Red Flag Renovations That Require a Pro

A construction worker on a roof with a solar panel.
  • Intermediate

At some point in time, every homeowner faces repairs and renovations to their home needed due to natural wear and tear. While maintaining the integrity of the structure is crucial to providing a safe environment and retaining property value, not all projects are something a homeowner can do on their own.

To prevent voiding warranties, adding to an existing problem, or creating health and safety hazards, contact licensed and insured contractors for the job. The money spent on professional services each year helps discover existing problems that can lead to more extensive problems and higher costs in the future.

Here are five areas of your home where you’ll want the expert services of a professional contractor: the roof, solar panels, electrical wiring, the HVAC cooling and heating system, and plumbing.

1. Solar Panels

A yearly inspection by a qualified contractor is suggested for homes with solar panels installed on the roof or in the yard. Solar panels are an expensive investment, and although the panels require minimal maintenance, they do need to be inspected and cleaned throughout the year to keep them in optimal working condition.

2. HVAC Cooling and Heating System

An electrician using a multimeter on an hvac unit. Other than changing the filters in the system, any problems with the system not working properly or at all need to be handled by a professional contractor licensed to work on your system. If you attempt to work on the system yourself, it will void the warranty.

If it’s no longer under warranty, an experienced HVAV contractor knows what to look for and how to fix it without causing damage to other components of the system.

Whether your heating and cooling system is a standard HVAC system with an indoor air handler, a single or multi-split system, or an electric or gas furnace, the services of a professional come with a guarantee and warranty of quality service.

3. Plumbing

Some plumbing projects are doable by homeowners such as replacing old faucets and showerheads with new energy-efficient models. Replacing an old toilet is also something many homeowners can do on their own. However, call an experienced plumber for clogged sinks and showers, leaks in water pipes, sewer line or septic tank problems, or problems with a water heater.

Using over-the-counter chemicals may do more harm than good for clogged sinks. Leaking pipes need to be replaced, which requires the removal of walls and/or flooring. Sewer and septic tank issues usually require specialized equipment. Water heaters need to be drained of built-up sediment at least once a year, and depending on the age of the water heater, the anode rod needs to be replaced. Scheduling a yearly maintenance check with a licensed plumber can prevent problems and costly repairs.

4. Electrical Wiring

A pair of pliers cutting some electrical wires.

If your home is experiencing problems such as frequently blown fuses, tripped circuits, sparking receptacles, or lights that are dim or flicker, you have an electrical issue that needs expert attention.

Homeowners who aren’t licensed electricians should not attempt to work on the wiring. Not only is this a health and safety hazard, but it can also be a fire hazard. Have the wiring in the home inspected by a licensed electrician at least once a year.

5. Roof

Roofs play a significant role in safety and security. When it’s time for replacement or repair, this is a project when a licensed roofing contractor is necessary.

Roofing material can become damaged due to falling tree limbs, high winds, snow, ice, and debris build-up. Roofing materials can also deteriorate as it nears the end of their lifespan.

A leaking roof can lead to interior damage, with signs of water damage to ceilings, walls, and visual drips. The wood below the roofing material and underlayment will also deteriorate and rot. An annual inspection by a roofing contractor will alert you to current or impending issues so steps can be taken to make the roof secure. With a licensed roofing contractor on the job, problems can be accessed, permits pulled, expert repairs implemented or a replacement roof installed. Plus, you’ll have a warranty to cover labor and materials.