Special to the Journal
(StatePoint) With a little easy home maintenance throughout the year, you can prevent emergency repairs down the line. Experts recommend posting a task checklist in a convenient location, such as on the refrigerator or a corkboard.
“Maintenance is usually a lot simpler than a repair, and a lot more affordable,” says Chris Terrill, CEO of HomeAdvisor, a leading website offering resources for home repair and improvement projects. “Keep a checklist handy during the entire year, so you don’t forget any timely tasks.”
Here are six tasks HomeAdvisor recommends not to forget to complete each year:
• On a quarterly basis, test your smoke and carbon monoxide detectors. Not only will doing so protect the safety of your family in the event of an emergency, it can also protect your pocketbook. The average national cost of repairing fire and smoke damage is $4,195.
• Twice a year, clean your gutters and downspouts. To prevent damage, the downspout needs to be free of debris so it can release water three feet from your home’s foundation. The average national cost of cleaning the gutter and downspout is $181. However, the average national cost of repairing the foundation of a house can cost up to 24 times that amount.
• In the cooler months, take a day each year to check caulking for cracks, especially around tubs and showers. Cracks can let in water with no place for drainage, which will cause damage.
• Every fall complete an annual roof inspection to help prevent the need for major repairs or a roof replacement. The average national cost of hiring a roof inspector is $360, whereas the average cost of replacing a roof is nearly 19 times that amount.
• Before the dog days of summer, hire a professional to service your HVAC unit. Doing so will increase its efficiency and prevent a breakdown. The cost of replacing and installing an air conditioning unit can cost more than 13 times the amount of servicing one.
• Annually check for cracks in the grout of tile floors, which can allow water to seep into the floor and cause mold growth and rot. According to HomeAdvisor’s Cost Guide the average national cost of repairing tile and grout is $439. However, the cost of testing and removing mold can be up to four times that amount.
For free home maintenance tips, resources and to find a pre-screened professional to help you with any of these tasks, visit www.HomeAdvisor.com.
Don’t wait for something to go wrong. Inspecting your home’s infrastructure and performing proper maintenance can protect your home from costly damage and deterioration.