I’m Marla, the Green Home Coach, and I’m back to discuss Chapter 6 of my book, Living Green Effortlessly- Simple Choices for a Better Home.
I hope you will find some helpful information to help you make simple choices for your better home because that is what this podcast is all about.
Today, we’ll dig into understanding the components and the systems in our homes and how to get information about how to take care of them, repair them, and replace them.
I want to help you to learn how to take the power of living healthier and more comfortably in your home.
A home that serves us
There are so many things that we all need to do to serve our homes. What we want is a home that serves us, and works to supports us. One of the main premises behind green and greener homes is having a home that supports us and makes our lives easier and better.
A better home
Everything about green, sustainability, eco-friendly, and high performance boils down to a better home for you to live in with your family, friends, and anyone else who lives in your home with you, including your furry friends.
We all need our user manuals. The average home in the US has a minimum of 75 systems and components that are relied on daily. Each of those systems and components has a manual.
When you bring something new into your home
When you get a manual for something new that you bring into your home, I suggest that you write down, on the manual, the serial number of the item, the purchase date, the purchase price, and the place you purchased it from. Then file the manual away in an easily accessible place.
If you do not have a manual
If you do not have a manual for something in your home, you can search the internet to find one. When you find it, bookmark it to have easy access to it whenever you need it.
There are even special sites for old manuals. You can try searching for old user manuals.
Why user manuals matter
User manuals usually tell you how to maintain an item, take care of it, and clean it. They also provide repair and warranty information about the item. They often have a contact number, website, or email for the company that makes the product.
A running list
You need to have a running list of all the items that need a routine inspection and/or maintenance, and having a system to remind you to go through that list regularly, as part of your household chores, is a great idea.
Heating and cooling
You need to change the filter of your heating and cooling system regularly. By doing that, you will impact the efficiency of how that heating and cooling unit runs. It will also make the air in your home better so that you breathe better.
You also need to check your outdoor heating and cooling unit regularly and also get it serviced regularly.
Check your roof
Check your roof by taking a picture of it with your smartphone, and zoom in. You should check your roof regularly if you live in an area prone to hail or wind damage. Also, remember to check the gutters and the downspouts.
Once a year walk-around
Once a year, do a more thorough walk-around. You can look at the outside of your doors and windows, check the weather-stripping, and see if any caulking needs to be replaced.
You need to check your garage doors and the remote opening system regularly.
One of the greenest and most sustainable things that you can do
One of the greenest and most sustainable things that you can do in your home is to make sure that everything in it continues to work and last. That requires basic maintenance, so you need to keep an eye on things.
A tip for your winter maintenance
Do your winter maintenance while the weather is still warm. And make some space to store your outdoor items like your patio and garden furniture during the winter.
My friend, Tina Gleisner, had a handyman business, and she shared some great ideas for my book. She suggests that you make things easier for yourself by dividing your home maintenance into four seasonal checklists.
Winter home maintenance
Winter home maintenance happens indoors. You can find and repair the minor, annoying things you try to ignore for the rest of the year.
Spring home maintenance
Spring home maintenance gets you outdoors to find and repair any storm damage and prepare your yard for the growing season.
Summer home maintenance
Summer home maintenance is about outdoor safety, living spaces, and landscaping projects.
Home maintenance priorities
In all four seasons, your priorities are the safety of those inside your home, water damage inside and outside, and energy-efficiency.
Tips for your checklists
Pick the items on your list that you want to do yourself and find reliable home professionals to do the rest.
Find an experienced homeowner or professional to help you check your home once or twice until you know what to look out for.
A three-part ongoing process
Maintaining a home is a three-part ongoing process: inspect, maintain, and update.
Write things down
You need to write things down and keep records of what you have done because that will make things simpler for you and save you a lot of grief and bother down the road. It will also help you when you want to sell your house.
A home recovery plan
After a disaster, your priority is safety. Once everything is safe, you can focus on recovery. Having a home recovery plan before you need it will help you get things back on track sooner after a disaster.
My website Green Home Coach
Facebook Group: Love Your Everyday Green Home
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