Home Safety & Maintenance Tips...
there is no such thing as “a perfect house,” either newly constructed
or rich with a history. Every structure eventually will need some type
of repair and an ongoing maintenance program implemented. It is
extremely important that you properly maintain all mechanical systems,
as well as the integrity of the structure for the safety of its
inhabitants. Therefore, it is equally as important that any necessary
repairs (completed by yourself or with the help of a Licensed
Contractor) should be performed in a safe, professional manner and in
accordance with the local building codes. If any of the repairs
require a building permit, make certain they are obtained and posted
prior to the start of any construction. Having these permits will keep
you out of any conflicts with the local building authority. They will
also assure that the repairs will be performed to current building
code standards, and the structure will be safe for occupancy when all
of the repairs have been completed.
home FIRE SAFETY CHECKLIST to print out
and use in your home,
Click On This Link.
In To Any New House...
replace all locks on the exterior entrance doors, for peace of
mind and improved security.
windows and doors are secure. Improve window hardware if
necessary. Security rods can be installed to sliding windows and
doors. Consideration could also be given to a security system.
on any existing smoke detectors and test them for proper
operation. Ensure that there are smoke detectors installed both
inside each bed room & outside all sleeping areas within the home,
and at least one smoke detector installed on each level of the
Ensure that all
fire extinguishers in the home are fully charged. Recharge as
Create a plan of
action in the event of a fire in your home. Ensure that there is
an operable window or door in every room of the house. Consult
with your local fire department regarding fire safety issues and
information regarding what you should do in the event of a fire.
and walkways for any trip hazards. Undertake any repairs where
interior of the home for any trip hazards or safety issues. Loose
or torn carpeting and flooring should be repaired or replaced
where necessary. Undertake improvements to all stairways, decks,
porches and landings where there is a risk of falling or
and make a note of the main shut-offs for the electrical,
plumbing, natural gas, and HV/AC systems. If you attended the home
inspection, these items would have been pointed out to you.
Review your home
inspection report for any items that require immediate
improvement, are in need of repair or require further
investigation. Address these areas as required.
Replace AC return
air filters. Check air cleaners and humidifiers, clean as necessary.
Examine below all
plumbing fixtures in the home for evidence of any supply or drain
Repair or replace
dripping or leaking faucets and/or shower heads. Clean aerators as
toilets. Check and repair any toilet flush mechanisms that leak or
the condition of shower enclosures. Replace cracked tiles. Repair or
replace deteriorated grout and caulk. Ensure that water is not
escaping the enclosure during showering.
exterior roof areas for evidence of damage to the roof covering,
flashings and chimneys.
Inspect the attic
area (if accessible) for evidence of any water penetrations,
condensation or vermin activity. Examine and ensure that roof
ventilation areas are securely screened and are not obstructed.
exterior walls and foundation for evidence of damage, cracking or
movement. Inspect for insect activity, bird nests or other vermin.
Eliminate any wood to soil contact around the perimeter.
Ensure that the
landscaping & grading of the land around the structure encourages
storm water to flow away from the foundation and there are no spots
where water is encouraged to pond.
Trim back tree
branches and shrubs to ensure that they are not in contact with the
roof or structures.
driveways, walkways, decks, porches and landscape components for
evidence of deterioration, movement, the presents of mold or safety
hazards, clean & make repairs as necessary.
Test the operation,
oil and check the locks of all windows and doors. Improve any
caulking and weather-stripping as necessary. Check for evidence of
rot in door jambs and wooden window frames.
exhaust vent for trapped lint, remove for fire safety. Replace oven
exhaust fan filters.
Remove and vacuum
all smoke detector housings, reinstall all detectors with fresh new
Have the entire HV/AC
system and vent systems checked, cleaned and/or serviced as
heater & test the Temperature and Pressure Relief Valve for proper
inspected and cleaned. Ensure that rain caps and vermin screens are
exterior trim, door jambs, window sills and frames. Repair, re-caulk
& paint as necessary.
overhead electrical supply wires coming to the house. They should be
secure and clear of trees or other obstructions. Examine the
protective covering; make sure it has not deteriorated.
electrical panels, wiring and all electrical components for evidence
of overheating. Ensure that all components are secure. Flip the
breakers on and off to ensure that they are not sticky.
Test all (GFCI)
Ground Fault Circuit Interrupter devices, as identified in the
Test the overhead
garage door operation. Ensure that the auto-reverse mechanism is
responding properly. Clean and lubricate hinges, rollers and tracks.
Make sure that all the tracks are secured.
Shut off isolating
valves for all exterior hose bibs in the fall if located in an area
where below freezing temperatures are anticipated.
If the house
utilizes a well, check and service the pump and holding tank. Have
the water quality tested. If the property has a septic system, have
the tank inspected (and pumped as needed).
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