Even for people who enjoy working with their hands, home maintenance can often feel like a lot of thankless work undertaken just to keep up with your home’s constant demands. But home maintenance isn’t just part of the responsibility you signed up for when you moved into your home—when done right, it can also help you avoid unnecessary costs and keep more money in your bank account.
As warmer temperatures arrive in spring, many homes are in need of a little TLC to shake off the cold winter season and get ready for the months ahead. As you prep your spring cleaning projects, remember that these five home maintenance tips are always great ways to save money both now and in the future.
1. Schedule a tuneup for your air conditioner.
Most homeowners realize an A/C tuneup is the easiest way to prevent appliance breakdowns before they strike. But what you might not realize is that these tuneups also improve the efficiency of your A/C unit’s operation, which can lead to savings on your utility bills as the weather starts to heat up.
A tuned-up air conditioner will require less energy and runtime to keep your home cool during the summer’s hottest days. If you’ve noticed your energy bill is high when the weather heats up, an overworked AC unit could be the problem—and a tuneup could cut down those costs while also sparing you any untimely appliance repairs.
2. Replace your home’s HVAC filters.
HVAC filters significantly impact the air quality in your home. Among other functions, they filter debris before it can accumulate in your furnace and other HVAC appliances, which can accelerate the rate of their breakdown over time.
Replacing these filters is good for both your own health and the health and longevity of your HVAC system. A clean filter is also easier for air to flow through, which places less strain on your air conditioner and furnace. If the filter has a visible layer of dust on top, it’s time to replace it. Doing so will reduce the workload required from your HVAC system, lowering energy costs whenever these appliances are running.
3. Clean any leftover debris off of your roof.
Leafs and other debris on your roof may linger after the snow has melted away. It might seem harmless, but this debris can accelerate the deterioration of your shingles, increasing the risk of cracks and leaking that can cause your roof to fall into disrepair. This lingering debris can cause hidden damage to your roof and even the structures underneath your roof.
By clearing away this debris, you extend the life of your roof and minimize the risk of costly damage.
4. Check your outdoor watering system for leaks.
If you have a sprinkler system in your backyard, hidden leaks can increase your water bill, overwater parts of your lawn, and lead to poor performance for the system as a whole.
If you blew out the lines last fall to keep them from freezing during the winter, it’s time to fill them up with water. Then, check for leaking, which may be detected as a hissing sound or as a physical accumulation of water when the sprinkler heads are shut off.
If you find a leak, call a technician to repair the leak before you use your system. You’ll have to eat the cost of the visit, but the faster you schedule the appointment, the less you’ll be charged on your water bill.
5. Touch up the seals around your windows and doors.
Weather strips, caulk, and other seals can erode around your windows and doors. These gaps and cracks can lead to heat loss and even become a source of water infiltration—which could go unseen until significant damage has been done, at which point the cost to correct the problem will likely be high.
By taking time to inspect these seals and replace or touch up any identified gaps, you can improve the heating envelope for your home, which will lead to lower heating and cooling costs all year long.
If spring maintenance doesn’t exactly sound like your idea of a good time, just keep in mind the potential savings that come with this proactive approach to home ownership. Plus, the more consistent you are in performing this home maintenance, the more worry-free time you’ll get to spend in your home.
Want to discover more money-saving, value-added home ownership tips? Download The Essential Guide for First-Time Home Buyers today.