Giving your outdoor living areas a spruce up before spring gets into swing is a smart and effective way to welcome the new season. Spring is full of surprises and the last thing you want is for your patio to fall prey to any of the many unforeseen circumstances that could put a damper on your good time.
When the Bones Are Good
As winter weather winds down in many parts of the country, warmer temperatures bring opportunities for springtime fun in the sun. With barbecues and bird watching on the horizon, you first need to take stock of what you have to work with as the season changes.
Pull back the chair cover sets and sectional covers for a quick check up of your patio furniture collection. While protected through winter, it still doesn’t hurt to give the furniture a quick clean. Regularly cleaning your patio furniture and keeping them protected with outdoor covers helps to prolong any major refurbishments that may arise down the line.
When cleaning patio furniture, you should always consult the owner’s manual for proper methods and cleaning products to use. Not all pieces are created equal and some can very well be unintentionally damaged.
However, most patio furniture can be cleaned with the help of your garden hose and a mild all-purpose cleaner of choice. This will remove any left-over built up dirt and grime from seasons past.
Vacuum the Outdoor Cushions
Most of us don’t have the space to keep patio cushions indoors throughout the winter, leaving them at risk in whatever designated spot we can find to store them. This means a thorough spring cleaning will be in order before they can be used on your patio for spring.
Start by vacuuming your cushions, which will remove any residual dirt that you might not have taken care of when storing them. Let the cushions rest for a few minutes before sprinkling them with a light coating of baking soda.
Baking soda acts as a refresher for your cushions and helps breathe life back into even the dirtiest of them. Let the baking soda sit on the cushions for 10 to 15 minutes before vacuuming them a second time.
Next, mix a solution of three parts water with 1 part white vinegar. Pour this solution into a spray bottle and spritz your cushions before letting dry. This works as a holistic way to deodorize any musty smell that may have found its way in between the seasons.
Make preparations for next winter’s storage by considering custom sized cushion covers.
Like chair cover sets and sectional covers, cushion covers are the protective solution that will keep your patio essentials in excellent condition all year round.
Turn the Pressure Down
With all the other pieces in place, it’s time to set the scene for the season. No matter how clean your outdoor furniture may be, it will all be for naught without a patio area that is spic and span.
The easiest way to get rid of gunk from your patio is to pressure wash any stone or concrete areas. Before getting hose-happy, however, you should clear out any auxiliary items from the patio. Larger items and their protective covers can easily be covered by custom tarps, preventing the washer and cleaning mixture from splashing them.
A washer with a 3 gpm and 3000 psi is ideal for most concrete cleaning jobs. Choose a tip with a wide angle that allows you to clean the surface without damaging the porous hardscape.
Concrete is prone to accumulating a moderate amount of mold or mildew in fall and winter. Spraying these spots with an undiluted white vinegar helps to break down the build up before going at it with the pressure washer.
The best method for pressure washing is to hold your nozzle just 1 foot from the surface you’re cleaning. With a steady hand, do gentle strokes back and forth in an even line, moving in a downward direction.
As you complete this process you will notice that the hardscape area will brighten without the integrity of your patio being compromised. For more stubborn areas, it’s important to give the surface time to rest between cleanings as not to strip the concrete.
Order in the Court
With the tedium of cleaning mostly complete, you can focus your attention on fine tuning the aesthetics of your outdoor living area.
The tenets of feng shui are an apt philosophy for reorganizing your patio at the start of spring. The flow of energy on your patio is not measured by the quantity or quality of the pieces you have but rather how the pieces contribute to relaxation and aesthetic cohesiveness.
With this in mind, you should arrange your patio furniture in a manner that speaks to the lifestyle you lead with a mindfulness of how to maximize your space. Ask yourself the following questions as you arrange your patio.
- How often do I entertain guests?
- What kind of entertaining do I do?
- Is this the best possible use of my space?
- Can I enjoy this space on my own?
This will help you to determine an outdoor floor plan for the season ahead. With just four simple questions, you can transform the energy and style of your space.
As your outdoor space takes shape, you should also consider the level of protection being provided to the pieces. The presence of a chair cover set, sectional covers, and curved sofa covers, can help to protect your furniture and ensure these items don’t need to be replaced any time soon.
Keep Your BBQs Clean
What’s an outdoor living area without the bbq? Your spring cleaning isn’t complete until you’ve unpacked your bbq after an idle winter.
As you move your bbq from the storage shed or garage back on to your patio, you’ll find that it may be in need of some freshening up. This cleaning should not be confused with a maintenance check, which requires a more thorough examination.
Before connecting the propane or putting charcoal in the bed of the bbq, give the exterior of your bbq a good spraying with the hose. This will remove any dust or dirt that might’ve settled on your bbq after being stored away for fall and winter.
Alternatively, for BBQs that were stored outdoors, you should do more than just the initial spray with the hose. Open the inside of the bbq to check for any bugs or vermin that may have taken shelter there for the winter. Use an old rag to wipe down the interior and exterior of the bbq, removing any grime.
As you get ready to fire up your bbq for the season ahead, it’s important to take the proper precautions moving forward. BBQ covers are ideal for keeping your barbecue protected from debris and ensuring that your patio’s most utilitarian tool is good to go for years to come.
In most cases, bbq covers can be customized to provide an exact fit to your bbq no matter the shape, size, or brand. These customizable covers are a must for upholding the integrity of your bbq.