Maintenance Tips

It does not matter if you are a new homeowner or if you’ve had your property for years, your home will require regular maintenance. While homeowners will be able to perform some of these tasks themselves, others will need to be performed by qualified professionals.

Below is a basic checklist of items to inspect:

Driveway gates

What type of gate is at the property? Different types of gates require different types of maintenance. Do you have a sliding gate or swing gate and is it automated or not? (Can you open it with a remote?).

  • Sliding gate – With a sliding gate, ensure that the gate track is clean and in good condition, as this will ensure the gate can slide as easily as it should. Gate wheels should also be lubricated regularly.
  • If there is a motor mounted on the gate, check to see that the gate cannot be lifted off the track and that an anti theft bracket has been mounted on the motor.
  • Swing gates – With swing gates, the hinges must be inspected for wear and tear and they must also be lubricated regularly.

If you have gate motors, a professional installer must inspect these at least once a year.

Boundary walls

Most homeowners don’t pay enough attention to boundary walls. It is important to ensure that no large trees growing too close to the wall, leaning against it or have roots growing underneath it. The wall should be inspected for cracks as well.

Driveways and pavements

These should regularly be treated for weeds and inspected for cracks or uneven sections. If there are sections where water runs towards the house when it rains, measures should be put in place to redirect it.

Garages

Doors should be inspected to ensure that they are operating, as they should be. If there is a motor on the doors, it must also be inspected once a year by a professional. Check walls for cracks and signs of dampness. Any wood parts should also be inspected for signs of insect infestation or rot.

Doors and windows

All broken or damaged windows should be replaced and new putty or seals should be applied. Frames should be inspected to ensure that they are not rotten or in need of paint or varnish. Weather seals and strips should be checked to ensure proper insulation, as bad seals could cause water leaks or even an increase in heating or cooling costs.

Electrical

Ensure that the main electrical panel is easily accessible. Inspect all circuit breakers and make sure there is no visible damage from outside. Turn all switches off and then turn them on one by one to ensure they are all working. Press the test button on the earth-leakage to ensure that it is functioning correctly.

Inspect all plug sockets and light switches. If they are plastic, there are no visible cracks, in cases where metal ones have been installed; these should be free from rust.

Fixtures

All taps in the house should be checked for leaks and ease of operation. Sealant and grouting should be checked and replaced if needed around bathroom and kitchen fixtures. If moisture gets behind tiles, it can cause mould and/or even result in tiles lifting off the walls. Toilets should be sealed and properly secured on the floor.

Walls and ceilings

Cracks should be filled so that if there is any movement it can be easily picked up. Damp areas where there are moisture in the walls will have to be treated and monitored. Dampness in the roof will cause ceilings to sag or even collapse.

Gutters

Gutters and downspouts should be cleaned regularly to prevent them from being clogged. They should also be checked to ensure that they are still secured properly and that they are not damaged or leaking.

Roofs

Loose or damaged roof tiles can cause severe water damage. Flat roofs should be checked that there are no damaged sections on waterproofing and they should have a new coat of waterproofing applied on a regular basis.

Most homeowners make the mistake of thinking that it is just a small problem and ignoring it. Unfortunately after a while that seemingly small problem can become an extremely expensive expensive repair job.