- Oven: Run that self-clean function while you work on other projects.
- Fridge: Pull out all the contents, and go ahead and pop out those shelves too. Give everything a good wipe-down, and put things back in an orderly fashion. This provides an excellent opportunity to throw out some suspicious items from the back of the bottom shelf. Is your fridge stainless steel? Try 1 tsp dish soap and 1 quart hot tap water, together with a microfiber cloth to clean off those pesky marks.
- Microwave: Such a well-loved appliance will need some TLC. Try chopping up some lemons, and add them to 1 cup of water in a large microwave-safe bowl (or you could substitute the lemons for a few tablespoons of vinegar). Put this mixture in the microwave and run for a few minutes, allowing it to boil (but not over boil!), and then allow to cool for about 15 minutes before opening the door. Wipe down the inside, and voila!
- Cabinets: Find your cabinet shelves are bit on the sticky side? That is just dust and grease that has built up. Very normal. Pull out the contents and give the shelves a good cleaning. Going forward, run your exhaust fan while cooking to prevent future grime.
- Cutting Boards: Probably just as loved as your microwave, if not more. Cut a lemon in half, and wipe down the cutting board with the cut side of said lemon. You will be pleasantly surprised by how many of those “permanent” stains come off! If they are more persistent, add some salt to the surface and scrub with that lemon again. The lovely scent is an added bonus.
- Granite Counters: Time to polish and restore! A little bit of effort will make a big impact. We also suggest you get yourself a special daily granite cleaner to prevent that dull film from returning.
- Pots & Pans: You may have stayed on top of this, but should you have any burned-on residue, add some water and dish liquid to the pot, and let it simmer a bit on the stovetop. Have some copper pots that look a bit tarnished? Use ketchup (crazy, but true), and a pinch of salt to polish them up.
- Shower Curtain: If you have hard water, then you will have some marks at the bottom of your shower curtain. Try throwing it in the gentle cycle of your washer… even if it’s vinyl or plastic. Throw in a few bath towels to help “scrub”. Hang it to dry.
- Bathroom Cabinets/Drawers: Pull out your items, vacuum the drawers and cabinets. When you are returning all the items, discard anything that has expired or you find you just simply don’t need/want anymore. This might also be a good time to wash those make-up brushes. We recommend using a few drops of baby shampoo on the palm of your hand and delicately rubbing the bristles. Rinse well, shake off, and allow to dry on a paper towel.
- Grout: This is one of those tasks that makes a huge impact, much like polishing your granite countertops. Not a lot of effort, with a big payoff. If your grout is white, CLR has a good bathroom cleaner, or you can use those trusty magic erasers. Remember to rinse, so it won’t have a residue that only collects more dirt!
- Shower Drain: Time to just get this out of the way. Clean out the hair (ick), and freshen up the drain.
- Beds: Rotate those mattresses, wash those pillows (or replace them if they are older), vacuum the boxspring with a crevice tool, and clean under the bed. In fact, if you are short on storage, consider investing in some rolling storage bins for under the bed to maximize your storage potential.
- Closets: Switch out your seasonal clothes. Take another look at what you do have, and if you find you haven’t worn the item in a year, it might be time to consider donating it. Try things on to see if you still like the look. If you are short on space, try the rule: “as a new one item comes in, an old item goes out”.
- Dryer: There is more than one lint collector. While you clean out the one inside your dryer with each load, there is a long path the exhaust takes, where lint can accumulate. Most condos and homes have a secondary filter that needs cleaning. Really, this should be done on a regular basis as it’s a real safety issue. Even go outside and check the exhaust pipe to ensure it’s not covered in lint too. Keeping control of lint buildups not only prevents fires, but it also makes your dryer more efficient, which saves you money on your hydro bill. Bonus!
- Floors: Vacuum under your washer and dryer. You will be shocked at the lint that is down there. Lost socks may also be found through this process.
- Broom: Introduce your broom head to your vacuum crevice tool. Say good-bye to all the dust bunnies that have taken up residence in your broom bristles. Then dunk the bristles in warm soapy water and allow to dry.
- Vacuum: After you’ve finished all the cleaning in your home, consider cleaning the filters in your vacuum. And while the filters dry, snip off all that hair that has wrapped around the beater bar.
- Front Door Mat: Sweep it clean and hose it down. Even sweep the whole front step. This will make a huge impact.
- Patio & Furniture: It exhilarating to pull out the patio furniture this time of year. But over the winter months, they may have become a bit dirty. A little warm soapy water and elbow grease will have them sparkling clean in no time. Consider repainting older items to give them a brand-new look.
- Ceilings & Ceiling Fans: Swiffer has an excellent extendable duster that can do the reaching for you. Remember to do this step before you dust or vacuum the rest of the house.
- Shelving: Pull items down and dust the items and shelves. This can be an excellent opportunity to pair down or find that book you have been waiting to read. You can also move things around to create a new look.
- Junk Drawer: Admit it. You have at least one of these. But what better time to deal with those drawers than during spring cleaning. Pull out all the contents. Vacuum the drawer, and slowly return contents in a more organized fashion. Consider getting some drawer organizers, or simply use bowls or plates that you no longer use elsewhere. Toss unwanted items. Return items to their proper locations. This one task will make you feel so much more organized.
- Furniture: If possible, move your sofas and larger pieces and vacuum underneath. Once you move it all back, vacuum the sofa with an upholstery tool attachment. Pull the cushions out and get in to all the nooks and crannies. Heck, you might just find a few dollars in there while you’re at it!
- Toys, Toys, Toys: If you have a toddler, cleaning these toys might be needed more than once a year. But this is a great time to also re-evaluate what toys are well-loved, and which ones your child has aged out of. Involve your children in the process and help them understand the value of donating toys that they have moved on from.
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