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After the excitement from the winter holidays has simmered down with warmer weather fast approaching, Spring Cleaning is a yearly reminder to hunker down, deep clean your house and start the new year right in preparation for the Spring and Summer months – it’s an easy way to hold yourself accountable to keeping your home in tip top shape with an annual deep cleaning that is maintained with regular surface cleaning for 11 months until next Spring.
Do: Know You’re In It For The Long Haul
To get Spring Cleaning right, you have to go into it knowing that Spring Cleaning is not something that can be done in a day, or in most cases even a week. Block off a solid 3 weeks for Spring Cleaning your entire home. Yes, we said it, your entire home – which brings us to our next tip:
Don’t: Set Spring Cleaning Limits
Anything and everything in your home that you think should be cleaned, should be. Living room crown molding, outdoor window panes, inner kitchen drawers and cabinets all qualify. As we mentioned, the purpose of Spring Cleaning is to give your home a completely fresh start for the new year which means attacking dust and dirt in every conceivable nook and cranny in your home. If it sounds like a hefty amount of work, that’s because it is – Spring Cleaning isn’t a walk in the park if you aren’t the biggest fan of getting your hands dirty (there’s a reason it’s only once a year!), but believe us when we say it is well worth it.
Do: Go From the Top Down
Going from the top and working your way down is key when it comes to Spring Cleaning any room or general area in your home. Starting from the bottom and working your way up can un-do all of your hard work – for example, cleaning the floor first and dusting the ceiling fan afterwards. Going from top to bottom is a common method used because of its efficiency and effectiveness in preserving the aftereffects of all of your cleaning.
A good rule of thumb when it comes to Spring Cleaning is to put down the duster and pick up the sponge. Dusting simply moves dirt particles around rather than removing them entirely. Wipe down items that you would normally dust with a damp sponge or rag to catch dirt and give your house that deep clean you want, and be sure to regularly rinse off whatever you choose to use and keep it clean to avoid spreading around dirt you have already gathered up. For more delicate materials, such as lampshades, opt for a lint roller.
Do: Tackle Big Projects First
Although it may be tempting to organize the clothes in your closet by color and style, tasks like these merely give the illusion of cleanliness rather than taking on the bottom line. Tackle the big tasks of cleaning before you set your sights on carrying out the little organization details that may wear you out before you even get to real cleaning.
Spring Cleaning Guidelines
Tasks that should be done in every room of the house
Curtains: Depending on the material, clean according to the label attached to the fabric. This may range from wiping with a damp cloth to taking to the dry cleaners. Some lightweight curtains can be cleaned in the washing machine.
Windows: Clean window panes with a glass cleaner and clear out the bottom window tracks with a little baking soda and vinegar to loosen up the debris and wipe after you have given it time to sit.
Carpets: If you truly want to start fresh with your home through Spring Cleaning, we think using a carpet steamer is a must. It sounds scary, but you can rent one for the day for a price that’s not as high as you think: Click for an option from Lowe’s
Wooden Floors: Start off with sweeping to eliminate surface debris, then move on to using hardwood floor cleaner with a damp mop. Take care to ensure the mop is damp to touch and doesn’t leave standing water on your floors. Be sure to dry any excess water on the floors following cleaning to preserve them.
Your kitchen is where you tend to spend the most time aside from your bedroom, which is why it is a common focal point when it comes to Spring Cleaning. Read below to see a tailored list specific to deep cleaning your kitchen.
Drawers & Cabinets: Completely empty out all drawers and cabinets and clean them out with a sponge that is damp from soapy water, take care to ensure it is not dripping wet to not harm the material.
Dishes & Utensils: Wash any dishes or utensils that haven’t been used in the past year to ensure dust does not collect on them.
Dishwasher: Put a cup of vinegar in a dishwasher safe container and leave it (lid off) on the top dishwasher rack, having the dishwasher run with hot water while empty. This method washes away oil and grime that has built up over time.
Refrigerator: Empty out the refrigerator completely and clean it out with a sponge and warm soapy water – take care to completely dry out the interior after cleaning to avoid excess mildew.
Microwave: Place a microwave safe bowl filled with 1 cup of water and chopped lemon in the microwave and turn it on for several minutes until the water boils out and loosens debris. Clean thoroughly with warm soapy water and a sponge.
Kitchen Table & Counters: Submerge a rag in soapy warm water and squeeze out completely, then proceed to wipe down your table or counter tops. Depending on the material, follow up with a spray cleaner for extra shine. Use this same rag method for kitchen chairs.