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Establishing and following a maintenance schedule is the best way to manage your household maintenance budget, to protect your investment and to prevent problems. This seasonal schedule ofmaintenance tasks should not replace the manufacturer’s recommendations. We suggest that you uselicensed contractors for any tasks you may feel that you don’t have the technical knowledge or ability to perform.

SAFETY FIRST ‐ Homeowners often want to perform maintenance themselves to save money. It is important to bear in mind that there are many areas of home maintenance that are best left to professionals. For example, electrical work, entering anattic, or climbing on roofs and ladders are just a few hazardous activities. It is better to take the safe choice if there is any question as to the ability of the homeowner to perform any maintenance task..

  • Check windows and doors on the exterior for possible air or water leaks ‐ make sure the weep holes are clear at the bottom on the outside.
  • Inspect caulking around windows for cracks or separation from the window or building.
  • Check the roof for loose shingles, tiles or shakes. Make sure vents are in good condition and are not blocked with debris.
  • If you have large trees or shrubs close to the home, make sure they are trimmed well back to avoid-branches damaging the exterior of the home, the shingles or interfering with vents.
  • Check for leaves and debris in gutters and eaves troughs ‐ check for blockages at the down‐pipe connections.
  • Have Gas heating systems inspected by a certified professional.
  • Vacuum and clean out forced air registers (vents) and duct work in your home.
  • Remove the hoses and any diverter manifolds or other attachments from the hose bib itself.
  • Remember to turn outside water outlets off and drain exterior faucets of water before winter! There are several kinds of outside water outlets. If you have only the frost‐free type of hose bib, it shuts off only from the outside of your home. Make sure all hoses and appliances are disconnected to allow water to drain out. You may have a frost‐free type that also has an inside water shut‐off valve. Shut off the inside valve, then open the outside hose bib to allow it to drain. You may have a non‐frost‐free type of hose bib with an inside shut‐off. Turn off the water at the inside valve and open the outside valve to ensure the water drains. Some new homes have the hose bibs inside the garage or a utility room ‐ these too should have the hoses disconnected and be drained before freezing temperatures.
  • Check CO (Carbon Monoxide) detectors if installed.
  • Check all the vents outside your home; the combustion vent intake, the dryer vent and the range hood vent. Make sure they are all clear, functional and the screens are clean.
  • Check the attic for leaks, check the insulation, look for blocked vents and look to see if any daylight is coming in through the roof or around chimneys (may indicate a leak or hole).
  • Replace the furnace filters (homeowner), check fan belt and lubricate the motor if required (may require a technician).
  • Clean and test all the smoke alarms ‐ check or replace the batteries.
  • Test all the Ground Fault Circuit Interrupters (GFCIs) and all the panel breakers.
  • Remove ice and snow from porches and concrete stairs as soon as possible ‐ don’t use salts or other chemicals that will damage the concrete to melt or disperse ice.
  • In freezing or snow conditions check for ice dams on the overhangs of the roof.
  • Occasionally open windows to allow the house to air out (weather permitting).
  • Avoid overloading circuits with heaters, light decorations or appliances during the winter.
  • Remember to remove and store all your hoses, turn off the water supply to the exterior faucets and drain hose bibs (remove diverters too) BEFORE freezing temperatures. (See the information under FALL).
  • If you have an in‐ground sprinkler system, make sure it is properly drained and winterized Before freezing temperatures.
  • Check that your faucets are not leaking ‐ this will save you money especially on your hot water heating costs.
  • Check all the CO (Carbon Monoxide) detectors for operation. This is especially important in winter.
  • Do not pile snow against the side of your home.
  • Clean and test all your smoke alarms (if needed replace batteries).
  • Test all GFCIs in bathrooms, kitchens, outside receptacles and on the electrical panel.
  • Change the furnace filters and inspect the fan belt (may require a technician).
  • Inspect the roof visually from the ground if possible (be safety conscious if you have to go on the roof or hire a contractor).
  • Clean gutters and down‐pipes and make sure downspouts and splash pads drain away from walls and foundation.
  • Inspect caulking inside and out and touch‐up or replace where needed with approved products.
  • Clean windows, window tracks and make sure weep holes are not blocked (including sliding door tracks ‐lubricate opener sand track rollers with silicone spray).
  • Remember to turn on the interior water supply to hose bibs and exterior faucets! (IMPORTANT ‐ check for leaks).
  • Remove debris from gutters, eaves troughs and down‐pipes. Hose them out and ensure good drainage flow.
  • Examine window and door seals and repair as necessary. This will cut down on energy costs for cooling.
  • Examine and repair grout in bathrooms and tile floors to prevent moisture damage ‐ materials shrinkage may occur during the hot season.
  • Inspect and lubricate garage door roller shafts (do not attempt to adjust door springs yourself ‐ always calla technician).
  • Lubricate locks on doors and windows with silicone spray.
  • Check window screens and screen doors for tears if installed.
  • Check the condition of concrete slabs and sidewalks and asphalt driveways ‐ repair cracks as necessary.
  • Make sure sprinklers and hoses are not directed against the outside of the house.
  • Make sure that plants and bushes do not grow up against the outside of the house (moisture can stay trapped and not dry causing damage).
  • Check all landscaping and outdoor features to ensure good drainage away from the house, if the groundhas settled or water is running back toward the house.
  • Make sure all your drainage systems are working properly and that water drains away from your home. Ifit does not, take corrective actions immediately.
  • Check to ensure there are no insects or vermin getting into your home.