When there is a breakup, illness, or death and the person in the household who took care of the household necessities is no longer available, it isn’t long before you know you need help. Finding someone to do these little jobs can be difficult. It’s a good idea to be prepared to learn how to do some things yourself.
Most furnace filters will need to be changed every three months / four times a year. If you can see dust and dirt or can’t see the fabric pattern of the filter, it needs to be replaced. Keeping up with filter replacement is good for your furnace. It is also good for your health. Changing a filter is a pretty easy task to complete once you know where it goes and how it is inserted into your air handler. Buy a year’s supply of filters, mark your calendar to remind you when it’s time for a change and get someone to show you how it’s done. You want to be as independent as you can be, so take notes if you need to. Tape them to the furnace so you’ll be all set for the next filter change.
Often the “filter changer” was also in charge of auto maintenance so you may also need to know more about care of the car. For example, how often to you need to change the oil in the car? What about getting the car waxed? Some people like to use the dealership where the car was purchased for maintenance. Others are sure they can get it done at an independent garage for less money. Just be sure you are not being penny wise and pound foolish. You might start with the service provider your previous auto maintenance person used. If you have no idea, ask someone you trust.
Typically, oil changes take place based on miles driven and type of oil used. Some cars use synthetic oil which comes at a higher cost but requires changing far less frequently. Find your car’s owner’s manual (it’s usually in the glove box of the car) and read. In the upper left corner of the windshield you might find a sticker that tells you the date of the last change and the mileage when you will need your next change. If you drive very little and don’t hit your mileage, it is still best to keep the oil in your car fresh. Change the oil at least twice a year.
Now, about keeping up with the appearance of your car. It is also good for resale and the look of your car to keep it clean and waxed. Spend the dollars for a hand wax at least twice a year.
If you are lucky, you’ll have a son or son-in-law or maybe even a helpful neighbor who will offer to help with your “manly” chores, but here’s an important tip: Plan your help and coordinate the chores. Ask for help getting the gutters cleaned, furnace filters changed, and light bulbs in the fan all taken care of during the same visit. You don’t want to be that person who is always calling for help. Also, don’t forget to reward your handy person. A gift card for your handyman and his wife to go out to dinner will keep everyone smiling.