Home & Garden

12 things to buy for summer now before they sell out

Don't wait to snag these must-haves.

Summer Products Hero Credit: Weber/Yeti

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Given the current coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, your biggest shopping concern is likely where to buy disinfectant wipes or how you can get your hands on a trendy loungewear set that's both comfortable and appropriate for your 10 a.m. conference call.

But the warm weather has arrived and summer is a little over a week away. It's time to break out things like fans, air conditioners, coolers, and grills. This summer is going to look vastly different than any other summer, but one thing is for certain: if you don't have these items now, you're going to want them. To help you prepare for summer, we've rounded up 12 of the top products you should add to your cart while you still can.

1. An air conditioning unit to stay cool

GE
Credit: Reviewed/Kevin Oliver

Bonus: This model is also super quiet.

Air conditioning is one thing you do not want to be without during the summer—especially if it's supposed to be as hot as experts predict this year. If your home doesn't have central air, a window air conditioning unit will be your saving grace. Of all the ones we've tested in Reviewed's labs, this GE unit had the highest cooling capacity along with some unique—and helpful—features, like an energy-saving LED display and voice control (you can hook it up with your smart home assistant!).

Get the GE Profile Series PHC08LY from Sam's Club for $349

2. Our experts' favorite grill

Weber
Credit: Weber

You're just one grill away from becoming a pro pit master.

Imagine waiting until after Father's Day to buy a new grill—only to find that they're all sold out and you're stuck eating boiled hot dogs. No thank you. But which grill should you get? Here at Reviewed, we've found the Weber Spirit II E-310 to be the best in terms of gas grills. Not only did it outperform other grills on every test (from producing perfect sear marks to cooking chicken evenly), but it's also built to last so you can use it for many summers to come.

Get the Weber Spirit II E-310 from Home Depot for $479

3. This powerful fan

Vornado
Credit: Vornado

Beat the heat with the Vornado.

When it's 100+ degrees outside—or worse, when you live somewhere without AC—you need (and we do mean need) a fan. Our experts tested some of the most popular ones out there and dubbed the Vornado 660 the best. Despite its smaller size, it had better airflow and speed than the other fans, even at a distance, so it'll keep your home cool.

Get the Vornado 660 from Home Depot for $99.99

4. A lightweight loungewear set

Loungewear final
Credit: Lou & Grey / Aerie

So soft, so chic.

Few things have been as popular so far in 2020 as loungewear. And we expect that trend will continue into the warmer months. But now that temps are getting above 80 degrees, a hoodie and sweatpants aren't cutting it. Instead, shop for breezy shorts sets like this one from Lou & Grey or this one from Aerie. Both have received high marks for being cozy yet lightweight and perfect for summer wear.

5. Lawn games to stay entertained

Spikeball
Credit: Spikeball

Game on.

Though many places are starting to open up, it's still looking like a #stayhome summer for a lot of people. You might as well make the most of it. For those of us lucky enough to be with family or roommates in a house that has a yard, that means lawn games galore. Some of the most popular ones this year are cornhole, Flickin' Chicken, and Spike Ball. You can even buy a life-sized Jenga tower, if that's more your speed.

6. A few bottles of suntan lotion

Sunscreen
Credit: Sun Bum/Neutrogena

Meet your beach BFF.

Sun is great. Sunburn, however, not so much. Protect yourself and your fam by replenishing your stash of suntan lotion now (i.e. before you all look more like a family of lobsters than humans). Some of the most popular sunscreens based on reviews and ratings are the trendy Supergoop! lotion, the cult-favorite Sun Bum spray, and the incredibly convenient Neutrogena Beach Defense stick.

7. This quality charcoal for your grill-outs

Charcoal
Credit: Reviewed/Betsey Goldwasser

We liked the assortment of large and smaller chunks of the Royal Oak Lump.

You're all stoked for your first backyard BBQ of the season—until you go to fire up your charcoal grill and realize, well, you have no charcoal. To avoid that sad situation, stock up on the summertime staple now before everyone and their mother flocks to do the same. Our experts love Royal Oak Lump Charcoal because it's easy to light and burns for a long time.

Get Royal Oak Lump Charcoal from Walmart for $9.87

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8. An at-home ice cream maker

Ice Cream
Credit: Reviewed/Jackson Ruckar

Homemade ice cream is just minutes away.

I'm calling it now: ice cream making is going to become the new bread baking this summer. And for that, well, you'll need an ice cream maker. Of all the ones we've tested, we like this Cuisinart one the best because it's affordable and quick and easy to use (you can have perfectly blended ice cream or frozen yogurt in just 20 minutes!).

Get the Cuisinart ICE-21 1.5 Quart from Wayfair for $69.95

9. A slip 'n slide for the backyard

Slip n slide
Credit: Amazon

Your summer afternoon just got a lot more fun.

Lawn games are great (see above) but if it's truly the hottest summer in years, you'll want to way to cool off after a rousing match of cornhole. Enter everyone's favorite backyard activity: the slip 'n slide. If you think your kids—and you—will want one in the months ahead, you might want to buy one now while they're still in stock since many parents will likely have the same idea as temps continue to rise.

Get the Wham-O Slip 'N Slide Surf Rider Double Sliding Lanes from Amazon for $79.89

10. This small but mighty generator

Generator
Credit: WEN

No electricity, no problem.

Some call it bikini season, others call it storm season. If you're in the latter camp, you know that power outages are a frequent occurrence in the summer. And even though places are beginning to open up, it's looking like it'll be a while before traveling really takes off again. That means you'll probably still be spending a lot of time at home and it's smart to have a trusty generator on hand. This top-rated portable generator has received rave reviews for being very fuel-efficient and for having a variety of port options so you can hook up multiple appliances or devices.

Get the Wen Super Quiet 2000-Watt Gas-Powered Inverter Generator from Home Depot for $433

11. Patio furniture for your outdoor space

Furniture
Credit: Wayfair/Pottery Barn

Your patio, upgraded.

You've spent all of quarantine decking out the inside of your home—now it's time to move onto the outside. And since it's likely everyone will have the same idea (after all, what else is there to do?!), shopping for patio furniture ASAP is a smart idea. Plus, since it isn't technically summer yet, you can still get some great deals on things like outdoor dining sets, chaises, swings, and more at retailers like Wayfair and Home Depot.

12. This cult-favorite cooler

Cooler
Credit: Yeti/OtterBox

Keep your drinks ice cold for days.

With many states reopening beaches and parks, you'll probably spend a good portion of your summer in public outdoor places (provided you follow social distancing, of course!). So a cooler is going to (literally) come in handy. Like so many other people, we're obsessed with Yeti coolers, especially the Yeti V Series. After testing, we dubbed it one of the best coolers out there because it kept its contents ice cold for eight (!!) days. However, since it's so expensive, we also recommend the equally impressive OtterBox Venture 45 as a more affordable option.

The product experts at Reviewed have all your shopping needs covered. Follow Reviewed on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram for the latest deals, product reviews, and more.

Prices were accurate at the time this article was published but may change over time.

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