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How to Maintain Your New Home

Posted on September 25, 2019 by Miller and Smith Blog Team

We all know the excitement a brand-new home brings, especially when it’s located in one of our Miller & Smith communities. That feeling may fade, but it doesn’t have to! With just a few regular, seasonal, and annual home checks, you will be able to keep your Miller & Smith home in perfect condition.

Daily & Monthly Inspections

Your smoke and carbon monoxide detectors, air filters, and water heater are just a few things that should be checked each month to ensure everything is up to par and working efficiently in your new home.

  • Smoke and Carbon Monoxide Detectors: Safety first! Both detectors can be tested by holding down the “test” button for a few seconds until you hear a loud beep sound. If this sound appears to be weak or nonexistent, it’s time to replace your batteries.
  • Oven Filter: If you don’t clean or replace the filter in the oven range hood, the buildup could cause the smoke alarms to easily sound. A good way to prevent these alarms from sounding when you cook is to clean or replace the filter. Go the no-scrub, deep cleaning route by letting the filter soak in ammonia for one day or scrub the dust and grease away with a white vinegar, liquid dish detergent mixture.
  • Furnace Filter: If the furnace filter gets clogged with dust or other particles, it will cause a decrease in airflow and force the furnace to work even harder. Cleaning the filter every few months avoids having to repair and replace parts of the furnace in the future.
  • TPR Valve on the Water Heater: The main purpose of the temperature and pressure relief (TPR) valve is to release pressure buildup in the water heater when the temperature or pressure rises to dangerously high levels. At times, this valve can freeze up due to mineral salt or corrosion and prevent the valve from functioning properly. To test your TPR valve, raise and lower the test lever multiple times so it moves the brass pipe it is connected to. If no water drains, it may be time to replace your valve.

Man Wearing Black Denim Pants With Carrying Hammer on Holster

Annual Inspections

Once or twice a year, it’s important to take a good look at your home’s structure. From inspecting your roofline and checking for cracks in home’s foundation, to ensure your heater and air conditioner are working efficiently, the following inspections are must-dos when preserving your new home’s condition.

  • Roof: Checking the roof for missing or broken shingles can help prevent leaks and unwanted wildlife from entering your new home. This may also be a great time to inspect your gutters and downspouts to guarantee they are in proper shape to withstand inclement weather.
  • Foundation: The grade around your foundation should be at least eight inches below the siding and slope slightly away from the house. If you spot any hairline cracks in the foundation, be sure to document them with a photo to keep track of their development.­
  • Heater and Air Conditioner: Similar to a car, these appliances need servicing to run efficiently. The heater should be checked in the fall so it will be ready to run come wintertime, and the air conditioner should be checked in the spring to make sure it will last throughout the summer.

Applying each of these inspections to your daily routine will not only help you avoid unwanted breaks and repairs in the future, but they’ll also extend that new home feeling in your beautiful Maryland or Virginia community.


These are just a few key points to maintain your home. To fully maintain the items on this list, be sure to check the owner’s manual for each system or follow up with the manufacturer.