6 Often Forgotten Places You Should Clean
It’s usually pretty easy to know what needs to be cleaned when you walk into a room — dirty dishes, laundry, cluttered tabletop. But after the obvious messes are taken care of, do you just move on? Here are 6 spots you may be forgetting.
Indoor plants, whether real or faux, have the ability to collect a shocking amount of dust. If that’s the case in your house, consider giving your live plants a quick trip beneath the showerhead. Are they too big or heavy to move? Then take a disposable duster or microfiber cloth and wipe off the leaves.
Faux plants or preserved blooms also must be cleaned. Either dust them or blow the dust off of them outside with a hairdryer set on the cool. If certain stems or blossoms need a refresh, add baking soda or table salt to a paper bag and place the faux foliage inside the bag. Close the bag and give it a good shake and you’ll find that a lot of the dirt on the flowers will stay in the salt or baking soda. Before adding the stems back into your display, remove any remaining residue with a cool hairdryer.
2. Closet Floors
Everyone knows when the closet needs a good cleaning: the shelves are untidy, the clothes are jumbled together, and you’re greeted by falling objects when you pull the door open.
But do you remember the last time you cleaned the closet itself, including the walls and floor? Closet floors especially can accumulate dust and dirt brought in on people’s shoes. A carpeted floor can even turn into a breeding ground for certain insects, and mold and mildew.
How often should you give your closet a thorough cleaning? At least seasonally. Closet cleaning time is also a good opportunity to reorganize, and sort out and donate the items you no longer need or want.
3. Tops of Picture Frames, Doors & Cabinets
Make a conscious effort to look up while you’re cleaning! There’s a good chance you’ll see dirt you haven’t noticed before. After all, we tend to block out things outside our plane of sight. Add wiping off the top of picture frames, door frames, storage cabinets, and ceiling corners to your regular cleaning routine.
And while you’re looking up, be sure to take a gander at the ceiling fans and light fixtures too. To combat any dust and spider webs you may encounter, consider investing in a disposable duster with an adjustable handle. If you don’t have one, a microfiber cloth attached to a mop or broom handle with a rubber band will also do the job.
4. Furniture Bottoms
We all know about those pesky dust bunnies living under the sofa or bed. They’re easily taken care of with a dust mop or vacuum. What we may not be aware of is all the fun stuff sticking to the underside of our furniture, like chair seats, table braces and bed frames. Next time you clean, take your duster or vacuum and remove all the dust and grime, spider webs and eggs gathering under there. Continue to do this at least twice a year.
5. Walls & Baseboards
Did you know that dust and dirt can stick to vertical surfaces just as much as horizontal ones? If you’re not convinced, simply pull open your window treatments, turn on all the lights and take a good look at how fuzzy your walls look. Do you have textured wallpaper? Then expect even more dust.
To clean your walls, take a duster that locks in particles and start at the top. Work your way down and then finish up by wiping away any marks or discoloration around doorknobs and light switches.
Next up? Baseboards. Those teeny ledges can gather an incredible amount of dust. While you may be able to clean them with a duster in most rooms, kitchens and bathrooms tend to have more humidity and may require you to wipe the baseboards with a damp cloth to remove the dirt effectively.
6. Vents & Air Filters
Most homes have central heating and air conditioning, which means there is ductwork present that connects the system to the rooms in your home. The hot and cold air travels through these vents, exits into the room, and then returns to the system to be treated again.
If the air going back into the system lacks filtering to remove dust and pollen, then those particles will continue to blow back into the rooms. There are many kinds of filters that will remove contaminants, from pricey HEPA filters to low-cost mesh. No matter what kind you choose, one thing is for certain: They must be cleaned or changed to work effectively. And don’t forget to clean the vent grates as well. Not only will your home have less dust, you’ll also breathe easier. The filters and vents in single window units should be cleaned thoroughly as well.