Memorial Day—the unofficial kickoff of summer—is just weeks away. And with vaccinations ramping up, things are looking promising for more travel, along with more visits from friends and family! (Fingers crossed.)
But is your house ready for those guests? Is your vacation home ready for you? If it’s been a while since you’ve had people over, or since you’ve stayed in your seasonal getaway, your systems might not be ready for the added strain.
The time to prepare, of course, is now—before you have a house full of people and no hot water, or before your guests tell you the AC in their room didn’t work well and they’re headed to a hotel. (Actually, you might not think that’s so terrible, depending on who’s visiting. But let’s be nice.)
Here are a couple of things to check out before summer stay-over season begins, along with one tip that can help you save money year-round.
The water heater
Even when the weather’s warm, most people aren’t looking to take a cold shower—so it’s best to do a few simple checks on your water heater occasionally to ensure it’s in good working order. After all, it’s one thing for you to be surprised with freezing water shooting out of the shower, but you really don’t want your guests to have that experience!
- Look at the water heater itself for any rusting on the tank—and check the water coming out of your taps for any rust or discoloration, too.
- Check the floor around the water heater for evidence of leaks.
- Listen for any odd noises from the water heater.
- Finally, run hot water in a couple of locations at the same time. Does the water stay hot in each spot, or does it start to get cold quickly in one or both?
- If the checks above turn up any issues, it’s probably a good idea to have a professional out to take a look.
- The AC (or heat)
If one or more rooms in your house aren’t quite getting enough cool or warm air from your HVAC system, there could be a few different causes. Here’s what to look for:
- Open windows. Yes, of course you know you don’t have any windows open. Except for that one you cracked a week ago and forgot about. Or the one the kids opened without you knowing. Just check—because they can let your cool or warm air escape pretty quickly.
- Dirty filters. One thing that can cause a system to underperform is poor airflow, and a filter that is clogged with dirt is a primary culprit. Change those filters!
- Closed air vents. It’s kind of the same thing as the windows—yes, you probably don’t have any closed. But it never hurts to check.
If none of these issues seem to be present, but your system still isn’t performing the way you want, it could signal a bigger problem. Time to call a trusted HVAC company.
Ditch the bottled water
A lot of people pay for bottled water because they think it tastes better than what comes out of their tap—but what if you could make your house’s water just as good as anything you can find in the store, while also helping to reduce the millions and millions of plastic bottles that are tossed out each year?
You can, with a reverse-osmosis system. And as a bonus, you won’t just save money on bottled water, you’ll reduce the need for recycling, too. Add a water softener and you can possibly prolong the life of certain appliances and things like shower heads as well; those can degrade over time due to mineral buildup. For more detail, check out our water filtration page.
Don’t get caught off guard this summer
If your HVAC or water systems could use a tune-up before we get into the heat of summer—or if you just want to make sure they’re in good shape—give us a call at 509-662-6262. It’s better to catch small problems now, before they become big ones!