Dallas, Texas, is home to some of the most beautiful outdoor landscapes, plants, animals, and buildings in the United States, which is why it is one of the most popular places to live. But all of its beauty can be hard to enjoy when the excess summer heat rolls in. With temperatures reaching well above 90 degrees Fahrenheit every day and the humidity blanketing the area almost constantly, Dallas in the summertime can be difficult to live in. That’s why homeowners in Dallas, Texas, should start preparing the exterior of their homes for summer right away. Follow these outdoor cleaning tips to prepare your Dallas, Texas home for summer.
Start at the top
Even if your lawn is beautifully manicured and your backyard is perfectly staged, your home won’t be ready for summer without a solid roof and gutter system. So before you even consider cleaning the exterior of your home, get your ladder out.
- Inspect your roof for signs of damage. Check for loose, broken, missing, discolored shingles or obvious mold and moss buildup signs. You can also check inside the attic for leaks.
- Inspect the gutters. While gutters may not be the most viewed aspect of your home’s exterior, they are among the most important. Your gutter system moves rainwater away from your home rather than allowing it to pool around the exterior and cause long-term damage to the foundation. To check the gutter system, you will either need to hire a professional or inspect each section of the system. You will need a ladder to climb up on to do the latter. When you look into the gutters, there should not be any debris. There also should not be standing water or signs of rust. Both might indicate that your gutters must be repositioned to promote proper water drainage. Check the downspouts next by running a hose into your gutter while waiting for the water to emerge from the downspout. If the water runs slowly or does not come out, the downspout needs to be cleaned. If you notice a severe build-up, denting, or deformation of any part of your gutter system, call a professional for assistance.
Add some power
The sides of your home take as much beating as your roof since everything from wind to dirt to hail can slam into it throughout the year. With so much attacking your home’s exterior, some damage and dirt will occur. Contact a professional immediately if your siding shows signs of damage, such as dents or loose panels. Loose pieces of siding can lead to moisture becoming trapped and will quickly turn into a mold issue. If your home’s exterior needs a bit of TLC, you can easily clean it yourself with the help of a power washer. Depending upon the size of your home, pressure washing your home will take an hour or two. Before you begin, take into account what type of siding you have.
- Vinyl: Can withstand a powerful gas pressure washer (2,500-3,000 psi)
- Aluminum, stucco, or soft-grain wood: Use a less powerful washer of 1,200-1,500 psi
Once you know what type of pressure washer to use:
- Prepare the area by removing or covering light fixtures, air conditioner condensers, shrubs, and plants.
- Mix the water, cleaning detergent, and mildewcide according to the manufacturer’s recommendations.
- Stay back 3 feet from your home and begin spraying in an even side-to-side motion, starting from the bottom and working your way up.
Wash the windows
With summer taking over the Dallas, Texas, area, the sky is filled with more and more sunlight. But if your home has old and dirty windows, your home won’t ever receive the full benefit of natural sunlight. There are several ways to increase natural sunlight in your home.
- Wash the windows with a streak-free cleaner
- Wash the screens with soap and water to remove excess dirt
- Remove heavy curtains from around windows
- Replace heavy curtains with sheer curtains
- Replace old windows with new Energy Star windows
Refresh the backyard
You can add value to your Dallas, Texas, home by creating a little oasis in your backyard. Home buyers everywhere are still very interested in a backyard with plenty of space and areas to entertain and relax. Start your backyard refresh by removing moss, debris, and dirt from your patio space. You should also wash walkways and the pool deck. Next, update patio furniture, cushions, pillows, and rugs. If you have an outdoor kitchen, now is the time to scrub the grill, countertops, and other surfaces. Finally, ensure your pool water is at the correct level and that all pool attachments and motors are running smoothly. Other items to prepare for summer are the fire pit or fireplace, flower beds, and outdoor dining area.
Update the landscaping
Summers in Dallas, Texas, are known for being extremely hot and very humid. With ample sunshine on the way, it’s time to ensure your landscaping is prepared to handle the extreme weather. Plants such as Texas sage, yucca, black-eyed Susan, and petunia grow effortlessly in Dallas and adapt to the climate. Make sure your landscaping works with your home’s foundation rather than against it. For instance, if your home has landscaping borders around its side, make sure they slope away from the home. Choose water-wise planting systems to move water away from your foundation and keep your plants healthy without daily watering. This type of landscaping is very popular among homebuyers and will eventually help you sell your Dallas, Texas home fast. Finish off your landscaping with a layer of mulch and garden lights. Not only will the updated landscaping
Service the HVAC unit.
As summer weather pushes temperatures higher, you must ensure your HVAC unit works properly. Without continued maintenance, an HVAC unit could work inefficiently or discontinue working altogether. You should have your HVAC unit serviced by a licensed professional once a year. However, if you are simply checking to ensure the unit is in working order before the summer, don’t forget to change the filter and check to make sure the compressor is working correctly. Signs that your HVAC unit is malfunctioning can be as simple as the forced air feeling warmer than before, inaccurate temperature readings, or not turning on as often as needed.
Change the filters
With increased temperature, more debris and more allergens are in the air. Changing your filters will help eliminate those annoying particles and clean the air in your home. Change the range hood filter and the air vent filters. You should also clean out your dryer vent, as a clog or build-up of lint could lead to a fire. Finally, change the water filter to ensure your drinking water is safe to consume.
Dallas summers can be excessively hot and humid, but that doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy them. Finish up your outdoor cleaning projects so that when the height of summer rolls in, you can sit back and relax with a cold drink.