DIY Backyard Improvement
There are a number of ways to spruce up your yard, even if you’re on a budget. All you need are the right tools. Here are a few of our backyard improvement ideas and the tools you’ll need to improve your yard in no time!
DIY Backyard Improvement Ideas
Tips for pressure-washing a house
Pressure washers are easy to use and have dramatic results. They pressurize the water from your garden hose from 1,000 to 4,000 pounds per square inch (psi), depending on size of the washer, and force it out via a spray wand.
If you have a buildup of mildew and grime on the side of your home or deck, rent a pressure washer and follow these tips to ensure a quality job.
- Begin about one foot away from your house or deck. The closer you are to your siding, for instance, the more pressure you’ll harness. If your home needs more pressure to remove grime, simply move an inch or two closer.
- Keep it consistent. Stay at least six inches away the entire time to ensure an even job.
- Keep hands and feet away from spray. Because the pressure is so high, it can cut into your skin. Use caution!
- Wash top-down. Spraying from the bottom-up can lead to water getting into your siding, so always move top-down.
- Wear the right clothing. Pressure washing is a messy job. Be sure to don safety glasses to avoid getting dirt in your eyes. Also, wear closed-toed shoes and clothes you feel comfortable getting messy in.
- Understand the uses for gas vs. electric pressure washers. Electric pressure washers are ideal for light cleaning projects, such as a car, outdoor grill, or garage floor. Use a gas-powered washer for bigger jobs, like siding, removing deck aging stains and deep-cleaning concrete. Gas pressure washers deliver 3,000 psi or more. Electric pressure washers also require a 20-amp dedicated outlet, so check your power sources before renting or go with a gas to avoid power-related issues.
Tips for spraying paint on a fence or deck
For big paint jobs, like a backyard fence or deck, don’t waste your time with a paintbrush. Use a paint sprayer to refurbish them instead. What could take days with a paintbrush takes an afternoon with a paint sprayer.
- Cover the surrounding area. If paint spraying your deck, for instance, cover all windows, doors and patio furniture – anything you don’t want to be coated with paint.
- Choose a nice day. If you’re using the paint sprayer on your deck or fence, choose a calm day. A windy day can cause paint to fly everywhere but your surface.
- Stir your paint before use. This prevents clogs at the tip of the machine.
- Move as fast as you would with a brush. Hold it 10 to 12 inches from the surface, and move in a slow, steady motion.
- Use multiple buckets. Have one five-gallon bucket on hand for paint, and one scrap bucket for test-spraying and cleanup.
- Have an extension cord handy. The sprayer needs electricity, so make sure you’re either near an outlet or have access to an extension cord before using it.
- Look out for things downwind. Take precautions like ensuring your car is out of the picture to avoid painting it.
Tips on how to use an edger trencher for a visually appealing lawn
Heavy duty edger trenchers are great for backyard they create clear-cut lines to define mulch or flower bed edges. The sidewalk edger can create clean lines that separate your grass from your sidewalk and driveway. Follow these best practices and safety tips for optimal results.
- Wear safety goggles. This will prevent loose debris from flying into your eyes.
- Have a shovel and broom on hand. You’ll need a shovel for any extra digging, and a broom to sweep up dirt afterwards.
- Call diggers hotline. While public electrical lines are marked, private ones are not. Digger’s hotline will come to your house, free of charge, to ensure where you are digging is 100 percent safe.
- Cut and water grass the night before. This makes the grass easier to work with – softened soil means easier cutting.
- Spray paint design beforehand. This helps you ensure perfectly straight lines and curves.