Now, take a moment and think back to the last time you had your home professionally cleaned. I know at least for me, there is just something special about how my home feels afterwards. It’s like there is an extra sparkle in the air, it just feels like magic. Parts of my home that I never noticed before just feel...well, cleaner! Ever wonder what kind of tricks your cleaner is using to make your home feel so magical? Follow me, and I’ll try to demystify the process, with these six tips from the pros that will keep your home sparkling between professional cleans.
Dust, Dust, Dust! This might seem like a pretty simple suggestion, you might even include a good dusting in your regular touch-up cleans already. As cleaners however, we’re looking for those places that you haven’t thought about in months, not just places that might already have seen a swipe or two of a duster on the regular. I’m talking tops of hanging picture frames and mirrors, that little trim that borders your closet, the top of that particularly tall armoire in the living room, your ceiling fan or light fixtures, and oh yes, even the top of the fridge. We aim to dust where no man has dared dust before!
We suggest always starting your cleans with dusting, that way none of the efforts of polishing furniture, mopping or vacuuming get wasted by a fresh coating of dust! A few soft microfiber towels, a bottle of multi-purpose cleaning spray and a dusting wand are all you need to tackle every room of the house. One of our favorite tools is the Swiffer Disposable Dusters, they really keep the dirt and dust locked in. If you want something reusable, try this Handheld Dust Wand from Target. The microfiber locks in the dust, and you can remove the head to wash it!
Hot Tip: Dust in the kitchen giving you trouble? Your multi-purpose spray just might not be cutting it. Any oil or grease from cooking tends to float around and land on the tops of things in the kitchen and mix with the dust, creating a thick and difficult to remove layer of grime (I’m looking at you, top of the fridge). Try using a cleaner with citrus or a degreaser, like Krud Kutter, instead!
Scrub those baseboards and trim! This one goes hand in hand with the dusting, but those baseboards and trims tend to collect a lot more than just dust. While it might not be something you notice on a daily basis, once they are clean it really adds a noticeable level of polish to your home.
First thing you’d want to do is make sure that all the loose dust is dealt with. Wiping them down with a dry microfiber cloth, or passing over them with a vacuum cleaner attachment should take care of build up on baseboards that are regularly cleaned. However, if you can’t remember the last time they’ve been touched, you might need to go in with a bucket of soapy water and a sponge. Be sure to thoroughly wring out your sponge, as to prevent any water damage or potential staining from drips running down your walls!
Open up those toilet hinges! If you’ve never tried to pry open those little hinges on your toilet seat (or didn’t even know they could open), you’ve got a dark and dirty secret waiting for you. Most standard toilet seats have plastic hinges that are actually little covers for the screws that hold the seat into place. They might be a little stiff and hard to open at first, but should flip up with some effort to reveal lots of gross, odor causing grime.
Once you figure out how your hinges open up, spray your favorite bathroom cleaner generously and let it sit for the appropriate amount of time to properly sanitize. Then, go in with either an old discarded toothbrush or other angled scrubbing tool and give it a good scrub. I really like window track cleaning brushes for this job, such as this one, the SHUNWEI Window Track Brush. Finish up by wiping it down with a paper towel, or your toilet designated microfiber towel.
Hot Tip: Some toilets don’t have hinge flaps, especially if they have screw in metal bolts. There is still plenty of odor-causing bacteria hiding in there though, so all you have to do is reach under the bolts and unscrew them, which will allow you to easily remove the whole toilet seat and sanitize the area under the bolts!
Polish that greasy oven top! While wiping down the surface of your stove might be part of your daily routine, especially after cooking, caked on grease can accumulate over time and be stubborn to remove. However, once removed, it really gives your kitchen a ‘like new’ shine.
There’s no real short cut around this one, cleaning stove tops requires some good old fashioned elbow grease! Time and scrubbing are your main allies, but luckily there are plenty of products out there that can help the process along. How you go about it varies depending on the kind of oven you have and how long it’s been since it’s had a deep clean, but a generous application of degreaser is a great way to start. The key is to allow it to sit for as long as you can, to help cut down on scrubbing time. Depending on the surface, I often like to use steel wool for really stubborn areas but if you’re concerned about scratches on delicate paint or glass, give the Scrub Daddy sponge a try. It’s firm in cold water and softens in warm water for added versatility. Once you’ve done away with your grease, I like to go over everything with a streakless cleaner to help get rid of any degreaser residue (this is especially important for glass cooktops).
Put some shine back in that sink! Deep cleaning a sink might not be something you’d think makes a real difference to how clean your home feels, so they are often overlooked in regular cleans. Even though you might be rinsing your sinks with soap and water daily, be it porcelain or stainless steel, they can be prone to staining and the accumulation of soap scum can make them look pretty dingy.
Whether porcelain or stainless steel, often a gentle abrasive powder, like Comet or Bon Ami, is a good place to begin. Like stoves, sinks can take some elbow grease to get sparkling again, especially those pesky porcelain ones that are prone to stains. A Scrub Daddy sponge with cool water and a scratch free abrasive powder that contains bleach can often take care of most, if not all of the grime and stains. However, if your sink is a little more stubborn try a bottle of Bar Keepers Friend Soft Cleanser Liquid. It banishes rust stains and hard water residue like they were never there, but be sure to spot test in a discrete area to ensure it doesn’t cause any unwanted discoloration.
Hot Tip: While you are doing your sink, try going over the hardware with Bar Keepers Friend and an old toothbrush. It does wonders to remove stuck on limescale and hard water spots.
Light switches? Door knobs! Clean them all!! Living in a pandemic has certainly made us all more aware of the things we touch on a daily basis, (and hopefully has instilled good cleaning habits towards those places!). I imagine there aren’t many objects we touch more frequently than door knobs and light switches, so a good daily sanitization is certainly warranted. However, as good as a nice Lysol spray is, it doesn’t do much for the greasy grime that sinks into all the edges and corners. Go on, get up and take a look at your light switch. I bet there’s a little something hiding in there.
Time to break out that handy old toothbrush again! (Hopefully a different one than what you used on your toilet hinges!). A little multi-purpose spray (or degreaser if it’s been a long while), that old toothbrush and a microfiber towel, and you're all set! While you're at it, you can also give a quick polish to that area around your door knobs. Often it will get a little smudged from being such a high traffic zone.
There you go! Hopefully those six tips for cleaning like a professional should help keep your home nice between your scheduled professional cleans. It may be a bit of extra work, but there’s nothing like relaxing after a tough clean, knowing every nook and cranny in your home is sparkling. And hey! If all that sounds like a drag, you can always schedule an appointment with us for a deep clean, so you can get a head start on relaxing while we do the scrubbing! Happy Cleaning!
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