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5 ideas to improve your summer outdoor living

Last week, we talked about getting your pool ready for the summer.

This week, we wanted to offer a few ideas to maximize your summer outdoor living experience. In addition to rinsing the dust and debris off the pavers and cleaning up tables and chairs, you’ll want to consider some of these suggestions for your outdoor summer sanctuary as well.

1. Do something shady

Adding extra shade can be a great attraction in your backyard in summer — perhaps for part of your swimming pool or dining/living area. You could build a gazebo or ramada with pillars and a permanent roof, but a quicker, easier option would be shade sails or canopies, such as the ones sheltering playgrounds in parks. They come with frames covered in tough shade cloth that typically have a 10-year guarantee. Be sure to secure them well, or you’ll lose them in our first dust storm! A professional, Rosie-Certified awning company can also ensure they stay put!

2. Get misty

Misters have been around forever, but the newest misters for cooling off your outdoor living room are a lot more exciting. You can mount these misters on your existing shade umbrellas or you can have free-standing fans that blow mist over your lounge chairs. Pumps can put out clouds of fog to roll across your swimming pool and your patio.

3. Sprinkle those pavers

Another cooling tactic for when you leave the swimming pool is to install irrigation heads among the pavers surrounding the pool. As they spray, they can reduce the surface temperature of those pavers by 30 to 40 degrees when you exit the pool. You can even operate the sprinkler heads via a remote control. (If you’re in the market for pavers, look for the lighter-colored ones).

4. Lounge in style

If the backyard lounge chairs look a bit shabby and faded, you might want to shop for new stuff. A popular trend in today’s outdoor furniture is wicker chairs and sofas woven of PVC fibers with a UV inhibitor. It’s tough and durable in the Arizona sunshine and lasts 10 times as long as wicker made from natural materials. It’s a whole lot cooler to the touch than furniture with a metal frame.

5. Install an outdoor shower

Wouldn’t it be great to have a real shower outdoors for the kids so that they can wash off the chlorine after a day in the pool? If you have the plumbing in place, it’s a pretty straight forward project. You may have to call a plumber, of course, to put an extra line in place if your house isn’t set up for this option. Better check with a plumber on what local codes are for handling the run-off.

These are all suggestions and DIY projects good for tackling yourself to help you make the most of your outdoor living this summer.

You can find even more advice and do-it-yourself tips, for your house, home, castle or cabin, at, every Arizona homeowner’s best friend. And, if you’re looking for the very best contractor or service provider for your home improvement projects, always trust a Rosie-Certified partner, Arizona’s most trusted referral network.

Be sure to tune in to KTAR every Saturday morning from 7-11 a.m. for the Rosie on the House broadcast!

Rosie on the House