More July 10, 2015

July Maintenance Guide


This article originally appeared on

Written by Anne Reagan


Your summer plans should include keeping up with these home and yard maintenance projects.


The month of July can be a busy one for homeowners. Summer vacation, celebrations, a change in the family schedule and increased heat can create fun but active weekends. If you live in an area with increased summer storms or floods, you’ll want to make sure your home and family are prepped for emergencies. For example, you can dedicate one weekend to creating a whole-home inventory. To keep your summer home costs down, maintain your air conditioning units and practice smart water conservation in the yard. July can be a great month to tackle larger home improvement projects, especially on the exterior. Projects like roofing, siding, painting, patio, deck, and landscaping might require hiring a professional. Be sure to read our articles about how to make smart hiring decisions and how to budget for your project.


Get everyone involved in home maintenance

With longer daylight hours and, for some, a change in the daily routine, it’s a great idea to get the kids involved in home improvement or home maintenance so they can learn problem-solving skills as well as learn how things work. Even simple projects like setting up a sprinkler system, repairing the fence, washing windows or weeding can teach kids valuable skills. Keep small hands away from sharp tools by purchasing inexpensive child versions of adult tools and encourage them to wear special safety glasses (or simply use swimming goggles). Kids love getting their hands dirty and contributing to family activities!


Best July weekend projects

  • practice water conservation by watering by hand and adding mulch.
  • service your air conditioning unit before technicians get too busy
  • check your exterior siding and repair, replace or repaint as necessary.
  • keep mosquitos away by emptying stagnant pools of water
  • set up or build a compost area in your yard so you can use this “black gold” for fall planting
  • make organic fertilizer, plant fall annuals and sow fall vegetable seeds
  • organize your closets and donate winter clothes
  • pack a summer emergency car kit


Grilling and BBQ safety tips

July is a hot time for outdoor grilling but it’s also the peak month for grill and barbecue fires. Here are some tips for keeping your grill area safe this summer:

  • always use your grill outside and away from the house
  • open the lid before igniting
  • never leave your grill unattended
  • clear a 3-foot area around the grill and place it away from heavily trafficked areas, especially where children play
  • keep your grill clean and remove grease build-ups
  • always place cooled coals in a metal, lidded container


Tip of the month: Sort and organize school work

School is out and your children’s precious memories and school projects should be saved or recycled.

  • keep the best projects in a clear plastic container that can be labeled year after year
  • display precious artwork or achievements on the wall
  • donate used backpacks and clothing
  • thoroughly clean lunch boxes prior to storing them
  • organize your family’s “command center” (here are some tips) is the free home network that connects homeowners and renters with the right home service professionals.