Are the warmer temperatures and new spring growth luring you outside? But you don’t have anywhere to relax because your garden furniture is still in the garage or shed and the deck and walkways are covered in leaves? It’s time for some spring cleaning!

First, sweep the leaves and debris off the walkways, patios and decks. Use a small broom to remove the trash between the boards of the deck and then spray a deck cleaner on the deck and railings. While the deck cleaner is soaking, use a water hose or pressure washer and mild soap to clean stubborn dirt and stains from the walkways and patio and then rinse them with clean water. Finish the job by thoroughly rinsing the deck cleaner from the deck and railings. Be careful not to get the soap or deck cleaner on your lawn or plants, as the chemicals might cause damage to the leaves or roots.

Now it is time to clean your garden furniture. Move the furniture to an area, such as the driveway, where the cleaning solutions will not get on the grass or plants. Remove dust, dirt and cobwebs from the furniture with a soft brush. Use a soft scrub brush and a mild oil-based cleaner, such as Murphy’s Oil Soap, to wash teak and wicker furniture. Rinse thoroughly with clean water and let dry completely before using.

Use warm water and a mild soap, such as Ivory dish soap, with a soft cloth to clean plastic, aluminum or wrought iron furniture. You can remove scuff-marks on aluminum furniture with a soft cloth and a small amount of a non-abrasive cleaner, such as Soft Scrub. Do not use abrasive cleaners or brushes on aluminum, as it is easily scratched.

The last thing to clean is your grill. Remove the cooking grates and place in warm soapy water to soak. To clean a charcoal grill, remove the coal grate and remove the ashes and debris with a grill brush. Use the grill brush to remove cooked on food and grease from the inside of the grill and replace the coal grate. Scrub the cooking grates, rinse thoroughly and replace.

To clean a gas grill, remove the lava rock, briquettes or metal flame shield. Use a grill brush to clean ashes from around the burner and to remove cooked on grease and food from the inside of the grill. Wash the metal flame shield with warm soapy water, or brush the ashes and debris from the lava rocks or briquettes, and place in the grill. Clean the cooking grates, rinse thoroughly and replace.

Now you are ready to enjoy a day of grilling and relaxing with your family and friends.

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