Keeping up with day-to-day tasks, like the kitchen and laundry is enough without adding in your “outdoor rooms.” In Arizona, we do a pretty good job of using our patios nearly year-round, which means keeping them looking good. But with monsoon season rolling in, the dust and debris are beginning to gather.
By July, there usually have been enough showers and blowing dust that the furniture in our outdoor spaces may be looking a bit frayed.
It’s time to clean it up so we can still enjoy those slightly cooler evening temperatures in Arizona that arrive just as the sun slowly sinks beyond the western horizon. If you want our help, House Spouse is just a click away to get an instant quote for the job.
If you’re more the do-it-yourself type, then grab a broom or a dust blower, if you have one, and clear out leaves, tree debris, dust and miscellaneous pebbles from all areas and off of all surfaces.
Get out your garden hose and rinse, keeping an eye out for any oily spots or stains on your walkways, patios or decks. You’d be surprised at what a little spilled soda or a glass of wine might look after a few weeks baking in the heat.
Remove spots with a little warm water and a bit of soapy cleaner. And remember – you’re outdoors. You may want to use an environmentally safe cleaner (dishwashing soap Dawn qualifies here!) to protect the critters that might use your yard.
If you run into an especially difficult stain, add a small amount of bleach to your cleaning liquid. Use the bleach at a 10-1 ration (10 parts soapy or plain water, to one-part bleach).
Let’s let that patio dry while we start on the furniture.
If your furniture is powder-coated aluminum or teak, rinse it off with a hose and then wipe it gently with a soapy rag and rinse again.
Wicker and rattan will need to be washed off with a soft, soapy cloth. If the grime has become particularly bad, you may need to use a toothbrush to get the dirt out from between the woven grooves.
Wrought-iron furniture generally just needs to be thoroughly hosed off here in Arizona. If you’re in a damp area, though, you’ll want to check wrought iron for mold beneath the seats. That will require a brush and disinfectant to clean.
If any of your furniture has cushions, take some time to get them clean, too. Use a mild detergent and water to spritz on the cushions. Scrub the cushions, let them sit for a few minutes, then rinse with your water hose and let them dry in the sun.
Now that your furniture is done, take a few minutes to double-check your outdoor lighting. Clean any fixtures, and make sure all the bulbs are functioning. You can use warm water and dishwashing detergent (add a tablespoon of borax to deodorize and disinfect).
If you have any umbrellas around your patio, you’ll also want to rinse those off.
Now that you’re done with floors and furniture, you can take a few minutes to assess the look. Because it’s summer, you might want to think about adding a few potted plants or flowers to keep your patio bright or adding some new throw cushions to update your style.
House Spouse is a Phoenix-based cleaning service that provides ongoing maid service, custom concierge services, carpet and tile cleaning, rental-property cleaning and more. Visit us at Housespouse.com, call us at (480) 834-2905 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org