The Duffy'sBlog

Keeping up with regular property maintenance can be a chore, but staying on top of it can help avoid bigger issues down the line. Our Greenwich, CT area handyman pros and trade experts put together a list of items that should be completed throughout the year. By staying on top of these items you’ll extend the life of your equipment and systems. You’ll also feel good knowing that your home is taken care of.



Fire and carbon monoxide issues, although relatively rare, are real threats to you safety and property. Stay safe by testing your smoke and carbon monoxide detectors and inspecting fire extinguishers on a regular basis. To test smoke and carbon monoxide detectors check with the manufacturers instructions for the exact steps to take. Typically they are equipped with test buttons that are easy to operate. To inspect your fire extinguisher first check the gauges needle to ensure it indicates proper pressure. Secondly lift the extinguisher to make sure it is still full. And always make sure that it’s unobstructed. 

Check Air Vents

Obstructed air vents can lead to moisture and mold issues. Sometimes these types of problems occur out of site. To avoid issues your monthly home maintenance program should consist of a thorough inspection of gable, ridge, and other vents. Check to make sure that boxes or other items are not blocking airflow.


Inspect and Change Filters

Clogged filters can lead to poor performance and make equipment work harder by restricting proper air and water flow. This can shorten the life of some systems. Check your HVAC, range hood and water system filters to make sure they remain clean. Clean or replace them if needed per the instructions on the filter or packaging. 



Roof Inspection

Maintaining your roof is one of the most critical property maintenance tasks. A residential property management company may be required to handle this one. To ensure that the roof stays watertight, shingles and flashing should be inspected. Replace or repair missing, worn or damaged materials. Also inspect the vents on the exterior to ensure there are no issues that may restrict airflow. And make sure there are no tree limbs hanging over the roof. They can break off and cause damage. 

Gutter Cleaning & Drainage 

Remove debris from gutters and test the downspouts to make sure they are flowing properly. Inspect the gutters and replace or repair any damaged or missing parts that would affect water flow. On the ground make sure that water is flowing away from the house by inspecting the runoff areas under each gutter. Downspouts that are connected to underground drains should be attached securely at the base of the connection. And make sure that slabs on the ground under downspouts are in good condition and tilting away from the foundation. 

Air Conditioning

A professional residential property management company should service your central AC units each year. The springtime is a good time to do this. Your HVAC professional will clean the system, inspect the controls and replace or clean the filters. These inspections are critical to keeping your HVAC system running at peak efficiency and will make the equipment last longer. 


Inspect Wood and Stone 

Rotting wood and crumbling stone and concrete can lead to safety and water issues. Inspect the siding, trim, walkways, foundation and retaining walls. Make sure there are no cracks, rot or missing pieces. If there are issues you may want to bring in a property management company to help complete the repairs. 

Cleaning and Painting 

To help avoid any rotting issues inspect stained and painted surfaces and refinish the decking, siding, trim and/or outdoor furniture if needed. It can be easy to let these projects go another year, but exposed wood can lead to rot, and that will be a bigger job down the line. 

Chimney Inspection & Cleaning

Homeowners typically have their chimney cleaned in the fall. Doing it in the summer, however, gives you a better chance of getting an appointment before the fall rush. Chimneys should be inspected and cleaned once each year if used regularly. A chimney professional will inspect the firebox, liners, flue and smoke chamber to ensure there are no cracks or issues. He will also inspect the exterior to make sure the masonry and flashing is in good condition. 


Heating System Inspection

Having your furnace inspected is a critical yearly maintenance task. This is one task that requires a property maintenance professional. They’ll have a licensed HVAC specialist on staff that can clean and inspect the system. Doing so will keep the equipment working at peak efficiency. It will also help to extend the life of your furnace. 

Window Replacement

If you’ve been considering replacing your windows, fall is a good time to do so before the weather turns cold. Today’s energy efficient windows are made so well that some manufacturers claim a 30 percent energy savings when replacing non-efficient types. Different manufactures and models have different performance ratings, so consult a professional to help guide you. 

Drain & Winterize Exterior Plumbing

It’s always a good idea to winterize outdoor water faucets, pipes and irrigation systems. Frozen outdoor plumbing can lead to burst pipes. To winterize start by disconnecting, draining and storing your outdoor hoses. If the faucets have a shut off valve indoors make sure to turn those off. To winterize irrigation and sprinkler lines, drain the lines and turn off the water supply to the system. 


Vacuum Refrigerator Coils

Cleaning the condenser coils on your refrigerator can help it run more efficiency. When the coils are clogged with dust and dirt they can’t release heat as efficiently. As a result the unit not only functions less efficiently, but also works harder. This can decrease the lifespan of the equipment. Coils can typically be found on the back or on the front at the bottom. Pull off the protective grate and vacuum the coils with a brush attachment. Special refrigerator coil brush attachments are also available for vacuums. 

Mind The Snow

Clearing snow doesn’t end with a plowed driveway and shoveled walkway. When storms hit you’ll want to make sure gas meters and access to oil lines are clear. When snow and ice accumulate around gas meters it can cause a dangerous buildup of gas that can leak into the home. And the oil company will need to access your lines, so make sure to keep a pathway snow and ice free. Also, keep an eye on exterior vents to make sure they are not blocked by snow and ice. 

This list covers some of the basics of home maintenance. Maintaining your home year round requires a lot of vigilance and some know how. To help ease the burden, and ensure that these tasks are being done correctly, consider hiring a residential property management company. At Greenwich Home Management we have trained and licensed professionals in all trades on staff as well as essential handyman services. Having a trusted professional to handle these efforts will provide piece of mind for your family.  

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