Summer Home Repair & Maintenance Tips

Home ownership involves a never-ending list of maintenance, especially in New England, where the weather can change by the hour and can wreak havoc on even the most well-maintained and cared-for home.

Here’s a check list of home maintenance tips for the summer months that can help you keep larger repair bills to a minimum. Not the DIY type? Call a professional before those small repairs get bigger and more costly; check Angie’s List or get a reference from a neighbor

Windows & Doors

  • Clean windows inside and out. Make them sparkle: use newspapers and a solution of water and white vinegar.
  • If you have older windows and doors, add putty, caulk or add weather-stripping where needed.
  • Clean and install screens for windows and doors.

Attic

  • Check and clear vents of insect and animal nests or other blockages.
  • Make sure vents and fans work properly.
  • Scan your roof line for leaks on rafters and insulation caused by loose or missing flashing.

Basement

  • Check for and seal cracks, repair leaks in walls and floors.
  • Clean vents and make sure they’re in good working condition.
  • Test, clean and lubricate sump pump if you have one.
  • Sweep floors and discard junk and other items you haven’t used in 2 or more years.
  • Think of organizing a yard sale with your neighbors to raise money for a charity or your local school. Or yourself!

Smoke & Carbon Monoxide Detectors

  • Test and replace batteries in all units throughout your home.

Exterior Walls & Walkways

  • Check for missing or loose siding or shingles.
  • Caulk joints and cracks to prevent expansion from water damage.
  • Touch up wood finishes damaged by wet winter weather.
  • Touch-up painting or re-paint where needed.
  • Repair crumbling or missing bricks and mortar from walls and walkways.

Exterior Plumbing

  • Turn on sprinkler system and other lines
  • Check and turn on outside spigots
  • Connect and turn on hoses

Roof

  • Repair damaged soffit panels and flashing.
  • Repair or replace damaged or missing shingles.

Gutters

  • Clean gunk out of your gutters; get a pro to clean out the ones that are too high/you don’t feel comfortable reaching.
  • Consider installing gutter guards if you can afford it (and you really hate cleaning your gutters out).

Porches, Patios and Decks

  • Clean and seal wood decks.
  • Check wood for rot and replace damaged boards.
  • Take out and clean off outdoor furniture.

Grill

  • Check fuel lines and replace propane tank if needed.
  • Clean cooking surfaces.
  • Replace grease tray liner underneath grill.

Air Conditioners

  • Dirt and dust force air conditioners to work harder and less efficiently, and cost you more to run. 
  • Change A/C filters monthly, especially if you or members of your family suffer from allergies. Otherwise change filters at least once every three months.
  • Clear leaves and other debris from outside condensers, which can block air flow.

 

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