Purchasing a home is one of the biggest investments that you will make in your life. Just like oil changes for your car, or physical checkups for your body, new homes require maintenance to make sure everything is in proper working order. New homeowners can get overwhelmed, but most of these tasks are easy and can be done by anybody without any experience. If you get stuck, simply performing a search in Google can show you how to complete any of these tasks.
Each month you need to inspect your HVAC filter, located in the furnace. You can purchase multi-packs of filters at any Wal-Mart or Kroger. Make sure to write down the size of your filter before going on your next grocery trip. There’s also a filter in your range hood, that many people forget about. You can easily remove this and clean it, using a degreaser and hot water.
Cleaning your garbage disposal is also something that should be done each month. The best trick that I’ve learned is to put vinegar in an ice tray, freezing it into vinegar ice cubes. Not only will the vinegar freshen the disposal, but the ice will sharpen the blades.
If you have a larger home with unused space, you’ll want to make sure that you’re running water and flushing toilets to prevent grime and build-up. Most of the time we see this in basement sinks or guest bathrooms that aren’t used on a normal basis.
Each quarter you should also be testing your smoke and carbon monoxide detectors. Simply push the “test” button, on the outside of the unit. If the alarm goes off then move on to the next one. If not, replace the battery and test again. Most of these take a 9-Volt battery.
This is the cleaning phase of home maintenance. Giving your house a deep clean every spring can alert you to problems that have risen in the past year. Be sure to inspect the interior and exterior of your home while you clean. Clean out your gutters, replace damaged window screens, clear out dead shrubs, and inspect your roof. While inside your home, clean the refrigerator coils, check the bathroom grout, inspect plumbing and take care of any insect problems that you may have.
Chances are, you’ll be outside more in the summer than any other season. While you’re out there, be sure to check your exterior fixtures such as sheds and porches. A good coat of stain on the porch can help the wood last longer. The summer is also a good time to clean the garage.
Fall is the season where you should prepare your home for the winter. You should flush your hot water heater, winterize your air conditioning system, make sure your furnace is working properly, turn off water to your outside water faucets, clean your chimney, test your sump pump and check your driveway and pavement for cracks.
Fall is also a good time to stock your home up on winter gear, so you’re not having to make unexpected trips when emergencies arise. Sidewalk salt and snow shovels should be kept in an easy-to- reach area in the garage, so you’ll be prepared for that first winter snowfall.
Winter is a good time to seal up drafty doors and windows. This will save you money on your electric bill. Also, make sure that the seals around your refrigerator door are airtight.