Summer Tips from RDA
Summer means gardening, grilling and more time outside. It's also the time of year to give your home some much- needed sprucing. Some parts of a house aren't used or can't be fixed during the winter so it's time to give them some TLC. Here are 10 useful tips to get your home ready for the season.
1. Think ahead: summer discounts
Many maintenance and cleaning companies offer significant discounts during the slow summer months. Take advantage of this and start preparing for fall and winter. Consider carpet cleaning, gutter installation, window washing and even have your furnace checked out.
2. Prevent water damage
Summer can bring heavy rain and thunderstorms to some areas. Prevent water damage by having the roof, windows, gutters, foundations and doors checked. Anywhere there is trim needs to be inspected to make sure there are no cracks, leaks or worn away caulking. Checking this early can save you a lot of money on repairs from damage in the future.
3. Check cooling units
If you rely on fans or air conditioning to cool your home, check that they’re properly running for summer. If you have an AC unit that you run daily, make sure to wash its filters every month. This can keep your energy bill down.
It’s also advisable to have someone inspect the refrigerant levels and to make sure the coils are thoroughly cleaned. Cleaning away debris and grass growing around the outside condensing unit can ensure that it works correctly.
4. Keep tabs on paint
Summer is the best season for painting a home or fence. It can make your house look fresh and helps protect wood from rot and mold. Preventative touch up jobs can save you a lot of money you would have to spend on repairs. It’s also a good idea to consider pressure washing the exterior walls before you paint, to remove dirt, stains, and mildew that paint can’t hide.
5. Trim shrubbery and trees
Since you’re having other things in your home inspected, don’t neglect the greenery on your property. Have trees, shrubs or even large plants that touch your house cut. Summer wind and rain can cause these to rub up against and seriously damage the roof or sides of your home.
6. Clean the pantry
This task often gets neglected in preparation for summer. It’s actually one of the easier jobs. Grab a big trash bag and start removing all the goods that have expired or won’t be used. Dust and clean away any debris that has accumulated. Organize the remaining items so you can see the dates and labels, and donate or give away cans that aren’t going to be used.
7. Flip the mattress
Flipping your mattress should be done in both winter and summer and is an important part of preparing for the season. Not only does this ensure longer wear for the mattress but it also allows you an opportunity to clean under the bed. Some newer mattress technology only requires rotating so check if you have a more modern bed. It’s useful to vacuum the top of the mattress before and after flipping. If you suffer from summer allergies, invest in a hypoallergenic protection pad.
8. Protect the deck
Preparing the deck is not just dusting off the furniture and refilling the grill gas. You need to inspect that the boards, support system, railings, and spindles are all secure so no accidents happen. Tighten any loose screws and sand down boards that could look like they might cause splinters. To protect the wood from sun and water, consider applying a sealant, wood stain or paint to give your deck a longer life.
9. Pest control
Summer months also mean pesky summer insects who invade your home. As mentioned in #2 check whether your home is properly sealed. Replacing worn strips can also lower your energy bills. Spray the exterior of your house with a preventative insecticide to create a bug barrier. If you have screen doors or screen windows, inspect that there are no holes or tears. Inside your home, you should look under the sink and other warm areas for cockroach nests. Call an exterminator or use bug bombs to prevent an infestation before the little critters get a chance to grow.
10. Stock a first aid kit
Take stock of your medicine chest because summer often brings minor medical emergencies. Throw out all the expired medication and visit the pharmacy to replace the missing items. Make sure you have a fully kitted first aid kit. Essential summer items include bandages, calamine lotion for insect bites, and hot or cold packs for sprains and strains.