We all know a clean home can bring great peace of mind. But how do you know if your home is truly clean? Believe it or not, there are many nooks and crannies we regularly forget to clean—whether we intend to or not.
For a truly clean living space, it’s time to really think about where the dirt and grime is hiding—and how often you clean those areas. We’ve outlined some of the biggest culprits, how often they should be cleaned, and how to do it. So grab your rubber gloves and get cleaning!
Garbage can (every week)
Make sure your garbage can is clean by washing it with a diluted solution of bleach and water. Once dry, sprinkle baking soda in the bottom, and let sit for ten minutes. This will help to absorb any residual odors that may lurk around. Be sure to wipe it out with a paper towel and let dry completely before putting in a new bag.
Light switches (every week)
Think about how often you and your family touch the light switches in your home. Now think about how often you clean them! Once a week, spray a household cleaner or rubbing alcohol onto a paper towel and wipe down the switch. Don’t spray the cleaner directly on it, as too much cleaner could get behind the switch.
Window blinds (every week)
Window blinds might help filter sunlight, but they also collect dust. If you don’t want a really big chore on your hands, dust your blinds weekly with a microfiber duster in the direction of the slats. For heavier dust, you can use your vacuum—with brush attachment—on its lightest setting.
Ceiling fan (every two weeks)
Ceiling fans are notorious for collecting dirt and dust. Hello allergies! To clean them, put an old pillowcase over the blade. Hold the blade through the pillowcase, and slide off to collect dust. Repeat on each blade, and then toss the pillowcase in the wash to use again next time.
Washing machine (every month)
Set your front-loading washer to its hottest water setting, add two cups of white cleaning vinegar to the machine, and run the cycle. Repeat with half a cup of baking soda. Wipe clean.
Garbage disposal (every month)
With the disposal off, put ice and white vinegar (or salt) into the disposal. Turn on, and let run for 10 seconds to remove buildup and grime.
Showerhead (every month)
Pour white vinegar into a sandwich bag, and secure the bag around your showerhead with a rubber band. Let it soak for an hour, then remove the bag and turn on the water to flush.
Dishwasher (every month)
Place one cup of white vinegar in a dishwasher-safe container on the upper rack, and run a hot water cycle. Next, add a cup of baking soda across the bottom, and run a short hot water cycle.
Mattress (every six months)
Remove surface stains with a cloth and upholstery cleaner. For a quick refresh, sprinkle a light layer of baking soda on top, and let sit. Vacuum with an upholstery attachment.
Pillows (every 3–6 months)
Wash two pillows at a time to keep the washer balanced. Use the delicate setting with an extra rinse cycle, and be sure to use gentle detergent. Dry on low heat until moisture is gone.
Oven (every 3–6 months)
Most of us keep our oven disasters behind closed doors for far too long. If you don’t have a self-cleaning oven, you can sprinkle baking soda on the base of the oven and spray vinegar over it until it becomes a light foam. Allow this to sit overnight and then wipe clean the next day. For really grimy areas, use a paste of baking soda
and water, and follow the same method.
Following these easy steps to clean these commonly overlooked items will help ensure your home stays clean—and your family stays healthy.