The best way to take care of repairs around your home is always to call professional repairmen, but sometimes it's easier and cheaper to fix a problem yourself - provided you know what you're doing, of course. Depending on the tools you have on hand and your expertise, there might be several things you can do around the house that don't involve calling a professional, but these are five basic home repairs that every homeowner should know.
Fix a Clogged Drain
While there are clogs that are severe enough to call for the expertise of a plumber, you should be able to fix many of them on your own. Most clogs are caused by putting the wrong things down a drain, whether that is cooking grease, hair or foods that soak up water to create a plug. A plunger can take care of some clogs, but in other cases you may need a plastic drain clog remover. This is a long plastic strip with barbs that grab onto whatever is clogging your drain. They can be purchased from just about any hardware store for just a couple of dollars, so it's good to have a few on hand.
If all else fails, chemical drain cleaners can fix a clogged drain, but many of these are caustic enough to damage the rest of your plumbing. Use them sparingly and only when your plunger or plastic clog remover doesn't work.
Fix a Running Toilet
Just about all toilets will run when they're not supposed to occasionally, but sometimes this can go from a mild nuisance to a serious problem that is running up your water bill. Most of the time, a running toilet is caused by the intake valve in the tank not shutting off. The valve is attached to a float that sits on top of the water. When the float reaches a certain level, it shuts off the valve and stops your toilet from running. Fixing this problem is simply a matter of making sure the float is high enough in the tank. All you have to do to fix this problem is to find the metal rod connected to the float and bend it. It should bend fairly easily, and it will keep the float from resting too low in the tank.
Caulking Gaps in Your Home
A drafty home can usually be fixed by caulking the gaps around window frames and electrical outlets. If you have some caulk and a caulking gun, clean the area that needs to be sealed, hold the caulking gun at a 45-degree angle and apply the caulk smoothly and evenly without stopping.
Changing the Air Filters in Your HVAC System
Every HVAC system has air filters to keep harmful airborne substances out of your home. Each HVAC system is a little different, but they all have filters that need to at least be checked once a month. Be sure to do this regularly, and change or clean your filters as needed.
Clean a Flooded Basement
If you have standing water in your basement, you should try to get it out within 48 hours if you don't want mold to start growing. To start, find the shutoff valve for your water and shut off the electricity to your basement. You should familiarize yourself with where and how to do this as soon as you move into your home. After that, remove all of your belongings and get them someplace to dry out. Remove any standing water with a sump pump and dry everything thoroughly. You may also want to contact your insurance company in case there is any lasting water damage.
These are just a few of the things you can do yourself to fix problems around your home. It's good to know how to fix certain problems, but there is always only so much you can do by yourself. If you feel like any repair is beyond your skill, contact a home repair professional immediately. You don't want to make your problem worse by trying something you don't know how to do.
Keep your home in tip-top shape with help from the expert electricians, plumbers and HVAC technicians at Tudi Mechanical Systems. Our award-winning home repair services are guaranteed to keep you home comfortable all year round, and our Home Comfort Plan goes above and beyond to provide you with the services you need whenever you need it most. So stop stressing about your home maintenance and upkeep and contact Tudi today!