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Filters, Batteries, and Water Heaters. Oh My!

Man Fixing a Water Heater in Shaw Rental PropertyComparing the different seasons of the year, you could tell that fall would really be the best time to perform regular maintenance on some of the hardest-working devices in your rental property. By taking advantage of this season to do important interior maintenance items, you’re really also preparing your property to run safely and smoothly all winter long. You can have your filters, batteries, and water heaters checked and cleaned or replaced. These things need to be done regularly to keep your tenants safe and your rental property operating in optimum condition.

It’s crucial that you change your Shaw rental property’s air filters, and that you do it regularly. These filters keep your property’s HVAC system clean and running efficiently. Because of this, changing the air filters in your rental home is considered an important part of seasonal maintenance. As the winter months draw near, less time is spent outdoors. Residents would stay indoors and furnaces would start to work harder to keep out the cold. This is the reason why making sure your filters are clean is important. There are different types of HVAC systems, and some systems use different types of filters. Depending on what filter your system needs, you may need to change the filters as often as every 30 days, every three months, or even every six months. While you may think that these maintenance tasks are best done by your tenant, there is a high likelihood that they’re going to forget to change the filters or not change them often enough. This sort of neglect would cause undue strain on your HVAC system, reducing both its life and the efficiency of the unit.

Fall would also be the ideal time to test and change the batteries in your rental property’s smoke and carbon monoxide detectors. These devices need to be functioning properly to ensure the safety of your tenants. For instance, there’s a fire and one of your tenants gets hurt. Then the investigation shows that one of your smoke detectors wasn’t functioning properly because it ran out of batteries. What’s going to happen next? It’s almost a certainty that you’d be getting sued. So, to put it differently, it’s critical that these devices are kept functioning properly.

There are multiple types of smoke and carbon monoxide detectors. Some of them have batteries that need to be changed every six to twelve months while others can last up to the full useful life of a smoke or carbon monoxide detector— which is ten years. But regardless of what kind of battery your devices have, you should still have them tested on a regular basis. And if any of the batteries fail the test, have them replaced right away. Hundreds of people are injured or killed in house fires every year, and, for some of them, the smoke detectors in their homes failed to go off to warn them. If you let your tenants do this task, there is no certainty that they would carry them out. What would happen instead, is that your property’s smoke detectors may get damaged— especially if they haven’t been taught how to do proper maintenance. This means you would have additional costs to replace the devices and increased liability.

Next, let’s talk about water heaters. They are one of the most frequently used devices in a rental home but are also one of the most overlooked devices when doing property maintenance tasks. It should not be overlooked. Cleaning your rental property’s water heater ensures that it lasts long and continues to work efficiently. Over time, sediment builds up in the tank of a water heater, making it less efficient and even leading to clogged water lines.

You can stay clear of these problems by simply flushing your water heater once every six months or so. It may take some time to finish the task, but it has to be done so you could get the most out of your expensive water heater unit. This may be a task you’d also want to assign to your tenants. But if you do that, you really have no guarantee that they’ll clean out the water heater properly. What may happen instead, especially if they mess up, is give you more problems.

Neglecting these maintenance items can have serious consequences and you may end up with expensive repairs. But letting your tenant change or clean the filters, batteries, and water heater in your Shaw rental property is not the best option. It may be true that you can do all these things yourself. The question is, would it be worth all the time and effort? The better option would undoubtedly be to hire a company like Real Property Management DC Metro to manage the property maintenance projects for you. There is a full range of maintenance services that we offer that would keep your property in top shape and also ensure the safety of your tenants. With us working with you, you can spend your time growing your real estate investment business. To learn more about what we can do for you, feel free to contact us today.

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