As a homeowner, you probably are aware of main aspects of your property that need to be periodically inspected and well maintained. The HVAC system, electrical system, plumbing, and roof are common elements in most homes that need to be monitored to ensure household comfort and protection. However, don’t overlook additional areas like the following that can also lead to costly repairs if minor issues are not discovered and addressed.
Water heaters are fairly common, but not every home has a water softener. If you have either or both, check them periodically to ensure they are working correctly. If your home’s hot water starts to change temperature unexpectedly or turns completely cold, schedule a service visit and arrange for water heater repair to restore your home’s hot water. Water softener damage will have less of a dramatic impact, but it can still cause problems with staining the toilets, clothes in the washing machine, or sometimes even the dishes in the dishwasher. Keep your water softener working consistently to avoid rusty stain buildup.
If you don’t spend much time in your basement, you might not notice a small problem until it becomes a bigger one. Termites can destroy wood timbers and floor trusses, so have your basement checked occasionally for early signs of an infestation. Look for mice while you are at it to get rid of a few intruders before they build nests and have families. Also, check for signs of crumbling, leaning, or shifting in the home’s foundation. If you do notice issues, have any damaged masonry repaired.
Basements are particularly susceptible to flooding and water damage. Watch for signs of flooding or have a water alarm in your basement to alert you of large leaks that are occurring so that you can prevent the majority of the damage before it happens.
Some homes in rural or suburban areas have a septic tank and well instead of city water, which is why you may have a water softener. Request a county health department water test every couple of years to ensure you well water remains free of toxic chemicals and bacteria. If you have a septic tank, it will probably need to be pumped out every year or two to avoid toilet backups.
The attic is another area that you might not see often. Inspect it every few months for signs of pests like bats, squirrels, raccoons, or carpenter ants. The sooner you find and fix this type of problem, the cheaper it will be. Have your chimney cleaned every year or two to prevent the buildup of creosote from burning wood, which can cause house fires if not treated.
Household maintenance and care is an ongoing task. Don’t forget to check the areas that may seem less prominent or important, as they, too, can cause problems if neglected.