Spring will be in full bloom in Michigan, soon! When the snow fully melts and the air warms, it is a good time to take care of some important home maintenance chores that were delayed during cold winter months.
Change Furnace Filters
A dirty filter is one of the most common reasons a heating and air conditioning system breaks down. Changing your filter regularly is an easy and inexpensive way to maximize the energy efficiency of your heating system, extend the life of the unit, and help purify indoor air. A rule of thumb is to change it every season, but those with pets or allergies may want to change it more frequently.
Inspect Roofing for Missing, Loose or Damaged Shingles and Leaks
Inspecting your roof is an important home maintenance chore that should be done annually. Work your way around the house, looking for cracked caulk or rust spots on flashing, shingles that are buckling or curling, missing or broken shingles, cracked and worn rubber boots around vent pipes and a missing or damaged chimney cap. Any issues should be fixed immediately to avoid leaks. If the problem is not something you can tackle yourself, consider hiring a professional.
Check the Exterior Drainage
Finding and fixing drainage problems when they are smaller can save you a lot of time, money, and stress down the line. Make sure the soil slopes away from the foundation at a rate of at least 6 vertical inches over the first 10 feet. If you have standing water or mushy areas, consider re-grading, adding berms (raised areas), swales (contoured drainage ditches), or installing a French drain (a shallow trench that diverts water away from the house). You will need to identify whether the issue is improper sloping or gutter overflow. A professional home inspector can help you if needed.
Test Carbon Monoxide and Smoke Detectors
The Consumer Product Safety Commission recommends that consumers test their smoke and carbon monoxide detectors every month to ensure they are properly working. Smoke alarms should be placed on every level of the home, inside each bedroom, and outside sleeping areas. If you do not have a carbon monoxide detector, be sure to get one. These should also be installed on every level of the home and outside sleeping areas.
Flush Hot Water Heater and Remove Sediment
To help control mineral deposit building, your water heater should be flushed every one to three years depending on the model and water source. This routine maintenance will help your water heater operate more efficiently and extend the life of the unit. There are tutorials online to walk you through the process.
Clean Garbage Disposal
You may think your disposal is relatively clean considering how often water runs through it, but food particles can often get trapped inside, creating the perfect environment for mold and bacteria to grow. Take the extra step to clean and sanitize your garbage disposal this month using items you already have at home, such as baking soda, citrus peels, and ice.
Visit the Greater Lansing Association of REALTORS® Facebook page for more home maintenance ideas.