Plenty of homeowners talk about problems like keeping up with mortgage payments or getting the wrong furnishings for their home. But what many people don’t really tell you is that one big part of homeownership is continuous maintenance.
Keeping your home in excellent condition is a huge responsibility. You have to do one maintenance job after another every day, week, and month. And with so many things that need your attention at once, it can be easy to overlook a few things.
To keep your household running like a well-oiled machine, take stock of the following home maintenance tasks you’re probably not doing as often as you should.
Inspecting your roof and gutters
Roof and gutter cleaning is one of the most overlooked home maintenance tasks. But when not maintained as much as they should, your roof and gutter may cause serious damage to your home.
If you have trees surrounding your home, it’s important to check and clean your roof and gutter after every season and not just after fall. In the winter and spring, especially, roof and gutter damage tend to become apparent.
If you’re in a colder area, ice dams can form in your gutter and leak water into your home during winter. Meanwhile, cracks and holes in your roof can cause the rain to leak into your home and damage the walls and ceiling.
Sealing off cracks and gaps
As structures age, cracks and gaps tend to appear, especially in openings like doors and windows. These cracks and gaps do not only reduce energy efficiency by letting out warm air in the winter and cold air in the summer, but they also let in things like pollutants and pests.
A few times a year, conduct a thorough inspection of every nook and cranny in your home and look for these cracks. Then, seal them with the appropriate sealants, like caulk and weatherstripping for your doors and windows.
Replacing loose or wobbly electrical outlets
Ideal electrical outlets are ones that can hold your plugs firmly so there’s no risk of electrocution when the prongs are exposed. But some outlets somehow get looser with time. And since these outlets still work, you might not pay them any mind and continue using them.
When they become worn out and lose, electrical outlets become electrical hazards. So, keep a lookout on the outlets around your home and take note of the loose ones. If you notice that plugs keep falling from an outlet’s receptacle, contact your electrical contractor so they can replace it immediately.
Cleaning your refrigerator coils
The refrigerator is probably the kitchen appliance that sees the most use. Despite this, it’s also one whose maintenance is often overlooked. Apart from cleaning the insides of your fridge, another maintenance task you’re likely often forgetting is cleaning the refrigerator coils.
The fridge’s condenser coils are located at the bottom or back of the unit. Because of this often inaccessible placement, condenser coils are neglected and collect dust over time. This makes it difficult for the coils to do their job of cooling and condensing the refrigerant, a substance responsible for keeping your fridge’s temperature.
If you want to keep your refrigerator at an optimal temperature, make sure to dust off the coils from time to time, ideally every other month. Your vacuum’s hose attachment can do an excellent job of this.
Removing lint buildup from the dryer vent
Lots of people forget to clean the lint screen in their dryers, but a lot more do not even clean their dryer vents. Lint can build up here with every load, which can cause the dryer to overheat and become fire hazard.
According to the National Fire Protection Agency, dust, fiber, or lint buildup is the top reason for dryer ignition between 2010 and 2014. And for the same period, fire departments across the country responded to almost 16,000 home fires involving dryers.
Prevent fire in your home by cleaning your dryer’s lint screen after every load and your dryer vent at least four times a year. You can do it more often if you have a large family and do lots of laundry. Once you’ve vacuumed the lint off your dryer vent, not only will your dryer stop being a fire hazard, it can also work more efficiently.
Home maintenance tasks aren’t necessarily difficult, but there can be a lot of them you need to keep track of. Keep the things we mentioned above in mind so you can do them more often and enjoy greater comfort at home as a result.