The warm months are an important time to tackle a range of home maintenance and repair items from making sure the roof and gutters are in good condition to having your HVAC system cleaned and checked.
Without regular maintenance, unnecessary and unseen damage can occur to your home.
When left unchecked and repaired, minor damage leads to the need for major repairs and significant expense can be the result. Additionally, a home that is in good repair looks better, is more comfortable and efficient to live in but more importantly, you are protecting your most valuable asset which can be sold more successfully and at a higher price.
In most cases simple maintenance cost can be recouped in no time at all. It will be money well spent.
Below, you’ll find the most important spring and summer home maintenance and repair issues to tackle. We provide them in checklist form that includes prices for each project. We suggest the right contractor to call for each type of work, though a handyman will be able to do much of the maintenance and repair. You’ll also find tips for saving money on the repairs, either DIY or when done by a pro.
Here are the top tasks for warm months to keep your home in excellent condition.
Inspect the roof, chimney and dormers: Winters are tough on roof shingles, especially when snow and/or ice are heavy or there are freeze/thaw cycles during the cold months. Here’s what to look for and the cost of maintenance for DIY work or calling a roofing contractor:
Check gutters and downspouts: This is one area where inexpensive maintenance can save you thousands of dollars in repairs. Clogged or leaking gutters will cause water to run down the back of interior wall linings and potentially produce mold and rot. The water might also cause flooding and major damage in your basement. Here are DIY gutter repair prices and costs from hiring a roofing or siding contractor to do the work.
Check and repair siding: Each type of siding has its potential issues that might include cracks, being loose, insect damage or rot. Siding protects your home from the elements, so siding issues will reduce HVAC efficiency and cause rot, mold and staining.
Examine and repair caulk around windows: Caulk keeps out moisture that can cause mold and rot. It also helps to maintain the energy efficiency of your home.
Repair door and window screens: Opening doors and windows is the most affordable way to cool a house and exchange the air. Keeping screens in good repair allows you to enjoy the breeze without letting in mosquitos and other pests. DIY screen repair will cost $8 to $20 per window while having a professional do it will cost $14 to $40 per window.
HVAC maintenance and repair: The best times of the year to have your heating and air conditioning system serviced to maximize efficiency, performance and durability are spring and fall before the seasons in which it works the hardest, summer and winter. Spring maintenance involves cleaning the indoor and outdoor coils (AC/heat pump), checking the drain pan and for clogged drain lines, checking to make sure that fittings are tight, lubricating moving parts, checking refrigerant lines, sealing gaps in air ducts and cleaning air ducts (optional). If you don’t have a programmable thermostat, this is a good time to add one to your system as a way to save 10 to 20 percent on your cooling and heating bills. Contact an HVAC company for professional maintenance and repair.
Deck washing, staining and sealing: A deck should be stained and sealed every few years to protect the investment. Otherwise, it will show splintering in just a few years. This is where “an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.” Call a deck specialist or handyman to have the work done.
Driveway maintenance and repair: Freezing and thawing and freezing again cause driveways with cracks to crumble. Warm weather is the time to have concrete cracks repaired or have the asphalt driveway resealed.
Drain and flush the hot water heater: If you have a hot water tank, flushing out the sediment twice a year will extend its life and help maintain its capacity. Tankless water heaters should be cleaned too. Follow instructions from the manufacturer for the most effective service.
Trim branches that pose a threat to your property: This is the time of year to remove the large branch overhanging your ranch home, sun room or deck. You can save on major damage to your home by having trees trimmed in the case that a strong wind storm comes through. Falling leaves can also be a major problem by blocking gutters.
This is one home maintenance project that we do not recommend you attempt yourself. Every year, serious injuries and death occur from homeowners attempting to remove large limbs or cut down trees.
Maintain children’s play equipment: Spring is a good time to check all the bolts, chains, seats and steps on kids’ swings and playscapes and tighten what’s loose and replace parts that are damaged.
How to Save Money on Spring and Summer Home Maintenance
The key to saving money on home repairs is to keep up with the maintenance throughout the year. Repairs typically cost three to ten times what preventative maintenance costs if left unchecked, depending on the work that needs to be done.
The best way to save on home maintenance costs and repairs is to get multiple estimates for the work being done. Let the contractors know that they are competing for the work. The process will allow you to find the lowest prices and learn something about the experience and skill of the contractor.
Looking for additional tips on this important topic? These pages will help.
Mountain View Heating and Cooling – This contractor offers homeowners tips for maintaining an HVAC system.
Champion Roofing – If you’re planning to inspect your roof, these tips from a local roofing contractor will help you do it safely and effectively.
Advantage Lumber – Here are excellent tips for inspecting your deck from a lumber company that sells decking.
Caulk Your Home – This Boston contractor gives excellent tips for checking and maintaining the caulk on your home’s exterior.
Aegis Asphalt – These tips for asphalt driveway maintenance, crack repair and sealcoating are very helpful.