While summer is usually a time for fun, neglecting your home maintenance needs isn’t a good idea. Many summer housing expenses are crucial for keeping your property in good repair and making sure all critical systems are running efficiently. If you want to make sure you tackle everything this year, here are some summer housing expenses you shouldn’t ignore.
Air Conditioner Service
During the summer, your air conditioner gets a workout. If you didn’t have your air conditioner serviced within the last year, you need to handle it now.
Without proper maintenance, your air conditioner may have a shorter life. Plus, it could be more prone to a breakdown, something that could make living comfortably difficult if it happens during a hot spell.
If the technician spots an issue, they can take care of the repair proactively. In many cases, this can actually save you money. When a part fails, there is always a chance the incident will damage other components. By fixing the part before that happens, you may be able to avoid other damage that would otherwise require a repair, too.
Additionally, a well-maintained air conditioner is more efficient. By getting your service handled, you may be able to save on your electric bills during the hottest time of year. This may even offset the cost of your service, depending on how much more efficiently your air conditioner might operate after it is fixed up.
Replace (or Clean) Your HVAC Filters
Another important step for making sure your air conditioner is going to work properly is to replace or clean the HVAC filter. Not only will it improve your air conditioner’s efficiency, but it can also help you keep the air in your house clean, healthy, and allergen-free.
Whether you need to replace or clean your filter may depend on the type you have and its condition. Some filters are designed so that they can be washed instead of replaced. However, others are essentially disposable, making replacement the only option.
Clean Your Ceiling Fan (and Check Its Direction)
Ceiling fans can be excellent for keeping your home cooler. However, as they operate, they can end up coated in dust.
Take a few minutes to clean your ceiling fan blades. Then, before you turn it back on, make sure the blades are spinning in the proper direction. Ceiling fans usually have a switch that lets you control the direction of the spin. One of the directions is better for cooling while one helps you stay warmer in the winter.
If your fan isn’t going in the correct direction, look for a simple switch on the unit. Usually, all you need to do is flick it into the other position, and it will start rotating in the cooling direction when you turn it back on again.
Exterior Paint Repair
Over time, your exterior paint can crack and chip. Since your paint is effectively a seal that protects the underlying materials, the damage needs to be addressed. Otherwise, water can work its way through the cracks or under chipped areas, increasing your chances of having rot or other issues.
Summer is the perfect time to address your exterior paint. Warmer temperatures lead to faster drying times, which works in your favor. Just make sure that there isn’t any rain in the forecast for at least 24 hours. That way, the paint can cure properly, restoring your barrier.
Just like cracked paint, cracks in your concrete paths or driveways let water seep into areas, potentially leading to damage. During the colder months, water in the gaps can freeze, making cracks worse.
Often, summer is a great time for concrete repair. Like paint, the warmer temperatures help the concrete dry quicker.
Once the repair is made, you still don’t want to walk or drive on the fresh concrete for at least 48 hours. However, it can take up to 30 days to reach full strength, though warmer, dry weather may speed that up a bit.
Reseal Fencing and Decking
If you have wood fencing or decking, summer is a great time to reseal them. Wood can be damaged by water and sun exposure, causing the material to degrade. Not only will resealing restore the protective barrier, but it will also dry more quickly due to the warmer temperatures.
Like paint, you do want to choose a day when you aren’t expecting rain within the next few days. That way, it can fully set before it’s exposed to water.
Gutter and Downspout Cleaning
In some parts of the country, summer storms can be incredibly dramatic. If you want to make sure your gutters and downspouts can swiftly move water away from your home, then cleaning them regularly is a must-do.
Typically, you would want to clean the gutters and downspouts in the spring and fall. However, if you haven’t tackled it yet this year, doing it now is a smart move.
Pest Control Treatments
As the temperature rises, insects and other pests are often more active. If you want to keep them from harming your home, then having a summer pest control treatment is often a must.
Work with a pest control professional who can not only apply treatments but also inspect your house for issues that may allow pests to make their home on your property. They can help you identify potential repairs to keep pests out and away, and some may even be able to handle those fixes for you.
Re-Caulk Windows and Doors
The caulk around your windows and doors breaks down over time. When that happens, the seal isn’t as effective, allowing the hot outside area to make its way inside.
If you want to keep your electricity bills in check and avoid overtaxing your air conditioner, take the time to inspect the caulk around your windows and doors. If you see any spots where it isn’t in good shape, re-caulk them. Usually, that only takes a few minutes, but it can make a big difference when you’re trying to stay cool.
Can you think of any other summer housing expenses people shouldn’t ignore? Share your thoughts in the comments below.