June Maintenance Must-Do's for Your Kansas City Home

June has arrived in Kansas City! School is out, the days are long, and the temperature is rising. With your vacation calling (so is ours!), home maintenance can be easy to put off. Do yourself a major favor by tackling a few maintenance projects now—a little pain now means a big gain later. This brief list of tasks will ensure your KC home runs smoothly through the dog days of summer.

Don't worry: The Just Say Home KC team has worked to make home maintenance chores as quick and easy on you as possible. With our handy checklist of chores, you can knock them out and return to your summer fun quickly.

Check AC

"The last thing you want is a busted air conditioner, so before a heat wave hits, give it a test run for 30 minutes to make sure it's cooling properly," says Dave Quandt, vice president of field operations at American Home Shield, a home warranty company.

Shortcut: Adjusting your programmable thermostat by two to three degrees at a time can extend the life of your AC unit.

Call in the pros: Does anything seem off with your unit? Call a professional Kansas City HVAC company. Service will cost between $100 and $250, which includes cleaning the condenser and lubricating the fan motor. It will be money well-spent as outdoor temperatures go deep into the red zone.

Prevent Mold Growth

We're entering a stretch of the hottest months of the year, with bouts of heavy rain expected through the Kansas City area. This combination of heat and moisture creates the perfect mold environment.

Shortcut: One simple trick that will keep mold at bay? Lowering your thermostat.

"Some homeowners try to save money by setting the thermostat at an unsafe high temperature, especially in high humidity areas," says Phil Kuczak, air-conditioning service and installation manager at Best Home Services. "The cost savings on the power bill could quickly be far outdone if you end up with a mold problem."

Leaving your AC fan in the "on" position can be tempting, but this can cause rapid mold growth, especially in high-humidity regions. If your fan is running continuously, moisture that's condensed on your AC's evaporator coil during cooling doesn't have a chance to drain off and can blow back into your home. It's essential to keep your AC in the "auto" position as much as possible.

Kuczak also cautions against limiting or increasing airflow to certain rooms by shutting supply grills. This can also cause condensation buildup, leading to mold growth around those grills, the adjacent ceiling, or the adjoining wall.

Call in the pros: Removing a mold problem can cost a small fortune. Kansas City homeowners spend an average of $3,200 on mold remediation.

Prime Your Pool

Test your pool's pH levels frequently to keep the chemicals balanced and ensure your pool is safe for swimming. To avoid that swampy green color, run the pump daily (one hour for every ten degrees of heat in the water is a good rule of thumb).

Shortcut: Did you forget to run the pump and come home to a green pool? No need to panic! According to Quandt, a jug of liquid bleach will clear it up quickly.

Call in the pros: Don't want to bother with daily pool maintenance? You can hire a KC pool maintenance company for a monthly average of $100 to $350.

Eradicate Pests

Warm weather has many benefits, but unfortunately, it also draws out all the creepy-crawlies. The good news? You can give summer bugs the boot (or at least keep them at a comfortable distance).

Shortcuts:

Shrubs or bushes that touch your home's exterior can harbor wood-destroying insects such as termites, carpenter ants, and powderpost beetles. Make sure to trim these branches throughout the summer.

Mercury-vapor outdoor lightbulbs can be swapped for yellow-sodium vapor ones. These bulbs are less attractive to insects such as mosquitoes, moths, and beetles.

Thick vegetation can house unwanted pests, so weed these areas and pick ripe fruits and vegetables as soon as they're ready.

Spilled seeds can attract rodents to your yard, so keep bird feeders at least 25 feet from your house.

Stop mosquitoes before they hatch by eliminating all sources of standing water on your property.

Call in the pros: Knowing when to seek professional help for home pests is vital.

"Do-it-yourself pest control for a cockroach or occasional spider can be cost-effective, but it's not going to stand up when you have a serious infestation," says Ryan Michel, owner of Defense Pest Control in Mesa, AZ. "Pests can carry bacteria and disease, and some can do serious damage to your home. If you're seeing pests pop up with frequency—especially if you notice them appearing in the same places—it's time to call in a professional to help."

Professional KC pest control costs an average of $100 to $260 a month, but this monthly expense can not only get rid of unwanted visitors this summer but also prevent future, more costly damage.

Service Sprinklers

Servicing your yard's irrigation system will save water, prevent damage to your landscaping, and reduce standing water.

Shortcut: Check to ensure that your sprinklers are programmed to follow any Kansas City water rationing regulations. You can also program your system to optimal summer use settings and keep your landscape looking fresh.

Call in the pros: Don't know what kind of maintenance your sprinkler system needs? A professional can take on this task for about $100 and answer any questions you may have about Kansas City regulations or your system.

Keep Your Fridge Frosty

As Kansas City temperatures rise this month, your fridge and freezer are at their most vulnerable. Cleaning condenser coils will help the unit stay cool by releasing heat from the compressor and keep it running smoothly. Remove dirt, pet hair, and any nasty food lodged within these coils.

Shortcuts: "Make the job simple by using a vacuum and coil brush," says Chris Granger, vice president of Sears Home Services.

While you're at it, tackle the door since Granger says, "A leaky door gasket can result in your refrigerator trying to cool the entire kitchen."

The gasket can be washed with a mild cleaner. Then, you can check the seal integrity with a soapy water solution—just like you would do with an inflatable mattress. Another approach is the dollar bill method: Close a dollar bill in the door so it's half in your fridge. If your gasket isn't tight enough, the dollar bill will fall out or slide down.

Call in the pros: Most KC appliance repairmen charge by the hour. Depending on the issue, a refrigerator repair could cost anywhere from $100 to $250 an hour.

Tune Up Your Lawn Mower

Compressed air or a leaf blower can clear grass, dirt, and debris accumulated in your riding lawn mower. To get rid of old fuel, drain it into an approved gasoline can and follow hazardous waste disposal regulations. Then, change your oil and filter. Granger recommends letting the mower run for a bit before getting started. If you have a foam air filter, clean it with soap and water and make sure it's dry before reinstalling it.

Lastly, change the spark plugs. "This simple but crucial task will help the mower start smoother and run more efficiently," Granger says.

Call in the pros: On average, professional Kansas City lawn mower maintenance and repair will cost up to $100. This amount could increase depending on the job's complexity and whether your mower requires new parts.

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