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It may be hard to believe, but summer is very close. Like, if it were a snake it’d bite you close. Yes, that means swimming pools, lazy Sundays hanging out on the patio, and barbecues galore. But, before you throw on your flip flops and head to the beach, keep in mind that there are a few things you’ll want to take care of around the house in preparation for the warm summer months. Not sure of what should be on your to-do list? Well, that’s no problem, because we’ve compiled a few ideas to help you get started.
Inspect Your Air Conditioning Unit
The last thing you want to deal with on a sweltering hot summer day is a broken air conditioning unit. Picture it: You come home on a particularly steamy day in anticipation of a cool breeze as soon as the door opens. What you find, however, is a house full of hot air and an air conditioner that’s dead to the world. A little preventative maintenance can help ensure that you don’t find yourself in this unfortunate predicament. As EnergyStar.gov points out, simple steps like checking your filter every three months (monthly during heavy-use times in winter and summer) can help ensure you’re not wasting energy, because a dirty filter puts more strain on your system. It’s also recommended to get an annual tune-up on your HVAC system, and sealing or insulating your ducts can make a huge difference in your energy use.
Prep Your Windows
As warmer weather becomes the norm, and we crawl out of the darkened caves we’ve been hibernating in all winter, update windows to reflect the light, airy mood of the upcoming summer days. Change out thick, dark curtains with lighter fabrics to take advantage of the added daylight and brighten up the room. Also, to ensure you keep the creepy crawlies out when you open up your home to let outside air in, do a thorough inspection of your window screens and look for any tears or holes requiring repair. Should you discover any issues, follow domestic goddess Martha Stewart’s simple and clear tutorial for window screen repair.
This is also a good time to rid the exterior of your windows of the grime and buildup of winter. Instead of grabbing a roll of paper towel and a bottle of glass cleaner, take a note from the pros and consider a squeegee for a more effective clean.
Change Out Winter Linens
Heavy flannel sheets served their purpose in the cold winter months, but hot summer nights call for thinner, more breathable material. To ensure nights of comfort and solid sleep, look for fabrics that promise to keep you cool and dry all night, like Nanotex and Cool Sensations, just to name a couple. A quick search online and you’ll discover that you have plenty of options to choose from. Don’t underestimate the power of comfortable sheets; your good night of sleep just may depend on them.
Test Smoke and Carbon Monoxide Detectors
It’s not a bad idea to do a quick check of all the smoke and carbon monoxide detectors in your home while you’re performing your summer maintenance. A few minutes spent ensuring the batteries are full and everything’s working as it should could save you more than you know.
Install a Clothesline
Why not take advantage of that warm summer air and save on your energy bill? Installing a clothesline will allow you to skip the dryer (and the costs that come with running it) while also allowing you to capture the smell of line-dried sheets and towels the old-fashioned way. There are a variety of styles at varied prices, from the retractable line to rack and umbrella clotheslines, so there’s likely one out there that’ll work for you.
Do you have any annual summer maintenance tips to share? Let us know in the comments below!