While there are things you can—and should—do to maintain your home year-round, summer can be a great time to tackle some outstanding tasks around the house. Here are some things you can do to maintain the upkeep of your home during summertime.
Replace Air Filters
How often you should clean or change your air filters depends on what kind of filter you have and the specifics of your household (how large, do you have pets, does anyone have allergies, etc.) but in most cases, you should be changing it out during the summer. Ideally you should replace it at the start of the season before the hottest weather kicks in, but you may even want to monitor it throughout the summer as your air conditioning usage is likely at its highest. Changing the filter helps you get the best possible air flow, the cleanest air, and can extend the life of your unit in the long run.
Clean Your Grill
Nothing says summer quite like grilling, but it is important your grill is clean and properly maintained. If you have a gas grill, shut the lid, crank the heat, and leave it on for a bit—at least a half hour. Let it cool down before scrubbing it with a grill brush. Clean out the drip trays to prevent fires and wipe down the outside of the grill itself. If you have a charcoal grill, empty it out and wipe down both the inside and outside before letting it dry and re-adding charcoal. Try cleaning your grill after each use to keep it in tip top shape throughout the summer. If you store it outdoors, be sure to cover it to protect from the elements.
Tend to Your Garden
Properly maintaining your garden not only makes it nicer to look at but can improve the life of your plants and ward off unwanted pests. Trim back bushes and plants. Add a new layer of mulch to minimize weeds and retain moisture. It’s not too late to do some planting. Marigolds, asters, black-eyed Susans, hibiscus, and zinnias are just a few of the flowers that do well when planted during the summer. If you have a veggie garden, consider planting cucumbers, tomatoes, squash, and peppers which also thrive in the summertime.
Things tend to get rather humid during the summer, especially in certain parts of the country. Make sure you are monitoring the humidity inside your home. Excess humidity and moisture can cause hardwood damage and lead to mold growth. Consider using a dehumidifier to combat humidity indoors; if you already have one, make sure it is clean and functioning properly.
Pressure washing is a great way to combat dirt and tough stains around the outside of your home. Some areas you may want to wash include your home’s siding, sidewalk, porch, and deck. Inspect these areas prior to power washing to ensure there isn’t any mold, cracks, or weeds and if there are, tend to these issues before hitting the area with the power washer. If you have a deck, you may want to reseal it following power washing to extend its life and appearance.
Check Your Ceiling Fans
Many of us get the most use out of our ceiling fans during the summertime. Make sure they are properly aligned and clear any dust from the blades which can actually cause them to be unbalanced. If you switched the rotation of your fan during the colder months, be sure to switch it to spin counterclockwise which pushes the air down and keeps you cool.
Have Your HVAC System Serviced
Even if your heating and air conditioning units seem to be functioning properly, they should be regularly serviced to ensure they are operating correctly and efficiently. A technician may be able to spot a potential problem before it happens which can save you money, time, and stress down the line. On top of verifying that you A/C is working as it should, which is so important during the dog days of summer, they can also take a preemptive look at your heating so you are prepared for colder weather just a few months away.
Clean and Inspect Your Windows
With longer days and more sunlight, you are more likely to notice issues with your windows. Take this opportunity to thoroughly clean all windows inside and out to remove any dirt or streaks. Inspect all screens and repair or replace any that have rips or other damages. While you are looking at your windows and screens, make sure they are properly sealed; this helps regulate the temperature inside your home, improves energy efficiency, and can even help reduce your utility bills.
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