How To Prepare Your House For Warmer Weather

Dated: June 14 2021

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Getting Your Home Ready for Warmer Weather


It’s just around the corner friends and family...warm weather. I cannot wait to be sitting on my deck, cold drink in hand, and soak up the sun! But, before we get there, I need to do a few things to make sure my home is ready for all the warmer weather will bring. 


I was hunting through the old episodes of “This Old House” and I ran across an article they published on their blog about how to get your home ready for summer. “Hmmm,” I thought to myself.  I have a list of things that I usually do to my home to gear up for the dog days...how does it measure up to the “This Old House” list (Which henceforth shall be abbreviated to TOH, because it is repetitive). 


My home is from 1978 and has some characteristics of an older home, located in a rural area. I have a septic field and a well pump, but luckily over the past few years all of the systems have been upgraded to accommodate more modern living, but new systems do not mean “no maintenance.” 


One of the first items recommended on the TOH blog is to “cut back your roses.” I will admit that I am a gardener but am not an expert on rose bushes. This was definitely not on my list. They recommend cutting your roses back in the early spring about the time you see the forsythia bushes beginning to bloom...whoops, missed the train on that. For those of you who are sitting there saying, WTH is a forsythia? Here is a photo of one of the ones slowly taking over my driveway. 


Another item TOH recommends is sharpening your mower blade. I will just say that I have never in my life sharpened a mower blade. I am 100% sure that is something we should be doing and lucky for us TOH has given a brief tutorial on how to do just that. Check it out here! I am on a roll here, 0 for 2. 


As I was thinking to myself, I am a bad, bad homeowner, there was something on the list I recognized! Upgrade your HVAC filters! 


TOH recommends trading up to pleated ones, which have a tighter weave, greater surface area, and an electrostatic coating, allowing them to capture at least twice as much allergy-triggering dust and pollen, and other tiny particles. Remember to replace the filter every three months at a minimum. I have an alarm set on my google calendar. The only way it’s happening people. 


Up next is something I have recently experienced. TOH recommends flushing a tank-type water heater. Show of hands...who has ever done that?. Anyone..? Let me be the first to tell you that I had no idea you were supposed to do that. Let me assure you as someone on a well system without a sediment filter...you need to do this! “Meg!”, you say enraged “I am not a plumber! How would I know how to do that!” Neither am I, but I did it myself. (Disclaimer...I would always recommend consulting a professional.) But, if you are like me...and to like to live dangerously, here is a tutorial that TOH put together that saved my basement. How to Drain a Water Tank!


Last but certainly not least, TOH recommends you clean the condenser for your HVAC system. What’s a condenser? Well, it's that piece of machinery on the outside of the house that whirs like a piece of Star Trek equipment. See below.



When air can’t flow freely through an AC system’s outside condenser, it’s costing you more to cool the house, and making the unit work harder and wear out faster.


To keep the unit operating efficiently:


  1. Turn off the power, unscrew and remove the side panels, and, working from the top-down, gently rinse off the debris clinging to the coils.

  2. Straighten any crushed or dented fins with a fin comb. 

  3. Then reattach the panels and restore the power. 

  4. Your unit is now ready to handle the summer heat.


There you have it folks, the things that can help you get your house in fighting shape for the dog days ahead! How many have you done this year? 

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Meg Hetzel

Meg Gaulding has been a resident of Frederick county since 2006. She is an alumna of Hood College and fell in love with the area. After a few years of working, she decided to go back to school and rec....

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