Patio Clean-Up for Seasonal Entertaining


Outdoor entertaining is a primary component of the warm-weather season as many choose to flock to their backyard patios and decks to barbecue or simply soak up a little sun.

Coming out of the fall and winter seasons, your patio may have experienced some wear and tear, requiring some attention before you're able to use it.

Before starting, take the time to figure out what your patio needs and stock up on the supplies necessary. Many patios are poured concrete, and a simple pressure-washing could be all that's needed to revive the look. Pressure washers can be rented or purchased. If there are cracks or chips in the patio, some minor patchwork may be able to fix unsightly problems with a fast-dry patching kit. If the patio is especially damaged, it may be in your best interest to simply replace the patio or cover it with a different material, like wood decking.

Some patios, however, are constructed from paving stones. Pavers are usually installed atop a thin layer of sand and then more sand is brushed into the seams between the pavers to set them in place.

Over time, the sand may become dislodged causing the pavers to wobble or even grow uneven. Taking the time to brush new sand over a paver patio can keep the stones stable. Because pavers are not a solid surface, weeds can grow in between the stones. Hand weeding and the application of a weed-killing product can help with keeping weeds at bay and from being unsightly.

This year, maybe it's not about refreshing the patio but installing one instead. Although many homeowners choose to make the installation of a patio a do-it-yourself project with fine results, if you have a large yard or an intricate design, you may want to price out masons.

Many times, these contractors have relationships with suppliers of concrete and patio pavers, which could save on the cost of materials for the job. As an added bonus, you will have the benefit of knowing the work was done correctly.

Now is also the time to wash the cushions to your patio set to enhance your patio decor. You'll want to do this on a sunny, warm day to allow the cushions to dry adequately so they won't develop mildew or mold staining and odor.

If the cushions look dated or beyond repair, this season could be a good time to head to the store and purchase a new set. Nothing refreshes a patio more than bright colors and attractive accessories.

While new planters filled with flowers could do the trick, coordinate patio colors with new upholstery for outdoor furniture, throw pillows and a new patio umbrella to complete the look.


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