Spring Cleaning Like Never Before

March 30, 2020 Outdoor Living

While Clorox, paper towels, and sanitizers of any sort are hard to come by, it doesn’t mean spring cleaning should get a pass. Getting fresh air is the best thing we can do right now, so sitting on crisp, clean patio is exactly what the doctor ordered! Not to mention, getting 10-30 minutes of vitamin D from the sun can can help keep you healthy and well! So get out and get to cleaning… your health depends on it, wink, wink!

Below are a few recipes for an at-home all-purpose cleaner with ingredients that should be easy to purchase if you don’t already have them!

All-Purpose Cleaner

Needs:

One part white vinegar

One part water

Lemon rind

Rosemary sprigs

Combine the above ingredients together, pour into a spray bottle, shake, and then let infuse for a week before using. Once done, you can use the natural solution to remove hard water stains, clean trash cans, wipe away wall smudges, and much more. Besides a fresh scent, the lemon rind may help boost cleaning power. Caution: Do not use acidic cleaners on granite, as they will etch the stone.

Stone Cleaner

Needs:

2 drops mild dishwashing liquid

2 cups warm water

Mix dishwashing detergent and water the next time you want to clean natural stone countertops. Sponge over marble and rinse completely to remove any soap residue. Buff with a soft cloth; do not let the marble air-dry. Caution: Never use vinegar, lemon, or any other acidic cleaner on marble or granite surfaces; it will eat into the stone.

Grill Cleaner

Before grilling your filet, burger or veggies… it’s important to make sure your grill is ready for you to bring the heat! Take a peek at this grill readiness checklist, click here!

Before You Roast Those Marshmallows

November 13, 2015 Outdoor Safety
Before you stack the s’mores and fire up that outdoor fire feature of yours … let’s make sure it’s a safe and clean one!  Houzz recently wrote up a great blog about keeping your indoor fireplace tended to in a tidy fashion.  That’s a hot topic as the climate cools in Texas, which got us to thinking … your outdoor fireplace or fire feature is just as important to keep clean and safe!

Cleaning

A clean fireplace is a safe fireplace. Not only does a clean fireplace look best, it also functions best. It’s tempting just to leave ashes and leftover wood in the fireplace between fires but it’s best to remove the chunks and sweep the ashes once the fire is completely extinguished and cooled. Having a set of tools specifically used for fireplaces will speed this process along. Now this may sound crazy, and you would be surprised at just how many people do this, but should NOT!  Never use a vacuum cleaner, even a shop vac, to clean ashes as embers can stay hot for days and can reignite inside your vacuum.

Burn

While most people can start a fire it is essential for the health of your fireplace to build the right kind of fire. Hardwoods are best for burning in your fireplace. They burn hotter, longer and cleaner. Learn to build efficient, clean burning fires. A fire that is inefficient is very smokey and makes the firebox and chimney dirty with flammable materials like soot and creosote.

Monitor

Between professional inspections it is important for you to regularly monitor the condition of your outdoor fireplace. Soot and creosote can build up inside the firebox and chimney and can make the fireplace very unsafe. If you don’t know how to recognize these build ups ask you chimney sweep to show you what to look for. If you notice a build up of soot and creosote in your fireplace have it cleaned before you build a fire in it again.
We love our outdoor fireplaces and we know you do too. Make sure you maintain your fireplace in between uses to ensure a safe, cozy experience!

Texas Custom Patios Hot Chocolate

Enjoy

It’s time to light a fire, pour the hot chocolate and roast those marshmallows!  We put together a fun board for you to peruse, pin and pine over (after all, the nostalgia of hot chocolate is just so sweet)!  Enjoy everything from Roasted Marshmallow Coffee Cocktail Shakes to creative hot chocolate mix-ins!  We created an entire board on Pinterest named Hot Cocoa Bar, s0 cheers and enjoy the view!  

 

 

 

 

Maintaining Your Outdoor Fireplace During Summer Months

February 16, 2015 Outdoor Living, Outdoor Safety
An outdoor fireplace is a great addition to any outdoor living space. It adSONY DSCds warmth, ambiance and can be a great place to hang a TV in your outdoor space. While a fireplace is nice and cozy it does require regular maintenance to function correctly and burn safely during cooler months. Here are some steps you can take to make sure your outdoor fireplace is ready to perform in the cool weather for many years.

Inspection

Your outdoor fireplace should be inspected at least annually by a professional chimney sweep to  ensure it is clean and safe for you and your family. A regular inspection will alert you to potential problems before they become serious. Your chimney sweep will let you know when you are in need of professional cleaning.

IMG_0484Cleaning

A clean fireplace is a safe fireplace. Not only does a clean fireplace look best, it also functions best. It’s tempting just to leave ashes and leftover wood in the fireplace between fires but it’s best to remove the chunks and sweep the ashes once the fire is completely extinguished and cooled. Having a set of tools specifically used for fireplaces will speed this process along. Never use a vacuum cleaner, even a shop vac, to clean ashes as embers can stay hot for days and can reignite inside your vacuum.

Burn

While most people can start a fire it is essential for the health of your fireplace to build the right kind of fire. Hardwoods are best for burning in your fireplace. They burn hotter, longer and cleaner. Learn to build efficient, clean burning fires. A fire that is inefficient is very smokey and makes the firebox and chimney dirty with flammable materials like soot and creosote.

Monitor

Between professional inspections it is important for you to regularly monitor the condition of your outdoor fireplace. Soot and creosote can build up inside the firebox and chimney and can make the fireplace very unsafe. If you don’t know how to recognize these build ups ask you chimney sweep to show you what to look for. If you notice a build up of soot and creosote in your fireplace have it cleaned before you build a fire in it again.
We love our outdoor fireplaces and we know you do too. Make sure you maintain your fireplace during the summer to ensure a safe, cozy experience come fall!

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Texas Custom Patios exceeded our expectations throughout our project. From drawing up plans, making changes and additions, through the clean-up process TCP made our dream patio cover a great experience. We knew everyday what was going to happen. Dean was our project manager and involved in every aspect. He was very professional and worked out every detail to make our vision come true. Thank you Dean and TCP! You guys are amazing! I highly recommend this company if you want a professional company to do a great job with the best materials and beautiful outcome.

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