Spring Maintenance Tips for a Safe, Energy-Efficient Home
The weather is finally warming up in New Jersey, and as Leo Tolstoy says, “spring is the time for plans and projects.” Although there is a variety of home improvement and maintenance projects you can tackle yourself, some things in your house should be left to the professional – like your electrical panel, water heater, and HVAC system.
That’s why we want to save you time, money, and energy by doing all of your home tune-ups at once (4 for the price of 1)! But, the longer you wait, the less you save.
But that’s not all you should do. Learn how to get your NJ home ready for the warmer weather ahead by following these 5 spring maintenance tips:
5 Spring Maintenance Tips
We are proud to present these spring maintenance tips to homeowners in New Brunswick and other New Jersey areas:
1. Inspect Gutters
Over winter, a lot of debris has accumulated in your gutter system. Now’s the time to break out the ladder and work gloves to inspect your gutters. You can clear a lot of the twigs, leaves, and other debris with your hands, but you should also check for any loose connections. It’s also important to check your berms and ditches, if necessary. Learn how to extend your downspouts here.
Repair or seal any loose gutter connections. Learn how to fix sagging gutters here.
You may also want to consider gutter guards to prevent future clogs and blockages.
Also, rain gardens are a great way to provide natural drainage around your home.
There are some other ways to mange your water runoff problems, including rain barrels, cisterns, and rain gardens.
2. Fix Plumbing Leaks
First, you have to detect plumbing leaks around your home. Considering the fact that “ten percent of homes have leaks that waste 90 gallons or more per day,” it’s important to fix plumbing leaks as you find them.
A good way to detect leaks in your plumbing system is to take a look at your water meter. Most water meters have a leak detection dial that will tell you if you have a leak:
Common plumbing leaks can be fixed by replacing damaged toilet flappers, faucet heads, and other leaking plumbing fixtures. Plumbing leaks are pretty easy to fix and can save you 10% or more on your water bill. You can save even more money on your water bill by switching to low-flow fixtures and high-efficiency appliances.
3. Check Your Water Heater
Check to make sure your water heater is set at 120 degrees, rather than the typical 140 degrees. This will lower your energy bills and prevent scalding, especially important if you have young ones at home.
Spring is also a great time to flush your water heater of sediment, which we will do as part of our water heater maintenance service. If your water heater is older than 15 years, you may want to consider replacement. Ask us about tankless water heater options.
4. Inspect Your Electrical System
Here are a few things to check to ensure your electrical system is safe and efficient:
- Are extension cords are being used properly? They are only a temporary measure (use for no more than 30 days), so if you need to add extra outlets, do so. Make sure your extension cords aren’t under rugs, carpets, furniture, or in high-traffic areas. Inspect your extension cords for damage before using. This goes for power tools and other electrical equipment as well.
- Are all electrical cords in good condition (no cracks, frays, or damage)?
- Have you tested your AFCIs and GFCIs in the last 30 days?
- Do you have tamper resistant receptacles (TRRs) installed to prevent young children from electrical shocks?
- Are any of your outlet or light switch plates discolored, cracked, or broken?
- Do any of your outlet or light switch plates feel hot to the touch?
- Does your breaker or fuse box keep tripping? Do you know the capacity of your circuit?
- Are your expensive electronics and appliances protected by a surge protector?
- Is there adequate air flow and ventilation around your appliances and electronics? Is your dryer clean and free from debris?
- Are liquids near any of your electrical devices?
- Do you have working smoke and CO alarms? Are they installed in the right places (on every level of the home and outside of every sleeping areas)?
- Are your using the right bulb wattage for your light fixtures?
- Does your ceiling fan wobble? Has it been dusted or cleaned recently?
- Is your water heater set to 120 degrees Fahrenheit?
- Have you had your electrical, plumbing, and HVAC systems inspected by a professional this year?
Use this Home Safety Calendar from ESFI to help you keep track of your monthly home safety duties:
5. Tune Up Your Air Conditioner
It is very important to schedule professional air conditioning maintenance every spring, but there are also several things you can do to supplement this professional effort, including:
- Keeping the evaporator coil clean.
- Clearing away debris from the outdoor unit and maintaining a minimum 24-inch clearance.
- Changing your air filter every 1-3 months. Learn which air filter is best for your home.
- Checking and changing your CO and smoke alarm batteries.
- Installing a programmable thermostat and knowing how to use it.
Schedule your professional cooling tune-up before June 1st and get 3 other tune-ups for FREE! Not only will this reduce breakdowns and energy bills, but it will also maintain your manufacturer’s warranty and extend the useful life of your HVAC system.
Additional Spring Home Maintenance Tasks:
- Inspect roof and chimney for cracks and damage.
- Touch up peeling or damaged paint.
- Wash windows, inside and out.
- Install screens on windows and doors.
- Clean outdoor furniture.
- Service your lawn mower and other gas-powered equipment.
- Fertilize your lawn.
- Test smoke and CO detectors.
- Test your sump pump and learn how to avoid basement flooding. If it’s not working, call a professional.
- Dust and vacuum.
- Change your air filter.
- Clean kitchen and bathroom and throw away old food and cosmetics.
- Test your backup generator and call a professional for your yearly generator maintenance.
- Test panel circuit breakers/fuses.
Spring is a great time to improve and renovate your home. if you are thinking about a bathroom or basement renovation, give Gold Medal Service a call. We are an exclusive Bath Planet dealer and an expert in basement waterproofing.
To schedule your 4 home maintenance appointments (electrical, heating, cooling, and plumbing) contact the professionals at Gold Medal Service. We'll be there with our same day service guarantee to tune up your home cooling system. All of our technicians are highly trained, background checked, and drug tested.
Give us a call today at (732) 365-3199 or schedule an appointment online!