As of March 21st we are officially within the spring season, which makes this the perfect time to knock-out some of your much-needed spring cleaning! While floors, junk drawers, and mattresses are all spring-cleaning basics, there may be some crucial areas of your home that have been overlooked. Here are some spaces that could use that extra bit of love, right along with the rest of your home during this year’s spring cleaning!
Air conditioning ducts gather dust during the winter, and that dust will inevitably make its way into air vents and thence into your lungs. These little particles can make you doubly miserable if you have allergies, so be sure to keep your indoor air unpolluted by changing your air filters. Be sure to find filters with a high MERV (Minimum Efficiency Reporting Value) rating, which refers to how well the filter catches particles and what types. Here are some examples to help you choose the best filter for your home:
• 1 through 4– pollen, dust mites, cockroach droppings
• 5 through 8– mold spores, pet dander, dust mite droppings
• 9 through 12– legionella bacteria, lead dust, exhaust particles
Your bathroom might not be the prime suspect for clutter, but it could be an unused-cosmetics graveyard. Do yourself a favor and empty your cabinets, drawers, and shower shelves of expired and forgotten products, like those crumbling lipsticks you bought when The Office was still on air, or that “curl-control” shampoo that didn’t quite deliver. Be sure to wipe down products and shelving for dust, as these bottles typically form a layer of dust faster than you’d expect!
While you’re at it, be sure to clean your brushes, blenders, and applicators with a brush cleanser. Over time, these items accumulate bacteria, dead skin cells, and oil, which can clog pores and apply acne-causing bacteria directly back onto your face. Yuck! An easy mixture of water and a few drops of unscented castile soap is an easy way to shampoo make-up brushes, and there are plenty of options online for soaps specifically formulated to keep your brushes clean and usable for much longer!
Do you have young kids and toddlers in the home? One place germs and dirt can lurk in your home is in your child’s beloved toy collection, and they shouldn’t be overlooked when you’re ready for spring cleaning! Bacteria and mites love those toys, almost as much as your little one does. But luckily, cleaning can be pretty simple (as long as you’ve done a little checking first). Sturdy plastic toys can go in the dishwasher on a gentle / crystal cycle so long as you don’t use heated drying methods. Stuffed animals and plush toys should be fine in a mesh bag or pillowcase in the washing machine on the delicates cycle (just be sure to check the care tag first!) Run a lint brush over the plush when dry, and voila! Good as new!
Washer and Dryer
Speaking of washing machines, your washer and dryer could use some love this spring. You can disinfect and deodorize your washer by running its special cleaning cycle with bleach, or with specialized a washing machine cleaner. You may be asking yourself why it’s so important to clean the washing machine. Cleaning out that washing-machine will help prevent the buildup of mold, mildew, dust, dirt, and soap deposits. These can be harmful to both your health and clothing, and are the common cause of stinky machines.
You also may want to pay extra special attention to your dryer: more than 15,000 house fires a year start in the laundry room, usually due to lint back-up. When cleaning your dryer, pull lint from the filter slot, using the crevice tool on your vacuum cleaner if need be. Vacuum under, around, and behind the dryer unit to clean up any excess lint. Those who use dryer sheets and fabric softeners have a higher likelihood of residue buildup on the mesh lint trap– but an old toothbrush dipped in warm, soapy water is all you’ll need to get that mesh spic-and-span.
Phone & Devices
?It’s not pleasant to consider the fact that your phone screen probably has more microbes crawling on it than your toilet seat, but it’s true. Phones and other electronic devices are germ-magnets, so it’s a good idea to give them a nice deep clean. When cleaning the phone itself, especially the screen, use a small amount of soap and warm water on a microfiber cloth, being careful not to get moisture into any ports or jacks. Dry all surfaces thoroughly before re-attaching protective cases, which can be given a quick swipe with disinfecting wipes.
Keyboards and computer mice can also be cleaned with wipes after a good dusting, and if you’re really dedicated, a blast in between the keys with liquid air. Remotes are in the same boat, and don’t forget to take a look at any gaming devices and their controllers as well!
We hope these cleaning tips will help you love where you live! For more tips on how to keep your home dazzling, comfy, and healthy all year round, contact us. We’ll be happy to help you make your space look its best!