One amazing fact of life is that some people actually like to clean. For most of us, though, it’s the end result we like–a fresh, clean house. So, we clean like we take medicine, because it’s good for us! Every Spring we dive into cleaning with renewed vigor, scrubbing off the effects of a dreary winter and getting a fresh start.
To assist with your Spring cleaning, Tailored Living® has pulled together some labor-saving tips from the experts of clean that go beyond the daily tasks of dusting and vacuuming. You can enhance your cleaning efficiency, spending less time cleaning so you’ll have more time to enjoy your sparkling, clean home, or maybe slip out for an afternoon movie with a friend.
One: Microfiber is by far the cloth of choice for effective cleaning
Having the right tools is half the battle, and experts overwhelmingly recommend microfiber for just about any cleaning project.
- Cleaning mirrors
- General dusting of furniture
- Shining chrome fixtures in kitchens and bathrooms
- Clean computers, cell phones, cameras, iPods and plasma screens
- Dust the dashboard, instrument panel and windows in the car
- Even clean the family pets by wiping them down with a dampened microfiber cloth
Additional tip: The general rule of thumb is to use wet for cleaning and dry for dusting. When using wet, wring out as much water as possible. This increases absorbency as well as the fiber’s ability to pick up dirt and residue. –wellnessmama.com
Two: Use squeegees for windows, shower doors and walls
- Use a squeegee on the shower walls and door after every use to save time battling soap scum and water spots later. Keep the shower door slightly open to promote airflow and hamper mildew buildup. –Better Homes and Gardens
- Clean windows with a rubber-edged squeegee. To start, dip a sponge into a bucket of warm water with a few drops of mild dish soap. Wet window; rub the dirt away. Dampen the squeegee, then starting at an upper corner, draw it down from top to bottom. Repeat, overlapping strokes and wiping rubber edge with sponge after each stroke. (For large windows, ”snake” squeegee back and forth; then touch up edges.) Dry windowsills with a cloth. –Martha Stewart
Additional tip: For hardwater stains and chemical buildup on windows use Barkeeper’s Friend on a wet cloth to rub away the stain. Rinse and squeegee to complete. –thisoldhouse.com
Three: Easily dust and clean window blinds and shutters
- Put an old sock on one hand and spritz it with water. Grip each panel of the blind or shutter and slide sock-covered hand from one end to the other, removing dust from both sides of the slat at once. –Better Homes and Gardens
Additional tip: Do a final swipe with a used dryer sheet to create a more dust-resistant surface.
Four: Make quick work of dirty screens
- Clean screens with a scrap of carpeting. It makes a powerful brush that removes all the dirt. –HGTV
Additional tip: Close windows before you brush the outside of the screen to prevent dirt getting inside.
Five: Conquer those impossible-to-clean sliding glass door tracks (window sills too)
- Scrub the tracks with an old, dry toothbrush to loosen debris, then use your vacuum hose to remove it. Finish with a wet sponge. –Better Homes and Gardens
Additional tip: Lubricate and deter dirt from collecting by lightly spraying Armor All on the clean tracks.
Six: Clean and freshen the refrigerator naturally
- Two tablespoons baking soda in one quart of hot water, or a solution of one part apple cider vinegar to three parts hot water will clean and deodorize your refrigerator. –wikihow.com
Additional tip: For step-by-step instructions to clean the fridge inside and out see Cleaning the Refrigerator
Seven: Keep the bathtub sparkling clean
- Here’s a nontoxic but effective way to clean your tub: Add one teaspoon of liquid soap and several drops of an antibacterial essential oil (such as tea tree, eucalyptus, rosemary, or peppermint) to one cup of baking soda. Add just enough water to form a paste and use it with a sponge or brush to scour bathtub surface. –Martha Stewart
Additional tip: This DIY cleaner will work for any bathroom surface, except a wood finish.
Eight: Steam-clean the microwave
- Place a microwave-safe bowl with one cup of water and a chopped up lemon, lime, orange or several tablespoons of vinegarin the microwave. Run on high for several minutes (or until the solution boils and the window is steamy). Let it cool for 15 minutes before opening the door. Remove the bowl and wipe the inside with a sponge. –Good Housekeeping
Additional tip: Train the family to always cover food in the microwave to cut down on messes.
Nine: Spot-clean upholstered furniture
- Spot-clean fabrics with baby wipes. They are surprisingly effective because they contain very little moisture, have gentle cleaning agents, and dry quickly. Don’t confuse them with cleaning wipes, which might contain bleach or other harmful chemicals. –com
Additional tip: Stain Removal Basics from Martha Stewart
Ten: Effortlessly refresh window curtains and drapes
- If drapes are looking drab, take them out of the window, remove the hooks and run them through the air-fluff cycle in the dryer along with a damp towel (to draw off the dust) for 15 minutes. Hang them back in the windows immediately. –HGTV
Additional tip: This also works to refresh bedspreads, comforters and pillows whenever you change the sheets, and don’t forget to toss in a scented dryer sheet for a special touch.
Clean and organized brings peace and calm
If your Spring cleaning project gets slowed down by clutter, it might be time to look at storage and organization solutions for your home. With a place for everything, it’s much easier to keep the house clean and get the family on board to keep it organized. Tailored Living designers are experts at whole home organization with innovative storage solutions for every area of your home. We can help with custom closet organization systems, garage storage cabinets and flooring, home office design, entryway, entertainment centers, laundry room and more.
Call 866-641-8958 (US) or 866-973-8221 (CAN) today to schedule a free, in-home consultation or go online to www.tailoredliving.com to find a designer near you. We’ll maximize your space with efficient storage solutions that fit your lifestyle to make your life easier, calmer and cleaner.