Regular maintenance can help keep your home safe and minimize the possibility of costly future repairs. Here are measures you can take to keep your home in good condition:
- Test battery smoke and carbon monoxide detectors monthly. Replace batteries every 6 months, and replace detectors after 7 years.
- Check fire extinguishers for proper operation.
- Inspect water and waste lines on appliances for leaks or deterioration. Clean and/or replace filters.
- Service furnace and air conditioner units every six months.
- Shut off water to humidifier when not in use.
- Test water heater by draining a bucket of water from the drain faucet until water runs clean to remove any sediment. Replace after 10 years.
- Check around faucets, under sinks, around toilet and visible plumbing lines for leaks or corrosion. Inspect bathroom tile for cracks in tile and mortar. Clean and seal/repair grout lines.
- Clean and inspect gutters and downspouts. Ensure that water is draining away from the house.
- Inspect windows and doors for worn caulking and weather stripping. Check for proper operation and accessibility.
- Cut back any trees or shrubs touching the house or power lines. Check for health of trees as well.
- Check for any indication of pest infestation.
- Check all porches, railings and walkways for hazards or deterioration.
- Have your chimney professionally cleaned before each heating season and inspect the chimney top and its structure. Install a chimney cap to prevent water damage and keep animals out. Clean the firebox weekly when in high use. Dispose of ashes in a metal container and remove from the house. Do not put ashes in or near garbage.
- Check the roof for missing or broken shingles.
- Check exterior for missing siding and paint for peeling and cracking which may indicate potential water leaks or moisture problems.