Summer is finally here! Time to break out the swimsuits, fire up the grill, and soak up the sun. But before you fully embrace the season, there are a few important home maintenance tasks you should take care of to ensure your home stays cool, comfortable, and efficient all summer. By following these simple tips, you can avoid costly repairs down the road and create a more enjoyable haven from the heat.
Cooling System Maintenance
Your air conditioner is your best friend during the summer, so it’s important to make sure it’s in tip-top shape. Here are a few things to do:
Schedule a professional tune-up. A qualified technician can clean the coils, check the refrigerant levels, and make sure everything is running smoothly. This will help your AC run more efficiently and save you money on energy bills.
Change the air filter monthly. A dirty air filter can restrict airflow and make your AC work harder, so be sure to change it out every month during the summer.
Clean the vents and registers. Dust and debris can build up in your vents and registers, blocking airflow and reducing the effectiveness of your AC. Use a vacuum cleaner with a hose attachment to clean them out regularly.
Seal air leaks. Check around your windows, doors, and other openings for air leaks. Sealing these leaks will help keep cool air in and hot air out, making your AC work more efficiently.
Consider upgrading your thermostat. A programmable thermostat can help you save money on energy bills by automatically adjusting the temperature when you’re away from home.
Window and Door Maintenance
Windows and doors are another important source of heat gain in the summer. Here are a few tips for keeping them cool:
- Install weatherstripping and caulking. This will help seal up any gaps around your windows and doors, preventing hot air from leaking in.
- Add window tinting or film. Window tinting can help block out heat and UV rays, keeping your home cooler and protecting your furniture from fading.
- Invest in blackout curtains or shades. These will help block out sunlight and heat, keeping your home cooler during the day.
- Open windows at night and close them during the day. This will help take advantage of cooler night air and keep your home cooler during the day.
Don’t forget about your outdoor spaces! Here are a few tips for keeping them cool and comfortable in the summer:
- Trim trees and shrubs. Overgrown trees and shrubs can block shade and airflow, making your home hotter. Trim them back to allow for better air circulation and cooler temperatures.
- Plant shade trees. Planting shade trees around your home can help block out sunlight and heat, making your home cooler and reducing your energy bills.
- Clean your gutters. Clogged gutters can prevent rainwater from draining properly, which can lead to water damage and mold growth. Be sure to clean your gutters out regularly, especially before the summer rainy season.
- Inspect your roof. Your roof is exposed to the harsh summer sun, so it’s important to inspect it regularly for any signs of damage. If you see any problems, be sure to have them repaired right away.
- Maintain your deck or patio. If you have a deck or patio, be sure to seal it regularly to protect it from the sun and rain. You may also want to add shade sails or umbrellas to provide some relief from the heat.
Water Conservation Tips
Summer is a time of peak water usage, so it’s important to conserve water whenever possible. Here are a few tips:
- Water your lawn in the early morning or evening. This will help reduce evaporation and save water.
- Use a hose with a trigger nozzle. This will help you control the flow of water and prevent waste.
- Fix leaky faucets and sprinklers. Even a small leak can waste a lot of water over time.
- Install a rain barrel. This will collect rainwater that you can use to water your plants or wash your car.
- Cook outdoors. This will help keep your home cooler and prevent your oven from heating up the kitchen.
- Take advantage of natural ventilation. Open windows and doors on opposite sides of your home to create a cross breeze.
- Use ceiling fans. Ceiling fans can help circulate air and make you feel cooler, even if they don’t actually lower the temperature.