Your home may be the biggest investment you will ever make. Taking good care of it with regular maintenance is necessary to maintain its value and ensure that it will provide a comfortable, safe shelter for you and your family for a long time. This maintenance quiz will test your maintenance knowledge. While this quiz does not address every home maintenance project, it does provide helpful tips and reminders for chores you may have overlooked.


1. How often do forced-air furnace filters need to be changes?

2. What part of the faucet usually needs to be replaced when you have a water leak?

3. Should you run hot or cold water through your garbage disposal? 

4. How often should the moving parts of garage doors be oiled?

5. What tool can be used to unclog a toilet?

6. What tools can you use to unclog your drains?

7. What faucet part needs to be cleaned every three to four months?

8. What can you use for traction on icy sidewalks, steps and driveways?

9. Where should the fire be built in your fireplace?

10. What will prevent soot and add color to the fire in your fireplace?

11. Where should your firewood be stored?

12. What helps keep unpainted concrete floors easy to keep clean?

13. What should you use to clean unpainted concrete floors?

14. When can you clean hardwood floors with water?

15. Do hardwood floors need to be waxed?

16. What is the best polish for vinyl floors?

17. When is basement condensation at its maximum?

18. Why should noisy water pipes be fixed promptly?

19. Why should froze pipes be thawed slowly?

20. How often should your roof be inspected?

For more home maintenance tips, visit the Home Builders & Remodelers Association of Maine at


1. At least every three months during the heating season.
2. The washer.
3. Cold water.
4. Every three months.
5. A plunger and a plumber’s snake.
6. A coil spring-steel auger.
7. The aerator – the screen inside the end of the faucet.
8. Cat litter or sand – never use salt, because it damages the pavement.
9. On the andirons or grate, never on the fireplace floor.
10. Throw in a handful of salt.
11. Outside, away from the house, not directly on the ground.
12. Concrete sealer.
13. A solution of 4 to 6 tablespoons of washing soda in a gallon of hot water. Mix scouring powder to the solution for tough jobs.
14. When the floors have a polyurethane finish.
15. Hardwood floors that do not have a polyurethane finish probably will need to be waxed periodically. Use liquid or paste “spirit” wax.
16. Water emulsion wax.
17. In new homes, because gallons of water went into the concrete of basement walls.
18. The condition that causes noisy pipes may be accompanied by vibration that can cause fittings to loosen and leak.
19. Frozen pipes should be thawed slowly to prevent the formation of steam, which could cause the pipe to burst.
20. Your roof should be inspected every three years.