(Family Features) Homeowners can save big on emergency repairs by completing a few home projects each season. From winter to spring and beyond, follow HomeAdvisor’s seasonal maintenance guide to avoid costly fixes throughout the year.
Refrigerator – Letting the coils behind your fridge build up with dirt and grime can decrease its efficiency and cost upwards of $300 to repair. Vacuum the coils thoroughly each winter.
Furnace – Rather than replace a neglected furnace, have it serviced to make sure it is operating safely and to its fullest capacity.
Plumbing – Small problems, such as a dripping faucet or clogged drain, can turn into big headaches if left unchecked, and repairing water damage can cost seven times more than hiring a plumber. Inspect all plumbing fixtures and call a plumber if you notice any leaks.
Roof – The average cost of replacing a roof is $7,744. Check for damage and make general repairs in the spring to extend its lifespan.
Paint – Completely repainting a home’s exterior costs an average of $3,180. Touch up your home’s exterior paint to protect against weather and insects.
Trees and shrubs – The average cost of trimming trees and shrubs is $577, but leaving them untrimmed can lead to roof damage – a far greater expense to repair.
Gutter and downspouts – Ignoring your gutters can affect the foundation of your home, leading to $4,000 or more in repair costs. To save money, clean the gutter and downspouts thoroughly each fall.
Windows and doors – Homeowners spend 40 percent on heating and air conditioning in a drafty home. Install weather stripping to prevent unwanted air from leaking into a home in winter. You’ll save long-term on utility bills.
Reprinted with permission from RISMedia. ©2015. All rights reserved.