Every year, the average American homeowner is forced to pay for at least one big home repair. In addition to that, they're also forced to shell out upwards of $5,000 per year on home repairs collectively.
With these things in mind, you should make every effort to come up with a preventative maintenance schedule for your home—and stick with it. By figuring out when you're going to need to tackle the biggest home repair projects, you can avoid running into any unexpected surprises.
You'll have plenty of time to save up for major home repairs when you write down a preventative maintenance schedule and look at it on a regular basis. Here is when you'll need to think about making most of the big repairs while living in a home.
Replacing the roof on your home is one of the most expensive repairs that you'll ever have to do. It costs almost $7,000 on average to replace a roof, and it can cost a lot more than that depending on which roofing materials you choose to use.
The good news is that even the most affordable types of roofing, like asphalt roofing, will last for upwards of 15 to 20 years before needing to be replaced. And some types of roofing, like metal roofs, can last for more than 50 years before roof replacement needs to occur.
But it's very easy to lose track of your roof on your preventative maintenance schedule since it doesn't need to be replaced that often. You should get into the habit of inspecting your roof each year and making small repairs to extend the lifespan of it.
Your roof isn't the only thing on the exterior of your home that you'll need to monitor over the years. You'll also need to maintain your siding to make sure you get the most life possible out of it.
Wood siding can last for up to 20 years, while vinyl siding can last twice as long as that. But you'll only enjoy your siding for a fraction of that time if you're not careful about doing preventative maintenance.
You should refinish wood siding about once every five years. You should wash vinyl siding about once every year or two to keep it looking its best.
By taking these steps, you'll ensure that you won't need to make major repairs to your siding anytime soon.
Doors and Windows
If you have heavy-duty exterior doors hanging on the entrances to your home, there's a decent chance that you won't ever have to replace them.
You may need to make minor repairs to them here and there. But unless you just don't like the way they look, they're designed to last for the long haul.
Windows are a different story. Most modern windows, including those made out of wood, vinyl, and aluminum, can last for decades before they'll need to be replaced. But at some point, they will start to wear down on you and break, necessitating the need for replacement.
Work on washing your windows and keeping debris out of their tracks. This should help them last for 25 years or more before they'll have to be replaced.
Unless you live in a part of the country where the temperature stays mild pretty much year-round, your HVAC system is going to get plenty of use throughout each year.
Both your furnace and your air conditioning compressor should give you at least 15 years of life prior to being replaced. But you're not going to get that much time out of them if you don't subject them to service at least once every year.
An HVAC technician can inspect the inside of your furnace and air conditioning compressor to make sure they're both in good condition. By making a few small tweaks to them, they can make them more efficient and increase their lifespan.
Hot Water Heater
Your home's hot water heater should last about ten years or so before it kicks the bucket. But you should prepare to replace it before it dies completely.
If you allow your hot water heater to run right up until its final moments, it'll often start to leak. In some cases, it could even dump almost all of the hot water inside of it everywhere as it takes its last breaths.
Avoid a major cleanup job by following a strict preventative maintenance schedule when it comes to your hot water heater. Don't try to continue using it for too long after its expiration date.
The foundation that sits under your home is the most important part of it. Even a minor foundation problem can present big issues for you and your home and make it structurally unsound.
Fortunately, most foundations are built to last pretty much forever. But there are some factors, like the soil that sits beneath your foundation, that can cause it to crack in some cases.
It never hurts to have your foundation inspected every so often to make sure there aren't any problems with it. You should also look out for the warning signs that will show you need to have slab foundation repair done.
At some point in time, you'll need to replace each and every appliance in your home. It's good to know when you should expect to have to replace them so that you're not caught off-guard when your appliances start to die on you.
Here is a quick breakdown of how long your appliances will last:
- Refrigerator and freezer: About 13 years
- Oven and stove: About 13 to 15 years
- Washer and dryer: About 10 to 13 years
- Dishwasher: About 9 years
You may be able to improve these numbers by taking good care of your appliances. But most of them will still need to be replaced somewhere in these time frames.
Commit This Preventative Maintenance Schedule to Memory
As a homeowner, one of the worst feelings in the world is getting hit with a major home repair bill that you weren't expecting. It'll send you scrambling to try and find the money you need to make the necessary repairs to your house.
By memorizing the preventative maintenance schedule found here, you can make these home repairs a lot less surprising. You'll be able to stay on top of major home repairs and plan for them so that they don't sneak up on you.
Check out the rest of our blog for additional tips on maintaining your home and making the right repairs to it.