Though summer hasn’t quite come to its end yet, back-to-school is in full swing. Don’t let the hustle and bustle of the changing seasons get in the way of taking care of your home after one of the most weather-extreme seasons. Here are seven end-of-summer home maintenance tasks to take care of over the next month.
Properly Retire Your Patio Essentials
Your outdoor furniture and grill have served your entertaining needs all summer and require some TLC before retiring for the year. For patio furniture, different materials require different cleaning and storage methods.
For instance, wicker furniture an be cleaned using the lowest setting on a pressure washer but varnished wood needs to be cleaned using soapy water. Follow your manufacturer's guide on cleaning and storage, making sure furniture & cushions are fully dry before storing to prevent mold and mildew.
Though most grills don’t need to be stored during the off-season, it’s a good idea to give them a good cleaning before the prime grilling season comes to an end to prevent mold development and corrosion. For gas models, use a grill brush on grates, burners and other interior surfaces. Make sure to clean out the drip pan.
For charcoal grills, scrub down the interior and grates with a grill brush, removing as much grease and food residue as possible, and empty the ash catcher.
Add Clarity to Your Windows
Maximize the natural light in your home by giving your windows some TLC. After giving the interior of your windows a thorough scrub-down, use a solution of vinegar and water and a microfiber cloth to get rid of interior dirt, dust and fingerprints. For professional results, use a squeegee blade, keeping it in contact with the edges of the window.
For the exterior, do the same but give windows a pre-wash with the garden hose. While you're dismantling your windows, clean your screens and check for any holes. For an easy, no-squeegee exterior window solution, see the She Wears Many Hats Blog for the recipe of items you probably already have in your pantry.
Inspect Your Windows
While you’re scrubbing down your windows, use the time to look them over. Look for gaps where air may be escaping. Caulk and weatherstrip as needed.
Apply a Fresh Coat of Paint
If you plan to do any interior painting, there is no time like the present. You'll want to tackle this home maintenance project while the weather is still nice enough to open windows for additional ventilation.
Schedule Your Yearly Furnace Inspection
Even though you (hopefully) won’t be turning on your furnace for another couple of months, it’s a good idea to get on your HVAC professional’s schedule before the busy heating season begins.
Head to Your Roof
Roofs are often not top-of-mind for homeowners until they produce a major problem. This is why inspecting them on a regular basis is so important. Most roofing professionals suggest inspecting your roof before and after the most severe seasons in your area. For Midwesterners, you know that means both summer and winter. Look for shingles that are buckling, damaged or missing and cracked caulking or rust around flashing.
Protect Your Deck
Wind, rain, sun, snow and foot traffic can wreak havoc on your deck. The process of deck staining usually requires a span of two to four days without rain and temperatures below 85 degrees, so the stain can evenly absorb and fully dry. Late spring and early autumn are the best times to clean and stain your deck with mild, dry days and lower humidity.
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