With the amount invested in our homes, wouldn’t it make sense to have a plan to take care of that investment?
Absolutely, yet, maintaining the home is not something often thought of. In order to protect that investment, it’s important to do regular checks on your house for maintenance reasons. This ensures that your home runs like a well-oiled machine all year round. Plus, you’ll be safer, as well.
So here are a few things you can do each month to keep your home in top shape. Remember, these are things that anyone can do.
Smoke/Carbon Monoxide Detectors
One of the most important safety features in a home, the smoke and carbon monoxide detectors need to be monitored on a regular basis. Not having a functioning smoke or carbon monoxide detector is potentially life-threatening.
You’ll want to dust and clean these each month, inside and outside the housing unit. This will help prevent false triggers.
Also, if you’re getting non-alarm beeping (sporadic beeps), you’ll need to replace the battery. While, yes, most building codes say that the detectors must be linked into the power of the house, these batteries serve as a backup during power outages.
What is a GFCI outlet? It’s just your typical electrical outlet. Don’t worry — you don’t need to know anything about electric currents or outlets to complete this simple task.
You can check out whether your outlets are running at full capacity by plugging a light in and hitting the ‘test’ button on the outlet. This should turn off the light. Then you’ll hit the ‘reset’ button to turn the light back on. Short circuits can be a real pain, but this little test will help you stay on top of possible electrical problems, which, of course, should be handled by a licensed electrician.
Clean the Gutter
How many of you have actually cleaned out your gutters before? Probably not many of you. But, cleaning your gutter is actually really important.
Doing this prevents clogging and ice damming. It also allows proper draining. Cleaning the gutters can be done several different ways. You can do it by hand while standing on a ladder. But, if approaching this chore by this means, you’ll need to take safety precautions. A ladder should never be operated in rain or other adverse conditions, as they are prone to slipping. You’ll also want to make sure you are close enough to the gutter that you never have to reach more than an arms length to continue cleaning.
You can also get tools, like the Gutter Clutter Buster, that keep your feet firmly planted on the ground while it does all the work.
The last element of this chore is to clean out the strainer in the downspout with a screwdriver and water. Once you’ve cleaned it, be sure to use a hose to clear away the remaining debris.
Drains and Sinks
Sure, we clean out our drains and sinks when clogs happen, but there is much more that is also important when it comes to drains and sinks. Minerals from hard water, coffee grounds, hair, and other contaminants build up over time and can create a clog or start to eat away at your pipes, which means heavy repairs in the future.
The solution to this is simple. Just dump 1-2 cups of pure white vinegar down the drain or sink every month and you’ll eliminate the issues. If you’re into chemicals, there are also plenty of disposal cleaners.
And for the mesh on the drain of a sink… these can get clogged with all sorts of stuff, whether it be dirt or makeup. You can use a nylon brush and some pure white vinegar to get these mesh pieces clean, helping keep your sink running smoothly.
Taking care of these things on a monthly basis will help save you money on repairs in the future. It will also make your home more comfortable and accessible.