When you are performing maintenance tasks around the house, in many cases there is a fix--and then there's a solution. The fix often only involves treating and repairing the symptom of a problem. And when we simply fix the issues around our homes, we often find ourselves back out to do the same task next month or next year because we never really solved the root problem.
In honor of Groundhog Day (and as a tribute to a classic movie!), here are some personal household "repeat offenders," and how to nip them in the bud. If you have some of the same issues around your place, this time try the root fix, and break the cycle for good!
My dishwasher smells.
You keep running sanitizing cycles, flushing with vinegar, cleaning the rubber seals, you've even occasionally used a scented powder pack like we've suggested on this blog to deodorize and refresh your washer. But have you cleared debris from around the drain? Did you know that you can remove the grate at the bottom of the washer? You can. You'll need to unplug the washer for safety and be careful not to drop any screws as you work. Here are some great how to instructions.
My sink gets clogged/is slow to drain.
You use drain cleaner regularly to keep your sink drain clear and functional. But if you don't want to keep buying chemicals over and over again, you might want to delve a little deeper into the problem (pun intended). One thing that is often overlooked is habits. (Click here for some Do's and Don'ts). Anyone using the sink should remember not to rinse debris, nail clippings, strands of hair, or hair gel down the drain. If you have a habitually slow sink drain, observe it's use for clues. Someone's habits in the home could be the culprit. Whether it be trimming hair/beard in the sink, or washing excess gels down the drain. Rather than fixing the clogs incessantly, you may be able to educate your family and curtail bad habits to stop clogs for good.
I am constantly repairing water erosion in my yard.
Do you spend much of the fall and spring fixing bare spots in the lawn, replacing mulch in flower beds, repairing and replacing decorative borders and wood elements around your yard due to water erosion and damage? Try this tip: observe your yard from a high point indoors during a rainstorm. It will help you identify grading and water drainage issues, in real time. Once you see where the water goes when it rains, take the time to redirect the water properly, and the other issues will melt away.
What are some of the solutions you've found around your house--after weeks, months or even years of fixes that didn't work long-term? We'd love to hear them! (And save ourselves from a Groundhog Day nightmare of our own).