I know, I know. It is still technically winter, and FEELS like winter – but, did you know spring officially starts March 19th? That means SPRING CLEANING is upon us. Of course we clean our houses more than once a year, but spring cleaning is a time to “deep” clean the house and freshen it for the new year. The following are helpful tips on where to clean, what to clean with, and extra items that may help you out this time of year. I do not know about you, but when it comes to cleaning, I need ALL the help I can get (especially when it comes to using what product on what material). Who better to get tips on cleaning from than Martha Stewart?!
Wipe Walls and Ceilings
Use a vacuum to remove dust. Tackle stubborn surface grime, especially prevalent in kitchens, with a solvent-free degreaser.
Vacuum and Shampoo Rugs
Synthetic carpets and rugs with waterproof backings can be deep-cleaned with a rotary shampoo machine and a hot-water extraction machine. Rugs without backings, including Orientals, require professional cleaning.
Dust Books and Shelves
Take everything off the shelves, and brush them (along with the books) with a feather duster. Use the dust brush or crevice tool on a vacuum to reach into tight spots. Wipe the spines of leather-bound books with a clean, soft cloth.
Clean Upholstered Furnishings
Take cushions outside and gently beat them by hand to remove dust. If there are stains, check the pieces for care labels. Use a vacuum’s upholstery and crevice tools to clean under seat cushions.
Polish Metal Door and Window Hardware
Liquid polishes and polish-impregnated cloths work well for medium-tarnished surfaces; pastes and creams are best for heavier work. If the tarnish doesn’t come off, try a stronger product.
Dust Your Home Thoroughly
This includes hard-to-reach places, such as the tops of ceiling fans and window casings. Always work from the top of a room down, vacuuming the dust that settles on the floor. Avoid using dusting sprays.
Wax Wooden Furniture
Wipe surfaces with a soft cloth dampened with water and mild dishwashing liquid. Apply paste wax, such as Butcher’s wax, a few feet at a time with a cotton rag folded into a square pad. Let the wax dry; buff with a clean cloth.
Ensure Fire Safety
Change batteries in smoke detectors (this should be done twice a year), and make sure units are free of dust. Teach everyone in your household how to use a fire extinguisher, and review escape plans.
Wash Window Screens
Using warm water and a mild dishwashing liquid, scrub each screen with a brush; rinse thoroughly.
Clean Window Treatments
Many draperies and curtains are machine washable; check labels. Dry clean fabric shades. Wipe wooden blinds with a damp cloth; warm water mixed with a mild dishwashing liquid is safe for metal and vinyl blinds.
Wax Non-Wood Floors
Vinyl and linoleum floors that have lost their shine should be waxed with a polish designed for these surfaces. Most stone and tile floors can be treated with either a paste or a liquid wax designed for the material.
As for my two cents, I would suggest throwing out anything and everything that you don’t use. De-clutter your house by donating the clothes you don’t wear and items you no longer use. This small gesture can open up A TON of space in your home – plus, you are helping others out too!