I love shopping at Ace Hardware, especially during this time of year when my family's weekends are spent sprucing up our house and yard for barbecues, parties and picnics. Although Ace Hardware already has amazing specials and deals each week, I found a way to save even more money by signing up for the Ace Rewards program.

How to sign up

Head on over to your local Ace Hardware to sign up for the Ace Rewards program. You can find the store nearest you here. If you'd rather get a head start on your online shopping, you can sign up online and use your temporary Ace Rewards membership number to make purchases online and in-store. If you already have an account on Ace's website, you can easily link your membership to your account by clicking here and following the screen prompts to add your rewards card information.

How to earn rewards

Scan your card (or sign into your Ace account if you love to shop online like me) and you'll automatically get 10 reward points for every $1 that you spend. I earned 10,000 points just for signing up! Once you accumulate at least 2,500 points, you'll get a $5 reward that can be used like cash on anything in the store. Besides the rewards, you'll also be able to receive sale prices and in-store discounts when you scan your card at checkout. Your Ace Rewards card also gives you access to bonus point offers and members-only specials. Plus, members are notified about super sale events before anyone else! You'll also be able to submit promotional rebates via the Ace website with your card.

How to keep track of your rewards

You can check on your reward progress under the "My Ace Rewards" tab once you sign into your Ace online account. You'll be able to see how many points you have and how many points until your next reward. It also shows you a list of your purchases and how many points you earned on each item. You can also update any information on your account, print a temporary card, order a new card, or send in any eRebates.

Using your rewards

A reward will be physically mailed out to the address on your account once you earn at least 2,500 points. Rewards can only be used to buy products in the actual store—not online. But the good news is that you'll still earn reward points when you buy something with your rewards voucher. For example, I bought a new garden lantern for $20 and used a $5 reward at checkout. $15 worth of those points went into my rewards account.