9 Essentials You Need in Your Home Repair Toolkit

Putting together your first toolkit is virtually a rite of passage, but it’s also a pretty smart way to cut back on costs around the home. With the right tool for the job, many small repairs can be handled with aplomb, saving you money on contractors.

Most people acquire their tools piecemeal, adding a wrench or a screwdriver as life calls for it. But there are a couple of problems with this approach. First, it’s not going to ensure that you have what you need on hand to make a quick emergency adjustment. And it’s certainly not fun to have to run to the home improvement store every time you want to start a project. Of course, on the other hand, you don’t necessarily need to buy out the Home Depot, either. Some of your more specialized tools you can get as-needed for projects—that way, you won’t spend a wad of cash on products you may or may not ever need.

Either way, there’s no denying that a few essentials can come in handy to manage your basic repairs and keep your home in working order. Here are nine of our favorites to add to your beginner’s toolbox.

assorted tools

A Screwdriver Set

Every household should have a selection of flat- and Phillips-head screwdrivers on hand. These useful tools can help you with a range of jobs, like removing an outlet cover or prying a can of paint open. So if you don’t have a couple lying around, you should really make the investment. Kits typically include several screwdrivers in different sizes, or you can opt for a multipurpose screwdriver with interchangeable heads. The bits in these can swapped out on a single handle, keeping storage at a minimum. Whatever you do, don’t go cheap. It’s worth the extra expense to not have a tool break on you at a pivotal moment. Look for brands that have extended warranties or lifetime guarantees, or just go with one of these sets recommended by Business Insider.

A Claw Hammer

Even if you don’t plan on doing a lot of carpentry, claw hammers are a useful piece of equipment to have around the house. They’re good for taking care of everything from a popped porch nail to hanging a picture, and are absolutely essential for many DIY projects. Here again, quality counts. Seek out trusted, well-reviewed brands—even if you wind up spending a little bit more than the economy model, it’s worth it. Choose a “smooth face” hammer with a steel or fiberglass handle and a straight rip claw for a good, general-purpose tool that will handle most any project you can throw at it.

An Electric Drill

Sooner or later, most homeowners need to drill a hole in the wall or fix a loose screw. A quality electric drill in your toolkit will help you handle these jobs—but with the right bits and attachments you can also sand, grind and mix paints and finishes, along with many other functions. That makes your drill one of the most versatile pieces in your toolkit. When selecting one, you’ll need to decide whether you want to go corded or not. Cordless drills offer the obvious convenience of working untethered, but these models are sometimes less powerful than corded drills, and obviously have to be charged before they can be used. For the best results, look for a model ranging between 12 and 18 volts, which is more than enough power for most repair jobs.

A Tape Measure

We understand if you’re not crazy about power tools, but there’s no excuse for not having one of these somewhere in your house. Tape measures are necessary for everything from cutting wood for projects to hanging blinds to measuring whether that new sofa you have your eye on will fit in your living room. Pick one that measures about ¾-inch by 16 feet, which is a good standard size.

A Hacksaw

Whether you’ve got an overgrown tree branch on your hands or a too-tall Christmas tree, a hacksaw is your go-to tool for cutting it down to size. While more advanced DIYers may want to look into a full-service power saw, a hacksaw is good for home repair one-offs and those random odd jobs that pop up every once and awhile. Go for one that has at least a two-foot-long blade that can be replaced after it dulls.

A Set of Pliers

Pliers are amazing little hand tools, able to twist wires, cut fasteners and grip and clamp metal pieces in awkward, difficult spaces. There are tons of different types, but all you really need are three basic pairs to get your toolkit started: a set of 8-inch needle-nose pliers, a set of 10-inch groove-joint pliers and a pair of locking pliers. The needle-nose pliers are useful for twisting and cutting small wires and cables, as well as drawing out nails and screws in hard-to-reach spaces. Groove-joint pliers will help you turn nuts and bolts and get enough torque to loosen pipes and connections. The locking pliers act as a handheld vice, which makes them handy for removing frozen or broken screws, nuts, bolts, staples, nails pins—basically if you need to get it loose, these guys can help.

Pipe Wrenches

Need to put in a new sink? Fix a leaky faucet? Then these wrenches will be your best friend. They have a curved head that helps turn pipes and fittings. You can buy them in a three- or four-piece set, which should get you squared away for most small plumbing repairs around the home. Look for a set made from aluminum for a super-sturdy long-lasting addition to your toolkit.

A Staple Gun

Staple guns are great for everything from hanging Christmas decorations to repairing upholstery and everything in between. Regardless of how apt you are at home repairs, you’ll no doubt find plenty of uses for one of these in your life as a homeowner. Opt for an all-purpose manual carton stapler, and try the trigger before you settle on it. You want a staple gun that you can operate without too much effort—a sore hand is not a good look for any home handyperson!

A Utility Knife

A good utility knife has tons of uses—cutting into packaging, undoing plastic zip ties, and breaking down boxes, just to name a few—so it’s safe to say every homeowner could use one of these in their toolbox. Ideally, your utility knife should have replaceable blades, plus safety features like a nonslip handle and a retractable tip. Get enough blades and you can basically survive a zombie apocalypse!

If you want to go for extra credit or have several DIY projects in your future, you may also want to add a level, a hand sander, an adjustable wrench, a chisel, a putty knife, and a handsaw—or any other extras you think you might need along the way. Now, congratulate yourself! You’ve just leveled up your homeownership!

5 Projects Perfect for an Productive Three-Day-Weekend

Some of us ponder the long weekend ahead and think, “ahhh, a chance to get in some primo R&R.” And some us clap our hands together, eagerly contemplating all the home projects we can get accomplished with that extra day.

If you fall into that last category, this list is for you! Of course, there’s more to it than satisfying your itch to get your home in order. Labor Day weekend is an excellent opportunity to kick off your fall projects and repairs. These jobs will serve you well when the colder weather makes its first appearance and there’s no time for outdoor projects. After all, you’re an ant, not a grasshopper!

sealing a fence

Purge Your Garage

Our ancestors worked hard to give us the gift of an extra 24 hours this weekend—the least we could do with it is do something useful. Luckily, that’s just about all the time you need to reorganize and clean out the garage from top to bottom.

Before you start groaning, remember: winter is coming. You aren’t going to want to tackle this project once the weather dips below freezing, so take advantage of the milder temperatures and the extra day this weekend to whip yours into shape.

Don’t want to work hard this weekend? Make garage cleaning fun! Turn on some of your favorite tunes, or get inspired by one of these cute, quick organization ideas. Or sort your stuff into three piles: ‘To Toss,’ ‘To Donate’ and ‘To Keep,’ and stay motivated by thinking about all the good your donations will do later. Sell high-ticket items like bikes and power equipment on Craigslist and do something fun with the money you make—you deserve a reward after all that hard work!

Fix Up Your Fences

Summer thunderstorms can do a number on fences. And the sun beating down on them all day doesn’t help. If it’s been awhile since you’ve checked yours out, you may want to capitalize on the temperate weather to give your fences a good once-over.

If you don’t have any visibly leaning or damaged pieces, look around for rails that are pulling away from the posts and keep an eye out for cracked boards, rust, and rotted boards. The former can sometimes be fixed with a few metal braces, while the latter may require new boards or entire replacement sections, depending on the severity of the damage. Watch this video to learn how to replace wooden fence pickets by yourself and this one to realign a leaning fence.

Weatherize Your Windows

Labor Day is pretty much the unofficial end of summer, which means colder weather isn’t all that far behind—not fun to contemplate, if your home is prone to drafts.

But even if you don’t suffer from phantom winter breezes, you still may be losing a lot of heating—and spending a ton of unnecessary money on your energy bills. For example, experts estimate that a quarter-inch gap under your door is equivalent, heat-loss-wise, to a four-inch diameter hole in your wall.

Keep your windows and doors protected by sealing and re-caulking now, before the weather turns bad. Scrape loose any old caulk around the glass panes with a razor blade and then spread silicone caulk around them in the manner described by this video. Add a door sweep and some weatherstripping foam to your doors, and you should be all set. Let the winter do its worst!

Perk Up Your Pantry

With fall cooking and holiday treats on the horizon, your pantry is going to be getting plenty of use. And that means it could probably stand for a little reorganization before you begin stuffing it with autumnal staples.

First thing’s first: take everything off the shelves and wipe down every surface and drawer. Toss any food or spices that have expired (you can use the search field in EatByDate.com to help with any mystery products). Next, give everything you intend to re-shelve a once-over with your sponge. Finally organize everything in a way that makes sense. If you need help figuring out what that is, The Kitchn has a pretty helpful list of organization strategies to get you started.

Lighten Up Your Landscaping

Not sure if you’ve noticed, but the days aren’t as long as they used to be. Pretty soon, you’ll be coming home from work when the sun is setting and stumbling up the porch steps in the dark.

You can probably see where we’re going with this. Landscape lighting doesn’t just improve your home’s evening curb appeal, it also has the functional purpose of lighting your home’s exteriors. Use this weekend as your chance to install pathway lighting, floodlights or recessed stair lights for your deck—and make coming home at night that much safer!

How awesome will it feel to end the weekend knowing you really accomplished something? Now that’s the way to celebrate Labor Day!

Need a bigger dose of home repair ideas? Check out our archive of maintenance articles and get ready to get your weekend warrior on!

Your Back-to-School Home Maintenance Checklist

Let’s be honest: every parent feels a slight twinge of relief knowing that the kids will be back in school soon. These “thank god it’s back to school time” tweets don’t write themselves, after all. But regardless of how you feel about the upcoming school year, your kid’s first day back serves as an important reminder that you have some home upkeep to do. In between school shopping and packing lunches, make sure to schedule some time for the following maintenance tasks—to keep your home running smoothly all the way until summer vacation!

school bus on a shelf

Inspect Your Roof

Summer storms often spell disaster for your roof, which has the job of standing up to rain, wind and hail. Make sure yours is in tiptop shape by getting it inspected by a professional roofer. The pros know how to safely navigate your rooftop and to seek out telltale signs of shingle damage, leaks and rot. These indicators can be sneaky, so it’s important to have yours checked frequently; experts say every six months to a year is ideal. It could mean the difference between a leaking roof and one that’s solid for years to come!

Trim Back Overgrowth

Summer is prime growing season for trees and shrubs, so yours can probably use a little trim. And cutting back overgrown foliage gets you ready for the winter storms ahead, when falling branches can cause all kinds of havoc. Prune away any dead or weak branches or foliage that hangs over your roof or sidewalks. If you don’t feel comfortable doing it yourself, call in a professional tree service for some backup. Whatever you do, though, don’t trim any branches near utility wires—this is a job for city or county employees only.

Clean Your Kitchen Appliances

Now that the summer heat is finally waning, using the oven seems a lot more appealing. To prepare for the home-cooked meals ahead, consider giving your fridge, oven and dishwasher a deep, thorough clean. Need a quick refresher on how to do just that? This post from Martha Stewart has pretty much everything you need to know. Of course Martha would know how to do kitchen cleaning right!

Get Your Water Heater Up-to-Snuff

No one likes a cold shower—least of all when it’s freezing outside! With colder weather on the horizon, it’s the perfect time to give your water heater a little TLC. More specifically, you’ll want to flush your water heater’s tank with a garden hose. This frequently overlooked home maintenance task rids your tank of sediments that build up over time. Left to their own devices, these mineral deposits not only reduce your water heater’s performance, but can also cause leaks and other expensive, irksome problems. Save yourself a new hot water heater and clean yours out following the instructions in this video from Rheem.

Deep Clean Your Floors

With the kids spending more time inside, messes are sure to follow. Meanwhile, the rainy and snowy days ahead mean they’ll be tracking mud and dirt inside at epic levels. To keep your home presentable, it’s not a bad idea to give your floors and carpets a deep cleaning now before the weather takes a nasty turn. Regardless of the type of flooring you have in your home, Real Simple offers tips to get it sparkling clean—at least until the kids get to it, that is.

Check Your Furnace

Speaking of nasty weather, if your home gets its first frost sooner rather than later, you’re going to want to give your furnace some attention now. A little routine maintenance, such as changing the air filter, cleaning the vents and testing the thermostat will go a long way when the temperatures plummet. In fact, you may even think about calling in an HVAC specialist for a professional tune-up. A pro can check your electrical connections and give your system a more thorough cleaning—and inspect all the parts to make sure they’re working properly. After all, parenting is hard enough without a broken furnace to worry about!

20 One-Hour Home Improvement Projects to Reclaim Your Weekends

Hear that noise? It’s the sound of your weekend draining away! Somehow, those brief 48 hours never seem long enough—especially when you have a bunch of home improvement projects cluttering up your weekend to-do list. Spending all day at the home improvement store, watching a bunch of nonsensical YouTube videos, just to call a contractor in the end anyway? Not exactly our idea of fun!

DIY isn’t always a weekend timesuck, though—you just have to work smarter, not longer. Take these genius home improvement projects, for instance. They have all the perks of a large, leisure-gobbling job: you’ll get a more beautiful, well-maintained home and the sense of accomplishment that goes along with it. You just won’t have to forfeit your whole Saturday to do it! Professional-style home improvement in 60 minutes or less? Here are 20 projects that are our go-tos for a quick fixer-upper.

a relaxing hammock

Clean Your Refrigerator’s Condenser Coils

When was the last time you looked behind you refrigerator? Thought so. Don’t worry, you’re definitely not alone. Cleaning the fridge coils isn’t a glamorous job by any means, but it can improve your refrigerator’s energy efficiency by up to 30 percent and makes it last a lot longer, too, so it’s definitely worth it. Here’s how to get it done fast, from the appropriately named WeekendWorkbench.

Clean Your Range Hood Filter

While you’re at it, you might want to have a look at your range hood filter as well. This guy sits underneath your range hood, with the sole purpose of collecting excess grease, smoke, odors that drift up as you cook. Needless to say, it gets pretty filthy after a while, but nothing that a little baking soda and some determination can’t handle. Get the full instructions from The Kitchn here.

Paint the Front Door

The beauty of this fix lies in its simplicity. A couple coats of paint in a bright, eye-popping color is enough to take your entryways into next-level curb appeal. This is also a great time to finally use that paint leftover from redoing the kids’ rooms. Pick a strong, bold choice like brilliant red, stately navy or eclectic turquoise to put your own unique spin on your front-door decor.

Touch Up Your Baseboards

Baseboards tend to get passed over for the more decorative parts of your home, but the truth is, tiny touches like these easily make or break its overall aura of sophistication. And from their spot on the floor, where they’re subject to grime, dust, and dings, chances are your baseboards could probably use some love. There are lots of simple fixes for any kind of baseboard damage your feet, furniture or pets can come up with. If you just need to cover up a few marks or paint chips, a quick paint touch up will do the job. For gouges and scratches, you can either follow this tip from YouTuber AdamDIY and fill the damaged places with joint compound or replace a small section using this guide from The DIY Network. Either way, it will be well worth the sixty minutes you spend on it.

Switch Out the Hardware on Your Cabinets

This is another place where a small change gets you big-time bang for your decor buck (and effort!). Cabinet handles and drawer pulls often become grimy from years of use, so switching them out with shiny new hardware offers a lightning-quick fix for that problem—while allowing you to modernize outdated kitchen accents at the same time. We recommend oil-rubbed bronze bar pulls, or splurge for a set of glass or ceramic knobs that will really stand out. It’s the closest thing you’ll get to a kitchen remodel in less than an hour.

DIY a Concrete Firebowl or Planter

Concrete planters and tabletop firebowls have a super modern look that makes your exteriors sing! But they’re also pretty expensive, especially when you consider how easy it is to DIY one for yourself. Get the 411 on this stylish project from DIY Creators here.

Fix a Slow-Draining Sink

A slow draining sink isn’t just annoying, it’s also a lightning rod for stains and soap scum. And it’s only a matter of time until it becomes clogged, which often means a much more time-intensive repair. There are a couple of different ways to handle a slow sink: you can go with the traditional chemical drain cleaner, or a less abrasive alternative, such as baking soda mixed with vinegar. Or try one of the more drastic measures detailed here by The Spruce. No plumbing equipment necessary!

Install a New Faucet

This one will make you feel like a bonafide Bob Vila. Replacing a sink faucet is actually not all that complicated and can have a huge impact on your kitchen and bathroom decor. Goodbye rust, hello stainless steel! Lowes explains what you need to know.

Fix a Running Toilet

A running toilet is annoying, sure, particularly when it happens at three in the morning. But it also wastes gallons of water too: not great for your utility bills. Luckily, though, it’s a pretty simple fix, as long as you’re willing to get your hands wet. About 90% of the time, running toilets result from a problem with the flapper chain or the flapper itself, which has the job of creating a seal between the tank and the bowl. Replacing either piece is a cinch. Homeowner Series on YouTube elaborates.

Flush Your AC Drain Line

ACs are pretty miraculous little pieces of machinery, when you think about it. But just like many of our most ingenious contraptions, they do require a little maintenance from time-to-time to keep working in all their wondrous cooling glory. Beyond basic filter upkeep, you need to pay a little attention to your AC’s condensation drain line every so often. The line, which typically sits at the back of your outside unit, has the job of carrying humidity out of your home and depositing it outside as condensation. Algae and mildew can collect here eventually, which may clog the line if you’re not careful. A bad clog can shut your whole system down. Flushing the line occasionally with water and bleach or vinegar can make all the difference—and prevent you from spending a  night without AC. More on drain line cleaning here, from Today’s Homeowner.

Install a Rustic Beam Mantle

Fireplace looking a little more busted than rustic? A mantle is a great way to inspire a warm, cozy feeling in your living room—but there’s a fine line between quaint and antiquated. Give yours an updated Brooklyn rustic charm with this DIY beam mantle that you can have finished well before dinner. Full instructions available from Addicted2Decorating.

Hang Pretty Outdoor Curtains

What could be more relaxing than a lazy Sunday morning spent reading the paper on the porch? That is, if the glare doesn’t get to you first! Solve that problem for once and all with this unique and charming solution that’s as easy to install as it is on the eyes! Houzz provides some design ideas to get you inspired.

Make a Spa-Worthy Riverstone Bath Mat

Nothing washes away the stresses of the week like a long soak in the bath. To make yours extra marvelous, some spa touches are essential, like plush towels, scented candles, and this DIY bathmat you can make with some contact cement and 60 minutes’ worth of elbow grease. Find out more on Curbly.

Create a DIY Open Cabinet System

Super-trendy cabinets are just a few minutes away with this clever kitchen hack. In this stylish version from Better Homes & Gardens, trim added to the edges covers hinge holes and gives your cabinets a neat, professional look. And it will probably inspire you to finally clean out your cabinets. Bonus!

Powerwash Your Driveway

Does anything make you feel more powerful than blasting away dirt with a pressure washer? Sixty minutes spent wielding one of these babies will not only make you feel like a home superhero, they also bring the “like new” luster to cement walkways and drives. Take that, grime!

Create a Peel-and-Stick Faux Wood Plank Backsplash

Don’t you just love a good kitchen backsplash? Wood planks, newly in vogue, offer a game-changing backdrop for your kitchen counters. And with peel-and-stick flooring, they take literally no time to get up on the wall. Now that is the kind of backsplash revamp we can really get behind!

Weatherproof Your Doors

Air infiltration and heating and cooling leaks through doors make homes infinitely less comfortable and energy efficient. Even a gap as small as an ⅛ of an inch makes a difference—This Old House says it’s about equivalent to the air allowed in by a 5 ½-inch hole in the wall. With weatherstripping and a door sweep, you can stop phantom drafts in winter and lower your energy bills all year long. Here’s how.

Update Your House Numbers

Your home’s house numbers are sort of the like the font on your business cards: a small chance to add a touch of personality to an otherwise perfunctory feature. We particularly love stainless steel numbers in a classic mid-century font for a doorway that’s a part Wes Anderson and 100% charming. Nothing could be easier!

Wash Your Windows

You don’t even realize how dirty your home’s windows have gotten until you start cleaning them. The difference in visibility gives you a whole new outlook on life—literally! This usually-daunting task becomes simple with the right tools. This Old House explains how to use a strip applicator and squeegee to make window cleaning a cinch.

Sharpen Your Lawnmower Blades

This is one of those “spend time now to save time later” kinds of jobs. Sharpening blades twice a mowing season is an awesome shortcut, since dull blades can add serious drag to your mowing time. Once you nail this technique, it only takes about 10 minutes—and makes you feel like a serious pro around the lawn. More on that here, from The Family Handyman.

Only one last thing to consider: now that you’ve got your weekend chores lined up, what are you going to do with all the extra free time?

“Is My Grass Dead?” and Other End-of-Summer Home Questions Answered

Hot, hot, and hotter: three words that describe mid-August weather. And like any kind of meteorological extreme, summer heat can do a number on your home and yard, leading to plenty of end-of-the-season maintenance questions. To help, we’ve compiled a list of frequent queries homeowners have this time of yearwith answers, of course! You can use this list as your guide to August home maintenance or just to answer some lingering concerns you have around the home this time of year.

the sun shining through a leaf

Is My Grass Dead? Should I Fertilize It?

This is one we hear from homeowners all the time. Yes, a patch of brown, thirsty thatch isn’t all that attractive, and that can make it tempting to rush right out and run for the fertilizer. However, that may not be the right move. Grass that’s been stressed out by dry, hot weather will sometimes go dormant. It’s still alive, but not putting out new growth. It’s a protective measure the grass employs during hot, harsh weatherand it’s totally normal.

How can you tell if your grass has gone dormant or if it’s dead? Take a small handful and tug. If the grass comes loose easily, it’s gone to a better place. But if you feel resistance, it’s still kicking. In this case, the best thing to do is to give it a slow, gentle soak at about ½ an inch deep every two or three weeks. Or you can start giving it one inch of water every week to get it green again, but only if you’re prepared to continue watering regularly like that for the rest of the summer. Grass is weakened after it comes out of dormancy, so another period of drought just might be enough to kill it. Whatever you do, don’t flood it with waterit won’t make your lawn green up any faster. Same goes for the fertilizer. Spreading it now will either burn your lawn or cause it to send up a bunch of tender young shoots that will wither quickly in the heat. It’s best to wait until the weather gets cooler for that!

My AC Bills Are Through the Roof. How Can I Lower Them?

High cooling bills are like an unwanted house guest: no one invited them, and they’re using up all your toilet paper and eating all your food. Okay, so they’re not exactly like that, but you get the gist. While it’s normal to expect some increase in energy bills throughout the summer months, a huge spike could be a sign that you’re not getting the most out of your AC. Luckily, you’re not totally at the mercy of your utility company; there are some things you can do to improve your home’s cooling efficiency.

The simplest thing to do right off the bat is to change your AC filters. According to the Department of Energy, this simple act can potentially make your AC unit run 5 to 15 percent more efficiently—not too shabby! Other things you can do? Try cleaning the condenser coils on your outside unit, which can get gritty after a season of mowing and dust. You can also run your ceiling fans at the same time as your AC. That act alone has been known to help homeowners reduce thermostat settings by up to four degrees. And every degree you can shave off means more energy savings!

How Do I Get My Grill Ready for Fall?

Late summer marks the end of cookout season, and for many of us, that means it’s time to bid your grill a fond farewell for the winter. But before you do, give yours a little TLC so that it’s ready to go in spring. First and foremost, scour grates, heat plates and the warming rack with a wire brush to break down baked-on grease and grit. Scrape out the ashes and buildup inside the burner box, and wipe down the inside of the grill cabinet and the grill exterior with a gentle, food-safe solution, such as a mixture of water and vinegar. Wash the drip tray and grease cup in soapy water and allow them to dry thoroughly before reinstalling. Keep in mind that this little cleanup routine is great for year-round grills as well: you can keep your grill space too clean!

To prevent rust throughout the winter, apply a coat of cooking oil to the grates, heat plates, warming rack and burners. For gas grills that have an electronic igniter system, remove the battery and keep it stored inside for the winter—that way it won’t be damaged by moisture. Finally, put all the parts back in place, top it all off with a grill cover and move it into a garage, shed or other protected area to sit out the winter’s hibernation. So long until next year, cookouts!

Can the Sun Damage My Siding or Deck?

Absolutely. The sun beating down all day can be pretty rough on the surfaces of your home. While many kinds of vinyl, aluminum, and fiberglass siding are tested and waranteed against UV damage, you won’t get the same kind of guarantee with wood boards. For wood-clad homes, it’s not a bad idea to walk around your house this time of year, looking for cracked or peeling paint on the exterior, especially on sides that are regularly exposed to the sun all day. If you find a lot of damage, you may want to consider repainting with a UV-resistant exterior paint.

Now, onto your deck. If you haven’t already, now is the perfect time to give it a new coat of sealer, stain, or paint, since you’ll be able to get it done before the leaves start to fall. As you do, take a moment to put eyes on the boards, posts and stairs, too, to make sure there’s no rot or water damage there—otherwise, you’ll have bigger problems on your hands. Once you get a fresh coat of sealer on, you’ll be all set for winter moisture. Bonus!

Is There Anything Else I Should Do Before the Hot Weather Ends?

Hot weather provides an opportune time for a couple of other maintenance items, as well. Specifically, if you have an asphalt driveway in need of repair, now is when you should fix any potholes or cracks. You can DIY them yourself with liquid filler or crack-patching mastic.

Also, if you haven’t given your gutters any attention lately, you may want to do that now. Check the downspouts in particular—loose shingle granules can collect here after hailstorms, which could be an indicator of problems with your roof.

Lastly, start planning or researching large jobs, like roofing or siding projects or window replacements, that will expose part of your home to the elements while the contractors work. These are good projects for fall, when the weather is more comfortable.

Now go take a break and get yourself some ice cream! Armed with some home know-how, hot weather won’t keep you down!