Outdoor areas in apartments or units are much like a condensed backyard. Instead of a larger, sprawling area that is moderately tidy and neat throughout, you have a smaller, more packed-in area that is heavily regimented and more obviously tidy, or not.
The elements have a large part to play in how neat your outdoor area is, as rain and wind and scorching sun has a tendency to disrupt things on a regular basis. Dirt gets blown around by wind, rain cakes it into the ground and walls where it’s been blown and the sun peels paint, if left long enough. To help you to protect these outdoor areas of yours, we’ve put together this article on protecting your outdoor areas from the elements.
Shade sails are permanent fixtures in many backyards around Australia, and it’s easy to see why when you consider the strength of our natural sunlight. The sheer heat and intensity of UV rays gives people severe sunburns in a matter of minutes in summer, and this direct heat can be bad for outdoor areas, especially decorations.
Putting up small shade sails is very doable, and it will eliminate the heat in your outdoor area quickly and effectively. Folding arm awnings are great ideas for smaller areas, as they won’t require the same massive support structures that normal shade sails would need, but they are just as effective at covering up smaller areas.
The next big problem for many outdoor areas is wind. The wind can be very destructive to ornaments, structures, and plants alike, and your outdoor area is exposed to this threat constantly. A strong gust can blow through and tear down smaller plants, knock pots to the ground, and even compromise the structural integrity of fences. Reinforcing these things is the best way to avoid lasting damage in strong winds, and each has its own method of reinforcement that works better.
Small plants are best strengthened with metal or hard wood stakes hammered deep into the ground and attached to the plants via rope or tape. Pots are best weighed down with metal weights under the soil at the bottom of the pot. Fencing is a bit trickier, but with some larger grade screws and some time, you can add more points of anchor to the frame of the fence, and pack dirt more tightly in around the support beams that enter the ground to ensure less movement in high strength winds.
Tiling is an alternative to wooden decking in your outdoor area. Many people avoid tiling because of the increased costs initially, but their resistance to elemental damage is something to be reckoned with.
Where a set of wooden decking will look gorgeous out in the sun after a rainstorm, the heat and water will warp the wood, making it uneven to walk on. This uneven wood will shrink and grow with the moisture content, exposing the nails that hold the boards down and making them hazardous to walk over.
Tiling, on the other hand, never has any of these problems, can be cleaned with a broom and some water, and doesn’t need replacing until something heavy enough to break a tile falls on it.
Painting on the walls outside is something that many people forget can be damaged, but once the damage starts it’s hard to not notice it. Paint cracks and peels and falls away, and once it starts it’s hard to stop without completely repainting. This is because water enters in through the cracks or the lack of paint and lifts the rest of the paint up from underneath.
To prevent this from happening, a really good outdoor paint is needed for any outside surfaces that are in direct sunlight during the day. These paints are designed to deal with the increased heat and exposure, making them ideal for these conditions.
Finally, we arrive at cleaning. Keeping the outdoor area clean is instrumental in keeping it free from damage from the elements, as a dirt or water buildup will always rust iron-based metals, wear away stone, chew through wood and strip paint over time. Most things can be handled with regular sweeping and washing with clean water, so ensure you keep up those activities once a fortnight and your outdoor area should stay clean and undamaged.
With this guide your outdoor area is safe from the many malicious maladies of wicked weather.