Oh, the joys of homeownership! It’s a great feeling to own a home. It makes you feel like you are finally the commander of your domain, the king or queen of your kingdom. While it is true that homeownership is a rewarding experience, it also comes with many responsibilities. That includes keeping on top of home maintenance. It’s important to address common issues so you can protect your investment and get the most out of your home. Here is our list of some of the more common maintenance issues in Cobb County along with tips on how to prevent them.
1. Faulty HVAC System
The HVAC system works to control the internal environment of your house. It makes your home comfortable. Unfortunately, when temperatures are at their extremes of heat and cold, HVAC systems work harder making them more likely to break down when you need them the most.
Some of the most common problems with HVAC systems in Georgia are dirty filters, loud noises, water leaks, and possible corrosion of terminals and wires. Airflow problems are the leading cause of high energy bills, allergy issues, and frozen coils. Heating and cooling systems work more efficiently when they don’t have to work against a clogged and dirty filter so replace your filters once every three months. In addition, the heating coils need to be vacuumed regularly since dirt and debris build up over time. This leads to corrosion and also wastes energy.
2. Lost Shingles and Roof Leaks
A roof in Cobb County, GA may experience many issues before it begins to show. Extreme weather such as storms and high wind can pry the tiles up and that destabilizes the roof. Also, too much sun can cause breakage or cracks over time. As a result, unwanted pests and water can enter freely into your home. Even without damaged shingles, roof leaks may still develop in your attic or crawlspace.
How do you take precautions against damaged shingles and leaks? First, make sure to have your roof properly installed by a licensed and certified contractor. In addition, they should install flashing as well as ice and water shields to safeguard areas that are most prone to leaks.
After installation, your roof should receive regular inspection twice per year to ensure that leaks won’t develop over time. If you notice cracks, dented or warped flashing, or missing shingles, these are red flags. They need to be fixed right away. You can also remove any debris on your roof to decrease the likelihood of pooling water and ensuring that downspouts properly work.
3. Water Heater Damage
Although most homeowners don’t know the inner workings of the water heaters in their homes, they serve an important function: heating the water you use throughout your day. That includes hot water for bathing, cooking, cleaning, and laundry. It works by taking cold water from the water supply pipe, warming it up, and pumping it throughout the house.
Your water heater may experience common problems such as not heating water properly, making too much noise, smelly or dirty water, leaks, and low water pressure. Water heater failure costs thousands of dollars to repair, so it’s best to keep a close eye on the appliance to extend its life and replace it before it experiences serious issues.
Perform maintenance on your water heater every few months. Make sure that the appliance has at least two feet of clearance on all sides. Next, we recommend setting the temperature to about 120 degrees, which is optimal for performance and saves you a bit on energy costs. Test the temperature of the release valve and keep an eye out for potential leaks. If it’s leaking, you’ll need to contact a plumber. Lastly, drain about ¼ to ⅓ of the water heater tank a few times a year to eliminate a build-up of debris and sediment.
4. Water Leaks in the Foundation
Depending on the age of your house in Georgia, you may experience different foundation problems. First-year homeowners may experience moisture, unpleasant smells, and sticking doors and windows. By the fifth year, you may notice wall and floor cracks and bowing walls. Ten years into the homeownership, the foundation might experience settling, severe flooding, or sinking concrete. Luckily, there are preventative measures homeowners can perform to prevent home foundation problems. Typically, these problems occur from drainage issues, poor pre-construction soil, clay shrinkage, and plumbing leaks.
Shrub and tree roots may seek soil causing the foundation to settle and sink unevenly. To prevent the roots from sucking moisture from your foundation, plant deep-rooted trees away from the house. If you live in an environment with little rain and frequent droughts, it’s important not to let the soil around your home completely dry out. Run a hose with water around your house and under the soil to prevent soil expansion and contraction. Grade your yard at six inches so that the soil slopes away from your home.
5. Cracks or Holes in Siding
Your home siding protects your home from environmental elements such as snow and rain. However, it also contributes to the look of the exterior. The siding tends to experience many problems such as buckling and warping, moisture damage, cracked siding, pest infestation, faded siding, noisy siding, and insulation issues.
Siding issues can be prevented by hiring an experienced siding contractor for proper installation. Inspect the siding regularly and check that the gutters are working properly. If you notice any cracks or holes in the siding, you must use patch kitsch to repair all small holes. Large rips and tears will require professional assistance. Infestation can damage the home structure. Spray insecticides or hot water to quickly remove all pests.
6. A Rotted Outdoor Deck or Patio
Outdoor decks are nice spots to enjoy the outdoors with your guests and family members. However, they do require additional upkeep. An outdoor deck may experience problems such as rotting, deterioration, and water leakage.
The key to preventing deterioration is to not allow moisture to build up in the first place. This means you’ll have to keep your patio free from debris, pollen, and dirt buildup. Allowing moisture to collect contributes to the growth of mold and mildew. You can protect your deck by sealing the wood. This prevents water from saturating the deck.
7. Cracked Floors or Loose Tiles
It can be frustrating when you spend a lot of money on beautiful tiles only to have them chip and crack. Many times tile fractures occur because of a lack of care or poor installation. Before installing the floor, lay an anti-fracture membrane between the subfloor and your tile. These membranes will absorb the shock to prevent cracking tiles and disperse the pressure from a single tile to multiple tiles. You can prevent tile issues by frequently cleaning your tile and grout to prevent mold growth from lifting your tiles. Also, seal the grout to protect the pores. A professional grout and tile cleaning service can help restore broken tiles, remediate cracks, and remove mold.