Your home is the center of your life. It’s where you spend time with friends and loved ones. It’s where your dog greets you at the door after a long day at work. It’s where you can unwind and be yourself. Your home matters, and that’s why keeping it in good condition matters, too. With the right maintenance and upkeep, your home will stay like-new for years to come. In this article, we’ll walk you through several essential home maintenance tips that will prevent future problems and improve the liveability of your home.
Your home’s cooling and heating systems are essential to the comfort of your home. When they’re working like-new, you’ll reap the benefits: lower energy bills in the summer and winter, increased comfort, and fewer breakdowns or problems. One of the best ways to keep your air conditioner and furnace in great condition is by scheduling a professional tune-up with an HVAC contractor. This service allows the tech to not only inspect your system for any potential issues, but also gives them the opportunity to calibrate the unit and your thermostat for the best possible energy savings for the season ahead.
In addition to keeping you cool in the summer and warm in the winter, your air conditioner and furnace represent a major investment in the value of your home. Keep them in good condition, and you’ll get more years out of each before needing to replace them.
Whether your home is connected to a septic system or a sewer, you should watch what you put down your drains. Over time, the consequences of putting trash, grease, coffee grounds, and more down your drains—especially your kitchen sink—can catch up with your home. Grease and oils, in particular, can collect deep within pipes and the sewer or septic line. Given enough time, they can form a powerful, stubborn clot in the line that prevents water from leaving your home.
Here’s a tip: if you want to keep your home’s pipes and plumbing in great shape, watch what you put down the drain and always hire a professional plumber at the first sign of any trouble.
It’s not just grease that can be trouble for your pipes. Hard water scaling has the potential to make a clean, new home age right before your eyes. Within months, hard water buildup and corrosion will likely affect your faucets, fixtures, drain, and tile—basically, anywhere water goes, so does hard water stains. Use the combination of vinegar and baking soda to clean your bathroom and kitchen if you’re starting to notice these stains.
However, hard water is more than just an eyesore. It can also lead to scale buildup inside of your pipes and water heater, and make both your dishwasher and your washing machine less effective. Proactive homeowners should consider addressing the problem at its source by having a whole-home water softener installed. These systems filter out the mineral content that makes hard water hard, which means less stain buildup and better water for your appliances.
Even handy homeowners need to know their limits. There are just some home maintenance and upkeep projects that you shouldn’t take on yourself. Some homeowners may feel comfortable changing out a chandelier on their own, but you need a licensed electrician to safely handle a more complex and dangerous project like moving or replacing wiring. Similarly, you should always have a certified and experienced technician repair your air conditioner, heat pump, or furnace—not only are they more likely to actually fix the problem, but working on the system yourself could void the warranty.
Whether you need a plumber or a roofer, never settle for anything less than a professional. The relatively minor savings of hiring an unlicensed, inexperienced service provider is not worth the potential trouble that shoddy work can cause, either immediately or down the road. Your home deserves better.
Of course, not every aspect of home maintenance requires a licensed professional. With the help of an instructional video or two, there’s actually quite a few projects that even relatively inexperienced homeowners can take on themselves, from repainting the living room walls to changing out the air filter and adding weatherstripping around the front door. Spending 2-3 hours a month on your home can really go a long way to ensuring that it stays like-new for many years to come.
Whether you’re a first-time homeowner or you’ve shoveled snow out of the driveway for many, many winters, you have what it takes to take care of your home and keep it like-new for years to come. Treat your home with some love and care, and you’ll watch it age like fine wine.
Lauren Anderson is the HVAC content specialist at Wagner Mechanical, a professional heating and air conditioning company serving Albuquerque and Santa Fe, NM. Lauren has studied Construction Management and currently enjoys writing about topics that help homeowners in taking good care of their homes. At Wagner, you can trust that we are going to guarantee not only the work we do, but that our service meets your expectations.