Weekly Maintenance for your Home
September – Week 39
Just like preventative maintenance on your car, if you take care of a few small items around the house every week, you can avoid many emergency breakdowns and expensive repairs.
With the official arrival of fall, the entire animal kingdom, including humans, is busy getting ready for winter. Our heating systems have kicked in and some things that sound like repair, may just be maintenance.
If you have a forced air furnace and it makes an unusual amount of noise when it starts up, it might be as simple as a fan belt that needs adjusting or replacing. If it is too loose, it will bang around, especially on start-up. If it is too tight, it will wear out the fan bearings. You can adjust the tension on the fan belt yourself by disconnecting all the electrical power to the furnace first, then loosening the mounting bolts that hold the motor in position. Pull the motor away from the fan and tighten the bolts again.
You could also have an unbalanced fan because of accumulation of dust on the fan blades. In fact keeping the fan blades clean will reduce noise and improve air flow all while using less electricity. Don't forget to be sure the electricity is turned off before you begin putting your fingers into the fan or playing with the belt.
As the heating season gets underway I will be asking you to check and clean or replace your furnace filters every month. Not all filters require attention every month as some are specifically designed to last longer, but until you are sure of the way your particular house operates and how much dust wants to go through your heating system, you should check them every month. Dirty and clogged filters reduce the efficiency of your furnace and cost you heating dollars. For more information on furnace filters go to the SEARCH tab above and check out "Filters - Furnace".
COLD AIR DRAFTS
As the air outside gets colder it is time to hunt for and stop those cold air drafts. We are talking about "weather-stripping" and "caulking" . Stopping cold air drafts is not only for comfort and energy efficiency, but it will help to protect the structure of your house as well. It might be worth a few minutes of reading for you to go to the SEARCH tab above and check out "Air Sealing".