Summer is coming, and the Farmer’s Almanac says it’s going to be an extra hot one. Is your home ready to take on the heat of summer?
Here in Central Florida, are summers are brutal. Bust out that home tool kit, because it’s time to ensure your home is in pristine shape with our summer home maintenance checklist.
Check Your Air Conditioner
There’s nothing worse than your air conditioner failing when temps are in the high 90s. That’s why it’s vital to have it checked or inspected in the spring to get it ready for those extra hot days.
Also important? Make sure your system has a clean filter. Dirty filters make your air conditioner work harder, which costs you more money. You should change these filters every 2-4 months.
If you weren’t using it during the winter, turn your air on to see how it’s running. Make sure you hear it click on and see the thermostat go down. You may want to call a pro for an annual checkup just to make sure everything is in proper working order. They may be able to fix a small issue before it becomes a big one.
Stop Unwanted Pests
Check your home for any holes that are more than a quarter of an inch. Pests, such as squirrels, snakes, and bugs will enter your home if they find these holes.
If you have any trees or foliage close to your home, keep them trimmed back so they don’t act as a bridge to unwanted guests. You should also mow your yard frequently and remove any yard debris to avoid making your yard a safe haven for pests.
If you notice signs of termite damage, contact a home inspector right away to catch the problem before it gets bigger. Subterranean termites swarm during the spring and summer as the weather begins to warm.
Prepare Your Summer Tools
You and your family might be outdoors a lot this season. You need to keep your lawn nice, which means getting your lawn mower and edger ready. It’s time to give your tools a spring tune-up.
Clean all the equipment and change the gas. Replace any spark plugs and get new oil and air filters. Either sharpen your mower blade yourself or take to a mower repair shop. If your mower and edger are electric, inspect the cords for frays or cuts, and turn them on to be sure they work.
Wipe down and lubricate any hand tools like pruners, shears, hoes, shovels, and rakes. Make sure they are dry before you put them away to avoid rusting.
Clean Your Grill
Nothing says “summer” like burgers and hot dogs on the grill.Give your favorite outdoor appliance some love by getting it cleaned up and ready for all of those barbecues.
If you have a charcoal grill, empty it out and wipe off any residue. Scrub the inside and outside with hot, soapy water and a scrub brush. Make sure your grill is completely dry before using it.
For gas grills, turn the heat up high and close the lid. Let the grill cook off any dirt for about 30 minutes. Then let the grill cool down and use a grill brush to scrape off any excess debris. Lastly, clean the drip trays and wipe down the outside of the grill.
If you use a gas grill, make sure you have a new propane tank to make sure you don’t run out while in the midst of grilling. You should also make sure you have enough charcoal coals for your charcoal grill.
Wash Your Porch
Fallen leaves, dirt, debris, and pollen have done a number on your porch. Start with a good sweep, then wash it down with cleaner. You can remove any stubborn dirt by scrubbing with warm water and mild soap.
This is also the perfect time to refresh your home’s curb appeal with some seasonal flowers.
Check Your Deck
Make sure your boards are sturdy and in good condition. Replace any rotted boards and hammer down loose nails.
If there’s one thing you can count on, it’s that summer will bring lots of thunderstorms. Check that your deck is water-ready by pouring some water on it. If the water beads up, the deck should be good for the year. If the water disappears into the wood, you’ll need to reseal the deck to prevent any water damage.
Clean Windows and Add Screens
To make your windows sparkle, use newspaper or a squeegee with a good window cleaning solution. While you clean, make sure your windows held up during the winter by looking for any water damage or dry rot. You should also re-caulk if necessary.
Spray off your screens and let them dry. You can use your hose with a mild detergent, but don’t use too much pressure. If any screen has a hole, you can get a repair kit at about any hardware or home improvement store.
Remove any debris or leaves from your gutters to avoid water damage to your home. After it rains, check for any breaks or leaks in your downspouts or gutters.
Wash Your Outdoor Cushions
Remove the covers from your outdoor cushions and pillows. You can wash most outdoor fabrics in the washing machine in warm water on the a gentle cycle. Let them air dry before adding the inserts. If the stains don’t budge, use a scrub brush with warm water and dish detergent.
Once clean, protect them from staining with a water repellent spray, available at most home improvement stores.
Inspect Your Sprinklers
If you have a sprinkler system, look for cracked pipes or broken heads. You can do this by turning on your sprinklers one zone at a time. Look for any bubbling.
Tidy Up Your Landscape
Clear out any weeds and define your bed edges with an edging tool or spade. Till the top couple inches of soil if the soil is hard. Be sure to watch out for any bulbs you may have left in the ground.
Next, add a few inches of mulch for the finishing touch. You should have an even layer of mulch over the whole bed to help prevent any additional weeds. Be sure not to have any mulch touching your home, as this can encourage subterranean termites. Trim any bushes or trees.
Inspect Your Home’s Exterior and Roof
Take a quick look at your roof—including the flashing, shingles, and chimney—to check for any damage. If you don’t want to scramble around on the roof, a trustworthy home inspector should be able to look it over for you. (This is the perfect time for a wind mitigation inspection!)
Does your home need to be repainted? Look at the trim as well to see if you have any chipping. If your siding is dirty, you should power wash it.
Now that you’ve seen this comprehensive summer home maintenance checklist, it’s time to get your home ready for the summer heat.
If you want a professional to inspect your home or you are thinking about selling, contact EDC Professional Home Inspections today to schedule an appointment and get your home in top shape.