Proper home maintenance is necessary to ensure that your home, and the various systems and materials that it contains, remains functional and safe to live in. While there are certain maintenance tasks that are more seasonal in nature, such as raking leaves, there are others that should be done on a regular basis, whether it be monthly, quarterly, yearly, or more. Performing checks like these will help keep your appliances running smoothly and that you and your family are protected from risk of fire, mold, and more.
Monthly Home Maintenance Tasks
Clean out/unclog drains: Some tubs have a clean-out tube that can become clogged with hair and other debris. Remove the cover plate and clean out the tube using a long, thin implement. “Fatbergs,” or coagulated grease and other debris, can clog up kitchen drains. While not disposing of grease and oil down the drain is the best way to prevent fatbergs, removing these may require a professional.
Clean dishwasher filter: This is typically located at the bottom of your dishwasher. Remove and hand wash in hot water with a mild dish detergent. Reinstall and test.
Test smoke alarms: Smoke and carbon monoxide detectors typically have a Test button on their face, and pressing it should make the detector sound off. If there is no response, check the connection and replace the battery if needed. Alarms with low battery life may occasionally “chirp” or make a short sound at regular intervals, and should be addressed as soon as possible.
Quarterly Home Maintenance Tasks
Clean out rain gutters: While autumn is typically the season of most concern, cleaning out your gutters every 3 months can help prevent future ice dams and icicles from building up on your roof, and keeps your home’s drainage system optimally functioning.
Wash windows and screens: Cleaning these not only keeps your home looking clean, but it also helps prevent damage to the window, screen, caulking, and paint, ensuring a longer life for all.
Descale/clean out your coffee machine: This is one that most homeowners tend to forget, and rampant calcium deposits can damage, or even destroy, your coffee maker. Use a 50/50 combination of water and vinegar, run it through your coffee machine, and let it soak for 5-10 minutes. Dump then flush with water, then run with clean water to rinse.
Yearly Home Maintenance Tasks
Clean under your refrigerator: Run a vacuum over the coils of your refrigerator, then the floor underneath it. Dust and debris can clog your fridge’s condenser coil, reducing it’s efficiency and cooling capability, and can even pose a fire hazard in extreme cases.
Check your home for infestations: Pests can take on many forms, but common ones that can wreak havoc on your home and it’s inhabitants include termites, bed bugs, fleas, and more. It may be necessary to contact a professional in the event of a large infestation.
Clean out HVAC ducts: This can also include floor registers, vents, and fans. Remove surface dust with a duster or cloth, and use mild dish soap and water to remove heavier build-up on plastic surfaces.