It’s spring, so it’s the perfect time to get your house in order and give it a deep clean before allergy season. The spring cleaning season is the best time to organize your home and get rid of all the junk that accumulated over the winter.
However, this isn’t the only time your home should get a good scrub. “The parallel is to bathing and showering. Clean your home as often as you wash your hands and body,” says Allen Rathey, director at Indoor Health Council, an organization that connects cleaning with public health. “How often do you wash hands, bathe or shower? What level of detail? It’s really ‘spring cleaning’ time all year round depending on how dirty your body or home gets.”
Here is a checklist of spring cleaning tips and tricks from professionals to help make your spring cleaning easier.
- Regular cleaning is important.
- Clean your house with new cleaning products
- Deep clean indoors.
- Do not overlook the safety and security features of your appliances, systems, and home.
- Refresh your outdoor area.
The importance of regular cleaning
Cleaning is an important part of maintaining healthy, happy and comfortable living spaces. Cleaning can remove allergens, dirt and other pollutants which can accumulate with time. It can also improve your mental health.
Rathey says that a regularly cleaned home will last longer, be healthier and smell better. Less dirt and moisture reduces bacteria that cause disease and odors. Hard and soft flooring wear less when there is less grit. “Resettling and airborne dust reduces respiratory exposure, HVAC maintenance and air purifier clogging.
Renew Your Cleaning Supplies
It’s time to restock your cleaning essentials and give them a thorough overhaul before you begin cleaning. Courtney Klosterman is a home insights expert with insurance company Hippo. She says that you should ditch toxic cleaning supplies for a healthier, cleaner and safer home. Klosterman suggests replacing them with cleaners that comply with the Safer Choose standards of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.
Before you begin your spring cleaning, make sure that you have the following items:
- Microfiber cloths.
- Rubber gloves.
- Vacuum cleaners with attachments.
- Brooms and dustpans
- Carpet cleaner
- Scrub brush.
- Garbage bags.
- Castile soap or dish soap
- All-purpose cleaner.
- Window and Glass Cleaner
- Baking soda.
When you do your spring cleaning, you can also declutter and remove items that you no longer need or use. Cleaning expert Armeka Townsend is a senior consumer relations representative for Zep. She says clutter can make your house feel disorganized and chaotic.
By implementing the one year rule, you will be able to evaluate an item more objectively. You probably don’t want or need something if you haven’t used it in the last year. Townsend suggests that you donate, sell or recycle the items in order to make your home more functional and streamlined.
Deep Clean Indoors
Open your windows and start cleaning from the top.
- Dust. Dust, debris, and other particles usually fall from higher surfaces. According to Townsend it is important to clean these first. She says to start by dusting the ceiling fans, shelves and light fixtures, and then move onto furniture and countertops. “Finally clean your floors. Make sure you mop or vacuum them thoroughly in order to remove all dirt.”
- Glass. Clean glass with old T-shirts or socks, or newspaper. These items will help you clean glass without streaks. Klosterman suggests that you can make your own DIY glass cleaner by mixing equal parts of white vinegar with water, shaking it and wiping the surface. You can use a mild soap, water, and a microfiber towel.
- Walls. Scuff marks on walls can be removed with soap and water. For tougher spots, use a Mr. Clean Magic Eraser.
- Floors. Even on carpets, mold can grow quickly and unnoticed in the winter months. Klosterman suggests using a carpet cleaning product to remove excess moisture and thoroughly clean your carpet.
- Furniture. Furniture is a magnet for heat, sweat and dirt. Klosterman recommends using a steamer designed for furniture and upholstery to deep clean.
- Grout. Try an extendable scrubber to reach those germy areas without straining or overworking your back.
- Mattresses and bedding. Vacuum the mattress. All bedding . “Vacuum both the top and side of the mattress using the upholstery attachment. Klosterman recommends that if your mattress has an odor or is stained, sprinkle baking soda on top and let it rest for 30 minutes. Then vacuum it up. To extend the life of your mattress, turn it 180 degrees around or flip it.
Do not forget areas which are usually neglected. Townsend states that some areas of your house may not be regularly cleaned, but dirt and grime still accumulate. Be sure to clean the baseboards and air vents as well as window tracks, and spaces beneath and behind appliances. To remove dust and allergens, you may want to clean your carpets, upholstery and curtains. “Don’t forget to clean the doorknobs and handle as well.”
Do not overlook your home’s critical systems, appliances and safety features
Spring cleaning is the ideal time to inspect your major appliances and systems.
- Plumbing. Klosterman suggests checking for signs of issues, and water damage in areas such as under sinks and the basement. He also recommends pouring white vinegar distilled down drains twice a month and into dishwashers to prevent clogs. Check and drain the water heater for any sediment build-up.
- Appliances. Vacuum dust and dirt off your refrigerator coils. Do not forget to clean your dryer and washer. Klosterman explains that the leading cause of fires in homes involving washing machines and dryers is dust, fibers or lint accumulation inside the dryer exhaust vent. Hippo’s Housepower Report 2022 revealed that homeowners are hesitant to clean the dryer exhaust vent.
- HVAC. Replace the air filter in your HVAC, or schedule your biannual service with a technician.
- Safety. Check to make sure that smoke detectors, carbon monoxide alarms, and fire extinguishers are working properly. Have a professional clean and inspect your fireplace every year.
Refresh your outdoor space
You cannot forget about the outside as warmer weather approaches. It’s time to prepare your garden for spring.
Townsend says, “Clean your patio furniture thoroughly. Remove any debris on your deck or balcony. Check for any repairs or maintenance that may be needed.” You may want to also add new plants or decor to create an inviting atmosphere.
- Gutters. Leaves and other debris should be removed from your gutters. Klosterman advises: “Use a ladder to reach those hard-to-reach places and check for any possible points where clogging may occur. Then, using gloves, remove visible debris.”
- Siding. Consider painting your home. Klosterman says that painting and sealing siding will keep out pests and stop leaks and mold. Make repairs to your home as soon as possible if you notice any signs of damage.
- Trim the trees. Storms and high winds can knock down entire trees or limbs, causing damage to your property. Klosterman recommends a quick walkthrough in order to remove any branches that are touching or hanging over your roof. Trim trees that are overhanging or encroaching near gutters and rooflines to prevent damage.
- “Lawn Equipment Maintenance”: “ Clean up your lawn machinery, and remove any debris from last year,” Klosterman advises. Check your lawnmower’s oil level and whether or not the blades have become dull. If necessary, replace any worn or dull components.
- Grilling season is almost here. Grab the grill. Give your grill a good scrub. Klosterman recommends using a grill brush to clean the grill plate. A damp rag can be used to clean the outside.