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Saturday, 9 January 2016

A Bit Mucky

The last few times I've used my wheelchair, I've noticed that it was getting a bit mucky. There was some mud on the frame and a lot on the wheels, particularly the front castors. The footplate was really bad from all the rain we've had. So today, after my afternoon walk, I gave it a clean. It's the first time I've done this job and hindsight is a wonderful thing. I'll tell you what I did and then what I would do next time.

I got a bucket of hot soapy water (just Fairy) and a cloth and perched myself on the back ledge of the boot of the car. This is where I generally sit to dismantle my chair to put away. I kind of managed but it was way too much bending and I've got backache now. Next time, I'm going to do it on the back lawn, sitting on a waterproof travel rug.

I wiped all the metalwork down and that looks much better now. To get to the footplate and the castors, I had to put it in the boot of the car but of course, that means I had to be really careful about wringing the cloth out properly. I didn't want a car boot full of water!

The castors were really grim! Now I've cleaned them, the flashing lights are much clearer again. Also, the back wheels were quite muddy, not just on the tyres but around the rims. So I tried to give them a proper wash but it wasn't very successful because I was bending down and that hurt. Then I didn't think what I was doing and balanced it on my leg and now I've got a wet patch - lovely!

Finally, I gave the freewheel a clean, though that wasn't as bad as I expected. Then I left everything to dry off. Later, if my energy levels return, I'll check tyre pressures. Last time, I got taken by surprise and it nearly spoiled an afternoon out. That won't be happening again! Also, last time, we only did the back wheels, not the freewheel, so I'll check that too.

I think my biggest mistake was trying to do it at the wrong level. The floor would definitely be easier and less painful, as long as I can sit somewhere soft. Also, a stiff brush would be handy for doing the tyres and possibly a smaller bucket that would be lighter to carry.

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