Taking care of your home this season isn’t just about getting in on all those trending summer looks and beautifying the backyard. It’s also about getting all those dreaded seasonal maintenance tasks done and out of the way before cold weather arrives.
We know, we know—in the thick, sweltering heat of July it’s hard to imagine another fall and winter ahead. But knocking out your to-do list now will ensure you can space things out and still enjoy some lazy days off.
In order to help you organize your summer maintenance schedule, we’ve compiled this list with input from the experts—including details on which tasks to do yourself and which are best left to the professionals. Here are seven summer maintenance musts for you to start checking off this seaso
Check Your AC Units
We spend so much time right now washing our hands and cleaning our homes, but what about the air quality? Having a clean and dust-free AC unit is an often overlooked summer maintenance must.
Keeping a HVAC system clean and tuned up will not only save you money on your electric bill, but also ensure the unit is performing at its best capacity.
At a minimum, air-conditioning condenser coils should be cleaned at least twice a year. It’s best to clean them before starting the system for the season and again when the weather starts to get hot for prolonged periods of time—that is, right now.
While you might be tempted to break out your scrub brush, this job is best left to the professionals though, to avoid doing more harm than good!
Clean your outdoor cooking space
Whether you have a big BBQ or a gas-powered outdoor cooktop, you’ll want to plan on giving that space a scrub-down before guests start arriving for your next (socially distanced) barbecue.
The easiest way to clean your grill and outdoor cooking space is with a pressure washer. You can wipe your grill down and scrub your patio by hand, but when you’re dealing with heavy grease, it’s much faster to use a pressure washer to break it down and wash it away.
Check your deck for damage
Winter and even spring in our region can be harsh on our outdoor spaces—particularly wooden decks and surfaces. The long, bright days of summer are a good time to scope out whether they need any repairs.
Checking whether a deck needs repair usually involves three tests: stability, rust, and rot.
To properly inspect your deck, walk up and down each board, and grab each post to see if anything is loose. Next, check the metal fasteners and connectors for rust.
While surface rust can be removed, you’ll want to replace anything that looks like it’s been compromised. Finally, use a screwdriver to gently poke various boards and posts. If the wood is soft and doesn’t splinter, that’s usually an indicator of rot—and it should be replaced.
Protect your home against pests
While bringing the outdoors in remains a popular seasonal trend, there are some parts of the outdoors that are better left outside. One of the best maintenance tasks you can do (for your sanity) this season is protecting your home from pests.
If you want to save your cash and tackle pest control yourself instead of calling in a pro start by sealing up cracks, placing glue trap boards in places you find pests, and consider even getting your hands on some professional-grade pest deterrent.
Dust hard-to-reach places
Dust that builds up is bad for air quality and can also put extra weight on appliances, causing them to not operate properly. If your appliances don’t operate properly, then your energy bill increases.
As long as you’re comfortable standing on your tiptoes, grab a Swiffer duster to start dusting off the ceiling fan blades, cabinet tops, and other hard-to-reach places that are gathering dust.
Deep-clean mattresses, pillows, and rugs
With all the warm, sunny days ahead, it’s the perfect time of year to give your mattresses, pillows, and even rugs the deep cleaning they need.
Sunlight kills dust mites, so pillows, rugs, and mattresses can all be brought outside and placed in direct sunlight. Just be mindful of the weather and pollen in the air so you aren’t trading one allergen for another.
Hand- or machine-wash your pillows, vacuum those carpets, and deep-clean your mattress—then take them all outside to dry in the sun.
Get your landscaping under control
Trimming and pruning plants and trees on time is very important, so they don’t get out of control. Trimming hedges and pruning trees regularly will help guarantee you grow thick, healthy hedges (rather than tall, thin ones) and trees that produce more flowers and fruit.