How to Save Money On Home Repairs
In this article written by Bret Engle of the DiyGuys – Bret looks to help you save money by keeping up with these simple home repair tasks.
Save Money On Home Repairs With These Simple Maintenance Tasks
Whether you live in an area with frigid, snowy winters or celebrate the holidays by hanging lights on a palm tree, keeping your home maintenance on an annual schedule prevents costly home repairs. Doing them at the same time each year can keep you from forgetting.
Just as you should check smoke detectors during time changes (so it’s done regularly), you should take care of these maintenance tasks yearly. Checking them off your list as summer turns to fall not only guarantees that they get done annually. It also ensures that your home is ready for winter temperatures.
Protect Your Plumbing
Anyone who’s ever lived in a place with harsh winters can tell you that frozen pipes spell trouble. It’s why you should leave your faucets trickling during frozen temperatures. You want to keep the water moving and prevent the pipes from freezing solid. Because guess what happens to frozen water pipes? They burst. Even just an eighth-of-an-inch crack can spray up to 250 gallons of water in a single day. This can mean an expensive home repair bill, an astronomical water bill, and a massive headache.
To ensure that your pipes are protected from the cold, check that any heat tape or cords are in good repair, and cover the entire pipe. You’ll also want to disconnect your garden hoses from any outdoor faucets or use an indoor valve to shut off any water sources that are outside. Failing to do so can damage the spigot and the pipe that leads into the house.
Replace Your Air Filters
It’s easy to forget to replace your furnace’s air filters. After all, when was the last time you even saw them? But neglecting to replace them leads to dirty air ducts, increased indoor allergens, a reduction in airflow coming into the system. Neglected air filters can also mean skyrocketing energy bills. Worse than that, clogged air filters are the leading cause of furnace and A/C unit failure. Instead of spending thousands of dollars on a new A/C unit or furnace, invest the twenty bucks and an hour of your time in changing the filter.
While you’re at it, think about investing in an air purifier. A good air filter can also protect you and your family against mold. If moisture seeps into your home and creates even a minor mold problem, you’ll greatly reduce its effects on your health. As a bonus, with fewer mold, dust and other particles in the air thanks to a purifier, your A/C and heating units will work more efficiently, which will save you money.
Check Your Detectors
Although you’ve heard it hundreds of times, it’s worth repeating what the consequences of neglecting this task are: losing everything you own or your life and the lives of your family members to a fire or carbon monoxide poisoning. It’s also important to note that in a 2015 report, “The death rate per 100 reported fires was more than twice as high in homes with no or no working smoke alarms … as it was in fires with working smoke alarms,” according to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA).
Additionally, according to the CDC, “More than 150 people in the United States die every year from accidental non-fire related [carbon monoxide] poisoning.” These are deaths that could have been prevented with inexpensive detectors that alert homeowners to this odorless, colorless, tasteless, and deadly gas. That’s a lot to risk for the sake of shirking the quick task of checking to ensure your detectors are working properly. Invest in the batteries and change them out in the fall just to be sure.
Whether you’re looking to maintain your current home or looking for a fixer-upper, these simple steps can help you protect your largest investment – your home.
We tend to think of our homes as sanctuaries. However, facing major home repairs can make your oasis feel more like a burdensome money pit. Avoid a repair-triggered case of home-hate (and keep your family and your money safe) by checking off these quick but vital home repair tasks.