As homeowners, we’re usually so excited about our home purchase that we don’t even really stop to think about the maintenance requirements. We’re so happy with the new two-story, five bedroom home with two fireplaces that we don’t initially consider chimney maintenance or how much of our free time this monster of a home is going to eat up. I’ve put together a realistic home maintenance schedule that you can follow season by season to make sure all maintenance issues are addressed year after year.
Monthly Inspections and Repairs
The following items should be inspected once per month. This list is short and easy to accomplish in a single day or a single weekend if you’re very busy.
- HVAC Filters – Monthly filter changes aren’t necessarily required, but at least inspect them on the same date each month so you know when the time is right to replace them.
- Garbage Disposal – Clean the disposal with vinegar ice cubes to freshen it and sharpen the blades.
- Range Hood Filters – The range hood filter collects a lot of dust, smoke particles, and grease. Use hot water and a quality degreaser for best results.
- Fire Extinguishers – Inspect the fire extinguishers for adequate pressure and ensure there are no signs of damage.
- Cleaning Day – Every member of the household can be involved in cleaning day. Assign duties and teach responsibilities like vacuuming, cleaning windows, and mopping floors. The home will look, feel, and smell much better with one deep cleaning day per month.
Quarterly Inspections and Repairs
January, April, July, and October – or every third month – take the time to inspect the following items and perform the routine maintenance surrounding them.
- Smoke Alarms and Carbon Monoxide Detectors – Change batteries as needed.
- Garage Door – Test the garage door and garage door opener’s safety functions.
- Toilets and Sinks in Unused Areas – Run the water and flush toilets in rarely-used spaces such as the garage or basement.
- Water Heater’s Pressure Valve – Test the pressure relief valve to prevent mineral buildup and leaks.
- Vacuum Refrigerator Coils – Refrigerator coils get dirty over time and the refrigerator has to work harder to cool through the dirt and grime. Make sure that the fridge is running as efficiently as possible by vacuuming the coils occasionally.
- Hire a Chimney Sweep – A yearly chimney inspection will ensure that the fireplace is safe to use throughout the year. Request an inspection of the dryer vent while the chimney sweep is at your home.
- Inspect the Gutters and Downspouts – Pay attention to the drainage system when it’s raining to ensure that it is carrying water away from your home and landscaping.
- Clean Out the Flower Gardens – Spring is a time for new growth. Clear out all of the old plants to prepare for new.
- Hire an HVAC Technician – Hire a technician to test the air conditioning to prepare for summer.
- Repair Damaged Grout in Bathrooms and the Kitchen – Keep the grout clean and fresh to prevent the kitchen and bathroom from looking outdated and dirty.
- Inspect the Plumbing System for Leaks – Call a plumber if you discover a leak or potential problem that you can’t solve on your own.
- Exterior Cleaning and Repairs – Clean the exterior of the home, the privacy fence, deck, and other exterior structures.
- Clean the Garage – This is the perfect time to clean the garage and have a garage sale.
- Hire a Chimney Sweep – This only applies if you didn’t have the chimney inspected and cleaned in the spring.
- Repair and Seal the Driveway – Check for cracks in the pavement or concrete and repair them as needed.
- Prepare for the Coming Holiday Season – Halloween through Christmas is a busy time of year full of festive decorations.
- Deep Clean the House from Top to Bottom – One deep cleaning per year does the house a world of good. Winter in the Scottsdale area is the perfect time for a deep cleaning so you can ring in the New Year with a clean home.
- Tighten Things along the Way – Test all window locks, door knobs, drawer pulls, and other types of handles while you’re cleaning and tighten as needed.
- Inspect Windows and Doors – Closely examine all windows and doors, and ensure that their locks and deadbolts are working properly.
Give me a call at 480-570-5615 if you’re in need of a home inspector in the Gilbert area. I’m available for real estate transactions or any other reason you may need a detailed home inspection.