fireworksAs a new year begins, we find ourselves thinking about improvements. We consider things can we change to improve our well-being and live a better life. Just as we might resolve to take better care of our bodies with a healthier diet and regular exercise, why not commit to taking better care of our homes? Making a resolution to consistently perform some simple home maintenance tasks can provide a host of benefits, from improved health to greater energy efficiency.

Here are 7 easy home maintenance resolutions to get you started in 2016:

  1. Check Furnace Filters. The job of your furnace filter is to keep dust, soot, and other debris from collecting inside your furnace, and to reduce airborne dust and contaminants that are blown into the rooms of your home. A dirty filter requires the furnace blower to work harder, making it more costly to operate. A clean filter will help the furnace run more efficiently, effectively, and extend its service life.
  2. Clean the Dryer Duct and Filter.  The lint screen of your dryer should be thoroughly after every load. A filter clogged with lint will not allow the air circulate and dry the clothes. That mean the dryer runs far longer and wastes energy. Dryer lint is also a serious fire hazard! A duct cleaning brush should be used to clean the dryer duct every six months or so.
  3. Clean and Inspect Gutters. It is important to keep gutters clean and clear of debris so they can function as intended. Regularly check for loose or leaky gutters. Improper drainage can result in basement leaks. Downspouts should drain away from the foundation and be kept clear of debris.
  4. Clean Window Screens along with the Windows. We think about cleaning the windows, but maybe not the screens. Screens can get really dirty from rain, pollen, and insects, as well as the dust that comes at them from inside the house. Cleaning your screens along with the windows helps to keep the windows cleaner.
  5. Test Smoke Detectors and Carbon Monoxide Detectors. Detectors have a test button to confirm they are working properly.These should be checked once a month. You may need to get up on a chair, or use a broom handle to push the test button. If the alarm does not sound, your battery or the unit needs to be replaced.
  6. Have the Chimney Cleaned and Inspected. If you have a working fireplace, you should have the flue cleaned and inspected by a certified chimney sweep. It is also important to periodically check the exterior of the chimney for signs of damage.
  7. Check Drains and Keep them Clear. Maintain clear drains by periodically pouring boiling water down them. In the case of a clog or slow drainage, try pouring a half cup of baking soda followed by a half cup of plain vinegar down the drain. Flush with hot water.

Need assistance with window and gutter cleaning? Contact us today!