Electrical and plumbing maintenance for your home

Almost nothing is as vital to our comfort and day-to-day activities as the electricity and plumbing in our home. Proactive maintenance of these systems is important to protect against electrical fires or water damage.

Take these simple actions a few times a year to keep your home in the best shape possible.

Basic plumbing maintenance

Examine your water bill every month. If you notice that your consumption has spiked but you cannot think of a reason for this, you could be experiencing a leak somewhere. Have a plumber come out and check your pipes.

Examine your angle stops. These connections are under sinks and behind toilets. Should they fail, the water damage to your home can be significant. It is best to replace them as soon as you notice signs of a problem.

Inspect your water heater for leaks, poor performance or rust. The water heater is a vital component of your plumbing system, but often forgotten about until problems arise. Contact a plumber if you notice any issues.

Basic electrical maintenance

Start by checking your ground fault circuit interrupters to make sure they are functioning well; these are special outlets with a button to be pushed, usually seen in kitchens and bathrooms.

Look at how many devices you have plugged into a single outlet and consider distributing them more evenly around your home. If there are devices plugged in but not in use, store them away.

Think about how your electric system is behaving. Is there an outlet that sparks when you plug something into it? Do your lights flicker? Have you noticed a certain fixture seems to burn out bulbs too quickly? It might be time to call an electrician.

Listen to your electric panel. Do you notice a buzzing sound? This indicates a problem that might require repair or replacement of certain parts.

Keep in mind that your homeowners’ insurance policy is unlikely to cover easily preventable damage. If you are uncomfortable completing the maintenance yourself, schedule a plumber and an electrician to come out a couple of times each year.