It is with more than a little relief we can begin to turn our sights toward spring that began officially a few days ago. Even with the strong likelihood of more nasty weather before us, at least there is hope. The season of growth and renewal is coming.
So is the home repair and maintenance season. I have received several requests for a post or two on this subject. If you knew how inept I am with most home fix ups, you might have not asked. I can present some thoughts from someone who once tried to install a new door handle upside down. If that is you, we will be in good company. If you are more of an expert and think nothing of re-roofing your home on a Saturday afternoon, I am hoping you will add your advice and opinions, too.
There are some basics I do on a regular basis:
*Drain the water heater twice a year. Phoenix has very hard water and the minerals will kill a water heater before its time if not flushed out. At the same time test the pressure release valve.
*Have AC Heat Pump checked every 18 months. The company that installed our new unit says yearly tuneups are overkill.
*Change the house filter every 3 months. A cheap way to keep that expensive heat pump operating at peak efficiency.
*Check all sprinkler and drip heads twice a month. It is not uncommon for our lawn service to damage a sprinkler head or sever a irrigation line a few times a year.
* Look at roof condition once each spring. I have ham radio antennas up there, too that need a check after a windy & wet winter season.
*Recaulk around windows as needed. Our windows are old and are prone to leak. I do what I can to cut down on loss.
* Have chimney and flue inspected and cleaned every three years. We don't have many fires. If you do, then yearly is much better.
* Look for termite trails on foundation and patio three times a year. Arizona has a big termite problem. I want to catch any problems early.
*Lube garage door twice a year. With summer time temps very high, any lube on hinges will dry out and cause squeaking or damage.
* Check for any mold or cracks in caulking in bathrooms twice a year. The extra humidity and forgetting to dry the walls after a shower has cost us plenty over the years.
*Change battery in smoke alarms on my birthday.
Nothing too laborious or requiring much skill here. These are really the basics that keep our house functioning. As I noted, I am not a "This Old House" kind of repair guy. If I can manage this list, anyone can.
For budgetary reasons, Betty and I have rebuilt a powder room, put in new toilets, fixed bad tile in a bathroom (99% Betty), repainted the front door and installed new lock and handle (again, mostly Betty), and landscaped the backyard. Of course, there are bigger emergencies, like a leaking main water line into the house, or a garage door falling off its tracks. Then, we call a pro and save our sanity.
How about you and your housing situation? Different climates have different maintenance and repair issues. Let us all know what you do to keep your repair bills under control.
|Don't let your home get to this point !|