March means putting your winter wardrobe away, bringing out the flowy dresses, setting out fresh flowers and most importantly – some serious spring cleaning! But with some much to clean, where do you get started? Well first, pick a day that you have off (or sacrifice your Saturday/Sunday), give yourself a timeframe for completion (4-6 hours), and put together a killer playlist to get you through the tough day ahead. Now, you can check out the best tips and practices for making your place shine like new.
Pick up/remove all furniture and then vacuum thoroughly and with rented carpet-cleaning machine (find it at ACE Hardware or Home Depot for $25). Apply diluted soap mixture to carpet (try not to use the exact amount of soap called for as it can leave residue). Be sure to follow the manufacturer’s direction and not over-soak the carpet. Allow carpet to air dry for up to ten hours (if possible) by opening windows and doors.
Tile – Use mixture of ½ cup of baking soda and 2 gallons of water. Mix thoroughly and use mop.
Hardwood – Dilute wood-cleaning product (Murphy’s Oil Soap) and dampen mop in the water/soap mixture. Before starting, try to wring out as much water as you can from mop as too much standing water can stain hardwood.
Before getting started, use the tag on the furniture for reference. Start by vacuuming cracks and crevices gently. Take a spray bottle and fill it with water and a few drops of liquid dish detergent, a capful of white vinegar, and just a dash of baking soda (odor). Shake well and test it on a small patch of the furniture. If it doesn’t discolor the fabric, move forward with a sponge and dampening upholstery stains. Pat with cloth to dry.
We know it might be instinct to use bunched up newspaper, but your best bet is picking up a squeegee at your local hardware store as they are very effective.
Counter tops & grout
Counter – Use a sponge or rag and create a water mixture with hydrogen peroxide and a few drops of ammonia.
Grout – Mix of 10 parts water to 1 part bleach and a soft-bristled brush. Follow up with a pH-neutral cleaner to remove the bleach solution.
Walls, baseboards, and cabinets
Create mixture with mild dishwashing soap and water and dip clean cloth or sponge.
Bathroom (soap scum)
An acidic cleaner will work best on soap scum. You may also combine white vinegar and water for tough residue (twice a year). Remember to wear gloves and wash hands thoroughly after cleaning.
Cut one lemon in half and place in microwave-safe bowl with water for two minutes. This allows food that is stuck to soften so that you can wash thoroughly with rag or sponge while enjoying a clean scent.
Dump out leftovers, spoiled products, and condiments you’ll never use. Take out glass shelves and bins and wash in the sink with sponge. Use a rag to clean inside the fridge (try using some pinches of baking) and wipe down fingerprints on door and handle.
Remove pillows, pillow covers, sheets, blankets, mattress pads and place in washer (use tag for guidance). And pat down mattress with broom to shake out dust/germ build up. Then flip over your mattress as it is cleaner and better for your back.
Do you have any spring cleaning tips or tricks mom taught you? Share them with us, we want to know!