Maintenance performed regularly and on schedule provides optimum longevity and helps prevent potential breakdowns or malfunctions. Beyond maintenance procedures for operational sake, the primary (and most important) reason for checking and inspecting is to ensure maximum safety for you and your family. Bastian Home Inspection recommends you call a licensed professional when necessary, never placing yourself in danger or at risk of injury.
Check the roof and around vents, skylights, and chimneys for leaks. Repair as necessary. Inspect roof surface flashing, eaves and soffits. Check flashings around all surface projections and sidewalls.
If there is no ridge vent, keep gable vents open year-round to ensure proper ventilation.
Gutters & Downspouts
Clean the gutters and drain pipes / downspouts, so leaves won't clog them and be sure they drain away from the house. Reattach gutters that have pulled away from the house. Check for proper drainage. If leaks exist, dry the area and use caulking or epoxy to seal the leak.
Clean siding with a pressure washer to keep mold from growing. Check all wood surfaces for weathering and paint failure. If wood is showing through, sand the immediate area and apply a primer coat before painting. If paint is peeling, scrape loose paint and sand smooth before painting.
Inspect caulking and replace if deteriorating. Scrape out all the eroding caulk and re-caulk the area.
Windows and Doors
Seal drafty doors and windows. If you added up all of the small cracks where heating and cooling escapes from a home, it would be the same as having a window open. Replace seals as needed.
Window and Door Screens
Clean screening and check for holes. Holes in your screens bigger than a quarter, leave plenty of room for bugs and insects to enter your home. Patch holes or replace the screen. Tighten or repair any loose or damaged frames and repaint. Replace broken, worn, or missing hardware. Wind can ruin screens and frames that are allowed to flap and move, so make sure they are securely fastened. Tighten and lubricate door hinges and closers.
Storm Windows and Screens
(Fall) Take down screens (if removable type) and replace with storm windows. (Spring) Remove, clean, and store storm windows (if removable). Check and patch all door and window screens. Put screens up (if removable type).
Window Sills, Door Sills, and Thresholds
Fill cracks, caulk edges, repaint or replace if necessary.
Check foundation walls, floors, concrete and masonry for cracking, heaving, or deterioration. If a significant number of bricks are losing their mortar, call a professional.
Decks, Patios and Porches
Check all decks, patios, porches, stairs and railings for loose members and deterioration. Open decks and wood fences need to be treated as needed, depending on how much exposure they get to sun and rain.
Cut back and trim all vegetation and overgrown bushes that are touching structures. Limbs and leaves can cut into your home's paint, requiring that side of the house to be repainted. A little trimming can save a lot of money and time.
Check outside faucets for leaking regularly. In the fall in preparation for the winter months, drain outside faucets and drain and remove all hoses. Recommend frost free hose spigots to avoid breakage.
Clean the fireplace of ashes. (Fall) Check the chimney for loose or missing mortar. Have the chimney professionally cleaned. Make sure the damper closes tightly. (Spring) Leave the damper open for improved ventilation if the home is not air-conditioned.
Ensure that all smoke detectors, carbon monoxide detectors, and fire extinguishers are in good working order. Replace batteries in appropriate devices as needed, or at least twice each year.
Make sure your refrigerator door seals are airtight. Test them by closing the door over a dollar bill. If you can pull the bill out easily, the latch may need to be adjusted or the seal may need to be replaced. In addition, if you have a coil back refrigerator, vacuum the coils at least twice each year. Your refrigerator will run more efficiently with clean coils. Also, stock up! A full refrigerator uses less energy than an empty one.
Check for leaky faucets in the kitchen and bathroom(s). Replace washers as necessary.
Remember to clean or replace filters once a month, or as needed. Check and clean the dryer vent, air conditioner, stove hood, and room fans. Keep heating and cooling vents clean and free from furniture and draperies.
Check the basement walls and floor for dampness. Running a dehumidifier is recommended, empty often if required and clean regularly.
(Fall) Have the heating system serviced by a licensed heating professional. Change filters when needed.
Lubricate blower motor.
Central Air Conditioning Systems
Keep exterior coils clean and free from debris. Cover unit during the winter months, however, remove the cover once warmer weather hits and clean unit to prepare for use. Keep bushes and tree trimmed and away from the unit.
Window Air Conditioner
(Fall) Remove window air-conditioners from windows is recommended, or put weatherproof covers on them.
Hot Water Heater
(Fall) Drain the hot water heater. Remove sediment from the bottom of the tank.
Check regularly; keep filled with manufacturer's recommended salt.