How Do I Make A Home Maintenance Checklist?

As seasons rotate, so does your home’s maintenance requirements. In other words, the way you clean and keep your house in check during the winter can be very different from what you need to do for it in the summer. Unfortunately, not many homeowners realise this and overlook some important seasonal home maintenance needs. While you may not see the effects of neglecting a couple of things immediately, many house maintenance tasks can prove to be of critical importance in the long run.

We can all agree that the quality of our home is something we wish to uphold to the highest standard; however, this can only be achieved by carrying out the right kind of seasonal home maintenance. This includes cleaning and maintaining the exteriors of your house and surrounding property.

Maintenance Tips

Check Your Smoke Alarms

One of the simplest but one of the most imperative - should your house burn down, your insurance claim may be void if you haven’t done a check in the past 12 months. And troublingly (according to Smoke Alarms Australia), nearly every second household has no working smoke alarm at all.

Vacuum Your Fridge Coils

Surprisingly, your refrigerator can account for up to 15% of your home’s total power usage a year. So it pays to have it firing on all cylinders.

Clean Range Hood And Extractor Fan

A dirty job, yes, but those fatty deposits above the stove aren’t going to clean themselves. Moreover, the longer you neglect them, the harder your kitchen fan will have to work to pick up the slack.

Scrub Air-Conditioning Filters

On average, 40% of our total energy used at home is for heating and cooling (according to Your Energy Savings). So with summer around the corner, `it’s essential that your air-conditioning system is completely shipshape - especially considering that clogged or dirty filters can reduce airflow by up to 50%.

FAQs About Home Maintenance Checklist

Typical examples of routine maintenance include:

  • Lubricating, cleaning, or adjusting machinery.
  • Inspecting equipment to ensure proper operation and safety.
  • Replacing parts that show deterioration.
  • Checking, testing, and maintaining safety equipment, such as safety barriers, fire extinguishers, or alarm systems.

General types of maintenance philosophies can be identified, namely corrective, preventive, risk-based and condition-based maintenance.

  • Renail any loose siding or trim boards.  
  • Check house and garage for any rotting wood and repair as needed.  
  • Check porch flooring, and repair as needed.  
  • Check and replace any bad caulking around windows, doors, siding joints, or anywhere else needed.

Seasonal Home Maintenance

Summer

Who doesn’t love summer? It’s a season for fun and frolicking under the sun with an icebox of cold beverages by your side! But, unfortunately, Christmas is around the corner, which means the dreaded Christmas clean.

With that said, as the weather gets hotter and more humid, many households start to overwork specific home appliances. Apart from this, harsh heat can cause a string of damage to the exterior and interior components of your home; hence, summer house maintenance is a must! Here’s what you need to pay attention to, inside and outside your home, when the temperature starts to rise.

  • Service your air conditioners.
    • Cooling systems are sure to be working overtime during the summer and require servicing by an HVAC technician. A professional service will include cleaning or replacing air filters, cleaning the condenser coil, checking the drainage system for leaks or damage, and other key cleaning and maintenance required to keep your AC running all summer smoothly long. One way to ensure that you aren’t overusing your AC is by switching it off before leaving the room for a long period of time+. The last thing you need is your cooling system to stop working when you need it most!
  • Check all your plumbing fixtures for any damage and possible leaks.
    • Depending on the quality of your external pipes, prolonged sun exposure during the summer can cause cracks in the material. Therefore, it’s necessary to thoroughly inspect your outdoor and indoor plumbing to ensure that everything is in check. Look under sinks and around valves for any water drips; call for a plumber immediately before the problem gets out of hand if leakages are found.
    • Someone interviewed the owner of a Local Technician who advised that for regular plumbing maintenance in the summer, It’s a good idea to check all aspects of your home’s drainage. More importantly, pay close attention to your toilet and the smells coming from the cistern.
  • Clean up mould from in and around your home.
    • pexels athena 5805491Humid conditions promote mould growth in bathrooms, basements and attics, and garages. The fungus can cause various allergies and breathing and respiratory problems while being rather unsightly! Since they thrive in dark, humid places, summer is the best time to clean out your basement, attic and garage. It’s advisable to do your research on different types of mould and mildew so that you know what you’re looking for. In a severe mould infestation, call a professional for safe removal.
  • Maintain your refrigerator.
    • Depending on where you live and how cruel the summer can be in your area, you may need to adjust the temperatures of your refrigerator and deep freeze. With the appliance overworking to preserve its contents, it’s up to you to keep it in tiptop condition. One way to do this is by vacuuming the coils to remove dirt and dust, which hinders the fridge’s performance (switch off and unplug the appliance before doing this). Routine servicing and cleaning of your refrigerator are also imperative for extending the appliance’s life.
  • Clean out your air vents.
    • Apart from dust and debris, there could be insects and vermin hiding inside your air ducts, which will create a ‘mess’ in there and restrict the airflow. What’s worse is that dirty vents lower indoor air quality, leaving your family at risk of various types of illnesses. If you’d prefer not to get your hands dirty, consider calling in a professional to do the needful.
  • Clean your washing machine; inspect components of the appliance.
    • Assuming that you’ll be doing more laundry during the summer, your washer will require a thorough deep clean to ensure that it is doing its job! Apart from cleaning, check for any damage to the pipes and electricals. Frequently, a washing machine will not show any signs of damage until those minor issues become major. Hence, it’s best to get your washer serviced by a professional before problems occur.
  • Check the expiration date of your fire extinguisher(s).
    • In case of a sudden fire, your fire extinguisher may be of no use if it has expired. While they generally last for up to 10 years, it’s a good idea to check on them every summer to ensure that you are prepared for an emergency.
  • Check if your smoke detectors are working; replace batteries if needed.
    • Again, in case of an emergency, you need to know that your smoke alarm will go off so that you and your family have enough time to evacuate the house. After all, it’s better to be safe than sorry, right?
  • Wash your home exteriors.
    • A lot of dust and debris becomes airborne during the summer, which, eventually, settles on the exteriors of your house. While this makes the paint job appear dull and dirty, the real problem lies in the transfer of dust from the outside to the inside of your home. This can be prevented by washing your home exteriors and giving them a refreshed appearance at the same time!
  • Maintain your garden/yard.
    • This is a must if you want to keep your plants and grass healthy throughout the summer. Regular watering and trimming are imperative for keeping your green space in check and looking its best! You should also clean your lawn furniture regularly and use umbrellas to avoid fading or discolouration of the material.

Autumn

With vibrant colours and cool winds, autumn is a beautiful time of year. So, why not take measures to maintain your home and make it match this gorgeous season? Use the checklist below to complete your autumn home maintenance.

  • Clean your rain gutters.
    • Along with autumn comes many fallen leaves that fill up your rain gutters and attract insects that feed on dried leaves. This is a pest problem you certainly wouldn’t want on your head (or roof), and one which can be avoided by cleaning your rain gutters as often as possible. Once a week or every alternate week, at least, is typically advised.
  • Give your garbage disposal a deep clean.
    • This is fairly easy and necessary for sanitary reasons and maintaining the unit’s overall functioning. To deep clean your garbage disposal, pour hot water down the drain, followed by half a cup of baking powder and leave it for a few minutes. Next, make a mixture of hot water and vinegar (1 cup each) and pour the solution down the drain. After 15 minutes, flush the drain with a pot of boiling water.
  • Get your gas range and stovetop serviced.
    • Any blockages or leaks in your gas pipes can lead to a devastating explosion. We all know how hazardous improper use of gas can be; hence, regular maintenance is of critical importance. While this is a job for the professionals, you can do your bit by maintaining a clean stovetop and removing dust and debris behind and underneath your gas range.
  • Clean your fireplace and chimney
    • If your chimney hasn’t been capped, there could be bird nests sitting in it by now. In this case, you’ll need to call in a professional to remove and relocate the nests safely. Other than that, you can clean up your fireplace and have your chimney capped until you need to use it again.
  • Rake leaves from your yard.
    • Typically, this is a weekly task during autumn because of the sheer amount of leaves falling. A leaf blower is also a good way to eradicate dried leaves from your yard; however, a rake will suffice if you prefer to gather and dispose of them yourself.
  • Service your water heater and furnace.
    • To be prepared for winter or a sudden cold spell, it’s best to have your heating system and water heaters in working order. A reputable HVAC technician will service these units thoroughly and locate and repair any faults in the systems (if any).

Winter

  • pexels kelly l 4263067A girl blowing snow out of her hands
    • Cold climate comes as a relief for many individuals. It’s a break from the heat and humidity, and, best of all, it gives people a chance to cosy up to a fireplace and sip on a hot beverage! But, of course, the severity of winter conditions differs from place to place, and hence, so does your home’s maintenance requirements. Nevertheless, there are a couple of mandatory winter home maintenance tasks that one must follow. These are listed below.
  • Check on water pipes in and around your house.
    • Frozen pipes can lead to major house damage if left as is for too long. However, you won’t have to worry about this if the winters aren’t harsh where you live. With that said, if you plan to go on a long holiday, it’s advisable to have a friend come in and check on your water pipes.
  • Inspect your ceilings and walls for dampness.
    • Clogged gutters or hidden cracks in your home’s foundation can lead to melted snow or rain seeping through and dampening your interior walls and ceiling. This is a major problem that requires immediate attention. If you find even the slightest or smallest of wet patches anywhere in your home, call in a professional ASAP.
  • Clean your gutters and downspout.
    • Ensure that your gutters are cleaned and the downspout unclogged to avoid damage to your home’s roof and foundation. In snow, you will need a gutter scoop to clean it out. On the other hand, Ice dams will require Calcium Chloride ice melt to remove.
  • Ventilate your house more.
    • During winter, the air in your home will start to get stale and musty; ventilation is the best way to bring in the fresh air and let the ‘bad’ air out. This is also important in rooms such as basements and attics because they are generally closed up for days on end.
  • Do a pest inspection.
    • When it’s cold outside, pests seek refuge in the nearest homes they can find. These little critters can hide just about anywhere; however, some common places to look for pests include vents, garages, basements, attics, kitchen pantries and bathrooms. From cockroaches to mice, pests come in all shapes and sizes, so it’s best to call in pest control to take measures that will keep them at bay (especially during the winter).
  • Adjust your refrigerator temperature as needed.
    • If you find that your fridge is overcooling or frosting, you may need to re-adjust the settings. If this does not help, get your refrigerator serviced by an HVAC technician.
  • Check that your smoke detectors are working fine.
    • Using heating systems and a fireplace requires a fully functional smoke and carbon monoxide detector. Be sure to replace the batteries if needed.
  • Keep your property in check.
    • Whether it’s raking leaves or shovelling snow, outdoor maintenance during the winter is something many homeowners choose to ignore; however, carrying out these tasks regularly beats having to deal with a huge mess in your yard later!

Spring

A lady was standing barefoot with a basket of flowers on a sunny day.

Home cleaning and springtime go hand in hand! This is the season when countless homeowners turn their houses upside down to get rid of junk and deep clean the interiors and exteriors of their homes. However, the home maintenance aspect is completely overlooked during this cleaning haul. Hence, spring cleaning should always be combined with spring home maintenance! Here’s what you’ve probably been missing on your checklist.

  • Touch up chipped paint.
    • Whether it’s your walls or furniture, as you start cleaning up and moving things around, you’ll notice a few chips in some paint jobs. As small and unnoticeable as they may be, this will only lead to more peeling and eventually leave you with a tougher job of covering it up.
  • Drain and clean your water heater.
    • During spring, it’s likely that you won’t be using your water heater much; therefore, it’s advisable to clean it thoroughly instead of leaving any sediment and debris inside that has built up during the winter.
  • Inspect your basement and attic.
    • Spring cleaning typically extends to each room/space in your house; hence, you will be able to do a thorough inspection of your basement and attic during this season. Check for mould and dampness in corners, ceiling, behind boxes and other items.
  • Clean and service your dehumidifiers.
    • Depending on which rooms they are used in and the amount of time you run them, your dehumidifiers will collect dust and debris externally and internally. Pollen, dust and the allergies associated are especially present in spring. Cleaning and replacing air filters must be done routinely to run efficiently the next time you use them.
  • Clean and service your air conditioner.
    • Over the winter season, your AC will have collected dust which can clog your filters and vents. Worst of all, this dust and debris become airborne when you switch the unit on, causing allergies and the likes. Therefore, you should clean and service all your air conditioners and air conditioner filters when spring begins.
  • Deep clean your garbage disposal once again.
    • While you’re still in ‘all systems go’ mode, give your garbage disposal another keep clean. Considering its purpose, keeping it clean and sanitary is important for hygienic reasons.
  • Clean your dishwasher.
    • This task is often overlooked when spring cleaning the rest of your home, yet, it is very much necessary for the proper functioning of the appliance. Moreover, a dirty dishwasher is unsanitary! Deep cleaning of your dishwasher can be done in 4, easy steps: 1) remove chunks or debris from around the drain; 2) place a bowl of 1 cup of white distilled vinegar inside and run an entire cycle; 3) remove the cup, sprinkle half a cup of baking soda at the bottom and run a short, hot cycle; 4) when the interiors cool down, wipe the inside with a clean, damp cloth.
  • Maintain your yard/garden.
    • Spring is when you can find both dried up leaves and unwanted weeds growing in your garden. Use this time to maintain your backyard by trimming hedges and bushes, mowing the lawn and fertilising your plants.

      Conclusion:

      The fact is, much like your car needs the occasional service, so too does the family home. Avoid those niggly chores, and you’ll find your home coughing and spluttering by the side of the road.

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