Here are eight spring cleaning tips to give your space a fresh face lift:
Make your doormats welcoming.
Give your mats the toughest cleaning they can take. They are your front line against tracked-in dirt so keep them clean enough for optimal use at peak efficiency.
2. Clean carpets and upholstery.
Fabrics that have absorbed mud, body oil and germs through the rainy season will need a thorough cleaning to get them ready for another year of wear or to pass close inspection by relaxing guests. When you’re shampooing carpets or cleaning upholstery with a rented carpet cleaner, practice first in an unobtrusive area to make sure you have the knack of the machine and that the treatment won’t discolour fabrics or cause dyes to run. Move furniture just slightly—not out of the room or against the wall, as the old rules dictated—and place the legs of each piece back on top of small wax paper squares after shampooing. The wax paper will protect your carpet and keep the furniture legs from getting wet as the carpet dries. Open the windows to speed the drying process, which can take a day or more. If you’re not the furniture-shifting and machine-renting type, use a professional carpet and upholstery cleaner.
3. Finish your floors.
To protect the floors in your kitchen from another year of wear and tear, wax or apply a sealer following label directions. The simplest method: use a combination wash-and-wax floor cleaner. No-wax floors don’t need a polishing treatment, but an occasional makeover will keep them looking fresh- be sure to add a protective buffer that could help them last longer. Use a floor cleaner that cleans, shines or both. If you have wooden floors, move furniture and rugs aside then apply a wood cleaner and either liquid or paste polish to clean and add a new wax coating.
4. Wash walls, cabinets, baseboards and woodwork.
The walls may not look as if they need a bath—dust and soot fall to the floor, right? Most of it does, but just enough clings to vertical surfaces to warrant a seasonal or pre-holiday bath. Use a sponge and hand dish-washing detergent, washing the surface in sections. A sponge mop makes it easier to reach higher spots. Use two buckets: one for dish-washing detergent solution and another for wringing your sponge. Dry the walls and woodwork with a clean cloth.
5. Vacuum with intelligence.
The old rules mandated that you go through the labour-intensive task of dragging every stick of furniture off the carpet, just so the vacuum cleaner could cover every nook and cranny. Instead, simply move those big items a little to the left or to the right. Vacuum the area previously occupied by the furniture and then move it back into place.
6. Clean ceiling fixtures.
Remove dust and dirt from ceiling fans and air-conditioner vents with a cloth and a vacuum with a soft nozzle attachment.
7. Clean your light fixtures.
A few minutes with a ladder, all-purpose cleaner, a sponge and a polish cloth will give new life to your space. If your home has skylights or tall ceilings, consider investing in a ladder and extended-reach dust-and-dirt-removal tools, all of which are available at your local hardware store or home supply stores.
8. Check your coils.
You should clean the refrigerator’s condenser coil, usually found behind the toe grille, with a long-handled bottle brush and a vacuum cleaner with an attachment hose to remove dust and lint. Built-up dust can shut down the unit by causing it to overheat. To remove dust from coils attached to the hard-to-reach back side of the fridge, carefully pull the refrigerator out several feet (newer models roll on casters) and vacuum thoroughly; finish by sweeping or vacuuming the floor area you’ve revealed. Expect to rediscover coins, bottle caps and twist ties that you and the cat knocked over the past year.