Maintaining a house is a big responsibility, but also very rewarding. There are many different areas in your home to maintain, and some need to be serviced more often than others. Doing smaller tasks more often can help reduce your electricity bill, ensure larger costs aren’t accumulated over time, and keep your home cozy and safe for years to come.
Your refrigerator can take up to 15 percent of your home’s total electric use. That number can increase if your coils aren’t kept clean to maximize efficiency. You may be asking how to clean the dark and small space underneath or behind this appliance, and the answer is rather simple: vacuum them. Do this once or twice per year.
HVAC Systems and Filters
Changing your Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning (HVAC) filters is a chore that varies per household. For a smaller home with less air pollutants, think fewer people and no pets, you may be able to change the filters every 2-3 months, but still check them every month. The seasons can also affect maintenance. For example, for months like winter where a family is typically indoors more, the quality of air will be more important.
The types of filters also vary. Less expensive filters will last a shorter time than more expensive ones. There are also reusable air filters that will need to be cleaned. Further extend the life of your filters of any kind by cleaning the vents and ducts of your home annually.
Gutters should always be cleaned twice a year. The best times to clean them are late fall, after all the leaves have fallen, and as part of your spring cleaning. However, at least 4 times a year, the gutters should at least be visually inspected. You can do this by walking around the house to see if there is any sagging and if there are any leaks or holes. For good measure, take a ladder and check your roof and gutters to make sure they are also free of debris or damage after each season.
If you have more trees around your home, it would be good to check on the gutters more often to ensure they aren’t getting filled with debris. For homeowners in colder areas, also be on the look-out for ice dams which can build up and cause water to get into your roof.
This kitchen appliance should be cleaned once a month and even more so depending on use. Think about it, the appliance soaks up smoky, steamy, and greasy air particles to keep your kitchen air clean while you cook and it is bound to get messy.
To clean the hood, use soapy hot water to wash and then spray down or rinse with sink water. If you need something stronger, use a degreaser, like you would use working around cars, and mix it with a little hot water. Let the hood/vent soak and then rinse it off. Air dry the vent. To help maintain cleanliness and ease monthly cleanings, wash down the vent like you would a counter top or stove top after cooking with a soapy sponge or washcloth.
These are only a few things that should be done to keep your home well maintained! If you ever need advice or help with home maintenance, we'd be happy to help with the little and big stuff.