When you own a home with a patio, that means you’re responsible for regular patio maintenance. While that might seem simple enough, there are some pitfalls to avoid. After all, the last thing you want to do is damage your patio simply by forgetting to put a tray beneath your potted plants.
Read on to learn 7 mistakes with patio maitenance and how to avoid them!
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1. Pressure Washing Patios Is Trickier than You Think
Using a pressure washer may seem easy, but there is an art to using a pressure washer properly. You can blast away a stain at short range, but you might end up blasting away some of your patio’s finish — or materials.
When you’re using a pressure washer, set the nozzle to a lighter spray setting. That way you won’t use as much force at first, and you can adjust the pressure to a higher setting later. If you’re really concerned, you might be better off hiring professionals to use patio cleaning tools for you.
2. Stick with Water for the Initial Cleaning
When in doubt, use water to clean your patio. Your kitchen cupboard could have a lot of cleaning products for you to use, but it can be risky to try them on a patio. This is particularly true for products that contain bleach.
You risk discoloring the surface of the patio if you grab the most aggressive cleaner in your closet. Instead, start with plain water and a rag that isn’t abrasive. If that’s not getting the job done, add a little mild dish soap to the mix.
Stubborn stains could require more treatment. Start with the gentlest cleaners and do a test spray in a less visible area of the patio. If you don’t see any discoloration or streaking, then use the cleaner to address your patio stains.
3. Beware of Where Your Place Potted Plants
Ferns and other potted plants can dress up your patio. But they also can cause irreparable damage if you’re not careful. You’ll want to be aware of what you’re putting beneath your plants before setting them on your deck or patio.
Are you using pots for your plants that have perforations for drainage? If so, you’ll get excess water trickling out and getting trapped underneath the pot after each watering. This leads to mildew and other stains that will be impossible to remove.
You also may corrode your concrete patio if there are fertilizing agents in the soil that seep out. Your best solution is to elevate your potted plants. Put them on a table, cart, or rug.
4. Ignoring Stains is One of the Biggest Mistakes with Patio Maitenance
When you spill barbecue sauce or coffee on your patio, don’t forget to wipe it up. While you may not want to interrupt a cocktail party to grab some damp towels, your patio will thank you for it. Just as with clothing, you don’t want the stains to set on your patio.
Stone patios will soak up the grease or other material that has soiled the surface. And you’ll be stuck with a stain that’s the color of your spilled food. A tangy orange barbecue stain won’t look good on a neutral stone surface.
At the same time, you don’t want to overdo it with the cleaning. Too much intense scrubbing or overwashing may cause sensitive surfaces to crumble. And that could ruin the structural integrity of your patio.
5. Don’t Automatically Seal Your Patio
The temptation is to seal your patio the moment you install it. In some instances, this is the right move if you prefer a glossy appearance. In other cases, however, you set yourself up for extra work when you use a sealant.
You’ll need to reapply a patio seal every few years. And some patio materials, such as stone, may not benefit from it. Make sure you’re aware of the cost and work involved in applying a seal to your patio.
6. Putting Off Regular Patio Maintenance Creates Problems
Neglecting to do routine patio maintenance is among the biggest causes of costly patio issues. Checking your patio each month and addressing spills quickly, you can keep your patio in good shape for a longer period of time.
With patio pavers, you can encounter weeds that like to grow between them. Make a habit of removing weeds to keep them from showing up — and shifting the position of your pavers.
And plan on repairing patio damage as it happens. You may want to seal a brick patio to prevent too much wear. And you’ll certainly want to sweep your patio each week, especially after storms.
7. Use a Patio Cover for Extra Protection in the Winter
When winter weather rolls around, your patio can take a beating. When melting snow enters small cracks and freezes, it can expand and create bigger cracks in a concrete patio. And as the ground freezes and thaws, your patio pavers can start to shift.
Fortunately, you can address the problem with the right winterizing techniques. Turn to patio covers Boise Idaho to protect your space from snow and other debris during the cold winter months.
Find the Right Patio Cleaning Techniques
When it comes to mistakes with patio maitenance, it’s easy to get lazy about regular maintenance. But if you clean up debris promptly and commit to using the right patio cleaning tools, you’ll keep your patio in good shape. And this prolongs the life of what can be an expensive investment!
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