Previously we offered the first part of this list of maintenance recommendations for your house now that the weather is becoming more and more mild. Below are our remaining tips that you should consider doing to make your home safer and ready for the new season:

Check the shutoff valves on each plumbing fixture to make sure they function

You don’t want your shower or toilet to start leaking. Know the location of all valves and what equipment and water lines they serve. Teach all family members how to find and use them as well.

Check your water heater

If you have a gas-fired water heater, check to make sure it is venting properly. Light a match next to the vent and wave it out—DON’T BLOW IT OUT! See if the smoke is pulled up into the vent. If it isn't, have a professional inspect and repair it—otherwise, carbon monoxide and other combustibles can build up in your home.

Also check around the base of your water heater for evidence of leaks. If your water heater is over 5 years old, it should be checked monthly for any leakage or rusting at the bottom. If water leakage or rust is found—the water heater should be replaced.

Have a professional air conditioning contractor inspect and maintain your system as recommended by the manufacturer

Maintenance should include:

o  Calibrating the thermostat and cleaning the evaporator coil;

o  Lubricating fans/motors and tightening or changing the belts;

o  Checking the condensate drain and the drain pan for leaks;

o  Testing the capacitors and the crankcase heater;

o  Visually checking electrical safeties and the wiring for potential short circuits.

These steps can help decrease the chance of fire, save money by making the system run more efficiently, and help prevent breakdowns.

The following are additional recommended maintenance items:

o  Check the condensate hose to be sure it is not blocked with algae;

o  Clean the outside condensing unit screen of leaves;

o  Listen for unusual noises.

Check all the fascia and trim for deterioration

These areas can become weathered and worn and may lead to potential water damage.

Clean the clothes dryer exhaust duct, damper, and space under the dryer

Poor maintenance allows lint to build up in the exhaust duct and can potentially cause fires.

Replace all extension cords that have become brittle, worn, or damaged

Exposed wires may cause arcing, which will produce heat and can start fires. Care should also be taken to keep appliances and their power cords away from water or a heat source because this will damage the cords’ insulation.

Are you thinking of renovating or making some simple changes to your bathroom to make it more accessible? Let us help. Village Craftsmen offers a THRIVE Bathroom Design Safety Program to not only help you age in place, but thrive in place.  An in-home, experienced rehabilitation technician will:

* LISTEN to your concerns regarding bathroom safety

* ASSESS your bathroom with the Thrive Safety Protocol

* PROVIDE you with recommendations for your safety & fall prevention

* ARRANGE for a quote to install safety enhancements if you desire

To learn more please complete the form in this page or call 330-896-2000.