February 2019

Little Ways to Show Love to Your Home

With Valentine’s Day fast approaching, love is in the air. February is the perfect time to reflect on all the important relationships in your life – include your relationship with your house! Whether you’re enjoying the honeymoon stage as a new homeowner, or a long-time resident looking to bring the magic back, show your house a little extra TLC this winter with our quick tips:

1.)    Make sure that your home has working carbon monoxide and smoke detectors. Remember to test the detectors once per month, and change the batteries at least once per year. Though they are simple acts, they are potentially life-saving!
 
2.)    Keep your house and your family healthy by regularly replacing your HVAC filters. While you should replace the filters quarterly, check them monthly to ensure they are not clogged with dirt, dust, or other debris. Not only will you improve the air quality in your home, you’ll also lower your energy bill and extend the life of your HVAC systems!
 
3.)    Don’t forget your garage! Make sure everything is in working condition by lubricating your garage door hinges and rollers.

4.)    Remember to clear snow from all external vents and meters. While shoveling may not be your winter activity of choice, it is worth enduring the cold and taking a few extra minutes to ensure vents are free of snow – obstructed vents can force deadly carbon monoxide back into your home.

5.)    Get down and dirty with your refrigerator – by cleaning its grille and coils! Using a vacuum cleaner with a soft brush or a coil brush, remove grime which builds up over time and blocks air flow, ultimately burning out the refrigerator’s cooling mechanism. Make sure your fridge is unplugged first, of course!

6.)    The refrigerator is not the only thing that needs to be cleaned regularly! Other often-neglected appliances to clean include the filter in your range hood, your dryer vent, your bathroom fan exhaust grille, all household drains, and your garbage disposal. Proactive cleaning helps ensure that blockages won’t be a danger to your loved ones or to your home. 

7.)    Protect your home and family by expecting the unexpected, especially during the cold, snowy weather that comprises a Cleveland winter. Keep emergency supplies readily accessible, including flashlights, blankets, and canned food. Never use fires or space heaters to warm your home or cook your food.

8.)    Check your home for recalled appliances. One important recall to look out for are the once-popular Federal Pacific with Stab-Lok circuit breakers, which are prone to shorts and other malfunctions. Your electric panel – along with your outlets – should never feel hot to the touch!
 
9.)    Snow, rain, and ice may be an inevitable part of winter – but you can keep your house protected! Regularly check your basement and attic for leaks, especially during snows and after thaws. Fix problem areas as you see them – don’t let little leaks be the source of major stress and expense!
 
10.)   Brighten up your home with a fresh coat of paint. The Heritage Home Program staff can provide free color consultations to help you find historically-accurate colors that can make your house sparkle! As part of this service, HHP staff create personalized color palettes that fit the style and time period of your house, along with your personal color tastes and preferences. Call today to schedule an appointment!
 
11.)   Treat your home – and yourself – to a free site visit with our construction specialist. There’s always more to discover about your house, and our construction specialist is happy to answer any questions you might have, help find ways to fix problems, and give suggestions about making your space more livable to improve your relationship with your home – and, in turn, your life!