Would you like to keep your cabin as beautiful as the day it was delivered? Here’s a checklist to help you do just that.
Start outside and save the inside for a rainy day. Check for wear and tear on your:
- Roof — pay close attention to valleys and the areas around vent covers. Clear away any debris.
- Overhangs and gutters — look for signs of leakage on the underside of your overhang, and clean out the gutters.
- Deck — look for loose or warped boards and signs that it’s time to reseal the wood.
- Siding — whether you chose natural cedar logs or LP Smart Lap siding, inspect the siding looking for discolored or damaged areas.
- Windows — the wrap around the window is just as important as a pane of glass. Look for any signs of damage from hail or the elements. Don’t forget to wash that beautiful glass while you’re there.
- Skirting — inspect the skirting and take note of any areas that may need a touch-up of paint.
- Foundation — peek under the skirting to make sure your foundation looks as solid as the day it was put in.
- Vent — do you have a dryer vent? Unscrew the cover and make sure it’s clear of any lint.
Tip: A good rule is to have your siding painted, stained, or sealed about as often as your deck.
Tip: Hewn cedar logs behave like all wood: they expand and contract depending on the amount of heat and moisture present. Before you use a power-washer to clean up your siding, inspect it closely for any gaps. Seal those gaps with exterior caulk, and then be sure to use an appropriately powerful pressure washer so you don’t score the surface of the wood (for example, 1500 PSI is enough to remove graying from UV rays, but you’ll need about double that power to remove old sealant).
Once you’re done outside, it’s time to come inside. Save the inside for a rainy day perhaps. And just like you did outside, start at the top and work your way down. It will save you from having to immediately redo some of these chores.
- Curtains — now is the perfect time to take down curtains. Put them in the washer while you work on other things.
- Ceiling — knock down any cobwebs and dust the corners of each room as well as the crown molding/trim.
- Ceiling fans — time to dust and inspect those fan blades. Don’t forget to wipe down the fan itself.
- Walls — any webs present? Get ‘em! Give your walls a nice once over with a damp cloth.
- Windows — dust those window sills and make the glass shine!
- Cabinets — the top of the cabinet is every not-tall-person’s worst nightmare, but it’s the perfect place for dust to accumulate. Use that step stool you brought out earlier for the ceiling and ceiling fan.
- Cabinet doors & interiors — take the stuff out and wipe down the inside and outside.
- Countertops — the secret to keeping your countertops easy to clean for months to come is to wax them. Use a little car wax (apply a thin layer, let it dry until it’s clear, wipe off) to increase the shine.
- Appliances — get another person to help you move your appliances out of their usual spots so you can clean the floor underneath and wipe down the sides of the appliance. Clothes
- Washer — run an empty load in your clothes washer, adding about 1 cup of vinegar to the water. This will help eliminate any mold or mildew hanging around.
- Dryer — check the dryer over for any lint buildup. Lint buildup is a fire hazard. So be sure to check the host and vent too, not just the lint catcher in the dryer. Dishwasher — clear the drain on the inside of your dishwasher (check your manual for specific instructions) and wipe around the seal on the door. Then place about 1 cup of vinegar is a dishwasher-safe container on the top shelf and run the dishwasher through a hot-water cycle. It kills germs and eliminates odors.
- Baseboards — wipe down the baseboards, aka the dust catchers.
- Rugs — as for your rugs, take them outside and beat them soundly! Or take a less violent approach by vacuuming them. Your choice (option A is a great stress reliever and workout). But leave them on the porch for a bit so they’re not in your way.
- Flooring — now is your chance to scrub the spots you’d been ignoring and mop the whole place.
Tip: Old, used dryer sheets are good at grabbing lint and dust.
Tip: While both vinegar and baking soda are great cleaning agents, the two together will result in quite a mess. But pouring baking soda down a drain washed down by vinegar will help clean up the inside of your pipes and eliminate odors.