Home is where you rest your head. Home is where your family eats dinner. And home is where the best memories are made. The ways in which we value our home may differ but the common sentiment is that it’s the place where we feel most secure. Keeping that security alive often includes maintaining the areas that risk the potential of causing damage.
Whether you’re a new homeowner or are well into owning your third or fourth home, performing routine maintenance can be a tricky task. It’s not always clear how often one needs to check the kitchen’s exhaust fan. But it’s precisely those details that make a difference. So we thought it’d be a good idea to break down how often something needs to be inspected or replaced on a monthly and seasonal basis.
Your Monthly Checklist
- Change out the air filters. Most manufacturers will say that HVAC filters need to be changed every 30 to 60 days. This will ultimately depend on a couple of factors. For one, if you own a cat or dog, you’re looking at an average of every 60 days. On another note, if you suffer from allergies, you’ll want to bump that up to every 20 to 45 days, depending on the severity of your symptoms. But if you’re hardly ever home or this is a seasonal residence, you can extend that length up to 90 days.
- Check and/or replace the batteries of your smoke detectors. You’ll want to install a smoke detector on every floor of your home as well as the basement or attic. As a rule of thumb, be sure to check each detector’s batteries at least once a month. It only requires a couple of minutes and the difference a smoke detector makes is significant.
- Clean the garbage disposal. There’s debate over how often the garbage disposal needs to be cleaned—some say once a week, others claim once a month. This will depend on how often you throw food waste down the drain. But at least once a month you’ll want to thoroughly clean it using baking soda and hot water. First, throw in a couple of ice cubes into the disposal then flush them down with baking soda and hot water.
Every Three to Four Months
- Check door and window locks. With everyday use, door locks can become loose or require some finetuning to ensure they’re performing optimally. A door lock that’s too tight or too difficult to open is not safe. The same applies for home windows. You want to make sure that you can open them without any trouble. Once March, June, September, or December roll around, be sure to perform a routine check on your doors and windows.
- Check the exterior of your home. Look for any cracks in the walls, the chipping of paint, or any missing roof shingles. By inspecting the exterior of your home, you’ll uncover any potential damage that can be addressed early on or before the start of a new season, which may bring unpredictable weather. You should have a professional roofer inspect your roof.
Your Seasonal Home Maintenance Tips
- Check the basement and/or attic for any leaks– By spotting leaks in the basement or attic, you can avoid the damage that’s caused when those leaks spread to the rest of your home, often leading to mold.
- Clean the exhaust fan grill– Your stove and oven will see a lot of oil and different chemicals splattered throughout. It’s important to clean both the exhaust fan in order to rid it of the grease that will collect over time. Leftover grease can easily start a fire if you’re not careful.
- Inspect your roof– Have your roof professionally inspected just to be sure no repairs are needed.
- Remove leaves or outside debris from gutters- Keeping your gutters clean is important for your home’s exterior and interior. Since gutters control the flow of water, they also keep your roof and walls protected from water. Clogged gutters often leak to mold and the infestation of rodents and/or pests.
- Have your septic tank professionally inspected and cleaned- How often you have your septic tank cleaned may depend on the size of your household. Ultimately, you want to make sure you have it inspected once a year in the spring to make sure it’s functioning properly.
- Flush the water heater– Doing so will help prevent the buildup of minerals and other harmful corrosion. It will also keep your water heater running as smooth as possible.
When Summer Rolls Around
- Make sure your dryer’s vents are clean- When a dryer overheats, it can cause a fire. Lint is the culprit, which is why cleaning the lint filters is key. Unfortunately, those lint traps that we clean after each use isn’t able to capture all of the lint that’s produced. For that reason, you’ll want to make sure that the inside of the dryer is cleaned and free from excess lint.
Do Your Part to Avoid Property Damage
The value of your home comes in many different forms, from its financial value to the sentiment you and your family place on it as a means of shelter, security, and warmth. When the subject of potentially losing or damaging your home is brought up, it will ultimately raise feelings of fear and maybe even anger. Doing your part to keep your home protected is the best mechanism for challenging that fear. There are natural events that will occur such as a storm that may bring property damage but by focusing on preventable measures, you’ll find that your home will remain as secure as possible. As with any matter, taking precaution is always key!
Contact Lariat Builders Group
At Lariat Builders, we do our best to inform you about all of the safety precautions that will keep your home as secure as possible. This includes tips that affect your home’s physical structure as well as your own health and safety. We’re always happy to answer any questions you may have regarding seasonal updates, repairs, and how to best restore an area of your home if property damage does occur. Please connect with us today if you have any questions!