As the warmer weather creeps in, we all start thinking about vacation days, beach trips and long summer nights. Besides all of the fun-in-the-sun things that are on all of our minds, we should also consider ways to get our homes ready for the warmer weather. A little bit of preparation can save headaches and money later. Consider following the below tips to be sure you are prepared.
- Have your air conditioning system checked and serviced. Part of the overall maintenance of your air conditioning system should include changing the filters. While it is recommended to do this multiple times a year, you want to be sure you are at least doing this before turning it on for the season. These filters collect pet hair, allergens and dust, which will prevent your system from running efficiently, which will not only cost you more money in the long run, but can also cause health issues.
- Check the screens in your doors and windows for rips, and check for dry rot around all screens. Also, be sure to clean all your screens with mild soap and water. You can even use a garden hose on the screens (be sure your windows are closed when doing this!), but be sure not to use a pressures washer as the force will likely cause damage. This is something you might want to consider doing periodically throughout the summer to rid the screens of pollen and dust, which could prompt issues with those who suffer from allergies.
- Power wash your home, garage, shed, patios and driveway.
- Inspect and clean your pool filter. Even though you (hopefully) emptied your filter at the end of last season, it’s a good idea to take the filter apart and run a hose through to be sure there are no blockages.
- Inspect your roof and replace any missing or broken shingles. If you are unable to climb on your roof safely, stand back and use binoculars to get a good look. If you do notice any missing or broken shingles and are unable to fix them yourself, hire a professional for the repairs. Be sure to have this done to avoid further damage from leaks.
- Clean all gutters and downspouts. If you are physically able to do this yourself safely, clear the gutters and downspouts of leaves and debris then use your hose to clean out anything left behind after the cleaning. If the hose does not run through free and clear, you know there is a blockage you need to find and clear. The easiest and cheapest way to clean the gutters is to dredge them out with a garden trowel and place the debris in a garbage bag.
- Re-organize your shed or tool area. In order to make things easier and make quick work of your summer chores, move all winter tools, such as snow shovels, ice melt and snow removal items to the back of the shed and move your summer tools, such as gardening tools, rakes, hoes, lawn mowers and weed whackers to the front of your shed.
- Check to make sure your lawn mower is running properly. Do not wait until your grass is a foot high to check the lawn mower! If you did not empty the gas at the end of last season, be sure to change the gas, along with the oil, spark plugs and filters. If you use an electric mower, check to be sure that the cord is in good shape and not frayed or split.
- Change the direction of your ceiling fan. Hopefully, you were making good use of your ceiling fan in the winter months by having it turn clockwise to redistribute the heat that rises. Similarly, you should flip the switch to have it turning counter-clockwise in the summer to provide a breeze.
With the completion of these fairly routine and simple tasks, you will find yourself ready to enjoy the warmer months with less hassle and more time to enjoy the beautiful weather!