Wish there was an extra hour in your day?

Everyone can use more time – a 13th hour on the clock – and that’s what we aim to give you with the timesaving advice on mytimeheroes.com. Tell us how you waste time and what you'd do if you could get back those wasted hours.

Take our quick, simple survey. You could be one of three weekly winners of $150 or win a $500 grand prize.

Each week, we'll share highlights of survey results and great tips from survey participants. We'll also call in the team of ServiceMaster family of brands experts to provide valuable advice on how to enjoy more of your precious time.

You could win 1 of 3 weekly $150 prizes or a $500 grand prize!

Expert Advice

The ServiceMaster family of brands is known for time-saving services that help Americans keep their free time free. The experts at ServiceMaster are the true ‘time heroes’ when it comes to saving people time.

Gale Colvin represents AmeriSpec, a home inspection service company. In addition to general home inspections, AmeriSpec inspectors provide the tools and resources to successfully buy, sell or maintain a home. See Gale's tips below

Expert Tip #3:

Grind ice, not teeth
To keep garbage disposals clean and operating well, grind ice cubes. They’re hard enough to knock debris off the blades but not hard enough to damage the disposal.

Expert Tip #4:

A chance to vent
Clogged dryer vents are the second leading cause of home fires. Clean your dryer vent regularly using a long brush especially made for dryer vents. Remove the vent pipe or hose from the back of the dryer to clean. Vents should be metallic – not white plastic which are a fire hazard and illegal in most states. Easily replace white plastic dryer vents with soft or hard metallic vents that are inexpensive and available at any hardware store.

Highlights & Tips from Our Survey

"Make a list of errands before I leave the house so I don't waste time running from one side of town to the other. "
Patty T. – Adrian, MI

Expert Tip #1:

Busted!
Burst water hoses on washing machines are a leading cause of water damage in homes. Replace the rubber supply lines with stainless steel braided hoses. This is a simple, inexpensive replacement job, as easy as hooking up a garden hose. Braided hoses are much more resistant to bursting and they're fairly inexpensive.

Expert Tip #2:

All systems go!
Hate to wait for HVAC repairs? Don’t. Have your heating and cooling systems cleaned and inspected annually – before the season. You won’t be caught off guard when the season arrives and service people are inundated with calls.

Highlights & Tips from Our Survey

"I save time by getting up an hour or two early before the rest of my family so I can do chores without interruption. That saves me time and added stress during my busy days."
Noland H. – Apopka, FL

Dave Quandt represents American Home Shield, the industry leader in home protection plans. American Home Shield serves nearly 1.4 million home protection plan customers across 49 states and preventative maintenance plan customers in 48 states.

Expert Tip #1:

Agitatin’ rhythm
Got an out-of-balance washing machine or dryer dancing around your laundry room? Adjusting the level is easy. Simply turn the legs clockwise to lower them or counter-clockwise to raise them. Be sure to clean dryer lint after each load to keep the dryer running energy efficiently.

Expert Tip #2:

Frosty reception
Be sure your freezer door closes properly to help avoid frost build-up. Adjust the door hinges as needed so the door shuts tightly. Leaks in the door seal also make it difficult to maintain a desired temperature. Regularly clean or replace the rubber strip (the gasket) that runs along the inside edges of the refrigerator and freezer doors and is designed to create an airtight seal.

Kirk Hurto represents TruGreen, the nation's largest lawn care company, serving approximately 2.5 million residential and commercial customers across the United States with lawn, tree and shrub care.

Expert Tip #1:

Bag of tricks
Bagging your clippings? No need. Recycle grass clippings to reduce water loss, lower soil temperatures and return nutrients to the soil. Plus, you'll save the trouble of bagging and keep clippings out of our already-clogged landfills. In fact, many communities will no longer accept grass clippings in household trash.

Expert Tip #2:

Smooth moves
Don’t like raking up grass debris but like the look of a smooth, carpet-like lawn? Save the time you’d spend raking. On a bright sunny day, in less than two hours, clippings will be dry enough to quickly redistribute evenly over the lawn using your leaf blower. The results: no “mower tracks” and no raking!

Highlights & Tips from Our Survey

"I try to classify tasks by job size. Sometimes I only have a few minutes and I can do one or two small jobs, and with them out of the way I can concentrate better on the bigger tasks."
Earl S. – Canton, MI

Tony Loftis represents ServiceMaster Clean Janitorial Services. Clean, well-kept facilities provide a healthy environment for customers and employees. With over 50 years of experience, ServiceMaster Clean has developed the most advanced cleaning technologies and methods to do the job well.

Expert Tip #1:

Above it all
During busy, stressful workdays, green plants can bring a touch of nature to the office. To ensure that live plants don’t also provide an opportunity for mold and mildew to grow, always place plants on a raised platform that allows air to circulate.

Expert Tip #2:

Aero-sault!
Keeping your work area clear and clean can help you stay focused on the tasks at hand. But resist the urge to bring your own aerosol polish or cleaner to the office. Aerosols lower indoor air quality which may negatively affect people with allergies. Instead, use your time to clear clutter from desks and work areas so the cleaning staff can do their job – using products appropriate for the workplace.

Highlights & Tips from Our Survey

"I stay in constant ‘pick it up and put it where it goes’ mode. If I leave one room, I try to make the trip productive by bringing things with me, like laundry, trash, items that need to be returned to where they belong."
Sharon S. – Huntsville, AL

Expert Tip #3:

Office pests
Don’t let annoying workplace pests slow you down at work – and we’re not talking about your co-workers. Food scraps in your desk side waste receptacle can draw bugs, rodents and other pests. It’s best to avoid eating at your desk, but if you do, wipe up spills immediately. Use the waste baskets in the cafeteria or office kitchen to dispose of food and other garbage.

Expert Tip #4:

Productivity in the air
Don’t let a dirty filter in your office heating and air conditioning system contribute to an unhealthy environment. If you notice dust accumulating on desks and counter tops, ask your maintenance team to check the filter.

Gina Moss represents Furniture Medic, one of the world's largest furniture repair and restoration companies. Furniture Medic offers unparalleled craftsmanship and quality service, providing home owners and businesses an affordable alternative for their wood furnishings and fixtures.

Expert Tip #1:

A Little TLC Goes a Long Way
"Love" your wood furniture but hate spending precious time trying to remove water marks? Over a period of time, finished wood that comes in contact with water or steam on a daily basis will break down the finish. This will ultimately result in white marks, black spots or the clear top coat completely flaking off of the wood. If you have a coffee maker that blows steam on your cabinets, pull it out and away from the cabinets. When eating at a wooden table, take the extra minute to use coasters for beverages and place mats for plated food.

Expert Tip #2:

Look of Love
Find more time for your sweetheart this Valentine’s Day. Save the time you’d spend applying furniture polish on wood furniture by dusting with a damp cloth and then quickly drying. If you prefer to use a polish, a good quality white cream polish will work best. Cabinets under the sink will come in contact with a lot of water. Act quickly and wipe the water dry before it has a chance to puddle on top of the wood and cause damage.

Highlights from Our Survey

What’s better than roses for Valentine’s Day? According to early survey results, nearly 70 percent would like their home cleaned for them so they can spend more time with loved ones. Thirteen percent would like help fixing things around the house and 9 percent would appreciate someone taking care of the yard.

Expert Tip #3:

Water, water everywhere
Over a period of time, finished wood that comes in contact with water or steam on a daily basis will break down the finish on wood furniture. This will ultimately result in white marks, black spots or the clear top coat completely flaking off of the wood. If you have a coffee maker that blows steam on your cabinets, pull it out and away from the cabinets. When eating at a wooden table, take the extra minute to use coasters for beverages and place mats for the plated food.

Expert Tip #4:

Clean Cabin(et) Fever
Cabinets under the sink will come in contact with a lot of water. Act quickly. Wipe the water dry before it has a chance to puddle up on top of the wood and cause damage. Save the time you’d spend applying furniture polish on wood furniture by dusting with a damp cloth and then quickly drying is all you need. If you prefer to use a polish, a good quality white cream polish will do the best job.

Kirk Hurto represents TruGreen, the nation's largest lawn care company, serving approximately 2.5 million residential and commercial customers across the United States with lawn, tree and shrub care.

Expert Tip #1:

Mow-blize!
Ready to make haste and not waste? Fire up your mower to ensure it’s ready to work before the long lines start at the local repair shop. Change the oil and if you didn’t add a stabilizer to your fuel before you put your mower away, you may need a tune up for your carburetor.

Expert Tip #2:

Stop Irrigation irritation
Irritated by your irrigation system not reaching all the spots it needs to? Landscapes change and grow, and that may change where and how you need your to water your lawn. Overhanging plants and branches may also disrupt the flow of your sprinkler. Avoid the hassle this season by having your irrigation system inspected and serviced to be sure sprinkler heads are not blocked or over /under watering sections of the lawn.

Highlights from Our Survey

Approximately 45% of survey respondents wish they could add a 13th hour to the clock! Just about the same amount admit that they are spending too much time surfing the internet and sorting emails.

Debra Johnson represents Merry Maids, the largest home cleaning franchise network in the world. Merry Maids trustworthy, reliable and competent employees clean more than 300,000 homes in North America every month.

Cleaning up after the big game requires a smart game strategy. Check out our expert timesaving tips for a winning game plan and record-breaking follow through.

Expert Tip #1:

Post-Game Playbook
Once the party is over, offer guests remaining food to take home with them. Supply plastic containers and score big by sharing the left over spread. Store any remaining food and rinse dishes and place in the dishwasher. Quickly gather any remaining trash. Dust off tables and furniture with a microfiber cloth. Advance to the goal line by vacuuming the floor and upholstery.

Expert Tip #2:

Timesaving Plays, Post-Game or Anytime
When you saturate an item with cleaning products or polish, you spend more time getting the product off than actually cleaning. To avoid this time trap, spray cleaning products on your cloth to control application and speed you through your tasks! When spraying a cloth only a fine mist is needed to dampen the cloth. Microfiber cloth is the best cleaning tool available. Place extra trash bags at the bottom of your waste cans so you can easily replace bags.

Expert Tip #3:

Have a Game Plan
When it comes to cleaning your home, getting organized is the ultimate timesaver. First organize your supplies and then clean the entertainment areas starting at the farthest point in the house and working your way forward. Once you begin cleaning, work around the room, cleaning thoroughly before you leave – everything except the floor. Save the floors for your last task to avoid backtracking dirt into the rooms.

Expert Tip #4:

Tackle Game Day Clutter
No time for cleaning? De-clutter! When your home is picked up, everything appears cleaner. Remove clutter on and around chairs, couches and end tables. This has the added bonus of creating more seating to watch the big game. Be sure to clean any folding chairs that may be used before bringing them into your home. An all-purpose cleaner or mild soap and water should do the trick.

Highlights & Tips from Our Survey

"Make little cleaning goals to accomplish during TV commercial breaks."
Kelly D. – Louisville, KY

Entomologist Stoy Hedges represents Terminix, the world’s largest provider of pest control services, protecting more than 2 million households. Certified Terminix professionals know how to keep pests out of your home and away from your family.

Expert Tip #1:

Keep your distance
Don’t have the time to be bothered by ants and other insects? Plant fruit trees that attract bees, wasps, ants and other insects as far away from your house as possible. Keep leaves from piling up near the foundation of your home. Leaves and mulch under shrubs and plants can create moisture that provides attractive nesting sites for ants and other insects. You only need about two inches of mulch, and that should be placed close to the base of the plant. You need considerably less coverage between plants.

Expert Tip #2:

Roll up the welcome mat
Don’t make it easy for pests to access to your property. Trim back shrubs around your home at least 6 inches. Keep tree branches trimmed back 6 feet from your home. Branches that touch the house made it easy for critters to jump on to your house and head for the attic and other nesting places. Keep your gutters clean to eliminate conditions suitable for mosquitoes, silver fish, carpenter ants and other pests.

Expert Tip #3:

Keep it moving
Something as simple as ensuring your attic or crawl space is well ventilated will create the kind of changing atmosphere that is inhospitable to spiders. Don’t waste time saving paper grocery bags under you sink. Store them somewhere other than the kitchen to prevent them from being used as a nesting place for cockroaches.

The information provided is for general guidance only. Due to the general nature of the property maintenance, cleaning and improvement advice and tips in this material, neither ServiceMaster Company LLC, nor its licensed subsidiaries assumes any responsibility for any loss or damage which may be suffered by the use of this information.

Ellie W.

Garland, TX

Julianne J.

Lake Nebagamon, WI

Brittany S.

Douglasville, GA

Kerri J.

Seattle, WA

Bret B.

Coeur d Alene, ID

Kathy P.

Sherman, NY

Lea-Ann W.

Ogden, UT

Tung T.

San Diego, CA

Jane C.

White Cloud, MI

Dana S.

Walhalla, SC

Sarah O.

Campbellsport, WI

Brandon C.

Charlottesville, VA

Kimberly B.

Santa Rosa, CA

Becky C.

Meriden, KS

Amy O.

Charleston, SC