A (big) Home Maintenance Checklist for Keeping Your Home in Top Shape

home maintenance and diy checklistWe provide an affordable, quality home maintenance, handyman and DIY service for all of Co. Cavan.  Call us for details. 

Most people’s minds immediately go to the cost when they consider purchasing a property. It’s easy to lose sight of the hard work and dedication that goes into maintaining a property. Keeping up with routine house maintenance activities can save you time and money in the long run, just as getting your car’s oil changed regularly keeps your engine happy and healthy.

As a new homeowner, it might be overwhelming to consider all of these responsibilities. There’s no ignoring the fact that this is a rather lengthy list. The good news is that you can do much of it without needing anybody else’s help or having any special expertise. If you’re truly in a bind, Google it, and if that doesn’t work, give the number to your neighbourhood handyman.

You may find that making a home maintenance schedule helps you stay on top of things and actually gets things done. Write down manageable, recurring chores for each weekend, whether you want to do it digitally or on paper. The duties that should be completed on a monthly, quarterly, and semiannual basis are outlined. We’ve also provided you with a schedule of seasonal projects. This isn’t always a black and white list, since not every expert will agree on which work has to be done during which season. As long as these tasks are completed, your house will be cheerful for many years to come regardless of how you choose to organise your time.

Monthly Home Maintenance Tasks

  • Check the air conditioning system’s filters and possibly replace them if necessary. Although many authorities advise replacing filters every month, this isn’t always essential. Changing the filters every two to three months should be OK for smaller households without pets or allergy sufferers. To check whether the filter has to be replaced due to dirtiness, or to wait and see till the following month. I’ve been advised by handymen to forego the more costly filters in favor of the cheaper ones and to change them more often. (You may also put the idea out of your head by ordering from a service like Cleaner Filters.)
  • Disposal in the kitchen sink should be cleaned regularly. There are a number of methods for doing this, but vinegar ice cubes appear to be the most convenient and effective overall option. To clean the disposal, freeze some vinegar in ice cube trays and then run the cubes through the machine. The ice not only cleans it, but also sharpens the blades. Thank you for your kind words.
  • To clean the filters in the range hood. When you take the filter out of the hood for the first time to clean it, you’re in for a “treat” if you’ve never done it before. The degreaser sold at auto parts stores may be used in conjunction with hot water, as recommended by a handyman. You may skip the waiting time by letting the filter rest for a few minutes and then rinsing it thoroughly.
  • Please check your fire extinguisher (s). It is assumed that you have access to and are familiar with using an extinguisher. Performing this check doesn’t involve much effort: verify that it is not obstructed by a trash can or anything else, that the pressure gauge reads appropriately, and that there are no obvious indications of damage.

Quarterly Home Maintenance Task Checklist

  • Put CO2 and smoke detectors through their paces. Your detectors should also include a “test” button, so that you can easily check their functionality. To be ready to go if the alarm goes off. Change the batteries and try again if not. If it still doesn’t make a noise after you’ve replaced the batteries, rust on the terminal may be to blame. Purge it and give it another go. If that fails, a new detector will be required.
  • Try out the door’s automatic reverse function. After a number of preventable deaths of children, this requirement was made mandatory by federal legislation in 1993. Put a 2×4 on the floor in the door’s expected closing position once a month for a test. As soon as the door makes contact with the wood, it should reverse within a second or two. If you also have photoelectric sensors, try blocking their view (not your body). Something is wrong if the door doesn’t spring back up quickly.
  • Keep water running and toilets flushed in unoccupied rooms. To a lesser extent, this also applies to sinks and water sources that are rarely used, such as those in guest bathrooms. The goal is to avoid the accumulation of dirt and dust. This may be avoided by periodically flowing water through.
  • Make sure your water softener has enough salt in it. It’s not necessary to add salt every month, but you should check nonetheless since doing so takes no more than five seconds.

Biannual Home Maintenance Tasks Checklist

  • You should check the water heater’s pressure relief valve regularly. By doing so, mineral and corrosion accumulation may be avoided, which in turn helps to prevent leaks. In addition to improving the effectiveness of your heater, this is a great winter preventative measure.
  • Do a thorough cleaning of your home. Take one Saturday every six months as a family to do a thorough cleaning of the whole home. Cleaning the oven, vacuuming the carpet, wiping down every surface (including the basement), etc. Keeping your property in pristine condition over many years requires a commitment to cleanliness and an avoidance of the buildup of filth, grime, and dust.
  • It’s time to change the batteries in the smoke and CO2 detectors. Actually, I’d never heard anything like this before. When it began making the low-battery warning sound, I thought you replaced it. On the other hand, this piece of advice was consistent across all of our sources. You can never be too cautious, and batteries won’t drain your financial account, when it comes to anything of this significance. Do a complete swap every six months.
  • Make sure the coils in your fridge have been vacuumed. This was a trick I picked up from a refrigerator repairman, and it was later proven by our own investigation. If you want to save money on your electric bill, you should make sure your refrigerator is energy efficient. Dirty coils increase your refrigerator’s energy consumption. It’s a simple way to save money that may add up to $100 over the course of a year.

family performing home maintenanceAnnually (Organised by Season) Home Maintenance Tasks

Spring Home Maintenance Tasks Checklist

Home improvement projects often peak in the spring. Spring cleaning isn’t called that for no reason. Pay careful attention to the outside of your property, as it has recently endured the harsh conditions of winter and will soon be subjected to the scorching temperatures and, in certain areas, oppressive humidity of summer.

  • Verify the external plumbing. Does the terrain slope away from the house? It’s not safe to have puddles around your house for more than a day. There are many things you may do if water remains or begins to creep closer to your home’s base. Initially, you should inspect the gutters. It may be as simple as needing to be cleaned or as complex as replacing a faulty spout or connector. The second is that I have had success in the past using dirt to grade the ground surrounding my house by myself. Third, if your driveway or sidewalk is low, you may have it raised by specialists to direct water away from your house.
  • Do some gutter maintenance and cleaning. They’re probably dirty from the leaves that fell in the autumn and the silt that was carried by the snow and rain during winter.
  • Look at how the house is holding up from the outside. Is there flaking paint? Is there any winter damage to the siding? Have you checked your brick for holes? Check the condition of your home from top to bottom, then fix what needs fixing. Verify the solidity of the base by looking for any splits or other damage. All sorts of issues may be remedied with the use of silicone or caulk.
  • Prepare your air conditioner for the summer heat by thinking about getting it serviced. The answer to this question is as unique as your house and your geographic location. While some areas rely only on window air conditioners, others, like my own Colorado house, have large swamp coolers installed on the roof; either way, they are quite simple equipment, and a fast online search may help you solve any difficulties that arise. When it comes to routine maintenance, be sure you consult the user manuals. The central air conditioning system is clearly more complicated. A professional service should cost less than $100, and it will save you time and money in the long run if you get it done.
  • Fix or replace broken screen doors and windows. It’s not ideal to let insects enter via an open window. Duct tape doesn’t qualify, either. It may be easily remedied, but don’t put it off for too long. It detracts from the overall presentation.
  • Throw out any bushes or plants that have died inside. This is also a gardening advice, however you should prune trees and shrubs now if you didn’t do it in the autumn. Plants may sneak inside your house via any openings they find, shortening its lifespan and perhaps causing structural damage. Do something about it before it becomes a problem. Keep a watchful eye on any vines you may have used for outside decoration.
  • Make sure power cables aren’t being impeded by any nearby trees. If required, have it cut by a professional.
  • Test the roof for problems like leaks and other damage. Maintain and fix as required; expert help may be required.

Summer

The summer is an excellent time to provide attention to the outside of your house, including the grass and garden. The extra daylight is great for getting to those macho tasks you’ve been putting off in the open garage.

  • Examine grout in the bathroom, kitchen, and other areas; fix if broken. It looks nicer and will extend the life of your tiled surfaces.
  • Fix any leaks you find and make sure that the faucet aerators are all sparkling. Inspect each sink and bathroom fixture for signs of dripping. The aerator is the most common cause of low water pressure from a faucet, and replacing it is a breeze.
  • Get rid of any bugs that could be plaguing your home. It’s a free-for-all for them throughout the summer. Seeing whether there are bug issues will not need much effort on your part. Common pests like ants, spiders, moths, etc., may be easily eliminated. Clear away any cobwebs, stock up on ant poison, double check any doors, etc.
  • Decks and patios should be cleaned and repaired as required. In most cases, all that is required is a thorough washing. It’s also possible that the deck has to be re-stained. As an added precaution, tighten any loose screws or fix any sagging planks or sagging pillars.
  • Remove any clutter from window sills. Window wells are standard in basements. The bottom of the pit is easily accessible, allowing everything from leaves to rubbish to small creatures to find their way in.
  • The exhaust ducts in your house, including the one that leads to the outside, should be checked and cleaned regularly. Verify that exhaust is leaving the dryer while it is operating. The clean scent of freshly washed clothes is ideal. Check for obstructions as thoroughly as possible if there is little exhaust. A specialist may be required. Lint in the dryer’s hose should be removed using a vacuum cleaner as well.
  • Put some effort into cleaning the garage. Every male need to make cleaning out the garage a summertime tradition. Keeping it clean and neat will increase its life, yet it frequently gets ignored of regular attention. With all the additional dust it receives from the macho tasks you’re working on, you should really clean it even more. However, once a year, you should give it a complete inspection.

Autumn

In the autumn, you finish up the home maintenance projects you started in the summer and start preparing your house for the colder months ahead. It’s important to get your house ready for the winter months since the effects of the cold, snow, and rain may be devastating.

  • Be sure to flush the hot water heater to get rid of sediment. The heater’s useful life is increased, and energy efficiency is improved, by doing this.
  • Protect your AC against the cold winter by preparing it in advance. Take down and store window treatments. Cover the outside condenser with a tarp or plastic sheeting and fasten it with bungee cords if you have central air conditioning.
  • Prepare the heating system for the next winter. Windows and doors that lose air may quickly rack up huge energy bills. Make sure that nothing is blocking any heating vents. It’s recommended to have your furnace tested and serviced once per year, if not twice a year. Much like the air conditioner, this shouldn’t cost too much. If you have a fireplace, be sure to use it.
  • Water faucets outside should be turned off and flushed. Clean the hoses and put them away. If you have a sprinkler system, it should be winterized as well.
  • If you have a chimney, it should be cleaned. The timing of this is debated; some believe spring is best, while others argue autumn. Either way, make sure it occurs annually.
  • Try out the basement’s sump pump. You don’t want to discover your sump pump is broken just before you need it.
  • The pavement or driveway should be inspected for cracks. Water may freeze and expand in cracks, causing extra damage, so it’s important to reseal before winter.
  • Get some warm clothing and a coat. Prepare for the winter by stocking up on salt for the sidewalks, sturdy shovels, and the like. There’s no telling when the first snow will fall.

Winter

During the colder months, it’s a good idea to do a thorough check of your home’s interior to make sure nothing has been forgotten or neglected. Your time has come, winter. This is also a perfect time to get to work on any of those little tasks around the house that you’ve been meaning to get to for a while, like painting, putting up shelves, etc.

  • Icy buildup and ice dams are both something you should keep an eye out for often. Front-roof de-icing wires are an efficient solution. No matter how much the youngsters beg, don’t give in and let the icicles form. Heavy enough to harm your property, they also pose a risk to anybody standing underneath them. When they melt, the resulting water might seep into your basement and create problems.
  • To the best of your ability, test the power in your home. When dealing with electricity, you must use extreme caution at all times. However, there are certain things you can do on your own. Verify the functionality of all plugs; if necessary, rewire them on your own. Please ensure that your GFCI plugs are functioning properly. The frequency of such examinations is a topic of intense debate. Others claim once each year, while yet others claim once per month.
  • Tighten all the knobs, handles, and racks. Check for loose screws anywhere you could find them in the home.
  • Doors and windows should have working locks and deadbolts. It’s better to replace broken parts than to fix them.
  • Examine the caulking around your tubs and showers and fix it if it’s damaged.
  • To eliminate sediment buildup, remove shower heads. This improves water pressure and extends the appliance’s life.
  • Check and double-check everything in the cellar. The basement is often disregarded because of its secondary use as a storage place. Remove any mould, dust, dirt, etc., and wipe down all surfaces, including windows. At least once a year, you should do a thorough basement examination.
  • This is a long list, but it doesn’t include all you can do to improve your house. How can you ensure that your house always looks its best? Any tips for getting the most out of every minute spent on these activities?