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Home Maintenance

Checking the countless little things that keep your home safe and secure can feel overwhelming, but it's not so bad if you break it into small steps.

January

  1. Test smoke detectors
  2. Check the charge levels on your fire extinguishers
  3. Change HVAC filters (if needed)
  4. Vacuum or dust vent covers, fridge coils, light bulbs, and ceiling fan blades
  5. Tighten loose screws on doors, cabinet doors, drawer handles and pulls. Lube sticky or squeaky hinges.
  6. Take a two-minute walk around each room with a pad and note any repairs to make or areas to watch.
  7. After every winter storm: Shovel out furnace, heater, and other vents, meters, and hydrants

February

  1. Test smoke detectors
  2. Change HVAC filters (if needed)
  3. Check flooring -- carpet, wood, and vinyl -- for wear and tear
  4. Clean and seal ceramic tile
  5. Test water heater's temperature and pressure relief valve for proper operation
  6. After every winter storm: Shovel out furnace, heater, and other vents, meters, and hydrants

March

  1. Change batteries in smoke detectors and CO alarms when changing clocks to daylight saving time
  2. Change HVAC filters (if needed)
  3. Check and/or change water purification and/or water softener filters
  4. Make an appointment to get your air conditioning system or unit serviced this month -- get it scheduled now, before the heat of summer!
  5. After every winter storm: Shovel out furnace, heater, and other vents, meters, and hydrants

April

  1. Test smoke detectors
  2. Change HVAC filters (if needed)
  3. Clean gutters and ensure roof is free of winter debris; check for tile and vent seal damage
  4. When the snow has melted, get a jump on trimming shrubs or trees around your house. Remove limbs and branches that rub against the building. Remove dead branches and other debris where insects might nest
  5. Inspect decks, steps, and railings to be sure they're clean, safe, and secure. Make a note of whether they'll need painting or sealing this year.
  6. Check basement for cracks and leaks (and get them repaired)

May

  1. Test smoke detectors
  2. Change HVAC filters (if needed)
  3. Clean and inspect outdoor play equipment, lawn furniture, and grills before their first use
  4. Start painting or staining projects; clean and seal deck if needed
  5. Remove, clean, and store storm windows -- weather permitting!
  6. Check windows and screens; be sure they work, and replace or repair torn screens

June

  1. Test smoke detectors
  2. Change HVAC filters (if needed)
  3. Open exterior dryer vents and clean out lint
  4. Check washing machine lines; replace if they're deteriorating
  5. Remove debris under porches and decks and around AC compressors
  6. Get a termite or pest inspection
  7. After every summer storm: walk around and check for debris, clogged gutters, and downspout or drainage issues

July

  1. Change batteries in smoke detectors and CO alarms
  2. Check the charge levels on your fire extinguishers
  3. Change HVAC filters (if needed)
  4. Vacuum or dust vent covers, fridge coils, light bulbs, and ceiling fan blades
  5. After every summer storm: walk around and check for debris, clogged gutters, and downspout or drainage issues

August

  1. Test smoke detectors
  2. Change HVAC filters (if needed)
  3. Make an appointment to get your chimney cleaned and/or furnace serviced before the heating season rush
  4. Test water heater's temperature and pressure relief valve for proper operation
  5. Drain sediment from water heater
  6. After every summer storm: walk around and check for debris, clogged gutters, and downspout or drainage issues

September

  1. Test smoke detectors
  2. Change HVAC filters (if needed)
  3. Remove/cover window air conditioners
  4. Check and/or change water purification and/or water softener filters
  5. After every summer storm: walk around and check for debris, clogged gutters, and downspout or drainage issues

October

  1. Test smoke detectors
  2. Change HVAC filters (if needed)
  3. Rake and remove fallen leaves so gutters and storm drains don't clog
  4. Store or cover outdoor play equipment, lawn furniture, and grills for the winter
  5. Turn off outdoor water supply and store hoses
  6. Remove screens and replace storm windows

November

  1. Change batteries in smoke detectors and CO alarms when changing clocks back to standard time
  2. Test smoke detectors
  3. Change HVAC filters (if needed)
  4. Clean kitchen exhaust hood and filter
  5. Test sump pump
  6. After every winter storm: Shovel out furnace, heater, and other vents, meters, and hydrants

December

  1. Test smoke detectors
  2. Change HVAC filters (if needed)
  3. Test GFCI outlets
  4. Check sinks and toilets for leaks
  5. After every winter storm: Shovel out furnace, heater, and other vents, meters, and hydrants

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