Spring is quite literally in the air this year with plenty of pollen and dust attacking seasonal allergy sufferers. That means it is time to break out the broom, dust cloths and cleaners to rid homes of dust, dirt and animal dander that settled during the winter season.
Deep cleaning a house is an overwhelming task, but there are ways to make it easier for everyone. Here are a few mistakes to avoid while spring-cleaning:
- Not Having a Plan
Spring cleaning a home is a huge job, which may make most people want to charge at it with full force to get it done. Instead, have a game plan in mind and stick to it. Planning will discourage jumping from task-to-task and leaving the house and the person cleaning it in disarray. Start with the most time-consuming, difficult job first, like the kitchen. This will make the other tasks seem less overwhelming.
- Dusting from Bottom to Top
When reaching for the dust cloth, the first instinct may be to dust the closest eye-level object. Resist this impulse and start with the objects that are higher up in the room. The ceiling fan is likely covered in dust and if everything below it is dusted first, then all the hard work is wasted. Start with the ceiling fan and the highest shelves first, and then move to the lower shelves, knick-knacks and pieces of furniture.
- Forgetting the Mattress
Mattresses receive a lot of time and attention, but not always for cleaning. Dirt, sweat and dust are absorbed into the mattress regularly, making it an inviting place for dust mites. One way to clean the mattress is to use a vapor steam cleaner. Another is to sprinkle baking soda all over it, let it sit for three to four hours, then vacuum the excess. To make the cleanliness last, wrap the mattress in an anti-allergen mattress protector so dust mites are not as tempted to make their home there.
- Using the Wrong Tools
It may be tempting to use a wet wipe to pick up a lot of dust at once, but moisture actually attracts dust, and leaving the surfaces damp will cause them to become even more dust-coated. Instead, use a dry, anti-static cloth, like a microfiber cloth. Additionally, it’s important to stock up on the essentials, like all-purpose cleaner, glass cleaner and natural cleaners such as baking soda and vinegar. To keep from searching the house for the right cleaner or cloth, designate a special “spring cleaning” basket or bucket and take everything from room to room.
- Doing It Alone
Instead of treating it like a stressful chore, make spring cleaning a family event! Assign simpler tasks like dusting and picking up clutter to children and ask teenagers to focus on certain rooms, like the kitchen or garage or to move furniture to be vacuumed under. Try to view the cleaning as exercise and enjoy a day of getting up and moving while making the home a better place to relax and enjoy time with loved ones.