It’s very easy for the damages to your home to get out of control (we’ve all seen those shows on various home networks…and documentaries about people who live with their hordes and have completely let home maintenance go downhill). But if you keep up with your home maintenance, not only are you saving money in the long term, but you’re probably saving money in the short-term, too, because otherwise you’d probably have to call a repairman in when the situation got out of control.
And just like you see on those TV shows, DIY home maintenance isn’t as hard as it looks – you don’t need to be a professional with gadgets and gizmos, hand carts and pallet jacks to make sure that your home and appliances are in good working condition.
What follows are a few simple ways to make sure that you aren’t spending any more money than you should be either in bills or in maintenance of your home.
How often do you check the state of your roof – or do any repairs?
Yeah. I thought so.
You’re going to want to check your roof a bit more often than “once a year…maybe,” because while roofs do have a longer lifespan – about 30 years – like anything – if you repair that one or two loose shingles before it becomes half your roof, it’s going to serve you well in the long run. Plus, it’ll save you a couple thousand dollars, probably.
And just below the roof is the gutter – and you’re going to want to check that quite often, as it is very easy for the gutter to get…cluttered. Overflowing gutters are never good, as you’re accumulating water all in one place – which is never a good thing for a home. And if it’s colder out, the freezing of that large amount of water can cause cracks in your foundation, which is really not good.
Simply grab a ladder every once in a while and take a peek at the state of your gutters. Don’t forget to grab a trash bag, too!
Caulking For The Win
A tube of caulking costs maybe $2. You’re probably spending a lot more than that in wasted energy if your house has any kind of draft. More than that, though, properly caulking your doors and windows seals out water – which is, as we know, the bane of homeowners.
You get two birds with one stone on this one – saving on energy expenses and working to protect your home from some very costly damages. So get to it! Buy some of that $2 caulk and get going.
Love Your Fridge
We all know how awful it is when the power goes out and we’re just staring at the clock, counting down the hours until all our food spoils or starts defrosting. It’s a fun time. But your fridge needs love even when you aren’t praying for the power to come back on.
You’re going to want to clean your refrigerator coils regularly (usually every 5 years) – though some recommend cleaning your coils at least once or twice a year. It depends on how temperamental your fridge is, I guess.
Give Your Toilet a Break
Hearing your toilet run isn’t just annoying – and it isn’t just water going down the drain, either, but money! Cliche, I know, but it’s amazing how much stopping a running toilet (by replacing the fill valve for a measly $20 or so) can save you in energy bills.
Replacing the fill valve is pretty straightforward, but the biggest thing to remember is to make sure that you turn off the water, otherwise it’s going to be a very messy, wet, process which probably won’t end well for you…or your bathroom.
This is a guest post from Jackie Ryan. Jackie is a freelance writer that works to supply home repair professionals with the supplies that they need – everything from platform trucks to Nexel shelving. She hopes that everyone becomes a handyman (or woman) when it comes to their own home.