At the end of a long day, what could be better than stepping out onto a breezy balcony with a gorgeous view – preferably to unwind with a good book and a nice cup of tea?
Across Chicago, balconies, patios, and rooftops are a common sight – a high-flying amenity for those living the high-rise lifestyle, and a lovely feature in single-family homes, mid-rise condos, and even two-flats and three-flats.
To really make the most of your outdoor living space, it’s important to keep your balcony, patio, or deck cleaned, prepped, and ready to go. While having this outdoor space can be a real blessing, it’s also an area that’s going to come with a robust checklist of cleaning and maintenance tasks, particularly as the summer season starts to give way to the chilly and dark days of fall and winter.
As the winter months begin to approach – bringing with them plummeting temperatures, extreme weather, and piles of snow and ice heading back our way – your outdoor spaces can definitely take a beating. A thorough balcony cleaning now can help you enjoy this prime space for the rest of summer and fall – while also getting it ready for the harsh winter weather still to come.
So, what should be on your balcony cleaning checklist as we transition from sunny summer days of entertaining to cozy fall evenings? Here are five key tasks to add to your balcony “to-do” list:
1.) Give your balcony a thorough scrubbing
Spring and summer pollen can build up on your balcony, as can cobwebs, dirt, and debris. To help make your outdoor living spaces more functional for fall – and make it easier to pack up for winter in a few months – it helps to get down and dirty now.
Start by removing all furniture, plants, decor, and any other pieces situated on the balcony for a truly deep clean, which will involve some sweeping, washing, and vacuuming. As you remove your balcony decorations, you can pack up what you want to put away for the rest of the year – and start breaking out the fall and winter gear (more on that in a bit).
Start by sweeping your balcony floor and surfaces, to get rid of built-up dirt and debris. Then, take a pass with your vacuum, and use a long-reach attachment or an extendable duster to safely and securely reach into corners to take down cobwebs, grime, and any other messes hiding in those hard-to-reach spaces.
Follow up your sweeping and vacuuming with a wash. Use a light mop or even a rag to get your floors if you live on a higher floor; your downstairs neighbors will thank you for skipping the hose or power-washer. For a full clean, don’t forget the little details and finishes of your balcony, like polishing lighting fixtures and wiping down railings and ledges.
Above all, remember to keep safety in mind! Avoid slips or falls by working in sections and calling on a spotter or buddy when going for those far-flung areas.
2.) Clean glass windows and doors
Whether you have stunning views that look over the waters of Lake Michigan, or a great spot overlooking your backyard garden, keeping your floor-to-ceiling windows and doors clear of dust and grime can help you make the most of your outdoor areas.
Use your go-to glass cleaner (or even consider whipping up one of your own) to wipe down your glass surfaces, using a cloth or squeegee to wipe from top-to-bottom for a streak-free finish. It also helps to take out that duster with an extension pole to get around the tops and edges of your windows and doors, as dust and grime can collect there. Give your blinds and curtains a dusting or washing, and don’t forget to wipe down your windowsill and handles.
3.) Take care of your outdoor furniture
Whether you have metal, plastic, wood, or wicker furniture, giving your pieces a good cleaning can help your balcony feeling refreshed for the new season – and make everything easier to pack up and put away when winter starts to settle in.
Start by removing cushions or fabric elements from your outdoor furniture and tending to them according to manufacturer’s directions. This may mean giving the fabrics a quick pass with a vacuum, or even running them through the washing machine, if possible. Next, you can turn your attention to your furniture pieces, wiping down arms, legs, and backs and fronts with a sponge or cloth with some warm water and a gentle cleaning solution. Wipe down tables with glass tops with a glass cleaner to keep them sparkling.
You may also want to start preparing with steps to “winterize” the balcony to prepare for the upcoming season. If you don’t have a place to put your furniture in storage, get covers or tarps to put over them, and make a place indoors to store your outdoor decor when the time is right.
4.) Rethink your patio space
This transitional time of year is the perfect opportunity to plan and perfect your ideal balcony space. Whether you want to totally clear house and rethink how you use your outdoor living areas, or you simply want to do a slight recalibration for the fall, take some time to research and brainstorm ways you can make the most of your outdoor spaces and get them ready for next year’s goals, from entertaining more to hanging out solo.
Looking to update your balcony as we head for fall? Reviving your balcony with some simple design changes can help do the trick. Have fun with this and get creative! Getting this space ready for autumn could mean changing out rugs, pillows, and other decor pieces for your dream look. For example, you could swap from bright, summer colors to more autumnal-focused ones, or play around with fall elements like wreaths, lanterns, or gourds.
Even if you’re not the changing-decor-with-the-seasons type, you can still refresh and revive your balcony with minor DIY projects, like bringing in new plants or hanging a hammock for those lazy Sunday afternoons.
Ready to Start Making Your Balcony Spotless? Help Is On the Horizon!
Here at Sweeping Dimensions, we always make a sweeping effort to make life less stressful – whether you live in a high rise, three flat apartment, or single family home.
From dusting blinds, to cleaning floor-to-ceiling windows, to making sure your balcony and patio are spotless, our teams are professionally trained to tackle every cleaning job with unparalleled attention to detail, quality, and professionalism. We offer flexible time windows, and all of our cleanings are fully customizable to meet your needs. We bring all of the cleaning supplies and equipment needed to clean your home, with a focus on green, environmentally sound cleaning products.
Have any more questions? Ready to make the most of your spotless balcony? Reach out today for your free estimate! Property managers – don’t forget to ask us about our multi-unit deals, post-construction service, short term rental cleanings, and more!