Overlooking Basic Home Items Can Cost You Money
Often overlooked basic home items that fall into disrepair can make your life a nightmare. Keeping up with the basic home items that you take for granted is vital to a comfortable lifestyle. Most people do not think about things like their plumbing until there is a problem
Focused maintenance on basic home items is the easiest way to ensure that all of your basic household needs are being met. Learning more about what type of maintenance you should be performing on those basic home items is a good place to start.
Let’s Start At The Top
What is one of the most important systems in your home that often gets overlooked when it comes to maintenance? Your roof. Roofing contractors are often not contacted until there is a visible problem with the roof like a leak.
A damaged roof can cause thousands of dollars in repair costs. It is vitally important that you take steps to protect your home, especially when you are dealing with an older roof. An older roof starts to lose its ability to protect your property from weather elements, but if you care for it the right way you reduce some of the risks.
The fact is your roof should be inspected annually. Small repairs are less costly, and of course, addressing an issue before it becomes a problem will curtail any potential damage. When should you have your roof inspected? That is entirely up to you.
Some homeowners choose the spring to have roof inspections done to make it easier to have any necessary roofing repairs addressed. Other homeowners prefer to wait until the fall after all the summer storms are finished. When you should have a roof inspection done really depends on where you live and your personal preference. For example, if you live in a region where the winters deliver a lot of snow, ice, and inclement weather, spring would be a great time to ensure your roof survived unscathed. If you live in a summer storm zone, the fall would be a prime time for roof inspections.
A roof inspection can reveal what type of roof repairs are needed to keep your roof in top condition. It can include things like replacing missing shingles or repairing areas around chimneys and vents where there has been material loss.
Roof maintenance and care will ensure that your home stays protected. Your home is one of the biggest investments you will ever make, keep your roof in good shape to protect that investment.
Your Heating and Air
Is there anything more disruptive than not being able to climate control your home? We often take our ability to control our climate with our HVAC system for granted, and unfortunately, do not think about it until it breaks down. According to the experts, one of the best ways to avoid finding yourself in the position of not having heat or AC is to have regular HVAC service as a preventive.
An HVAC maintenance program will ensure that all the working parts on your system are working, and any potential problems can be addressed before they fail. Of course, you can also do your part to keep your HVAC system humming along by:
- Clearing debris away from outdoor units. Grass clippings, leaves, and dirt can cause problems for your unit. Make sure you clear the area around the unit to avoid some of the problems that can crop up with your HVAC system.
- Change your filters. The unobstructed flow of air is very important to keep your HVAC in top condition. Change your filters frequently to ensure you are not overworking your system.
- Keep your thermostat set to a reasonable temperature. If it is 100 degrees outside do not ask your system to keep things a chilly 62 degrees in the house.
Some of the basic home items that we all take for granted are not very expensive to simply replace, however, some of those basic home items that we take for granted can be very expensive to replace. Taking care of what you have is a much better approach to avoid costly replacement, damage, and discomfort. Your HVAC system is a good example of the more expensive things to replace. With a little TLC, you can extend the longevity of your equipment, and avoid the hassle of an unexpected breakdown.
Another System That You Depend On And Do Not Really Think About
Is there anything better than a hot shower after a long day at work? If you are like most homeowners, you take for granted that when you turn the tap on that hot water will flow out, no problem.
Hot water heaters are a vital part of your home systems, yet, most people barely ever take a look at them to see how things are going. If you have ever run into a problem with a hot water heater, you know that it can be a huge mess to deal with.
Your hot water heater should be periodically be inspected for signs of wear and tear like a rusty bottom. It is a lot easier to make the call for a new electric hot water heater installation before the bottom falls out, then after it does.
Electric water heaters have an expected lifespan of about 10-15 years. The older your system becomes the more likely it is to fail. If you have a 40-gallon water heater, if and when it fails, that means you will have 40 gallons of water spilling out from the water heater into your home.
Periodic checks can reveal any issues before they become full-blown problems. Of course, you always have the option of calling in an expert that can inspect your water heater and make any recommendations for repairs.
Other Basic Home Items that Are Often Ignored That Need Care
Owning a home is a full-time job when it comes to what needs to be cared for pretty regularly. Sometimes there are very simple solutions to what seems to be a big problem. For example, if your garage door opener will open but will not close, you may be able to solve the problem with a cotton swab dabbed in a bit of alcohol.
Since the 1990’s it has been mandatory that sensors are installed with garage door openers for safety reasons. On either side of your garage door mounted near the floor, you will notice two little boxes. Those boxes are your sensors. There are “eyes” on your sensors, one shoots an infrared beam, and the other receives it. If the beam is broken the garage door will not close because the sensor interprets a broken beam as an obstacle in the way like a foot, small child, or piece of equipment.
Sometimes the lenses on your sensors get dirty. A quick swap with a Qtip dipped in a bit of rubbing alcohol can take care of the problem. How can you avoid the problem in the first place? Keep your sensors clear of debris and dirt. When you sweep out the garage wipe off your sensors.
There are plenty of things around the house that are often not thought about that can cause a bit of havoc from a lack of care. Getting familiar with the basic home items that need care will put you ahead of the game.
When Basic Home Items Go Bad
Some times no matter how diligent you are about taking care of your home, things go wrong. When things go wrong, it is important that you know when to call in an expert to help right those things. While there are plenty of things around the home you can repair yourself, there are just as many things that are best left up to the experts.
One of the key basic home items is the ability to flush the toilet and not have to think about it. Septic problems can put an end to one of the most basic needs. Sometimes, even if you are careful about what you flush, treat your system regularly, and have it pumped on schedule, septic systems fail.
A failing septic system makes require new septic installations, or it may be a simple repair and fix. Most homeowners do not know enough about septic systems to take these types of repairs on as a DIY weekend project. Of course, not being able to flush, or worse yet, having sewage backing up into your home, is an emergency that cannot wait. Call in a professional to manage the problem.
Other situations that will require professional attention is mold removal services. Mold can devastate a home. The sooner you get help, the better. If you see indications of mold in your home acting quickly can help to minimize damage.
Do not make the mistake of thinking a small mold problem is no big deal. It can spread quickly, and cause a tremendous amount of damage. Additionally, a home that is infected with mold can be a trigger for anyone that suffers from allergies or has breathing conditions.
Investing in a company that specializes in remediating mold is a worthy investment for your property. Act as quickly as you can, and you will be able to save some money.
Other Times You Need to Rely on Experts
Other basic home items like electrical systems typically need a professional to manage. For example, you have a shed out back that you want to convert into a man cave or she-shed, but you need electricity run to it. An electrician that offers electrical design services is your best option to ensure that your electrical system is done right.
Electricity is one of the biggest basic home items that we often ignore until there are problems. In older homes, the electrical systems are often outdated and can be downright dangerous. We as homeowners tend to focus on what we can see when we are renovating or updating, and since the electrical system is inside the wall we do not pay it a lot of attention until there is a problem.
How do you know if you have an electrical problem? If your circuits or fuses often blow, that is an indication that your electrical system is not up to par, and your home may be at risk. If you have outlets in your home that just does not work, that is an indication that something is wrong.
In today’s electronic heavy world, many older homes cannot support the electrical demand because they were not designed to. Having an electrician come in and take a look and potential redesign your electrical system can help you to have one of the most coveted basic home items up and running and ready to support your lifestyle.
Basic Home Items Should Meet All Your Needs
Humans need four things. They need food, water, shelter, and companionship to feel fulfilled. Of course, the type of food, companionship, and shelter that fulfills the human need can vary widely. The goal of any homeowner should always be to ensure that all the basic home items are in good condition to work toward fulfilling their needs to the level that they desire.
How do you ensure that all your basic needs are being met by the basic home items in your house? You set up a calendar with a schedule for maintenance, repairs, and upgrades. When you write it all down, it can be harder to let some of the basic home items slip into the gray area of “oh I forgot about that”. Start at the top with your roof and then work your way down level by level. Include things on your maintenance calendar that may even seem mundane like:
- Pest control activities.
- When you need to change out filters in your home for HVAC systems, water systems, and more.
- Septic care.
A calendar of home care and maintenance not only ensures that you do not forget any of the systems in your home, but it is also useful for budgeting for maintenance. Having a system in place that becomes routine will help to care for the systems in your home, and make it all affordable.