Maintenance Tips for Homeowners Who Have an Old Home
If you’ve been renovating an old home for many years and finally feel like you’ve done everything you need to to get the property looking and feeling how you want, it will be very tempting to hang up your work belt and put your feet up for a while like.
However, keep in mind that “grand old dames” still need to be maintained every year; in fact, maintenance is even more important in historic estates and other well-loved homes than it is in newer ones. Read on for some maintenance tips you can follow over the coming year to ensure small problems don’t end up turning into really costly ones. (1)
Create a Schedule to Stay on Track
Before you start any of the physical maintenance tasks, it’s a good idea to sit down and create a maintenance schedule for yourself. Since life gets busy and before you know it months can have passed, it helps to have a plan of attack for the work so you stay on track and don’t accidentally forget to do a bunch of jobs.
Put together a list of things that need to be covered over the coming 12 months, including things that are just annual or bi-annual, as well as those which need to be done more regularly, whether quarterly, monthly, or every second month. In addition, take photographs of the current state of the home, so you have these to refer back to as time goes by. They will help you to notice if the condition of a part of the property suddenly deteriorates more than it should. (2)
Regularly Service HVAC Systems
As for jobs to complete around the home, one of the top ones is regularly servicing your HVAC systems. In older homes, in particular, the heating and cooling devices may be very old and potentially will have been neglected since they were installed. This means you need to keep a close eye on them. It pays to do maintenance in spring and fall, rather than right at the time when you need to use more air-conditioning or heating in summer or winter.
While you may be experienced enough to do some of the basic tasks yourself, such as replacing filters, because HVAC systems in older homes may be quite ancient and particular, it’s usually better, and safer, to have an experienced specialist work on them for you. For example, if you’re in Texas, you could search for a Dallas handyman who has plenty of experience in repairing all types of heating and cooling units. If your repairs get too costly for the older unit(s), and it’s guzzling too much power, you may want to eventually look at switching it out for a more modern HVAC system.
Repair the Roof
Again, since older homes also usually have older roofs to match, it’s important to inspect your roof annually to see if there are any issues needing to be repaired. There could be significant wear and tear, such as broken tiles or shingles, or holes that have opened up. Plants can creep onto the roof and then lift tiles, or harsh weather can cause damage and lead to leaks. Have a professional roofer inspect and repair the roof at least once per year to avoid ending up with flooding and related problems.
Gutters need to be cleaned out, too. This should be at least twice per year, however, if you have lots of trees overhanging your gutters and dropping debris down into them, you may need to clean more often. If you don’t clear mess, such as leaves, dirt, mud, sticks, tennis balls, and other bits and pieces that end up in gutters, it can cause ice dams and icicles to form and you’ll end up with rust and eventually holes. If the water pools up where it shouldn’t around the foundations of your home, this can then lead to all sorts of other problems, too.
Sort Out Pipes and Drains
Another maintenance job you don’t want to leave is sorting out the pipes and drains in your older property. Many “mature” homes are more at risk of having pipes clog up and/or burst due to internal rusting. As such, if you can do the work yourself go for it, but if not make sure you call in a plumber to clear out drains and replace any pipes which are past their prime and unable to be repaired.