The Seasonal Home Maintenance Checklist You’ve Been Waiting For!
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 a lot of homeowners realise this and end up overlooking some important seasonal home maintenance needs. While you may not see the effects of neglecting a couple of things immediately, there are many house maintenance tasks that can prove to be of critical importance in the long run.
We can all agree upon the fact 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.
So, to help you keep your home in check all year long, you’re going to need a checklist. Not just any seasonal home maintenance checklist, one that doesn’t miss a thing! Lucky for you, we’ve got all the information you’ve been waiting for right here! Read on.
Who doesn’t love summer? It’s a season for fun and frolicking under the sun with an ice box of cold beverages by your side! 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 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 hence, 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 smoothly all summer long. One way to ensure that you aren’t overusing your AC is by switching it off before you leave the room for a long period time. The last thing you need is for 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 do a thorough inspection of your outdoor and indoor plumbing to ensure that everything is in check. Look under sinks and around valves for any water drips; if leakages are found, call for a plumber immediately before the problem gets out of hand.
- Clean up mould from in and around your home. Humid conditions promote mould growth in rooms like bathrooms, basements and attics, as well as garages. The fungus can cause various allergies and breathing and respiratory problems, while being rather unsightly too! 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 case of a severe mould infestation, call in 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 performance of the fridge (switch off and unplug the appliance before doing this). Routine servicing of your refrigerator is also imperative for extending the life of the appliance.
- Clean out your air vents. Apart from dust and debris, there could be insects and vermin hiding inside your air ducts which will not only create a ‘mess’ in there, but also restrict the air flow. What’s worse is that dirty vents lower the quality of indoor air, 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 actually doing its job! Apart from cleaning, check for any damage to the pipes and electricals. Often times, 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 it 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 is 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.
With vibrant colours and cool winds, autumn sure 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 a whole lot of fallen leaves which 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 very much necessary for sanitary reasons, as well as to maintain the overall functioning of the unit. 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 from 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 safely remove and relocate the nests. 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, if you prefer to gather and dispose of them yourself, a rake will suffice.
- Service your water heater and furnace. In order 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 be able to service these units thoroughly and locate and repair any faults in the systems (if any).
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 cozy up to a fireplace and sip on a hot beverage! 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 which 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. To avoid any damage to your home’s roof and foundation, make sure that your gutters are cleaned and the downspout is unclogged. In case of snow, you will need a gutter scoop to clean it out. Ice dams, on the other hand, 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 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. The use of heating systems and/or 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 shoveling 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!
Home cleaning and spring time 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 home. However, during this cleaning haul, the home maintenance aspect is completely overlooked. 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 and every 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, on the ceiling and 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. Cleaning and replacing of air filters must be done routinely in order for the unit to run efficiently the next time you decide to use it.
- 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 becomes airborne when you switch the unit on, causing allergies and the likes. Therefore, you should clean and service all your air conditioners 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 proper functioning of the appliance. Moreover, a dirty dishwasher is unsanitary to say the least! 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 a time where you can find both, dried up leaves and unwanted weeds growing in your garden. Use this time to maintain your yard by trimming hedges and bushes, mowing the lawn and fertilising your plants.
With this seasonal home maintenance guide, you can keep your house in tiptop condition! That’s right, your beautiful, functional home will no longer be anything less than you want it be!
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