you’ll ever make.

 

MONTHLY

  • Fire extinguisher: Check that it’s fully charged; recharge or replace if needed.
  • Washing machine: Discharge filter, sink stoppers, drain holes: Clean out debris.
  • Garbage disposal: Flush with hot water and baking soda.
  • Water softener: Check and replenish salt when necessary.
  • Forced-air heating system: Change filters (unless otherwise noted by filter or manual).
  • Range hood: Clean grease filter.

 

EVERY 3 MONTHS

  • Faucets and shower heads: Clean aerators.
  • Basement floor drain: Clear away blockages and debris.

 

EVERY 6 MONTHS

  • Smoke detector: Test batteries and replace if needed.
  • Interior caulking: Inspect caulking around tubs, showers, and sinks; replace any if it is deteriorating.
  • Clothes dryer: Vacuum lint from ducts and surrounding areas.

 

SPRING

  • Roof: Inspect roof surface, flashing, eaves, and soffits; repair if needed.
  • Gutters: Clean and clear (unless house is installed with no maintenance gutters then check for damage).
  • Downspouts: Inspect for proper connections and drainage flow.
  • Siding: Inspect and clean siding; repair if needed.
  • Air conditioner: Remove cover and remove debris from exterior.
  • Outdoor faucets: Turn on valves to outdoor faucets. Reconnect garden hoses.
  • Exterior caulking: Inspect caulking and replace any that is deteriorating.
  • Windowsills, doorsills, thresholds: Fill cracks, caulk edges, repaint; replace if needed.
  • Window and door screens: Clean screening and repair or replace if necessary.
  • Trees/bushes/shrubs: Prune any limbs or branches making contact with the home. Maintain at lest six inches of clearance between landscaping and siding.

 

FALL

  • Roof: Inspect roof surface, flashing, eaves, and soffits; repair if needed.
  • Gutters: Clean and clear (unless house is installed with no maintenance gutters then check for damage).
  • Downspouts: Inspect for proper connections and drainage flow.
  • Chimney: Clean flue (more frequently if needed); repair any cracks in flue or any loose or crumbling mortar.
  • Siding: Inspect and clean siding; repair if needed.
  • Air conditioner: Cover with a tarp.
  • Exterior caulking: Inspect caulking and replace any that is deteriorating.
  • Window and door weather stripping: Inspect and repair or replace if it is deteriorating or if it does not seal.
  • Outdoor faucets: Shut off valves to outdoor faucets. Open spigots and drain, store hoses indoors.
  • Trees/bushes/shrubs: Prune any limbs or branches making contact with the home. Maintain at lest six inches of clearance between landscaping and siding.

 

ANNUALLY

  • Main drain: Have a rooter professional clean out the main line, particularly if there are mature trees in your yard whose roots could have cracked the pipe in their search for moisture.
  • Water heater: Drain water until it is clear of sediment; test temperature pressure relief valve; clean burner and ports (gas heater).
  • HVAC system: Have a professional tune up your heat/air conditioning system.