Spring has finally made an appearance and after seemingly never-ending dull and dreary winter months, it is truly refreshing to be surrounded by blossoming flowers and milder, lighter evenings. Therefore, it’s a great time to get into the cleaning spirit and transform your home into a pristine and sweet smelling spring-like environment. Whether your home is small or large, spring cleaning can be a challenging task and is all about going beyond your usual dusting and mopping regime and transforming areas that don’t normally get that much-needed tlc as well, but where to start? This is where we come in – we’re here to give you a great insight into all the tips and tricks you need to make your spring cleaning experience all that bit easier!
1. Failure to prepare is preparing to fail!
Before you even begin to mop up, dust off and wipe down, you should take time to ensure that you have all the supplies you need ready. The first obvious ones will be your general purpose cleaner for all walls and floors and some sort of glass cleaner to make your windows and mirrors spotless. You’ll also want to have specialised cleaners like oven cleaner, wood oil and silver polish at the ready for those more specialised jobs. Good quality mops and brushes are also a must, so if you’re gazing at a trusty broom that has acquired somewhat deformed and frayed bristles over the years, it may be a good idea to fork out a few pennies and grab yourself a more effective one.
2. Eco-friendly mad? Go green with your cleaning products and make your own.
As more and more of us look to do our bit to save the planet, we can find ourselves spending more in order to achieve this. However, with these great recipes you can now make your own cleaning products out of most household ingredients:
Glass : Mix 1/4 cup vinegar with 1 quart of water to make your windows sparkle.
Countertops and bathroom tiles: Mix 2 parts vinegar and 1 part baking soda with 4 parts water. Apply with a sponge and wipe away.
Floors: Mix 4 cups of white vinegar with about a gallon of hot water. You can also add a few drops of pure peppermint or lemon oil to leave a fresh smelling scent.
Wood Furniture: Mix equal parts of lemon juice and olive oil. Apply a small amount to a cloth and rub it into your wooden furniture in long, even strokes.
3. The Living Room.
Sick and tired of unwanted surface scuffs and marks on your once pearly-white skirting boards? Lemon cream cleaner works beautifully at restoring them back to a bright shine whilst also maintaining a wonderful gloss finish, give it a go!
Use a hair dryer on a high heat setting to remove mug stains and water marks that have taken unwanted refuge on your coffee table and other wooden furniture.
Take down all your curtains or blinds to freshen up. If you are pessimistic about the hassle associated with cleaning curtains yourself then send them off to get dry cleaned, this way you can appreciate the transformation without any mishaps. Thoroughly scrub your blinds down with a vinegar and warm water solution, removing any dust that has collected over time.
Being the main hub of entertaining, the living room can often take the brunt of the buildup of dirt and grime, so it’s time to get rid any mysterious stains for good! (well until next year’s spring clean). If you don’t have one to hand or cannot borrow a steam cleaner, then turn DIY and steam any stains with your household iron. If the oily stains you are trying to attack are putting up a good fight then make a vinegar and baking soda solution and get scrubbing for great results.
- Make your way around the room with a duster getting rid of any dust on photographs, paintings or pictures you have hanging up, ensuring you pay extra attention to hidden nooks and crannies!
http://www.sparkpeople.com/resource/wellness_articles.asp?id=1073 is great for finding out more DIY, eco-friendly cleaning agents.
4. The Kitchen.
Scrub your oven until it gleams! A task that we all love to hate, though the satisfaction you’ll be rewarded with when you’re faced with a perfectly pristine oven will be like none other! Get rid of grease with a combination of baking soda, dishwashing liquid and vinegar, leave it to soak for a good while and then rinse for results.
Freshen up your fridge by removing all bins, shelves and compartments and wash/wipe them down with a general purpose cleaner (scented ones are even better!) Spring is also a good time to pay some attention to your condenser coils. By either vacuuming or wiping off the dust that has built up on them, you’ll be greeted with a happier and efficiently working fridge.
A great tip for making your stainless steel pots and pans sparkle like never before is to apply white vinegar and a bit of elbow grease. This will remove any stains that have built up from heat and hard water. TIP: In future, always make sure you dry your pots and pans to prevent unwanted marks.
A pongy job but none the less still all important – wash down all dustbins (inside and out), spray with a somewhat strong air freshener and leave to dry.
To make your dishwasher run like new again put two cups of vinegar in it and run it empty.
5. The Bedroom.
Use baking soda and lavender oil to really freshen up your mattress and give it a lovely sweet smelling smell. Another great tip is to flip it both horizontally and vertically to keep the wear even.
Give your bedroom a good hoover and use the living room tips to remove any grubby stains that lie lurking on the carpet.
Use a microfiber cloth to wipe down all surfaces seen to the eye, this includes table tops, window sills and TV tops.
Why not try something different for the new year? Tidy and organise any accessories and books a different way to what you would usually, e.g. colour coded.
6. The Bathroom.
Bathrooms can soon become a haven for grime so its understandable that they are probably your least favorite place to clean. Start as you mean to go on and tackle the toilet first. A great tip is to coat the inside with baking soda, followed by pouring a bottle of coke in and allowing it to sit for 30 minutes. This reaction works to maintain a stain free and sparkling appearance. For tougher stains, a little (or a lot) of scrubbing may be necessary.
Give your shower curtain a new lease of life by sending it to the washing machine if it’s fabric ( make sure you read the label instructions) or if its plastic then scrub away any marks with some fairy liquid.