Spring is here and if you're finding the idea of a once-a-year mega-cleaning marathon to be a little daunting, try breaking it down into an item-by-item list. It will be more manageable and you won't be left feeling like you have too much to do with too little time to do it. As you write your list, be sure to include these items:
Disinfect Your Washer and Vacuum Your Dryer
Washing machines do get funky after a while and you can buy detergents specifically for this purpose -like Affresh or Washer Magic. Follow the manufacturer's instructions and you'll find your clean clothes smelling much cleaner.
As for your dryer, lint buildup is a major cause of house fires. To keep your home safe, always clean your lint traps and open the back of the dryer and vacuum it out at least once a year along with the lint trap and the end of the exhaust vent. Consider buying a dryer vent cleaning kit to really ensure you're free and clear.
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Wash Your Dishwasher
Like your washing machine, your dishwasher gets dirty if not cleaned regularly. Use baking soda and water to clean the edges and door, then run it on empty with a product made specifically for cleaning dishwashers -like Dishwasher Magic.
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Disinfect the Garbage Disposal
A lot of nasty stuff goes down the disposal but it rarely gets cleaned because we don't look down there. Throw a sliced up lemon and some ice and salt into the sink and then run the disposal to neutralize odors and clean the blades -or try a commercial product like Plink.
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Scrub Your Food Storage Spaces
Don't just throw out old food, take everything out of the fridge and clean the shelves, drawers and sides. When you put all your refrigerated food back, do the same process with your freezer. After that, move on to the pantry.
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Clean Out Your Trash Cans
You may have sprayed them out after accidentally throwing something in there without a liner or when a particularly stinky bag of trash leaked some unknown fluid in the bottom of the can, but your trash cans could probably use a good, thorough cleaning. Use an old sponge and some bathroom cleanser that contains bleach to get out all the nastiness that's accumulated over the last year.
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Wipe Down Your Baseboards
This process can go pretty quick, but the dust that builds up baseboards gives your space a dingy look. Use a little dish soap to scrub off any scuffs or stains. You'll be surprised how much cleaner things look when your baseboards are spotless.
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Scrub Those Window Tracks
A lot of grime gets caught in those tracks. You'll be amazed when you clean it and realize just how much dirt has been sitting around in the open all this time. And don't forget those sliding glass door tracks.
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Dust and Wipe Down Your Fans and Air Conditioning Vents
You may have forgotten about them over the winter, but your fans and AC vents will soon become your best friend. Give them a little TLC by knocking off all the loose dust and then wiping fan blades and vent covers down with a wet sponge.
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Clean Your Blinds or Curtains
It's easy to forget about these often-used window covers, but when you clean them after a year or more of neglect, you'll soon notice the difference.
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Deep Clean Your Carpets
If you have a steam cleaner at home, use it. Otherwise, hire a professional or head to your local grocery store and rent a deep cleaner. Remember to do this early in the day and leave the windows and doors open because it can take a while for carpets to dry out all the way.
Image Via CitruSolution Carpet Cleaning
Empty Out your Closet
Use the one year rule. If you haven't worn it in a year, give it away because you aren't going to wear it at all. Also donate any clothes that don't fit you anymore -sure, you may fit into them again later, but chances are they'll be outdated by then and you'll be better off just buying new clothes than holding on to old ones for years.
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Shake Out Your Doormats
Your doormat catches dirt and grime before it can get inside -shake it out and swat it a few times to get all that dirt out so the mat can operate at peak efficiency once again.
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Scrub Your Patio Furniture
When you think of spring cleaning, you probably think of indoor chores, but as summer inches closer it's a perfect time to clean up your patio for guests. Wash any removable pads and scrub the surface of chairs and tables and your patio will look clean and inviting when warmer weather rolls around.
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Consider a Power Wash
Not all home exteriors can handle power washing, but if yours can, it's a quick and efficient way to get the outside of your house looking clean from top to bottom.
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If, after cleaning, your house still doesn't seem to shine and sparkle like it once did, then don't miss these great tips to refresh your decor.