Preparing your home for Summer

How to prepare your home for summer

With temperatures already reaching the 90s, Texas is well and truly entering summer time. Whether you love or hate the warmer weather, it can be beneficial to prepare your home for scorching temperatures, and everything that comes with it.

Summer can present new challenges for your home, but many can be avoided or at least reduced with considered preparation. Here are some tips you may not have considered.

How to keep your home cool in extreme heat

Service your AC unit – It’s already warming up, but the temperatures can get much hotter here in Texas. Your AC unit will become your best friend for keeping your home cool throughout the summer, so make sure it’s functioning correctly. Service the unit, replace its air filters and clean the vents so it’s ready for the next few months of hard work.

Adjust ceiling fans – Did you know that there’s a correct way for your ceiling fans to turn in order to effectively cool down a room? Adjust all of your ceiling fans to rotate counter-clockwise, as this pushes air straight down, assisting with cooling the room. When in use, keep fans at the highest speed to help lower the temperature of your home.

Check your thermostat – Is your thermostat working correctly? It’s all well and good setting the thermostat to a specific temperature, but if it’s failing to bring your home down to this temperature, it’s useless. Now is the time to make sure this is functioning correctly before it gets even hotter in the state.

Close your blinds – As much as natural sunlight in the home is preferred, when the ambient temperature is particularly high, closing the blinds can help keep the blazing sun from heating up your home too much. As an additional benefit, closing your blinds can prevent the sun’s strong rays from fading your furniture and carpets.

There are plenty of methods for keeping your home cool, but you should also consider the energy consumption of your home throughout the warmer months.

Search for air leaks – Your AC system is going to be running much more regularly throughout the coming months, and every bit of cool air that escapes your home will add to your utility bill as the AC returns your interiors to the desired temperature. Check the seals of all the windows and doors around your home for leaks and replace any stripping or caulking where necessary to keep the cool air indoors.

Check your refrigerator – The AC isn’t the only appliance running on overdrive throughout summer; your refrigerator will also be working harder to keep its interior cool. Similarly to your external doors, check your refrigerator door for any air leaks and replace the seal if need be. It’s also a good idea to clean the condensing coils inside the refrigerator, as this will help reduce energy consumption.

Clean your grill – Hot weather is a great excuse to rally up your family and friends and enjoy some grill-cooked food in your yard. However, firing up the grill isn’t just an excuse to socialize; it can also help reduce the pressure on your AC unit. Whenever you cook in the kitchen, heat is released, causing the AC to work harder to bring the internal temperature of your home back down. Making the most of the sunshine and having a grill outdoors is a great way to cut back on your energy usage.

Preparing your garden for summer

Keep your lawn hydrated – The blazing sun can wreak havoc on your lawn, especially throughout long, dry periods. Invest in a good sprinkler system, ideally one that comes with a timer functionality to automatically stop and start watering. You need to keep your lawn hydrated without over-watering, so the best time to set your sprinkler system to run is during the early morning and evening when the sun is at its lowest. It can also be beneficial to make small holes in your lawn to help water penetrate more easily. You can either rent a core aerator for this, or hire a professional.

Prevent pests – Summer is prime time for certain insects and pests to become a concern in and around the home. Termites and carpenter ants can cause structural damage and are often undetectable until it’s too late. They are both attracted to rotting wood, so keep any mulch, firewood or dense shrubs away from the perimeter of your home. Mosquitoes can be deterred by removing any standing water from your yard, like bird baths and empty flower pots or buckets that may have water inside, and mowing your lawn regularly to prevent ticks from breeding in the long grass.

Extreme weather in summer

Unfortunately, you’re never immune from extreme weather conditions in Texas, even in the summer. We may be coming out of tornado season, but that doesn’t mean there’s no risk, and other disasters like storms and hurricanes should also be considered. You should always have some form of emergency supplies readily available at home, such as:

  • Non-perishable foods
  • Water
  • A backup generator
  • A flashlight
  • A battery-powered radio
  • A whistle
  • A first-aid kit

Keep on top of your supplies and replace any you’ve used as soon as possible to ensure your household is always prepared for an emergency.

No matter where you’re located, it’s important to take precautionary steps ahead of the harsh summer weather. Preparation is key to staying safe this season!