Before having children, I preferred to attack spring cleaning head-on and complete it all within two days.
However, now as a mom of six homeschooled children and a husband working from home, I had to adapt to my circumstances and work at completing spring cleaning over the course of few weeks.
Just like with everything else, there is more than one way to get your spring cleaning done.
But if the thought of spring cleaning your own home is just too much because of health problems or it is a time constraint, it is possible to get your home sparkling, without sacrificing your entire weekend or rearranging your entire schedule.
By taking advantage of little chunks of time in your day, you will be able to get your spring cleaning done in no time. Below are some of my top tips on how to get your home clean using those pockets of time in your schedule.
13 SPRING CLEANING TIPS THAT WILL LEAVE YOUR HOME AND YARD READY FOR SUMMER
Begin with the entrance to your home
Shake the doormats, sweep around your porch or entryway. You can trap more dirt if you keep two mats onhand, one outside the door and one inside the door. Also, wipe off dirt and cobwebs that may be on and around your door frame. If you have a door that is extremely dirty, consider washing it down with a mixture of dish detergent and water.
Let’s talk about those windows
It is best to wait for an overcast day to clean windows. First of all, if you have blinds wipe them off with a microfiber cloth or Swiffer, or vacuum with the attachment. After cleaning them, raise them up to access your windows. Use a different microfiber cloth and glass cleaner to get those windows clean on the inside. (The outside can be done another time)
Kitchen cabinets (inside and out)
These are some of the greasiest and grossest surfaces in your home that are used daily. Hours are often spent in the kitchen. If this is done all at once, this task will time-consuming, but if you do a predetermined number of tasks at a time, it won’t seem too bad.
- Take everything out of the cupboard or cabinet that you will be cleaning.
- Gather supplies. Dish detergent, vinegar, cleaning rags.
- Wipe down the exterior, beginning at the top and working your way to the bottom. Paying close attention to handles and the crevices on the door.
- Rinse thoroughly and wipe dry with a clean cloth.
- Vacuum out the inside of the cabinets.
- Wipe down using the same method as the outside, wiping dry when completed.
*Most cabinet types, including metal, plastic laminate, painted wood, and vinyl cabinets, can be cleaned with a solution of liquid dish soap and warm water.
If you have a shower curtain, chances are it is probably slimy with mildew and water spots. Remove the curtain (if it is cloth or plastic) and place it in the washer. Wash on the gentle cycle. Hang to dry.
Pull all furniture away from the wall and vacuum behind. Using the vacuum attachment, clean the upholstery and underneath the cushions. This can be done on couches, chairs, and beds. Also be sure to vacuum under beds, dressers, and anything else that does not get cleaned regularly.
After vacuuming, fill a bucket and mix about 2 cups of distilled water with 1 tablespoon of dishwashing liquid and 1 tablespoon of vinegar. Slightly dampen a microfiber cloth with your cleaning solution. Gently blot any stained areas with the cloth.
Curtains, Duvet Covers, or Large Quilts and Blankets
Remove any curtains, covers, or large blankets and individually place them on the ‘air-dry’ setting in your dryer for about 15 minutes, Hang immediately to avoid wrinkling.
Stuffed animals and soft toys can be placed in a pillowcase that is tied. Place in the dryer on the ‘air-dry’ setting for 15 minutes.
Plastic toys can be wiped down with a sponge dipped in a mixture of bleach water. Then dried off with a clean towel. This should remove most of the grime that tends to accumulate from little hands.
Larger ride-on toys, cribs, playpens, swings, and other equipment made out of plastic may also be wiped down with a cleaning rag dipped in detergent, vinegar, and water. Then air dried or wiped down with a clean cloth.
*Warning, do not ever mix bleach and vinegar together. The result are a toxic chlorine gas.
Bookshelves, end tables, and dressers
Mix 1 cup water and 1 cup vinegar in spray bottle/jar and add in 1 tablespoon olive oil. Mix well. Spray directly on surface or rag and rub clean. Make sure to occasionally shake your solution because as we all know: oil and water/vinegar separate.
Be sure to wipe down the legs, handles on tables, and the backside as well. Dry with a clean cloth when done.
Looking up at the lights and fans
To clear dust from ceiling fan blades, use a pillowcase. Carefully use the pillowcase to cover each blade of the fan, then grip down and slide the pillowcase off to trap any collected dust inside.
Some ceiling fans will only need to be wiped down with the pillowcase, but if you have a greasy kitchen fan apply an all-purpose cleaner, or a mixture of vinegar, detergent, and water to a sponge or cloth and wipe each blade to remove grease.
Unscrew the light fixtures from the ceiling, lamp, or base. The first step will be to dump the dust, bugs, and any other dirt out of the light fixture into the trash. Then, dust the inside and outside with a microfiber cloth or another duster. Sometimes this is all that is needed.
Now the fixtures will need to be washed. A sink with warm water and a few drops of mild dish detergent is all that is usually needed to clean glass light fixtures.
Allow them to soak for a few minutes before wiping them down and rinsing. Use a dry towel to wipe them completely dry, especially the inside.
*Never try to unscrew a lightbulb that has been on. These can be extremely hot and cause severe burns.
*Use caution when standing on a ladder and handling glass.
- Set a timer for five minutes and start going through all your clothes, shoes, and accessories. Have boxes or bags labeled and ready to go. Label them Keep, Donate, and Trash.
- Place items that you are not keeping in either trash or donate.
- Place items back in the closet.
- Vacuum. Wipe down surfaces.
Laundry area or room
Whether you have just a washer and dryer or an entire laundry room; both areas become filthy over the course of a year because they are the dumping ground for dirty clothes, blankets, and bedding.
The first thing to do is to gather materials. You will need the following:
- Laundry basket or hamper
- Broom and dustpan or long-handled duster
- Garbage bag
- Microfiber cloths
- Soft scrub brush or toothbrush
- Multipurpose spray
- Dish detergent
*Begin by removing all garbage and any item that does not belong in the laundry room.
*Fold and set aside any laundry (to be put away later).
*Using the vacuum attachment or long-handled duster, remove all cobwebs from walls and ceiling and from behind and around the washer and dryer. (If you are able to, pull out your washer and dryer from the wall to clean behind as well-paying close attention to water lines and electrical cords)
*Dust and wipe down any light fixtures.
*Remove items from shelves. Using microfiber cloth removes dust. Using a clean microfiber cloth, wipe and spray and wipe down any cabinet doors, shelving and countertops, as well as the outside of the washer and dryer (including knobs and buttons). Also, check the walls to see if there are any splatters or other marks that require cleaning. As you move through the room, clean from top to bottom, and left to right to minimize your cleaning time. Place items back on shelves.
*Remove the lint trap from the dryer. Place the lint trap in a sink of hot soapy water. Wash the trap using a soft scrub brush or toothbrush. Using the narrow attachment on your vacuum, vacuum up any lint or debris that may have gone down the vent where the lint trap goes. Dry and replace the lint trap.
*Take a few minutes to clean your washer properly, too.
*Using a slightly damp microfiber cloth run it along the baseboards to pick up any dust and dirt.
*Sweep or vacuum the floor. Mop if necessary.
Patio furniture and outside play equipment
Start by rinsing all surfaces of anything that is plastic such as playhouses, ride-on toys, lawn chairs, picnic tables, and outdoor storage bins. Mix even portions of dish detergent and vinegar into a spray bottle, and spray all surfaces with the mixture. Some surfaces will allow a Scotch-Brite scouring pad to be used without damaging the finish. Otherwise, a car wash mitt works perfectly to scrub. Then, rinse thoroughly and let dry.
Don’t forget the garbage containers
Ideally, the best time to clean is on garbage day after the garbage has been removed. Move the containers and outside garbage bin to an area where you have access to a hose and spray nozzle.
First rinse each container out, allowing dirty water to go out into the drive or lawn.
Then squirt some strong dish detergent (like Dawn) into each. Once that is done using the strongest pressure setting on your nozzle to ‘power-wash’ the containers. If you have a broom you can use it to clean the sides and very bottom of your outdoor bin. And use a brush to quickly wash down the indoor containers.
Once dirt and grime have been removed, rinse out, and let air dry for a few hours.
Cleaning the bathroom
When we bought our house six years ago, the first thing we noticed was the fact that it had 8 bathrooms in it! It was a former residential care home and each room had its own bathroom. Now each of my children has their own bathroom, which is a whole lot of cleaning.
If you want to know how we clean our bathrooms, fast and simple, read how-to here.
You may also like these additional spring cleaning resources from fellow bloggers. Head on over and check them out!
Keep things simple from the Watering Can blog
5 Things to remember when spring cleaning from Sandra’s Ark.
How to effectively manage your home with cleaning checklists for each room from the Fruitful Vine Woman.
Thanks for stopping by!
Stephanie, Training Keepers of the Home