Save money with some inexpensive summer projects

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INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. - If it's time to do some summer projects, you don't need to spend a fortune.  It can be as simple as spray paint for many of the things on your "to do" list.

“What you're going to do with this wicker and aluminum chair is start by spraying it about eight inches away from the surface and just get a first coat of paint on it.  Once that dries, you're going to hit it with another coat.  In this case, we went from a dark brown color to a vibrant blue color,” said Todd Byczek, store manager for Lowe's NE Indianapolis.

The spray paint works if something looks old, or if you just want a different look.  One hint is not to spray too much on the first coat, or you could get drips.

Another kind of paint project involves the type you do with a roller or brush.  One great project to make your home pop is beautifying your front door.  Doors can be expensive, especially solid wood, exterior doors. But after time, they can look lousy, so just pretty up the one you have.

"A front door only requires one quart of paint.  You don't have to prime it.  It's an oil-based paint.  It's going to give you extreme durability and a plethora of paint colors to choose from.  This is an easy project to do without having to change your door," said Byczek.

Have you ever had to do any caulking?  You generally need a caulking gun, or a squeeze tube and it often turns out messy.  If you have a smaller area that needs it, try this alternative.

"Maybe you just don't want to buy that much caulk.  Several places sell what is basically a pressurized tube that's as easy to apply as can of Cheese Whiz.  You put your finger near the end of the nozzle, press it down and go down the line you need caulked.  Then when you're done, it's still ready to use,” said Byczek.

One piece of advice with the pressurized caulking tube from reviewers, clean the tip as soon as you're done, or it may become clogged.  Preferably use warm water.

If you have an awful looking deck, try a special thick paint that extends the life of the surface.  It costs a fraction of the price of new deck boards.  It's important to spray on cleaner first, let it sit according to the instructions and wash off.  Let your deck dry for a day after cleaning.  That's when you apply the specialized coating with a roller or brush.

"Rustoleum makes this version called 10X.  We took a deck board that had large cracks and splinters.  It looked rough.  But just from cleaning it, and painting it with this very thick coating, it's transformed,” said Byczek.

The covering is more expensive than regular paint, about $70 for almost 3 gallons, but that's because it does what paint can't.