Summer is finally here, and we’re getting ready to kick outdoor entertaining into high gear! But is your outdoor space ready for the occasion? After the winter we’ve had, it’s gonna take a little more than a couple of newly potted plants to get your space ready for active use. We recommend that you start at the “ground floor” so to speak, and work your way up. Check out our tips for inspecting and prepping your natural stone patio now to be ready for summer entertaining in no time.
Start with a Clean Slate
A great first step is removing all patio furniture and giving the space a good sweep and/or power wash. You want to start off with a relatively clear space to be able to assess stains, cracks, chips or other wear that has occurred since last year.
Cracking Down on Cracks
Remedying cracks can be tedious, but it is important for ensuring the longevity of your patio. We all know how hot Texas summers can be, so if you spot a few cracks in your natural stone, stamped concrete patio or tile surfaces that you would like to seal, it’s best to start earlier in the morning or wait until it cools down in the evening. This prevents sealant drying too quickly and becoming sticky or greasy when it is time to wipe it off. Ideally, you would want to give your sealant 15-20 minutes to penetrate the stone and grout properly and ensure a mess-free wipe down afterward. If you find that your stone is beyond a quick fix solution, you can always give us a call for our stone repair services!
Don’t Let Stains Take Over Your Patio
Stains are inevitable, especially when your patio is getting high traffic during the summer months. Removing stains is a great way to get your patio looking new again. It is important to note that different patio types require different care.
For natural stone patios, it is best to start with hosing down the stone and using a grease-fighting detergent to combat the stain, such as Dawn. For dark spots, moss, mold and mildew stains, try a mixture of ¾ cup bleach and 1 gallon of water. Apply this mixture to the surface and let it sit for up to five minutes, reapplying as needed to get pesky stains out.
Concrete patios require less maintenance than natural stone but can still call for a little elbow grease! A high-pressure rinse with a garden hose and spray nozzle usually does the trick but for those tough stains, you can use a bristle scrub brush with some dish detergent. Please note that you should not use a wire brush when attempting to remove a stain from concrete, this could result in new rust stains forming on your patio, and no one wants that.
Manufactured Paving Stone
Manufactured paving stone requires the least maintenance out of them all! If you happen to have a manufactured stone, you won’t regret your choice when it comes time to clean. A simple power wash with your garden hose should get your patio looking like new in no time!
We understand that some stains are harder to get out than others, and some may be impossible! For example, if you find that your concrete patio is discolored or those pesky stains in your natural stone just won’t leave, don’t hesitate to call in some extra reinforcements! Our team of professionals at Aladdin Cleaning and Restoration can assess your stains and get your patios looking great again before you can get the grill fired up for that first BBQ of the season.
Reviving Your Outdoor Décor
We all know that outdoor cushions and accent pillows can go through quite the beating, especially for those of us who forget to use our protective coverings as we should. Replacing all your outdoor furniture year after year can be extremely costly, and some items are just too good to let go. Refreshing what you already have is a great way to save money and maximize the lifetime of your outdoor décor. If you are unsure about the exact material of your outdoor fabrics, the safest approach is to use dish soap and warm water to remove stains. If this doesn’t work, reference the care instructions on the item, if available, or consider professional cleaning. At Aladdin Cleaning and Restoration, we offer upholstery cleaning that starts with a full inspection to determine how your items should be cleaned.
Maximize Your Space
Once the cleaning and repairs are done, consider changing up the floor plan this year. You can make the most out of your patio by creating multiple smaller spaces with different functions. Having an area for your grill, separate from your dining and lounging spaces, can make all the difference in the overall ambience of your patio. If you have a bistro set, consider setting it off to one side to create a cozy conversation nook. Incorporate a bar area by your grill for entertaining while cooking. An outdoor living area with comfy seating is great for parties or lazy Sunday afternoons. The goal is to create more “livable” spaces in your backyard. If you’re looking for a little more inspiration for your outdoor space, check out our list of outdoor design trends!
Getting your patio ready for summer can be a daunting yet rewarding task. Starting with these few steps can help bring your patio out of hibernation and into the summer fun. Just be sure to not forget an invite to your friends at Aladdin for your next summer bash! Contact us today for stone cleaning and other home cleaning services.