Here at College Muscle Movers, we’ve helped a lot of new home-owners move in. We have a fair amount of experience with new homes. It’s not unusual to find a whole plethora of things that need to be tweaked and fixed, and we’ve gathered up some of the more common issues you’ll find when moving into a new home. Below you’ll find 5 tips to help you learn what to expect.
Dripping Faucets and Toilet Fill Valves
After a long day of moving, you’ll be thrilled to crawl into bed and fall asleep. That might be when you first notice the incessant sound of water running from somewhere in the house, usually the kitchen or bathroom. Dripping faucets sometimes require a plumber to fix properly, as you might end up making it worse if you don’t know what you’re doing. On the other hands, if water is running in the toilet, you likely have a leaking fill valve.
A leaky fill valve is quite easy to fix on your own. You just have to take the top off of the reservoir and find out what kind of rubber cap you have. Then run down to the nearest hardware store and pick one up. Installation is easy, too. If this doesn’t solve the problem, you’ll likely want to call a plumber.
Patching and Painting Drywall
Damaged drywall is one of the most common new home repairs. Especially around stairs and corners, you’ll find spots that have been scratched or dented by people moving furniture in or out, or kids, or people just going about their life. In fact, you’re likely to cause some damage yourself while moving. Don’t worry!
Hiring a painter to come and fix the drywall and paint it is pretty affordable. Some offer labor by the hour, or by square foot. It takes some time to complete (paint has to dry, after all), but drywall is easy to patch, sand, and paint over.
Again, you can do it yourself by simply picking up paint (bring a paint chip along for reference), drywall patching compound, roller brushes, and medium-grit sandpaper. Don’t forget to lay down cloth or newspaper to prevent getting paint on your floors!
Re-caulking Tubs, Sinks, and Showers
Caulk is vital for preventing rot and mold from creeping into the structure of your house. All sinks, tubs and showers should be caulked around the edges so that moisture can’t seep in. Check the caulk in your new home right away and replace any that is peeling or damaged. All you need is to dig out the old stuff, and use a caulk gun to shoot in more. If you aren’t comfortable doing this on your own, find a friend or a handyman to help you.
Cleaning and Replacing Gutters
Gutters are key in protecting your house from rain and snow. In Minnesota, that’s pretty important. Snow and leaf accumulation can cause them to pull free from the house or get twisted.
Sometimes you can just bend gutters back into the proper position. If not, you’ll need to replace the gutters, or install some metal support structures underneath. Once you have all the gutters on your new home in working order, do your best to keep them clean! Make sure to get leaves out every fall, and try not to let too much snow collect in them.
Preventing Ice Damming
This one is especially relevant in Minnesota. Ice build-up on the roof occurs frequently during our winters, especially around the edges of the roof. Melting water can get trapped and accumulate, creating a heavy ice dam that can damage shingles, roofing, and eventually force water into your house from above.
A good long-term solution is to have thermal cable along the edges of the roof. This can be warmed up during the winter to prevent freezing at the source. It’s a complex job, however, and you’ll want an experienced contractor to take care of it (assuming you’re not a master electrician)
A cheap and easy fix is just to make sure that you have channels running through the ice dams. You can do this by filling old knee-high socks or pantyhose with calcium chloride (snow melter). Lay the socks or hose along the roof so that they run down and drape just over the edge. This means that even if ice accumulates, melting water will have a path to escape.
Hopefully some of our tips will help you work through your new home repairs, or least shed some light on what to expect. Remember, if you have any questions about moving to a new home, contact us!