Aluminum patio covers, which provide shade and block out the rain, make great outdoor seating areas that are perfect for spending time outdoors with family, friends and making the most use out of one’s backyard all year around. They are also known for reducing air-conditioning costs by keeping the sun away from your windows and protecting your patio furniture. Aluminum patio covers are just about maintenance free. There are still a few tips to keep them in great shape so that they can last you for years to come.
At least 1-2 times a year, it’s a good idea to rinse off your aluminum patio cover. Frequent rinsing may be needed if you do live in an area that is heavily traveled or have a lot of trees in your backyard. A simple garden hose should work just fine in cleaning out any dust and dirt that stores on the aluminum patio cover. Areas that are visibly dirtier will need a more forceful spray to clean the cover and it is best to use a wider spray to rinse everything off.
For heavier dirt accumulation, you may use a soft-bristled brush attachment (a long-handled, car-washing brush used for cars). As far as what cleaners and soaps to use that will not damage your aluminum cover, the best type to use would be only a mild- detergent or dish-washing soap. A simple formula that you can use is 1/3 cup detergent such as Tide, 2/3 cup trisodium phosphate such as Soilax and 1 gallon of water.
Typically, people like to deep clean their homes and backyards around spring and fall and that is a great time to include cleaning your aluminum patio cover and its gutters. It is just as important to clean the patio cover gutters as it is to clean the house gutters. Most of the times, regular winds are enough to keep the leaves from gathering on your aluminum patio cover. The problem is when the leaves are damp and they get built up near the gutters. The goal is to focus on those areas and sweep off the settled leaves.
Aluminum patio covers are also known for being a perfect location for an outdoor bbq area or grill, which can get dirty with grease and dirt from the smoke. The best tip for cleaning greasy and dark smudges on the underside of the cover is with a grease-cutting cleaner similar to the one you would use around a cooktop at home.
Aluminum patio covers that have been painted before can hold the paint much better that wood if the exterior is carefully cleaned. If there comes a time where you would need to repaint your aluminum patio cover, the best cleaning method prior to painting is trisodium phosphate, which you can find at any paint or hardware stores.
Following these simple tasks and tips will allow you to have a beautiful, long-lasting aluminum patio cover to enjoy for several years to come!