August 17, 2015
Power Washing the Stable
My stable manager, Betsy, and her crew, Sarah and Dolma, do a wonderful job of caring for my horses, ponies and donkeys. They also work hard at maintaining the stable - keeping it clean and comfortable for my dear equids.
At least once a year, the stable undergoes a heavy, thorough cleaning - this is important not only for the wellness of the horses, but for the stable itself. Last week, the interior was given a complete scrubbing - walls were power washed, floors and mats were scrubbed and thoroughly dried, and every nook and cranny was inspected.
Here are some photos of our process.
1 The first step to cleaning the stalls was to remove all the feeding and bedding, and to sweep as much of it by hand.
2 Using a hard and short bristled broom, Eng scrubbed the mats down with sudsy water.
3 Eng scrubbed the bars, walls, ledges - every nook and cranny to remove as much organic matter as possible. He also wore a mask as protection from any fumes during the process.
4 Using the power washer attached to a garden hose, Eng washed down all the surfaces. A power washer can get out so much more than what is seen - they are very helpful.
5 Gas powered pressure washers, or power washers, are great for cleaning large areas. They pump out up to 2800 pounds per square inch of water pressure. When using one, always wear safety equipment to protect eyes, and hearing.
6 The mats were removed, and the concrete floors were scrubbed. During these major cleaning sessions, it's also good to inspect the stalls in case there are other issues or repairs that may need addressing.
7 Phurba went over every stall carefully, and made sure everything was well-cleaned and well-scrubbed.
9 The underside of the stall mats were scrubbed thoroughly and then moved outdoors where they could dry under the hot sun.
10 Allowing them to dry outside helps to eliminate odors and kill bacteria that thrives on moisture.
11 It was a very hot day, so fans were on full blast to help dry the stalls. This is important to prevent mold and mildew from developing.
12 All the mats from the grooming aisles were brought outside for cleaning as well.
13 Stable mats need to be thoroughly cleaned once or twice a year. Good quality rubber mats provide a drier environment for the horses, and reduce the need for excess bedding.
14 Once the stable floors and mats were completely dry, they were brought back in and assembled.
15 Eng and Phurba returned all the mats to their original places.
16 They all fit together perfectly.
17 The walls, which often get kicked and marred by hooves, were cleaned and wiped down - they looked as good as new!
18 Dolma and Sara brought in the new bedding for the stalls.
19 Each stall was ready with fresh shavings and some feed.
20 The stable was clean as a whistle. Now, to bring the horses in.
21 Dolma and Sarah got the horses. My beautiful Friesians are so good - they just walked up to them, ready to go back to the stable.
22 Out of the hot sun, and back to their clean stalls.
23 A clean stable fit for horse, and pony... and, of course, the donks.