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Summer Home Maintenance

06-26-18 1:41 PM by HomeID
Summer Home Maintenance

Maintaining Your Home in the Summer

Summer is not only a great time to tackle maintenance and projects outside your home but also inside your home as well. When summer arrives, and the weather is nice out, people sometimes tend to forget about simple home maintenance, it’s important not to fall into this trap. Keep up with the health and safety of your home inside and out with these summer home maintenance tips.

1. Change your furnace filter

Your furnace filter should be changed at least every 3 months. A great schedule to stick with is to change it at the start of each season. Every time you use central A/C (non-window units) you’re using the furnace, which means many furnaces may be working in overdrive, so it’s best practice to change your filter. It’s a great way to keep the air in your home healthy and clean.

2. Check for mould (aka mold, mildew, bio-organic-growth, fungus)

The following mould removal tips are very important for your summer home care. If you have what appears to be surface mould (less than 10 sq. ft.) it’s okay to clean it yourself, as long as you have the proper safety gear such as gloves and a respirator. Never use bleach to clean mould! Bleach does not kill mould, which means mould will continue to grow after bleach has been applied. You want to use a product that is safe and effective, something that will kill and get rid of the mould.

If you suspect you have mould growing in your home, you need to address the problem by first taking care of any moisture issues – increase the air circulation in your home, seal around the building envelope, have a dehumidifier installed, and stop leaks from entering your home.

3. Save money and make your home more energy efficient and environmentally friendly

If you haven’t already switched to LED lighting, give it some thought. You can switch to LED lights inside and outside your home.

Make use of your ceiling fans. During the winter, turn your ceiling fans clockwise - this helps circulate warm air trapped near the ceiling. In the summer, switch your ceiling fan to work counter-clockwise to help create a cool breeze.

Look into having a smart thermostat installed. Most smart thermostats allow you to adjust your home’s temperature from anywhere, whether you’re on vacation or have stepped out of the house for a couple of hours. Some also track your monthly energy usage and provide you with a report to show your usage compared to others in your area.

Instead of using clean water that you pay for, consider installing a greywater reuse system that collects rainwater from your roof. It helps protect your home and is environmentally friendly. Rather than letting the water go to waste, you can use the water for your lawn, to wash your car, or to wash your deck. It’s free and why not help the environment.

4. Stop pests

When the weather starts to warm up you can be sure to find insects making their way indoors to look for a cooler place to stay. Summer is a good time to go around the exterior of your home and seal your home from pests. Check around window and door frames, window and door screens, vents, and the foundation for gaps and cracks.

Gaps around windows and doorframes, as well as vents, should be sealed with rubberized exterior caulking. Any cracks wider than half-inch should be filled with expanding foam. I prefer low expanding foams, because they don’t put too much pressure on framing and keeps them from bending and warping. Small foundation cracks can be filled with either an expandable foam or epoxy injection. Expanding foam should be coated with paint or sealant after it cures.

I’ve seen swarms of bees and wasps find their way into homes through tiny holes and cracks on the exterior of a home. One home had a large swarm of bees that made a home behind kitchen cabinets that happened to be along an exterior wall. I’ve also seen a colony of ants make their way through a tiny crack in the foundation, below the front door that led directly into the home’s foyer.

Another thing to keep your eyes out for is insect wings. If you happen to see an abundance of wings around the exterior or maybe even the interior of your home, there’s a good chance you have termites and its time to call in a professional.

5. Enjoy your summer!

If you live in the northern part of the states or Canada, you know summer only lasts for a short period of time, so take it all in and make the most of the great weather.