If you’re spending more time at home, there are plenty of things that you can do to take care of your house and its systems. We asked our licensed technicians what you could be doing with your time to help make sure everything is in tip-top shape. In part one of this two-part series, we shared five of the tips we got from our highly experienced techs. Continue on for the second part of our DIY home maintenance checklist for five more that will help you maintain your home.
Why is Home Maintenance Important?
Proactive maintenance can help you save a lot of time and energy, especially when it comes to seasonal checkups. Since spring can bring bouts of wild weather, and you may be firing up systems that haven’t seen much action through the winter, you’ll want to give some more attention to parts and devices around your home. Here are five things to consider:
1) Check Smoke Detector Batteries and Thermostat Batteries
Making sure that your smoke detectors and thermostat are fully charged and running is an important safety measure that shouldn’t be ignored. Here are a couple of tips to keep these devices running well.
When to change smoke detector batteries?
You should change your smoke detector battery at least once every six months.
After making the change, you can test your smoke detector by pressing and holding on the test button until you hear the alarm. You should test your smoke detector at least once a month to ensure that the batteries are still working.
When to change thermostat batteries?
You should change your thermostat battery at least once a year, and check on your thermostat battery level at least once a month. When it’s low on battery, you’ll see a low-battery symbol on your system’s display, so keep your eye out for that when you check each month.
2) Prepare your Condenser Unit for its Annual Cleaning
As summer approaches, your air conditioner will need to be kicked back into gear after its winter hibernation. To prepare your air conditioning system for hot and humid days, your outdoor condenser unit will need to undergo an annual cleaning.
Before you have an HVAC specialist come out, you can prepare your condenser unit and make sure it’s accessible. Clear out the area around the unit (at a three-foot radius) of shrubs and debris. This will give your technician plenty of space to do their job.
3) Test your Outdoor Faucets
Over the course of the winter and spring seasons, your outdoor faucets are left exposed and vulnerable to colder temperatures. This exposure can lead to your pipes freezing.
As we approach summer, it’s important to check in with your pipes to make sure they made it through the season unfrozen and undamaged. Open the taps on all of your outdoor faucets to see if water flows – if it does, you’re good!
If water isn’t flowing freely from your faucet, your pipes might have frozen over the winter. Call Haller today to get some help with fixing your pipe issues.
4) Inspect your Water Heater for Leaks and Rust
Take a trip down to the basement or the storage room to check on your water heater. Visually inspect your water heater from top to bottom, looking for those two signs.
Water heater leaking?
A leak could indicate a number of issues with your water heater, ranging from old age to a loose connection, a faulty valve, and more.
Water heater rust on top or bottom?
Rust on your water heater can indicate corrosion from mineral buildup that can come with the wear and tear of operation. This can wreak havoc on your water heater, and the more it corrodes, the less efficient it becomes.
Rust can be a bigger issue — and bigger fix — than you might imagine. If you’re experiencing either of the issues listed above, call a plumber or technician today so that they can take a look at your water heater and repair or replace it.
5) Locate Your Main Water Shut Off Valves
Your main water shut off valves control the flow of water throughout your home. It’s important to know where these valves are located. If you ever experience a major leak anywhere in your home, the first step that you should take is to shut off your main water supply.
Where to find the water shut off valve?
There’s one water shut off valve located inside your home and one on your water heater itself. The one inside your home can be found along the perimeter of your house (it will be where water enters from outside). If your home has a basement, that’s likely where you’ll find it. You can also control your main water supply at the source — your water heater, — where there’s another valve.
Individual systems also have shut off valves. Should you need to, you can locate shut off valves behind, below, or attached to your toilets, sinks, washing machines, and other appliances.
If any issues arise while you’re poking around your home systems, Haller now offers virtual technician visits through HomeX Remote Assist and it’s free for One Call Club members. Our trained experts can help answer your questions and guide you to a solution over the phone or through video chat, so we only send a technician to your home if absolutely necessary.
If you’re a Haller One Call Club member, don’t forget to schedule your maintenance visit – it’s a complimentary service for members! Customers who aren’t members can also schedule their visit today.