Spring Cleaning – Cleaning Out the Tack Room
The tack room is one of the most important rooms in the stable. Considering it stores all the supplies you need to tend to and ride your horses, the room can become disorganized and cluttered very quickly. The warm spring urges many of us to clean our indoor and outdoor spaces.
As you tidy up the paddock, stalls, and feed rooms, you should allow plenty of time to straighten up the tack room. Allowing this time will make every spring and summer rider easier.
Empty the Room (or At Least the Shelves)
Over time, tack rooms collect equipment. Some of this equipment may be unusable or unwanted. Additionally, if you live in an area with cold winters, you may have plenty of unneeded winter equipment through the spring, summer, and fall months.
Sort all your equipment into three categories:
- Items you need immediately
- Items you need in the winter only
- Items you no longer need
For items you no longer need, determine if they are still usable. Items that are unusable should be disposed of. Otherwise, clean the items and prepare them for donation or sale.
Clean All Your Equipment
At this point, you should clean all the equipment you intend to keep. For large items like horse blankets, you can send them to cleaners. The winter and spring months can cover everything in dust.
Wipe down and disinfect all plastic and leather items. You should regularly protect your leather equipment like saddles and reins.
For all fabric items, you will want to remove as much horsehair as possible before washing them in your washing machine. Allow the items to air dry before returning to the tack room.
Clean the Tack Room Itself
Your storage system inside the tack room has likely collected dust and mud through the winter. Before returning your equipment to the room, give it a thorough cleaning. To clean your tack room, you should have a top-to-bottom approach.
Check the ceiling for cobwebs, birds’ nests, and other debris. Additionally, you should wipe down all shelves and hangers. Finally, sweep the floor. With so much equipment in the room year-round, it can be difficult to clean all parts of the tack room.
Organize and Restock
The final step of cleaning your tack room is to return all your equipment to its proper place. After all the equipment is clean and dry, you can begin to organize your tack room. Create specific locations for each type of equipment. You will want to ensure that the equipment is safe from damage.
Keep items that are needed regularly easily accessible. You will thank yourself later for that. Otherwise, stock the tack room in a way that makes sense to you.
For winter items, you can store them in a separate place to make room in the tack room. However, you can also place them out of the way if you do not have another place to store them. The highest and lowest shelves are great locations to store your winter equipment.