Preventative Maintenance Tip & Tricks
I. FOUNDATION & MASONRY: Basements, Exterior Walls: To prevent seepage and condensation problems.
a. Check basement for dampness & leakage after wet weather.
b. Check chimneys, deteriorated chimney caps, loose and missing mortar.
c. Maintain grading sloped away from foundation walls.
II. ROOFS & GUTTERS: To prevent roof leaks, condensation, seepage and decay problems.
a. Check for damaged, loose or missing shingles, blisters.
b. Clean gutters, leaders, strainers, window wells, drains. Be sure downspouts direct water away from foundation. Cut back tree limbs.
c. Check flashings around roof stacks, vents, skylights, chimneys, as sources of leakage. Check vents, louvers and chimneys for birds nests, squirrels, insects.
d. Check fascia’s and soffits for paint flaking, leakage & decay.
III. EXTERIOR WALLS: To prevent paint failure, decay and moisture penetration problems.
a. Check painted surface for paint flaking or paint failure. Cut back shrubs.
b. Check exterior masonry walls for cracks, looseness, missing or broken mortar.
IV. DOORS AND WINDOWS: To prevent air and weather penetration
a. Check caulking for decay around doors, windows, corner boards, joints. Recaulk and weather-strip as needed. Check glazing, putty around windows.
b. Repair or replace windows that show signs of interior glass pane condensation or deteriorating conditions.
V. ELECTRICAL: For safe electrical performance, mark & label each circuit.
a. Trip circuit breakers every six months and ground fault circuit interrupters (G.F.C.I.) monthly.
b. Check condition of lamp cords, extension cords & plugs. Replace at first sign of wear & damage.
c. Check exposed wiring & cable for wear or damage.
d. If you experience slight tingling shock from handling or touching any appliance, disconnect the appliance & have it repaired. If lights flicker or dim, or if appliances go on and off unnecessarily, call a licensed electrician.
VI. PLUMBING: For preventive maintenance.
a. Drain exterior water lines, hose bibs, sprinklers, pool equipment in the fall.
b. Draw off sediment in water heaters monthly or per manufacturer’s instructions.
c. Have septic tank cleaned when applicable…i.e. a household of 4 people, with a 1,000 gallon tank can expect to have the tank pumped every 5 to 8 years.
VII. HEATING & COOLING: For comfort, efficiency, energy conservation and safety.
a. Change or clean furnace filters, air condition filters, electronic filters as needed.
b. Clean and service humidifier regularly. Check periodically and annually.
c. Have oil burning equipment serviced annually.
VIII. INTERIOR: General house maintenance.
a. Check bathroom tile joints, tub grouting & caulking. Be sure all tile joints in bathrooms are kept well sealed with tile grout to prevent damage to walls, floors & ceilings below.
b. Close crawl vents in winter and open in summer.
c. Check underside of roof for water stains, leaks, dampness & condensation, particularly in attics and around chimneys.
IX. Know the location of:
• Main water shutoff valve. • Main electrical disconnect or breaker.
• Main emergency shutoff switch for the heating system.