Your furnace and/or air conditioner filter should be checked frequently and replaced or cleaned as needed. Some filters are reusable and should be removed, washed with a hose and re-inserted. A dirty filter can lower the efficiency of the heating/cooling system, increase heating costs and could cause fires.
Clean the clothes dryer exhaust duct, damper and space under the dryer. Poor maintenance allows lint to build up in the exhaust duct reducing dryer efficiency and posing a serious fire threat.
The plumbing in your home is an essential and often overlooked system that provides clean water and the proper collection and transport of waste water. Take a look at water hoses on the clothes washer, refrigerator, ice maker and dishwasher for cracks and bubbles. Make sure shutoff valves are functional, septic tank (if present) is serviced, water heater leakage, rusting and proper ventilation.
One of the main goals of an inspection is to uncover safety issues. This includes the electrical system. Please take note of items that only a qualified electrician should service, and call one if an item isn’t working properly. Make sure you have light bulbs with the proper wattage, no exposed wiring or loose-fitting electricaloutlets.
Windows and doors are important for aesthetics, safety and energy efficiency. Understanding the condition of the windows and doors can help determine future maintenance projects. You can reduce your home’s heating and cooling costs through proper air sealing techniques. Take a look at weather stripping and caulk on windows and doors, broken or cracked glass or damaged window screens and trim for rotting wood or peeling paint.
Extreme caution should be exercised when working on or around the roof. Consider hiring a professional to inspect your roof and the area around it. Check the attic for signs of leaks, such as water stains. Check the roof for damaged or missing shingles and vents for bird nests.
A solid foundation forms a continuous skirt around the building that supports the structure above it. The main causes of failure in foundations and basements include poor construction, frost-related damage, settling or shifting of the ground and water infiltration caused by improper grading and guttering. Inspect for signs of termites, check the basement for dampness and make sure your sump pump (if present) is operating correctly.
An outside air conditioning unit is more vulnerable than an inside unit because it has to operate in all kinds of weather. An outside unit should be level and completely clear of leaves and other debris.
No matter which type of siding your home has, they all deteriorate – some types deteriorate faster than others and require maintenance. Check for any cracks, growing vines or peeling paint.
Clogged gutters and downspouts are a main cause of paint failure and decay of the fascia and soffit. Make sure your gutters and downspouts are attached correctly and working properly.
Wooden decks can deteriorate quickly and require regular maintenance. Improperly maintained decks can cause falls, which could lead to a trip to the hospital emergency room. Check wooden decks for deterioration and repair any damages.
When preparing the outside of your home take a look at faucets and hoses, sprinkler systems, check caulking, clean/repair any outdoor furniture, trim tree branches, mulch and service garage doors if necessary.
Focus your efforts on one room at a time before moving on to the next project. Make sure caulking around bathroom fixtures is adequate, check floor and wall tile grout for cracks, and test smoke alarms.