Cleaning your entire home quickly and efficiently can be tedious and even unpleasant, but it’s something necessary for your comfort and health. Sweeping or vacuuming and then mopping the floor, dusting the shelves, scrubbing the toilet, washing and changing the sheets — the list of tasks goes on and on! But hiding in between these big tasks are small yet important cleaning jobs that you might forget, which could lead to a build-up of grime and germs that can cause more problems in the long run.
Here are some of the most easily forgotten places when cleaning that you ought to add to your to-do list so you don’t neglect them again.
The Tops of the Fridge and Cabinets
We often dust surfaces on eye level or slightly below it, since these are places that are easily seen and reached. However, there are many places that gather dust and dirt above our heads like the tops of the refrigerator and tall cabinets. The blades of your ceiling fan and even appliances placed on high shelves are also dust magnets that we often overlook when cleaning. What’s worse is that if you don’t clean these areas, the accumulated dirt can trickle down onto lower surfaces. Make sure to give these surfaces a quick swipe with a duster or a microfiber cloth to keep them dust-free.
Under the Bed and Rugs
Much like the surfaces above our heads, those under our feet or hidden away are also quite easy to miss. One particularly critical spot is under the bed. If you don’t clean this area, your bed, pillows, and sheets can attract dust mites and the dust itself can trigger allergies and cause respiratory issues — not a good thing for a place where you should be relaxing. Another place that most people forget to clean is under the rugs. You really ought not to forget, though, since you might get the shock of your life when you finally lift a corner of the carpet and take a peek. Schedule a vacuuming session for these areas about twice a month to get rid of dirt and other debris hiding beneath them.
Speaking of things below eye level, baseboards are also something that we often dismiss or forget when cleaning. However, baseboards are essentially mini-shelves that accumulate dust from when you sweep the floor or dust higher surfaces. This is apart from the dust that settles on them regularly. Run a microfiber duster on your baseboards whenever you sweep or mop your floors so you don’t have to get down on all fours to give them a thorough clean.
Behind the Toilet
The area behind the toilet is easily missable because we’re focused on the front and sides, which are the immediately visible parts. It’s also rather small, so it’s hard to get to and really clean it with the same amount of effort and attention that we give to other parts. But leaving the grime to build up just because you can’t see it isn’t a good idea because that spot will soon become a cesspool of germs and bad smells; it will also look rather nasty! Use a long-handled brush to get to hard-to-reach places and make sure to dry thoroughly after cleaning.
The Washing Machine
You might think that the washing machine doesn’t need cleaning because it already gets soaped up and rinsed regularly along with your clothes, but that’s not the case. Soap scum can easily form along the sides of the tub and the lint filter also gets clogged up. These can affect the performance of your washing machine and even transfer bacteria to your clothes.
Regularly check the lint filter of your machine (if it has one) and simply scrub it clean with an old toothbrush and rinse it thoroughly. For the tub itself, fill it with hot water using the biggest capacity. Put some white vinegar/bleach in the detergent dispenser and some baking soda in the fabric softener if you have a front-loading machine, or let the water spin for a minute or two before adding the white vinegar/bleach and baking soda if you have a top-loading machine. Run it on its longest wash cycle, and then rinse by running another wash cycle with just hot water.
The Garbage Bin
No matter how careful you are, you can’t completely prevent the occasional spills or punctured trash bags. These can cause messes that in turn attract flies, cockroaches, and other critters, not to mention millions of germs. Deep-clean your garbage bins once a month, or more often if it is filled up more quickly. Just use some hot water and heavy duty disinfectant and wash them inside-out, including the lids, and dry them thoroughly before using them again.
Light switches don’t get a lot of attention because, admittedly, they don’t look like they get dirty at all. In truth, light switches are full of germs because you often touch them with unknowingly dirty hands. The accumulation of dirt might also affect their circuitry if it gets between and under the spaces. Wipe light switches using a microfiber cloth spritzed with a bit of disinfectant to keep the germs at bay.
Cleaning your home from top to bottom won’t be complete if you miss out even the tiniest spots. Include these places in your cleaning task list so your home is truly, thoroughly clean!
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