If you live in a region with cold, snowy winters, your outdoor furniture probably hasn’t seen a lot of use in the past several months. Remove any furniture covers or protectors and store them away. Toss washable cloth items in the laundry, then use cleaners safe for your furniture type, whether wood, vinyl or metal, and cleaning cloths to wipe away dust, dirt and debris.
2. Tend to Plants
When the weather starts warming up, your plants will be ready to come out of dormancy. Make their spring arrivals seamless by weeding and trimming excess or dying branches and blooms. Then, add fertilizer suited for your various types of plants. Consider mulching garden beds to help keep soil moist, especially as the days get hotter and minimize weed growth.
3. Wash Windows
After months of rain, sleet and snow, your windows are probably looking a little grimy. Remove window screens and give them a thorough cleaning with soap and water. Then, use window cleaner to spray down windows and wipe them clean. Enjoy the brighter views revealed by cleaning your windows.
4. Clear the Rain Gutters
April showers bring May flowers, but they can also bring leaks and floods to your home if the gutters are clogged up with leaves and other debris. Grab a ladder and some gloves and carefully pull out the gunk stuck in the gutters. Have a roommate, family member or friend stay close by to steady the ladder. Once most of the debris is clear, you can use a hose to spray away the remaining dirt.
5. Sweep or Spray Off Patios, Decks and Balconies
You sweep and mop your indoor floors, so don’t forget to do the same for your outdoor spaces. For balconies, make sure to sweep dust and debris into a dustpan to avoid disturbing any neighboring apartments. Use a broom to sweep patios, decks and sidewalks, and you can use a hose or power washer to spray down these surfaces for a deeper clean.
6. Rake Away Leaves and Debris
If you didn’t get to raking in the fall, you’ll want to take care of that chore now. Plus, after winter storms, you may find more leaves and additional debris that blew in over the colder months. Rake up the debris, throwing away any litter you come across and composting organic materials, like leaves and twigs.
7. Wipe Light Fixtures
With warmer mornings and evenings just around the corner, you may find yourself wanting to enjoy a cup of coffee or glass of wine outside more often. Make the space feel cozy but bright with clean lights. Use a cleaning cloth and soap and water or cleaners safe for your light fixture materials to wipe down lights. Replace any burned-out bulbs after cleaning.
8. Power Wash Walls and Fences
The walls of your home and the fences around your property are probably looking a little dirty after weeks of rain and sloshy snow. If you live in an area with a lot of air pollution, these exteriors can look especially grim. Thankfully, it’s nothing a little power washing can’t fix. Make sure to inspect fences and make necessary repairs first, and be careful to avoid windows and other fragile elements when using a power washer. If you don’t have a power washer, you can either rent one from a home improvement shop or even use a hose with a jet sprayer for a similar effect.
9. Organize Shed or Garage
Okay, your garden shed or garage may technically be indoors, but let’s add them to your outdoor spring cleaning checklist. Take down your totes and bins, going through and donating, recycling or throwing out items you no longer need. Re-organize tools, garden supplies, seasonal décor and other items in the shed or garage. Be sure to label your bins before replacing them on shelves. This way, items will easily stay organized, making next year’s spring cleaning checklist a little shorter.