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What every tenant should know about maintenance

As tenants, we don’t realize the importance of “fixing” minor issues ourselves. Someexamples might be clogged toilet, HVAC: not cooling or heating, garbage disposal not turning on etc. But a lot of times, these simple remedies will help you save your money and time.  Here are some tips on how to solve problems yourself and how to avoid repair bills:

1. Clogged Toilet – Prevention is better than cure, in this case:  there are several things that should NOT be flushed down the toilet, such as cigerettes, cotton swabs, diapers, paper towels, wipes tampons etc. Typically, these are the things that lead to bigger issues and an upset owner.

Use plungers: it is economical and should be kept at the property at all times. Some points to remember before using a plunger:

–  There must be some water in the toilet or sink before using a plunger

–   Pulling is just as important as pressing, make sure to press all the way and pull back for 15-20 seconds at a time.

–          You will know the clog is gone, once the water starts draining rapidly.

Another important item is drain cleaners available at local hardware stores, or grocery chains. If the plunger fails, just pour some and wait to see if it worked.

The other thing to keep in mind is to check valve at the rear of tank by turning it counter clockwise to ensure valve is fully opened.

2. HVAC: no cooling or heating – First and foremost: Make sure you have connected gas service!

Second, check breaker panel box, usually located in the garage, laundry room, bedroom or attached to the exterior of home.

–  If breaker has tripped to the right and is in the “off” position, flip breaker to the left.

–  If breaker is in the “on” position, flip breaker to the right.  Wait 1-2 minutes.  Flip back to the left to attempt resetting the system.

–  Check all floor or ceiling vents to ensure they are open and not blocked by furniture, etc.

3. GARBAGE DISPOSAL: Does not power “on”

  • Check wall switches next to faucet.
  • Check reset button in cabinet underneath sink on base of garbage disposal
  • Check other outlets along the wall in kitchen.
  • Check breaker panel box, which is usually found in a garage, laundry room, bedroom or attached to the exterior of home.

– Check breaker panel box, which is usually found in a garage, laundry room, bedroom or attached to the exterior of home.

–  If breaker is in the “on” position, flip breaker to the right.  Wait 1-2 minutes. Flip back to the left to attempt resetting the system.

4. GARAGE DOOR: Not opening/closing properly

  • Check for foreign objects blocking the sensor/wires.
  • Check batteries in remotes
  • Check breaker panel box which is usually found in a garage, laundry room, bedroom or attached to the exterior of home.

–  If breaker has tripped to the right and is in the “off” position, flip breaker to the left.

–  If breaker is in the “on” position, flip breaker to the right.  Wait 1-2 minutes.  Flip back to the left to attempt resetting the system.

5. Stove element not working – Have you checked the connections to make sure they are not lose or dirty? Sometimes pulling the element out and cleaning them and putting back in again can fix the problem.

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