The cleaning of outdoor furniture is always an issue, being outdoors they get more exposure to dirty and effects of the sun, rain and cold. The clean up of outdoor furniture is common question we receive. Here is a idea to make the clean up easier and have your furniture looking newer longer. Apply a good quality car wax and wax them like you would wax your car (paste wax is better).
Now that summer is over many of you will be putting away your baseball & softball gloves until “spring training” next spring. Here is some advice on how to keep that glove in top shape and ready for next season Many types of treatments and care have been suggested over the years for baseball and softball gloves.
Some of these are safe and some, unfortunately, may damage glove leather. We recommended that one of the best and safest leather cleaners and conditioners is untreated petroleum jelly. Professional glove repairmen and leather specialists agree that this is one of the best applications, both for cleaning and conditioning glove leather.
During the break-in period, treat your new glove with a light application, working it into the leather. This will reduce the stiffness of the new leather and facilitate a faster and more comfortable breaking in procedure. Also, at the end of the season, take a generous amount of petroleum jelly and thoroughly cover the outside and inside of the glove.
Don’t ignore the laces or hard to-get-to areas, both inside and outside the glove. Then take a clean rag and wipe off excess to remove grit and grime. This will also remove and help neutralize much of the salt and acid buildup inside the glove caused by perspiration, a chief problem to the leather lining, usually made of softer leather. We do not recommend neatsfoot oil, linseed oil or silicon-type spray as these tend to close the pores of the leather, causing it to dry, harden, and become heavy over an extended period of time and through repeated use. Petroleum jelly keeps the pores open and in effect, keeps the leather “alive” while also providing a softening condition.
Basically remember that leather is skin and leather experts tell us not to treat glove leather any differently than you would your own skin. Prolonged harsh temperatures, excessive water soaking (especially use of hot water), abrasives, the salt and acids produced from perspiration and excessive dryness all or individually can be harmful to the glove leather.
Also, continued exposure to sunlight may result in fading of the leather color. Be careful about sealing gloves in plastic bags for over 12 months. We hope this gives all you players a good idea on how to care for your glove until the next time you hear those words so near and dear to our hearts – PLAY BALL!!
This article is in response to a question from one of our visitors. She asked:
I have an Airstream camper and I would like to know what is the best for cleaning and polishing extérior Aluminium.
Aluminum is great. It oxidizes which actually protects the metal beneath, unlike iron based metals which will rust all the way through until there is nothing left.
There are companies that actually refinish these trailers, but it can cost over $100 per foot!! (Including the bumper in the measurement)
So your 25 foot trailer will cost $2500 to restore! Yikes! No wonder you asked us! You can probably do it yourself, but expect to spend the first few weeks of your vacation, and a couple hundred dollars in supplies to get similar results.
The first thing you need to determine, is if your trailer has a clear coating on the aluminum. This would have been applied after, as it was not included in the factory finish. The clear coating is good and bad. It is good because it protects the aluminum, to keep the “new” look for three or four years, until the clear coat itself begins to haze and dull. Then it becomes bad, because there is no way to polish the aluminum that is covered with this clear coat of paint, and there is no easy way to remove the paint, either. If you find your trailer is clear coated, you will need to source out a professional company to help you.
How do you know if it is coated? Buy a metal polish from your local automotive detailer. It is usually sold in small tins for refinishing aluminum wheels. Using a clean, dry rag, rub a little onto the surface of your trailer in an inconspicuous spot. Continue rubbing, and if there is no clear coat, the rag will begin to turn black. Continuing buffing with a fresh clean dry area of the cloth, this surface will polish to a brilliant shine. If it is clear coated, the clear coat may look cleaner, however the rag will not turn black.
So now you have a six inch circle polished on your trailer. Look at how big your trailer is. Do you have the gumption to attack this your self?
You can make it a bit easier on yourself, buy buying a good quality orbital auto polisher. Not one that goes in your 12 Volt automotive outlet, but a powerful 120 Volt unit. A more aggresive polishing wheel for a drill or angle grinder will speed up work, but these can also cause damage to the metal if you are not careful.
The first step is to wash the trailer thoroughly, and rinse it off very well. With the polisher you will need several different application and buffing bonnets. You can probably easily attack a 3 foot square section at a time, applying the polish with the first bonnet, and continuing to change the bonnet when they become soiled. I expect it would take at least half a dozen bonnets for each section, and likely an hour or so to complete one 3 X 3 (9 square foot) section. The bonnets can be laundered, however the heavily soiled ones may not clean very well.
Once you have polished the whole trailer, I would apply at least 2 coats of quality automotive paste wax, buffing after each coat, to minimize the damage from the elements. If your trailer is not as badly oxidized as the one in the photo, you might be able to get away with a less abrasive liquid metal polish (which is often marketed as a stainless steel polish). Check with a janitorial supplier. The liquid will be creamy or blue, and in a spray bottle (NOT an aerosol can). DO NOT use a greasy clear petroleum liquid found in aerosol spray cans (and marketed as stainless steel cleaner) it WILL NOT WORK!!!
If you do undertake this big job, we hope you will also find time to go camping this summer!
Normally, brooms are not thought of as requiring cleaning. However, a clean well-maintained broom will not only last longer than one that is not looked after, but it will do a better job when sweeping.
One key to extending the life of your broom is to store it with the head of the broom off the floor or ground, (which means it either gets hung on the wall or from the ceiling) or stand it up on its handle. This will help prevent a buildup of dirt or moisture on the broom head. Also, the broom will not deform which (when this happens) restricts the broom’s ability to sweep efficiently. If your broom is dirty or moldy from moisture, try hosing off the broom head, then scrub lightly to remove debris or mold. If there is lots of debris in the broom head, try combing it out with an old wide-toothed comb or with your fingers.
Sweep up large debris first. Absorb any oils or gas with commercial absorbents or cat litter.
Tools & chemicals:
Medium to stiff broom, degreaser or heavy duty cleaning chemical, hose or pressure sprayer.
Sweep up the absorbent before proceeding. Then hose off the driveway. The less debris that is left on the driveway, the easier it is to hose off. A broom and hose can be used for any kind of driveway (concrete, stamped concrete, brick, asphalt, aggregate stone). You can use specialized products, which narrow the water stream from a regular hose in order to give a stronger directional spray. For stained or heavily soiled driveways, use a stiff or deck type brush and general detergent and water to scrub the driveway before hosing. You can use a stronger ammonia type detergent and water or for extra heavily soiled driveways, or you can use a TSP mixture.
Environmentally friendly method:
Use a pressure sprayer, which will eliminate the need for soap or at least reduce the need. It should be noted that the higher the pressure from the sprayer, the higher the possibility of removing the driveway sealant. Using less than 1500 PSI on the pressure sprayer should be adequate to clean the driveway without removing the sealant. Also, watch that you don’t further damage any crumbling concrete by using the pressure sprayer directly on the area.
These disposal methods are commonly accepted, however your local government may have specific instruction and bylaws for safe disposal. To be certain of any restriction contact your local government or waste disposal utility.
- For small amounts dilute with water and pour into the drain or toilet. Do NOT do this if you are disposing of large quantities or if you have a septic system
- For large quantities take to a designated recycling centre, or return to manufacturer for re-proccesing