Fall means many things - the end of the State Fair, the start of school, and then there's home maintenance.  Do you know what you need to do to keep your home in good shape? There are a lot of misconceptions out there and doing the wrong thing could cost you a lot – both in damage and extra money in repairs. Find out some of the biggest pieces of fiction that are floating around out there.

Home Maintenance Myths
  • Ceiling fans are only able to turn one way.  The air should be pushed down in the summer months and up in the winter. Stand underneath it to find out which direction is going. It can be changed with a switch, pull string or remote.
  • You can test your smoke detector by pressing a button.  The button can tell you that it is able to throw off a sound but it doesn't actually say whether or not it is sensitive to smoke. Hold a match under the smoke detector each year to find out if it goes off this way. Replace the batteries annually – 58 percent of homes that catch fire have smoke detectors, but only 37 percent of those worked.
  • Do not run the garbage disposal dry.  This is one thing that has been floating around for quite some time, but it is not actually true. Throwing lemon down there will not clean it either, but it will make it smell good. Try baking soda or vinegar to clean it out.
  • Duct tape is the best to go with when sealing ducts.  Even though the name implies that, it is not necessarily true. It can lose adhesion over a few years and is not actually efficient at this job. Try air duct mastic or metal foil tape instead.
  • Brown grass is dead grass.  Brown grass is just sleeping or dormant, if you don't remove it; it will come back.
  • The lower you set your thermostat, the faster the home will cool down. Thermostats are not that smart, the temperature will just go until it reaches that number; setting it lower won't cool it any faster.  The same is true for turning it up in the winter.
  • If you cut the grass as short as you can, it will take longer to grow back.  Grass that is mowed all the way down will want to grow back as fast as possible to make up for the lack. It can even damage the lawn by doing this.
  • Stone counter tops are indestructible.  This all depends on the type of stone. Marble and soapstone are both softer and can have cracks and blemishes. Granite counter tops are susceptible to scratches. This is especially true when it comes to setting hot items down on it. Some household cleaners can even scratch and eat the stone. Orange juice or tomato sauce can do the same thing as chemicals because of their acidic make up.
Every home requires some sort of maintenance ,which means you need to keep on top of things. By using a MN general contractor, you're able to get the help you need with some of the maintenance. However, if  exterior maintenance is getting the better of you and consuming your time, then you may want to contact Quarve where we can suggest some low-maintenance alternatives to areas of your home such as siding and windows.  Quarve is a full-service exterior home improvement contractor serving the Minneapolis/St. Paul area.