TIP #1: Regularly Change Your HVAC Filters
Your HVAC filter’s primary purpose is to protect your heating and cooling system from collecting dirt and debris, which decreases the system capacity and function. They also trap harmful pollutants and allergens that you don’t want in your air.
Over time, your filter will naturally collect dust as a result. And, if you let it run too long without changing it out, it could get clogged, hindering the efficiency of your HVAC system, which wastes energy and ultimately costs you money.
To change your filter, make sure you turn off your system, pull out your filters and inspect them. If they’re dirty, get an appropriate replacement. Depending on the filter, it may need to be changed every 1-3 months.
TIP #2: Test your smoke and carbon monoxide detectors
Experts recommend that you test your smoke and carbon monoxide detectors every month to ensure that they are functioning properly. They’ll also beep when the batteries are low so you know when to replace them. But, another great tip is to go ahead and change the batteries as part of your routine when you change your clocks in the fall and spring.
TIP #3: Check the Caulking in Kitchens, Bathrooms and Trim
Caulk is used to seal joints or cracks from the intrusion of water, air, dust, pollution and noise. Some of the most common areas caulk is used is in kitchens and bathrooms around counters or even some of the trim such as crown molding and baseboards.
As your foundation settles, caulking will crack or separate – which is completely normal. When this happens, simply re-caulk the necessary areas. It’s a good rule of thumb to re-caulk about once a year.
TIP #4: Regularly Clean Your Dryer Vent
It’s highly recommended to regularly clean your dryer vent. Mistaking the lint trap for the dryer vent is a common mistake. But, please note that the dryer vent pushes air outside the home through a duct and can get filled with lint over time. A clogged dryer vent is a fire hazard.
TIP #5: Have Wood-Burning Fireplaces and Chimneys Inspected and Cleaned
If you have a wood-burning fireplace, we highly recommend having it serviced every fall, before fire burning season begins. That’s because creosote, a flammable byproduct of wood burning, can build up in your fireplace and chimney – resulting in a fire hazard that increases the risk of carbon monoxide poisoning.
But please, don’t try to do this yourself. Contact a trained professional chimney sweep to ensure it’s done properly.
TIP #6: Clean Your Gutters
Over time, gutters can collect leaves and other items that can cause water to back up and potentially enter your home through the roof or even the foundation. Or, it could even cause water to freeze in your gutters and ruin them entirely.
To prevent this, we recommend cleaning your gutters once or twice a year. And, this is something that you can do yourself if you like, unless you prefer to hire a professional.