Summer is coming, and everyone is excited about it. Both the outdoors and indoors just seem better in summer, and things are also easier to do. One of these things is to make some home improvements that will let you and your family stay comfortable even when the colder seasons roll around.
Following are 7 home improvements that you can make this summer to make your home feel brand new.
Renovating Your Deck
Even if you’re on a budget, you can still spruce up your deck and give your home a major facelift because a nicely done deck has this effect. You will probably spend a lot more time on it this season anyway, so get the repairs done and out of the way early.
If your deck is made from wood, you can give it a richer feel by staining it with quality, weatherp roofing stain. This is the simples way to make it look brand new and add more years to it so give it a go. If you don’t want to stain, you can get paint and add a pattern like checkerboard patterns to it.
You can also add a pergola or tarp to let you enjoy the outdoors while shielding you from direct sunlight. The tarp has the added benefit of also keeping water out so you don’t have to move your furniture around every time it rains.
Another idea is to add privacy to your deck by using lattice, a green wall, or even up-cycled shutters. All of these have a very low environmental impact and will cost a lot less than the aesthetic they leave your deck with.
Finally, you can add lamps, planter boxes, or even a whole dining table if your deck has enough room for it and turn the space into a whole new experience!
Just be sure to seek the assistance of home building contractors for more involving activities like cutting wood and setting up structures that need good support to avoid accidents in the future.
Repairing Your Roof
Roofs are our first line of defense against the elements, making this improvement more of a structural necessity than an aesthetic one. While it’s risky and complicated to work on the roof and you should generally seek out the assistance of a residential roofing contractor, there are a few upgrades you can take on if you are handy enough.
These are things like cleaning the gutter, finding leaks and fixing them, replacing flashing, and replacing missing or broken shingles. This should strictly be done if the situation is basic and you have a bit of experience working on roofs because you may run into issues when things get a bit technical.
Other upgrades you should consider for your roof include installing airtight chimney caps to save energy by stopping the heat leaking out of your home through your chimney when it’s not in use. They also keep birds and critters out on top of being easy to use as they are spring-loaded.
Another upgrade is installing eave flashing which is a bituminous membrane that self-seals around roofing fasteners to form water-tight seals over the eaves, the roof’s areas that are most susceptible to developing ice dams.
Finally, you can improve the ventilation in your attic to keep it from becoming a furnace in the summer. This essentially heats up your entire house and the rooms directly beneath your attic especially. When done with these roof repairs, you can also enlist the services of drain cleaning companies to make sure there’s no buildup where your gutters drain rainwater.
Sprucing up Your Garage Space
With the tendency of garages to be extra storage spaces even more that places to park your car, they can get cluttered and look terrible in a while.
Apart from cleaning up your garage and getting rid of things you don’t need (like that old deep freezer), here are a few more things you can do to give it an improved look:
Add wall-mounted shelves to maximize the storage area and get things off the floor. Baskets, hooks, wire and wood shelves can all make your garage look brand new at a minimal amount of time and money. If you decide to use storage bins, stack them vertically to save your floor space for other use or place them on boards screwed into your garage ceiling.
Give your garage door some attention with a garage door makeover which may be anything from a fresh coat of paint to new paneling. You can also get garage door repair contractors to help you insulate your garage door and reduce the energy lost in heating and cooling when temperatures get hot or cold.
For lighting, you can add special LED light bulbs which are specially made to withstand vibrations from opening and closing the garage door as well as extreme temperatures. This will save you from replacing standard bulbs every so often and it is one upgrade you can do in minutes with no extra equipment.
Applying a fresh coat of epoxy over your garage’s floor paint or even another coat of epoxy will add a beautiful touch to the bigger floor space you have after getting things off the floor.
Paint Your House Afresh
A fresh coat of paint can make the most mundane space come to life in an instant, and the best part is that you can do it all by yourself, saving money as well as increasing your home’s value. If the area is too large or there are numerous issues that need to be addressed, consider getting the services of a commercial painter.
Some tips you should follow if you decide to DIY are:
- Make the necessary preparations a day or more before you start painting. This means moving furniture, covering large furnishings with drop cloths, protecting trim with painter’s tape, removing chandeliers, and gathering your paint and tools in one area. This will help you work faster and more neatly.
- If you are going to paint the whole room, start with the ceiling then move to the walls, and finish with trim which will be slower to paint than wide spaces.
- Repair damages like chips and cracks before you start painting so you work on a smooth, even surface that will produce the best results.
- Wear protective clothing or clothing that you will discard because there will be paint spatters. Also cover your hair with a scarf and wear protective eye goggles to make sure no paint gets in your eyes.
- Finally, if you need to take a break before you finish painting, cover your brushes with plastic wrap and keep them aside so they don’t dry out but stay pliable. Simply unwrap them when you’re ready to continue painting.
While you can manage to do all of this by yourself, it will be better if you can enlist the help of friends or family as it will be easier and faster to do things like prep and cleanup. You can even use this time as an opportunity to bond and catch up while being productive.
Reseal Your Driveway
If you have an asphalt driveway, you need to seal it once every three years at least. Doing it more often can lead to ugly peels and cracks, so avoid it. For a concrete driveway, once every four to five years will keep it looking good and new.
For a concrete driveway, follow these instructions if you will do it yourself:
First repair any holes and cracks before you begin working, but note that it is a bit hard to get the repair material in a color that exactly matches the rest of your driveway. Allow for it to cure before taking the next steps.
Next, clean off any oil stains with a pressure washer or trisodium phosphate which can be found in paint shops and home improvement stores.
You can then apply a penetrating concrete sealer if your driveway is mature. This seeps into the surface, creating a barrier that keeps water out and keeps your concrete driveway safe from salt and the cycles of freezing and thawing.
Spray the sealer in a sweeping motion over the driveway and complete it in one session to avoid creating adhesion issues. and make sure to follow the instructions on the container well.
For an asphalt driveway, here is a basic guide:
If there are cracks up to about an eight of an inch wide, there are store-bought sealing products that you can use. If the cracks are larger, they can be repaired by filling them with a special form of asphalt called cold patch. These will need to be further sealed with a liquid crack filler. Be sure to first remove any dirt and plants from the crack using a wire brush. For extremely large holes however, seek professional help.
Next, and just as you would do for concrete, allow time for curing after any repairs then thoroughly clean the driveway before sealing it.
Remember to wear work clothes, gloves, eye protection, and a breathing mask when applying the sealer. If the sealer you get has to be stirred before use, it will be easier to stir it if you buy it a day in advance and then store it upside down. This will bring sediments to the top and you won’t have to manually dislodge them from the bottom while stirring.
Finally, allow at least a full day to let it cure and keep pets and children away from it during this time.
Summer is the best time to seal a driveway because it’s dry and hot so curing is fast and you don’t have to work with humidity which can introduce complications. Be sure to plan ahead to avoid situations like losing access to your car if you seal the driveway while the car is in the garage.
Fix Your AC
With summer heat comes excessive use of the AC. This will therefore be the time you notice some issues, or you are able to resolve them without the hindrance of rain and snow. AC repair should be done yearly to keep your systems in good form and also ensure efficient use of energy in your household.
Stay watchful for strange noises and smells which may be signs of impending failure, and get a HVAC professional to check anything suspicious out because an AC outage can leave you in the heat for up to two days before you can get it repaired.
Septic Tank Repairs
If you’ve been seeing problems like toilets and drains in your house backing up, toilets flushing slowly, bathtubs and sinks draining slower than they used to, or a smell of sewage near your septic tank or drain field, it’s time to call septic tank services.
Broken septic pipes need to be replaced as soon as they are discovered, and tree roots growing into your piping in search of water dealt with before they rupture the pipes.
These issues need to be dealt with before they spiral out of control and potentially cost a lot more to repair. Every three to five years, make sure that your septic tank is pumped and inspected to make sure it functions and there are no underlying problems.
With home improvements, it’s not always about the looks, function is a major thing to keep a lookout for as well. Summer is the best time to get anything that needs fixing out of the way because the weather is perfect. With a well-functioning home, you can be secure in the knowledge that when it gets rainy and cold, you have great shelter to keep you and your family safe from the elements while keeping your house’s standards high. This list of home improvements should help you keep your house enviably neat.