Preventative Home Maintenance – Protect Your Home
It is not a hidden fact that homes come with much more cost than just the initial price and taxes. Maintaining your home is just as important as doing maintenance on your vehicle. If you neglect it, the final repair bill can be much greater than the small amount of time and money that goes into regular upkeep.
These steps are recommended by us, that way when you car your local Missoula General Contractor it will be for additions that you desire, not require because the floor in your bathroom collapsed. Face it, no one wants to be taking a shower and end up in the basement before they have time to wrap a towel around themselves.
Flickr / Creative Commons / Eric Schmuttenmaer
Moisture can be one of the biggest factors in large repair projects; however, there are easy steps that you can take to allow you to enjoy a thunderstorm rather than dread it. Gather your thunder-buddy and outfit your home.
• Rain gutters are one of the easiest ways to keep your home safe. Rather than water creating a puddle next to your foundation and seeping in– they direct water a safe distance away.
• Rain gutters cannot do their job when clogged. Regular cleaning is very important– especially in spring after the winter runoff and fall when the leaves are dropping like candy from a piñata.
• During the summer, when watering the lawn, direct your sprinklers away from your home. Even having the water fall a few inches short can make a huge difference. Wet wood can rot and produce mold. On top of that, termites thrive in moist wood environments. Just think of all the termite paths that you see in fallen trees while hiking.
• To protect the inside of your home, inspect the attic area and the roof. A leaking roof can need much more attention than just new shingles if left alone for too long.
• To prevent your bathroom from rotting away and growing mold, turn on fans and/or open a window to help moisture escape rather than form condensation and soak into materials. Check around the bathtub and shower often to see if there are any cracks in the seams or tiles.
• When it comes to pipes and drainage, be sure to view toilet and sink pipes to assure that there are no leaks. It is also important to look into washing machines, air conditioners and dishwashers.
• In the winter, purge your sprinkler system and hoses to assure that they do not freeze and burst. If you do not need the spikets, cut off water to them completely. A burst pipe can cause a massive amount of damage– both inside and out.
Flickr / Creative Commons / The Peace of Mind Team
We already mentioned a few things to look for inside when dealing with moisture, but that is just a small portion.
• One of the simplest home maintenance tasks that can also help with health is to simply vacuum your carpet at least once a week. Carpets can trap debris that can be harmful to some people.
• The exhaust fan in your kitchen can become clogged and filter out less odor and particles when you decide to burn dinner every now and then. It is important to keep an eye on the condition of it.
• The other fan that is important to keep an eye on is the heating system. The filter here can become clogged and actually push harmful materials though your vents.
• Dryer vents and ducting must also be checked periodically. This is one of the leading causes of home fire.
• Heat registers can also build up with particles. An easy way to clean them is to simply vacuum them using a hose attachment.
• Drains can be kept in optimal condition by pouring boiling hot water down them. Baking soda can help to combat clogged drains. One cup down the drain, followed by three-cups of water can have you free flowing again if caught soon enough.
• Checking and changing the batteries on your smoke and carbon monoxide detectors can truly be a lifesaver.
• To keep down on heat and air conditioning costs, make sure that all of the seals around doors and windows are intact. This is a prime location for air to escape.
• If your home is outfitted with a wood-burning fireplace, be sure to check it for clogs and cracks in the chimney. A clogged chimney can be very hazardous.
Flickr / Creative Commons / Yortw
Exterior maintenance is especially important come spring. The cold weather can do a number, and after the snow melts things tend to get muddy.
• Lightly hose off the exterior of your home to remove dirt and debris left from the spring thaw.
• Clean your air conditioning compressor, making sure that there is no dirt and debris nearby. While you are at it, it is a wise choice to change the filter. If you want to be completely safe, you can have a licensed professional inspect your air conditioner to make sure all the lines are up to par.
• Removing sap and mildew from the exterior of your home and deck is crucial to the longevity of the wood. After it is removed, treat your deck for mold and mildew to assure that it retains it longevity.
• You can eliminate squeaking doors by spraying silicone spray onto the hinges. This spray also works great for sliding patio doors and window tracks.
These steps cover a very large majority of preventing disasters that could go wrong with your home. A few minutes here, an hour there, throughout the year can save you a massive amount of money, time and frustration in the end.
If you happened to miss one of these crucial preventative maintenance steps and things begin to go sour, give Straightedge Construction a call. Our general contractor would be more than happy to help out his Missoula-area neighbors.