Owning a home incurs costs. According to The Balance, you should set aside 1 percent of the value of your home for home repairs and maintenance every year. If you are living in a $250,000 home, you should expect to spend $2,500 a year on the upkeep of the home. Luckily, you can take on some DIY projects around your home to curb some maintenance costs. Let’s check out some tasks that will save you the most money.
Furnace and Heat Pump Maintenance
Many maintenance tasks for your home HVAC system require the help of a professional, but you can take a few basic steps to keep your furnace and heat pump working efficiently. For example, you should work to keep snow, ice, and leaves away from the outdoor condenser unit.
Also replace the air filter quarterly or as recommended by the manufacturer. This regular filter replacement will make the unit last longer and keep the air in your home clean.
Washer and Dryer Maintenance
Did you know that water damage caused by leaking washing machine supply lines contributes to large numbers of home insurance claims in the United States? Inspect all supply lines annually and replace them if you notice that the attachments are discolored or rusty, both signs that point to water leakage.
Don’t ignore your home’s dryer. Be sure to clean the vent regularly, as a dirty dryer vent is one of the top causes of house fires. Clean the lint screen between each load of laundry to boost your dryer’s operating efficiency and reduce wear and tear on the machine’s heating element.
Toilet leaks can be costly — not only because of increased water costs, but also due to the damage that a leaking toilet can do to your floor over time. If you find that your toilet is leaking, you can do a simple test to find out where the water is coming from: Add some food coloring to the water and wait for about an hour for the food coloring to appear outside of the tank. If water is leaking from the tank to the bowl, the flapper needs to be replaced. Drain the water, then replace the old flapper with a new one from the hardware store before refilling the tank.
If the water is leaking from the bowl to the floor, this problem probably means that your toilet’s wax seal is failing. This failure of the seal can happen over time, but the fix is a little more challenging. After shutting off the water and draining the water from the toilet, you must unbolt the toilet from the floor to replace the old wax seal with a new one before you reattach the toilet to your bathroom floor. You will need two people to tackle this job, as toilets are not light to pick up and carry.
With some regular DIY home maintenance like the ideas presented above, you can decrease the overall cost of home upkeep and save some money (and time) in the long run.