Homeowner Tips for Routine Maintenance
Most homeowners do not realize that their homes, just like their cars, require routine maintenance to operate smoothly. Take care of your home systems and appliances, and they will take care of you.
It is essential to read your contract to best understand exactly what Homeguard HomeWarranty covers. A Homeguard HomeWarranty is a service contract, which means we fix covered breakdowns - we do not cover routine maintenance.
Take a look at the checklist below: it details suggested maintenance for your home's major systems and appliances. Remember: a happy house is a well-maintained house. Improper maintenance of your systems and appliances may result in a denial of Homeguard HomeWarranty service.
- A/C maintenance
Check and replace A/C filters monthly
- Brush and vacuum the filter or replace it.
- Hose off the exterior A/C unit periodically to remove dirt and debris.
Call a licensed heating/cooling contractor semi-annually for a thorough inspection and maintenance
- Please note that in addition to regular A/C maintenance, the evaporator and condensor coils require routine cleaning as well. For more information, contact a local, licensed HVAC professional.
- Furnace Problems
Inspect and replace furnace filter if necessary
- It should be replaced every month during the heating season.
- If air conditioning is part of the same system, the filter should be changed every month.
Clean the blower compartment
- Open the hatch on the front and use a vacuum cleaner with the upholstery brush attachment to remove any dirt.
Clean the burner compartment
- Use a wire brush. Then use the vacuum to carefully suck up the loosened rust, lint and debris.
Check the blower-fan belt for frayed and worn spots and tension. (This is only required for belt driven fans)
- If the belt looks worn it must be replaced. Belt tension should give about 3/4 of an inch.
Check the ducts for leaks
- If you see fuzz or feel air coming out through the joints between duct segments, seal them with metal tape.
Lubricate the fan motor and fan bearing with a few drops of oil twice a year. (This is only required on certain units)
- Washer/Dryer Problems
Washer: Clean tub interiors to eliminate minerals and soap build up
- Use citric acids or any mix containing vitamin C
Washer: Clean the screen filters located at the end of the hose or on the back of the washing machine's cold water inlet port
- The filters can get clogged with mineral build up and small debris which can damage the pump
Dryer: Clean the lint screen after every load
- Lint build up reduces efficiency, wastes energy dollars and it is a fire hazard.
Dryer: Clean the dryer duct at least twice a year with a dryer duct brush and a vacuum
Dryer: Remove and clean the exhaust hose/vent with a vacuum
- Replace any plastic flexible accordion type exhaust hose with sheet metal ducting. Plastic flexible exhaust hoses are a fire hazard.
- Water Heater Problems
Drain and flush sediment from tank twice a year
Check pressure-relief valve once a year to make sure this crucial safety device is not clogged
- Oven/Range Problems
Gas Oven: Removable gas burners should be cleaned regularly
- Use baking soda and hot water to clean the ports.
Gas Oven: The connector tube "flash tube" should also be cleaned to prevent grease clogs
Gas Oven: Clean non-removable sealed gas burners with a small brush and a solution of baking soda and water
Gas Oven: The burner housings should be wiped thoroughly clean, and remove all water from the gas jet port openings
- To remove the excess water use a cloth and a hair dryer to remove moisture if necessary.
Electric Oven: Remove the plug-in elements and clean the surfaces and tips with a damp rag or a stiff nylon brush
- Refrigerator/Freezer Problems
Keep the condenser coils clean
- Use a vacuum cleaner with a brush
Remove the refrigerator drip pan and wash it
Clean and remove mold from door gasket
- Mold can be removed with a solution of liquid chlorine bleach and water
- Scrub the door gasket with a small brush
- Clean any residues with warm water and dish detergent
- Apply a coat of lemon oil to soften the door gasket
Clean the interiors of the refrigerator
Defrost the freezer. (Unless self defrost)
- Most non self defrost freezers need to be defrosted at least once and sometimes twice a year
Clean the freezer drain line
- Garbage Disposal Problems
Clean the garbage disposal by introducing ice cubes and 1/4 cup of white vinegar into the unit and operating it with no running water. When the cubes are gone, start running cold water slowly.
You can add baking soda for a deeper cleaning and some citric acid crystals for odor purposes.
Always run a strong flow of cold water and start the disposal before you feed any waste into it.
Never put your hand in the disposal.