Is there anything better than having a super clean house? Get that glowing feeling of accomplishment when you add these simple, but often forgotten tasks to your spring cleaning list.
1. Washing Doors
Think about how much your family comes in contact with the doors in your home. Sure, we wipe the doorknobs when someone’s sick, but have you ever stopped to clean the whole door?
Use an all purpose cleaner or solution or warm water and dish soap. With a soft cloth, wipe down doors from top to bottom. While you’re at it, be sure to dust the door tops and around the door frame as well.
2. Clean the Trash Can
You take out the trash regularly, but what yuckiness and odors are left behind?
Wipe down your can with warm soapy water, or better yet scrub outside and hose it off.
3. Wipe Down the Fridge
Cleaning the inside of the fridge should be a regular part of your cleaning routine, but when’s the last time you cleaned the outside?
Wipe it down with sanitizing wipes from top to bottom. Be sure to get inside the rubber gaskets around the doors and vacuum dust off the top and coils on the back.
4. Dust Lampshades
Lampshades looking a little grey with dust and grime?
Lift away dust with the brush attachment of your vacuum. If any stubborn dust is left behind, go over the shade with a lint roller.
5. Wash Throw Pillows
We wash sheets frequently, but how many naps have you taken on the couch throw pillows without washing them?
Check washing instructions to see if you can throw your pillow cover in the washer, or if it needs to be dry cleaned. For pillows without removable covers that can be machine washed, wash as instructed and throw the pillows in the dryer with a couple of tennis balls to plump them back up. Be sure that pillows are completely dry so mildew won’t set in.
6. Wash Shower Curtain
Mildew and dust can make your shower curtain lose it’s luster.
Check care instructions, but if the fabric allows, wash on hot to kill any bacteria. When it’s dry, iron with starch to make your curtain look crisp and tailored.
7. Clean Air Vents
If your air filter is doing its job, it will keep out most of the dust and allergens entering your home. However, after a few years all vents will have some dusty buildup.
Remove vents from the wall and scrub with a brush and soapy water. (You can even wash them in the dishwasher!) If you don’t want to take the vents off, you can clean them with this rag and table knife trick.
8. Clean Bathroom Exhaust Fan
Having a clean, functional exhaust fan keeps mold an mildew at bay, but if yours is grimy it’ll start to lose effectiveness.
We based our instructions off of this tutorial. Unscrew or pull off the cover of the fan. Give the cover a good scrub in the sink with some soapy water. To clean the fan itself, start by unplugging the fan. Demove dust with the brush attachment of your vacuum, a microfiber cloth and a toothbrush to loosen dirt in hard-to-reach spaces. Replace the clean and dry cover, and you’re done!
9. Remove Lint from Dryer Vent
If your dryer is running slow it may be due to a clog in the exhaust vent. No matter how your dryer is performing, excess lint and debris can be a serious fire hazard.
Start by pulling your dryer away from the wall and unplugging it. Use a screwdriver to release the gaskets around the vent from your dryer to the wall. Shake out any dust from the vent and vacuum it clean. These vents are inexpensive, so you could also replace it all together. Vacuum as much lint as you can out of the vent in the wall.
If there is still a lot of lint in the vent that you cannot reach, you can blow it out. Remove the vent cover from the outside of your house. Take an electric (not gas!) leaf blower, insert it into the pipe and duct tape the pipe and blower to seal the opening. Blow all the lint out of the pipe. We once heard about 3 bird nests found in an exhaust pipe.
It’s also worth it to vacuum extra lint out of the opening where your lint filter goes. Use the skinny attachment of your vacuum to do this.
Reconnect your dryer vent to the wall with the gaskets.
10. Vacuum the Edges
What spots are you missing in your regular vacuum routine? The edges of the room and corners probably haven’t gotten any love in a while.
Vacuum where the carpet meets the wall in all your rooms and take a second pass along the baseboards with the brush attachment.
11. Clean the Washing Machine
It seems silly to wash something that washes other things, but your washing machine can build up grime and clothing stains after a few years.
We used this tutorial from One Good Thing by Jillee for top loading washers. Start by filling your washer with hot water and adding a quart of bleach. Let the machine agitate for 1 minute and then sit for an hour. Run the washer through the longest wash and spin cycle. Fill the washer with hot water again and add a quart of white vinegar. Let agitate for 1 minute and sit for an hour. While it’s sitting, wipe down the outside of the washer. Then run the washer through the longest wash and spin cycle.
Jillee also has a great tutorial for front loading washers that follows a similar process.
Go Forth and Clean!
Want tips for cleaning windows, blinds and shades! We’ve got detailed tutorials coming soon!