The Homeowner’s Essential Checklist for Annual Home Maintenance

Last updated on March 26, 2024

Follow this checklist to keep your home functioning and damage-free. Read on!

Home maintenance isn’t just for when you’re selling or buying a house – regular upkeep is key to keeping your home in tip-top shape.

This checklist provides the perfect refresher on all the essential steps that should be done annually, from changing out air filters to making sure dryer vent leaks are taken care of. 

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Service and Check Your Air Conditioning Unit

hvac checkup

Check your air conditioning filter. Proper levels of refrigerant and oil are essential to ensure your system runs smoothly – it’s like an engine needing the right fuel! If these aren’t checked, you might start seeing performance issues or sky-high energy bills.

Inspect all electrical connections for corrosion or damage (such as loose wires). If you find any problems with these connections, an air conditioning installation company like Advanced Clean Air can help you repair the unit before it becomes an expensive problem later on down the road.

Make sure your fan belt is still tight and not stretched out from overuse. If it has stretched out too much, then it will no longer be able to turn freely without slipping on its pulleys/belts/etc., which could lead to premature failure when working hard during hot weather conditions.

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Clean Your Dryer Vent

attic vent

Keep your laundry room safe and free of fire hazards by consistently maintaining the dryer’s exhaust vent. Give it a thorough clean at least once annually, or more often if you’re living in an area with higher humidity levels (since that results in frequent washes).

To do this task yourself, here are some simple steps:

  • Mask up any sharp edges on your broom handle with masking tape;
  • Then loosen and remove both screws from either side of the flap to get access into tight quarters.
  • With these easy precautions taken care of, it should now be smooth sailing.
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Check for Water Leaks

pipe leak

Check for toilet, sink and faucet leaks by dropping a few drops of food coloring in the tank or bowl. If you see color in the bowl after 15 minutes, there’s a leak that needs to be repaired.

Check pipes under sinks and toilets with soapy water or a leak detection dye kit (available at hardware stores). If you find any signs of leakage, shut off the main water supply immediately and call a plumber to repair it before further damage occurs.

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Inspect and Service Your Water Heater

water heater tank

With a little love and attention, your water heater can be part of the family for years to come. Regular maintenance will ensure that it’s always running optimally and protect you from costly repairs should it malfunction or develop leaks.

Plus, an expertly maintained hot water provider also means lower bills in the long run.

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Have a Professional Check and Clean the Furnace’s Heat Exchanger

home furnace checkup

The heat exchanger is part of your furnace where air and gas mix. It should be checked every year, but it’s especially important to have this checked if you’ve had recent repairs or modifications done to your heating system.

A professional can also tell you if it needs cleaning–a process that should take place every three years or so. If you don’t clean out all of those built-up particles, they’ll cause carbon monoxide poisoning and make your furnace malfunction more easily.

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Examine Your Chimney

Check for cracks, loose or missing mortar and flue obstructions by looking up into the chimney from the fireplace opening.

Besides this, you should also consider hiring a chimney sweep specialist at least once a year, so you can prevent all the problems you may encounter.

Look for damage to the brickwork or mortar joints, as well as corrosion on metal parts such as damper doors and firebox liners that could cause leaks into your home’s structure.

If you see rust stains in areas where water can collect (such as near roofing), then you may have a leaky roof flashing or gutter connection that needs repair before it becomes a major problem later on down the road when water damage occurs inside from rain coming through cracks in those spots during heavy storms.

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Check for Pests, Especially Termites and Ants

As part of your regular home maintenance routine, it’s critical to include pest control. Termites can be especially problematic as they are highly attracted to moisture and wood materials like drywall or flooring boards often found in homes.

If not caught soon enough, you may find yourself dealing with costly damage down the road! Stay vigilant – look for signs such as hollow-sounding timber around plumbing pipes – so that an infestation doesn’t take hold before it has a chance even surface.

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Examine Your Roof, Foundation and Driveway for Any Leaks or Cracks

metal roof work

As autumn kicks in, it’s time to check your roof, foundation and driveway for any cracks or leaks that could turn into major issues with winter on the way.

Take a look at shingles to make sure none are loose; examine flashing around chimney crowns; be mindful of possible damage from potential snowfall impacting cracked roofing material – making repairs now will prevent more extensive problems later.

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Don’t Delay Home Maintenance

Don’t wait until winter to tackle those home maintenance tasks. Taking care of repairs now is a great way to get ahead, save energy and protect yourself against expensive future problems. Put in the effort today for greater peace of mind tomorrow.

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