Guides


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What tasks should be on my summer to-do list?

Summertime! The time of year that's filled with vacations, sunny days, and poolside fun is here. But if you put in a little effort here and there around the house and check things off your summer to-do list, it'll pay off big time in the long run.
Exterior, Basement, & Foundation
(Click arrows for maintenance details)
Seal, repair, or replace your windows.

Why

Inspecting your windows will tell you a lot of things. For one, you might find separations in your sealants around the glass and around the frame itself. Sealing those up with some caulk or silicon will not only help keep the summer creepy-crawlies out, but it'll keep the cool in and help you save on your utility bills. Plus, you might find broken glass you didn't know about or discover that your outdated windows need to be replaced altogether.

Related Advice

How can replacing windows help me save on utility bills?

Related Video


Watch this video to learn about available window styles and materials.

Who Can Help

Inspecting your windows and sealing them can be done on your own, but hire a window pro to get an expert opinion or to replace your windows.

When

Summer & Fall

Give your roof a good once-over.

Why

Summer is the ideal time to check your roof for leaks, inspect the vent covers and shingles, shakes, or tiles, and make any repairs or replace it altogether. Sure it's hot, but that heat is exactly what a roof needs to cure properly.

Related Advice

How do I hire the right roofer?

When is it time to replace my roof?

How do I inspect my roof for leaks?

Related Video


Watch this video to learn the pros — and cons — of various roofing materials.

Who Can Help

You can inspect it by yourself unless you're not keen on heights. If you need to repair or replace it, you can find a roofing contractor in your area on Kudzu.com.

When

Summer

Give your house a bath.

Why

Sweeping off dust, debris, and cobwebs not only makes your home look nicer, it also protects your siding and paint from unnecessary wear and damage. Taking a hose or power washer to it will remove more stubborn dirt and bird droppings, and it could expose issues with your paint that you didn't know you needed to address. If you find extra sticky stuff like sap (or egg remnants from the neighborhood prankster), get it off as soon as possible with a good detergent or solvent.

Related Advice

How do I hire a siding contractor?

How do I maintain my siding?

How do I choose a house painter?

Why should I hire a painting contractor?

Who Can Help

This is a do-it-yourself project, but you can hire a siding expert or find a painting pro if you want to save time.

When

Summer, Fall & Spring

Check your crawlspace or unfinished basement for leaks and critters.

Why

Leaky pipes can cause wood rot, foundation cracks, and high water bills. All that moisture also breeds mold and mildew, terrible for health issues. And if any uninvited pests nestled in but didn't exactly survive the winter, you need to remove them before they start to stink. Plus, even though they're not in the land of the living, they can still spread disease.

Related Advice

How do I hire the right plumber?

Are there any do-it-yourself pest control solutions I can try first?

What common signs could point to a plumbing problem?

Related Video


Watch this video to learn some strategies on keeping water out of your basement.

Who Can Help

You can hire a plumber to fix leaks or find a pest control expert to remove the dead critters.

When

Summer

Interior & Appliance
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Install a home security system.

Why

Boosting your home's security is good any time of year, but the summer months tend to be when homeowners are most frequently away on vacation. Having a quality home security system installed will make your home safer whether you're home or not.

Who Can Help

You can find a home security pro for the best alarm advice and installation.

Related Advice

What do motion sensors do?

Can somebody help me decide if my house is as safe as it should be?

What questions should I ask a prospective home alarm company?

How does a standard home alarm work?

What type of alarm system should I get?

When

Anytime

Related Video


Watch this video to get some tips on how to find a quality home security company.

Install some ceiling fans.

Why

On the hottest days, even the best air conditioning units can be challenged to keep a home cool. Installing ceiling fans throughout the house helps to circulate the air, which can make 85 degrees feel more like a refreshing 76. And if you make sure your fans go in rooms where you relax, like the living room and bedrooms, you won't have to make you're A/C work as hard during your downtime.

Related Advice

How do I find a quality electrician?



Who Can Help

Installation is typically a do-it-yourself project, but if you're not comfortable working with electricity, you should hire an electrician.

When

Summer

Get your air conditioner and attic fan inspected and serviced.

Why

Keeping your air conditioner and attic fan properly cleaned and serviced will help them run more efficiently and cool your home better over the summer months. It's particularly important to clean your A/C's filters because clogged filters can overwork the unit and lead to overheating and major damage. That's not cheap to repair or replace. Plus, when you cool your home more efficiently, you spend less on utility bills.

Related Advice

How do I find a good HVAC pro?

What HVAC maintenance should I do myself?

How does my HVAC system work?

Related Video


Watch this video to learn what to expect from an HVAC system tune-up.

Who Can Help

It's best to hire an HVAC pro to service your A/C and attic fan.

When

Late Spring or Summer

Backyard & Landscape
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Keep the pool clean.

Why

No one wants to swim in a dirty pool. So, unless you want to own an oversized fishless pond, keep it free of algae, clean out any leaves and debris, and make sure the chemical levels are maintained. Yes, this encourages summertime poolside fun, but it also keeps the pump and heater system running properly so you can avoid expensive repairs.

Related Advice

Should I hire a pool maintenance pro or do it myself?

How should I care for my pool?

How do I hire a quality pool contractor?

What it Costs

How much does pool maintenance cost?

Who Can Help

You can do most of this by yourself, or find a pool pro to save time.

When

Summer

Keep your trees and bushes trimmed.

Why

Trimming dead branches and thinning out your trees and bushes will help them grow and stay healthy. Even though the branches are dead, the roots still try to feed them, which takes more energy than necessary. With only healthy branches remaining, your trees and bushes can flourish more easily and last longer throughout the years.

Related Advice

How do I hire a quality tree service?

What can a tree service do for me?

Related Video


Watch this video to learn why trimming trees can be dangerous.

Who Can Help

You can do some trimming on your own, but hire a tree service for more expert advice and to handle the branches that are higher up.

When

Summer & Fall

Install a sprinkler system and take good care of your lawn.

Why

With good watering and care, your lawn can thrive in the summer. Installing a sprinkler system alleviates the time it takes to water. And it can be programmed to water your lawn at automatic intervals, which will help you save on water bills. Plus, a lawn that is well fertilized, weeded, and trimmed can add a lot of good looks to your home.

Related Advice

How do I hire the right lawn care company?

What sprinkler system is right for me?

Related Video


Watch this video to learn why a sprinkler system can save water and make it easier to keep your lawn green.

Who Can Help

Fertilizing and general lawn care can be done by you, but you can find a lawn specialist to handle it for you or to install your sprinkler system.

When

Spring & Summer