The Rengstorff House is Mountain View’s oldest historic house and is one of the finest examples of Victorian Italianate architecture on the West Coast and is a prime model of adaptive reuse. Today this beautifully restored historic house museum provides the perfect setting for visitors to acquaint themselves with the attributes of the 19th century. The Friends of “R” House invite you come to the Rengstorff House and experience one of a kind exhibits, living history programs, memorable holiday events, and much more.

The Friends of "R" House are looking for VOLUNTEERS - Are you interested in serving on/or with the Board of Directions? Looking for a Social Media Internship? House about looking for some hours volunteering with collections management or Exhibition Organization? If so, check our volunteer job postings by checking the volunteer page under the About Us tab, or visit our listings at VolunteerMatch.org

Find us on Facebook and check our calendar often so you are assured not to miss a thing. Complimentary docent tours are held throughout the year on Sundays, Tuesdays, and Wednesdays and are given by Mountain View Parks and Recreation docent volunteers.  Tour times are subject to change without notice. Donations are always welcome and proceeds go to the Friends of “R” House to further our educational mission. The Rengstorff House is located inside picturesque Shoreline at Mountain View at 3070 N. Shoreline Blvd. Mountain View, CA 94043. Come out and enjoy the house, stroll through the gardens, enjoy the sailing lake, and take in the wonders of the wetlands and bird sanctuary.

Old Pool Maintenance: A Guide On Keeping Your Pool Clean

Pool cleaning tips

Opening the old pool of the Rengstorff House for visitors and guests will take a lot more than simply filling it with water. If you have a pool in your backyard, you may be dreading the idea of having to clean it. However, not giving your swimming pool proper care and maintenance may result in algae buildup, green water, and broken filtration system among others.

Keeping your pool looking at its best doesn't have to be an overwhelming task. The key here is preventive maintenance. Regularly maintaining it will not only prolong its life and cut down on maintenance costs, but it will also be safer for the whole family to swim in.

Here are a few simple and easy ways on how to ensure your swimming pool is always ready for the season.

Parts of your pool

Get To Know Your Pool And Its Parts First

Before anything else, getting familiar with the different parts of your pool and how they function will be very helpful on your part. It can make the cleaning process smoother and resolve any problems that may arise easier and faster.

Your swimming pool can have all the fancy features you want like advance pool covers, lightings, heating, or underwater speakers. However, all pools, whether it's Olympic-sized with all the bells and whistles, an old one like that of the Rengstorff House or a regular backyard pool, comes with four basic components that require regular upkeep and care: These include the following:

  • Pool water. You need to keep the water of your swimming pool clear, clean, and balanced to protect the health of your loved ones. It should be free from pollutants and contaminants so that your pool will also last longer.
  • Interior. The interior wall and liner of your pool are always in contact with water and anything that enters it. Your pool will be safe and clean if you'll keep its surfaces in good maintenance, free of debris, mold, and algae.
  • Filtration system. The pool pump is what keeps the water circulating, while the pool filter is what will clear contaminants like dirt from your pool water. If the filtration system is not functioning properly, you'll have an unswimmable pool that's polluted and cloudy.
  • Returns and skimmers system. Pool skimmers are different from net skimmers. These are the ones that pull the water into the filters for cleaning. The returns, on the other hand, push it after the water has been cleaned back into your swimming pool.

Not all pools are the same, and there will be upkeep challenges you may encounter specific to yours. Having a strong understanding of how these components work will help you resolve those maintenance challenges.

Maintenance challenges

Pool Cleaning Tools

Pools with proper circulation make it simpler to clean. However, there is still some manual work you need. Here's a list of basic tools you need to check in your garage:

  • Pool brush
  • Net skimmer
  • Pool vacuum

There will be various kinds of things that will go and grow into your pool when you use it such as leaves, residues from hair products and perfumes, as well as mold to name a few. Maintaining your pool is very important to prevent the risk of bacterial contamination and to make swimming safe.

Skimming, brushing and vacuuming your pool once a week will keep dirt and debris from its water. Using an automatic pool cleaner can cut down on your cleaning time significantly. It will not get rid off regular brushing and skimming, but both jobs will be a lot easier. This will leave you with more time to enjoy your refreshing and clean pool rather than cleaning it.

Best Historic House Museum Cleaning Tips And Maintenance


Maintaining a museum and old historic home like the Rengstorff House combines both traditional and unique cleaning techniques. The first step you need to take to rejuvenate it is to know the distinction between the materials used today and historic structures so that its integrity, architectural charm, and sturdiness will not be affected.

Homeowners of old houses often make the mistake of hurrying up to fix any damage when it arises. Most of the time it results in taking unsuitable measures when restoring or repairing its materials. It is essential to understand how a historic home responds to its inhabitants, the environment, and weather. This will enable you to determine the proper action you need to take.

The Importance Of Air Purifying Technology

Air Purifying Technology

The air surrounding us contains health risks related to dangerous gases and highly fine particles. They can penetrate deep into our bloodstream by passing through our lungs' alveoles. The smaller these impurities from polluted outdoor air are, the more they will be able to stick into our lungs.

The best way to get rid of these contaminants in the rooms of your home, especially old historic ones like the Rengstorff Home is by using an air purifier. These air cleaning devices do not just remove air contaminants, but they're also beneficial to people with asthma and allergies, as well as reduce or eliminate the smell of tobacco in a room.

If you're confused about the different types of air purifiers because of the jargons used in their brochures, this article will clear those out for you. Here you will find out essential information on the most common technologies utilized by air purifiers available in the market today including their pros and cons.

Pressure Washing Tips And Tricks

Power Washing Tips

In the past decades, pressure washing has become a very popular cleaning method in most households. While a lot of cleaning jobs in our homes will mainly depend on using the right cleaning product. However, there are instances when vigorous scrubbing is not enough to remove stubborn stain, dirt, and grime.

Pressure washers are the right machine for this. They are versatile cleaning tools that can handle accumulated dirt on your home that has built up over time with little effort on your part.

Pressure washing is a great way of rejuvenating the exterior of your house and even old historic homes such as the Rengstorff House. A pressure washer can take on practically anything outdoors. You can use it to clean your deck, patio, car, and outdoor furniture. It's also tough on oil stains and grease, making it the perfect equipment for taking care of your driveway.

These cleaning machines work dramatically and fast, and fun to use as well. Learn how to utilize one properly and make cleaning the exterior of your home a process that's short and painless by following the tips we have here.

Deep-Cleaning A Museum Historic House

Cleaning Tips

One of the main goals of the Rengstorff House operation is to provide people with a unique historical experience while preserving it at the same time for future generations to experience it as well.

There are plenty of ways to preserve a historic house. These can include pest control management, building maintenance, and disaster preparedness to name a few. However, basic housekeeping like pressure washing the patio contributes a lot to the success of all these aspects. When done the right way, regularly cleaning an old house is the key to prevent wear and tear of interiors, helps in preventing pests, and contributes to the maintenance of the structure.

How To Clean Patio By Pressure Washing

Patio Pressure Washing

The patio of the Rengstorff House is a stunning addition to the garden area of this gorgeous old house. It's the perfect place for dining, entertaining, and a whole lot more. That's why cleaning it regularly by pressure washing is essential to prevent any dirt or algae build-up, and to ensure it will stand the test of time.

Why Should I Use A Pressure Washer?

One of the biggest benefits of cleaning your patio and its furniture by pressure washing is its convenience and cost-effectiveness. You can clean your space quicker, and you don't even need to use a lot of water at doing so. It's a very effective method and can be a lot of fun compared to scrubbing and using a hose.

Guide On How To Properly Clean Old Hardwood Floors

Hardwood Floor

The hardwood floors of the Rengstorff House give it a warm and earthy vibe. Keeping it impressive and long-lasting takes a bit of care though. Wood floors may be gorgeous, but they tend to be expensive, and the last thing you want is to ruin it by using substandard cleaning products.

Nevertheless, their maintenance is not as expensive as you think. Bringing out the beauty of your hardwood flooring does not always require the process of staining and sanding, especially if they're not damaged. You can always keep it shiny and clean by utilizing the best mop available in the market. And you don't even need to use a lot of water or harsh chemicals which can weaken it.

Cleanup Expert - helping homeowners find quality cleaning products they can afford

At Cleanup Expert, we are passionate about cleaning. We want to make the necessary, yet tedious work of cleaning your space as simple and painless as possible. To do that, we review the top cleaning products on the market. Our independent reviews tell you all you need to know so you can save time and money while shopping for high quality cleaning supplies. We’ll list the pros, cons, prices, and links so you can easily click to the products you want.

You’ll also find articles with helpful cleaning tips and tricks. One reason people hate cleaning is that it’s physically demanding and time-consuming. Add to that products that don’t live up to their claims, and talk about frustration! We want to make cleaning as efficient and worth your time as possible. But we also want you to have fun while you’re here. We’ll strive to make all content light and easy-to-read. Imagine you’re in our kitchen, chatting over a cup of coffee about the ins and outs of cleaning.

Why trust Cleanup Expert

The internet is teeming with websites competing to get your money, and honestly, the big retailers aren’t interested in making sure you’re getting the most for your hard-earned dollars. Here at Cleanup Expert, we spend thousands of hours independently reviewing cleaning products that we purchase for that purpose.

We never accept remuneration from product manufacturers in any form. Our reviewers are completely independent and unbiased consumers just like you who have the same challenges when it comes to cleaning.

Where do we get our product information

For each product listed, we collect our independent reviewers’ opinions on each product, plus we gather other customer opinions from various internet platforms. We list both pros and cons so you know which ones will fit your lifestyle, budget, health needs, and physical limitations. Additionally, we gather product specs from manufacturer and retail websites so you know product size, ingredients, and any other useful data.

We don’t rely on bots, web crawlers and algorithms to determine our content. We’re real people, just like you, who want to know about real, quality cleaning products without all the hype. No one brand name will be spotlighted. If it’s something that does what it says it does, saving you time and money, then that’s what you’ll find here.

Importance Of Air Purifiers At Keeping The Air Quality

Air Quality

Indoor air quality is essential at the Rengstorff House to ensure that you'll breathe in clean air. Regardless of your home's age, if it has poor air quality, you will breathe in particles that can make you sick. Old homes may be charming, but they have more air quality concerns compared to newer ones since their age can produce a few complications related to air.

Old houses have different air quality problems than modern ones. They often have molds that we cannot see that have developed over the years in areas that are hard to reach. Another cause of the problem is aging and declining materials.

For example, old homes with walls made from plaster may have areas that may be deteriorating or damaged which will result in releasing tiny bits and pieces of plaster dust into your home's air in the process. Moreover, older houses have more wall cracks, windows, and doors, as well as lesser insulation. Hence, moisture and accompanying mold spores may play a significant role in air pollution inside your home.

There's no need to panic though because there are solutions to these problems. There are plenty of air purifiers and air filters available in the market today, as well as cost-effective and simple ways that will keep the air in your home healthier and cleaner for the whole family.

Restore Your Old Pool With The Help Of Automatic Pool Cleaners

Pool Cleaner

Having a swimming pool in your home is a great way to beat the searing summer heat. There's nothing like diving into a clean, crystal clear water. However, there is some maintenance you need to perform to ensure it stays that way. And let's be honest, most of us have been putting off scrubbing our pools because it's quite a daunting task and not as fun as swimming in it. Just the mere thought of it is enough to tire and bore us.

Keep in mind though that a pool that's been unattended or stagnant for a long time without circulation, cleaning, and chemicals will not last long. If you don't' clean and maintain it properly on a regular basis, you will wake up one day with a pool that's unswimmable. They become mossy green within weeks, mosquitoes and frogs will call it home within months, and its surfaces will start to decline if not given proper cleanup for too long.

Hiring a pool company to the job for you can set you back on your budget, and most of these companies will not be honest with you. Read this pool service companies secrets list to know what they don't want you to know with regards to pool cleanup.

Fortunately, you can revive and restore your pool yourself easily these days with the help of automatic pool cleaners. Aside from keeping it safe for you and your family to swim, maintaining your pool on your own can also save you money in the long run.

Effectively Pressure Washing The Old Wooden Deck

Pressure washer and Wooden Deck

Historic places like the Rengstorff House boast of a beautiful wooden desk that is indispensable to its outdoor living area. However, once it began to look worn out, it can lower the value of this grand old Victorian home significantly. That is why it is essential to give it a proper cleaning to ensure that its beauty will not fade for many more years to come.

The most effective way to remove all sorts of dirt and grime that are starting to build up on decks is by pressure washing. Any deck will look as good as new in just a matter of hours. Pressure washer must be used with caution though, and it is vital to learn the proper way of using it for cleaning your old wooden deck. You don't want to end up damaging it instead of bringing it to life.

In this article, you will find all the information you need that will help you through the process of cleaning your deck without worrying about causing cracks, splits, and damaging it.


Floor mopping

The Rengstorff House is one of the oldest historic houses and an extraordinary example of Victorian Italianate architecture. The wonderfully restored historic house museum is located on the West Coast.

Cleaning a regular home's floor is daunting enough, so what more of museum cleaning. Historic houses have some of the most exceptional floorings out there. Mopping 75-year-old hardwood floorings can be quite scary since you don't want to ruin its historical value. No matter how extremely resilient these historic house floors are, they are still prone to stains, damage, and other issues.

Everyone loves a clean floor, but not everyone loves the idea of mopping. One of the things that make an old or historic house special is its flooring. Here's how to give them the right kind of tender loving care that they deserve.

You don't have to worry though, these days you can rejuvenate floorings of any age with the use of the best mops available in the market today.

A Pioneer Family


Henry Rengstorff grew up in Germany, where his father owned and operated a country tavern near Bremen. Like so many others of his generation, young Henry was lured to California by stories of the Gold Rush. He left home at the age of 21, sailed around Cape Horn, and arrived in San Francisco in 1850. Too late to join in the Gold Rush, he took a job on a bay steamer traveling between San Francisco and Alviso.

Later, Rengstorff left shipping to work as a farm laborer in Santa Clara Valley, where he saved enough money to purchase squatter’s rights to 290 acres of land in San Jose. Just three years later, he added another 290 acres to his holdings. As Rengstorff’s fortune grew, so did his land holdings. He raised grain and hay near Milpitas, kept cattle in San Mateo and planted fruit trees in Los Altos.

He met and married Christine Hassler, a native of Wurtemberg, Germany. The Rengstorff home reverberated with the sounds of their children: Mary, John, Elise, Helena, Christine, Henry and Charles.

In 1864, Rengstorff bought 164 acres of land which is now part of Shoreline Business Park, located a quarter mile north of Bayshore Freeway. There he built the Rengstorff House.

Near where the house stands today, Rengstorff built a ship landing. The Rengstorff Landing played a significant role in the economic development of Mountain View and the Peninsula. Prospering farmers exported their lumber, fruits and grains. Returning ships brought hardware and building supplies for the growing region. An original journal from the Rengstorff Landing was discovered in the house during its restoration.

When Rengstorff died in 1906 at age 77, his daughter Elise Rengstorff Haag and her husband moved into the family home, bringing with them Perry Askam, the orphaned son of Elise’s sister, Helena Rengstorff Askam. Perry inherited the house after his aunt died.

In 1959, Askam sold the house to a land development company. A succession of owners held the property over the next 20 years.

In 1979, the house was purchased by the City of Mountain View, eventually moved to its present site and restored. In March 1991, the Rengstorff House was dedicated as a public facility by Mountain View’s City Council.

House Tours

Rengstorff House Dining Room

Tours of the Rengstorff House are available on Tuesdays and Wednesdays from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m., and Sundays from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m.. The grounds and gardens are open to the public during the same hours.

The Rengstorff House is located in Shoreline at Mountain View at 3070 N. Shoreline Blvd, Mountain View, CA 94043.

Yahoo Map - Yahoo Driving Directions

Rental Information  

The City of Mountain View is responsible for the Rengstorff House rental program.  For information on renting the Rengstorff House and a copy of the Rengstorff House rental packet please click here Call (650) 903-6088, or email RHouseRentals@mountainview.gov for additional information.

The Rengstorff House and gardens are available for rental every day except during public hours, which are Tuesdays and Wednesdays, from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m., and Sundays from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m.

Friends of “R” House is not responsible for, nor involved in, the rental program.