Cleaning Kitchen and Bathroom Cabinets:

Every year when I put my Christmas decorations away, I see all the things in my home that haven't been cleaned in way too long, and then I spend most of my January free-time on those projects. Kitchen and bathroom cabinets are one of the most over-looked items for a good clean, at least in my house! Over the years I have found that dark cabinets show the most dirt, white cabinets hide grease until they start to yellow a bit, and more natural wood tone cabinets slowly darken over the years with build-up. There are a lot of cleaning products out there for wood, but most leave a residue or build-up themselves. The best thing to clean your cabinets with, whether painted or wood, is warm water, a rag, and a little bit of Dawn dish soap. I always told my homeowners "if it is safe for baby birds, it is safe for your cabinets!" Happy cleaning and thanks for following along for more ways to view your home with a fresh perspective!

Protect an Outdoor Tankless Water Heater from Freezing:

Over the years, I serviced many homes with outdoor tankless water heaters (picture 1), and I have now had the privilege of inspecting several. There are few things I loathed more than defrosting a frozen water heater that hadn’t been properly insulated; bonus tip, don’t use a heat gun - they are too hot and melt the pipes! If you have an exterior tankless water heater, there are a few important precautions you can take to keep it from freezing. First, remove the bottom panel cover. Inside of the bottom compartment, make sure the water lines have pipe insulation on them. This is missing from picture 2. Next, add batt insulation on the front, back, and bottom of the pipes to fill the whole cavity; make sure not to add too much though, or the cover won’t fit securely back in place. Lastly, I have found during the winter months that I only experienced freezing water heaters with temperatures below 20 degrees. On nights predicted to be that low, leave a hot water faucet running with a slight drip. The hot faucet needs to be on to keep the water flowing through the water heater, but the volume will not be enough to actually make it turn on to heat. Hopefully these precautionary tips help, because once you have thawed a frozen water heater with a hair dryer, you’ll never want to do it again, I promise! Keep following for more ways to view your home with a fresh perspective!

Replace Your Return Filters and Save Money:

The last 3 inspections I did all had one thing in common: their return filters were long past their useful life. A dirty filter makes your HVAC system work harder than it needs to, over time this will shorten its lifespan. Filters are cheap, new systems are not! When purchasing a new filter for replacement, I always buy the inexpensive, 30 day filters. These allow the system to work efficiently and are what most systems are designed to use. The 90 day filters seem appealing when you think you won’t need to replace as often, but they are more expensive, they are thicker, and they make your system work harder, so you’re spending more money all around. I always recommended to my homeowners to check their filters once a month, but replace as needed. If your filter isn’t dirty, don’t replace it yet. Return filters closer to the ground will need to be replaced more often than ones in a ceiling. Each home is different, so it may take a few months to figure out what your filter maintenance needs will be. When you go to buy them, make sure to know what size you need ahead of time, this is printed on the current filter you have installed. Or you can order online from certain suppliers and set up email notifications to remind you when to change them. Last tip, always install with the air flow arrows pointing into the return, not out towards you. Keep following me for more ways to view your home with a fresh perspective!