How Clean Is Your House? 12 Questions That Could Help You Be More Spotless
After the shelves have been dusted, the windows washed, and the floors have been swept, scrubbed, and mopped, there are still overlooked spots where grime is hiding. Do you know where they are?
Don't worry! We've prepared our best solutions for helping you get to every corner.
Do You Clean as You Cook?
Instead of filling the sink with pots and dishes, wash them or put them in the dishwasher as you prepare a meal. Yes, it can seem like an inconvenience at the time, but not only does this take the work out of heavy-duty dishwashing and pot-scrubbing later, it prevents odor and grime from building up. From there, you can actually enjoy time spent with friends and family who've gathered in your dining area.
How Much Clutter Do You Have?
Of course, tidiness begets tidiness, but it's more than that. An excessive amount of stuff impacts the health of your home in very physical ways: without regular rotation, mold lingers in hidden corners, products expire, dust builds, and common household pests sneak their way in. The less clutter you allow to accumulate, the less grime your home will generate -- and that results in reduced housework by 40 percent.
Is Your Fridge Overstocked?
If it is, that's a problem. The refrigerator is one of the hardest working appliances in your home. Do you wipe surface spills immediately? Check the contents daily for spoilage? Keep groceries to a reasonable amount? Too many items can block the circulation of airflow, causing food to spoil faster, and leading to a bigger cleaning job later. Find the USDA's recommended storage limits for refrigerated and frozen food.
How Clean Are Your Cleaning Supplies?
Just because they're immersed in suds doesn't mean they are clean. If your cleaning bucket items go uncleaned, you’re simply smearing the house with germs and grime -- yikes! There is a right way (and a wrong way) to scrub those scrubbers, brush your broom, and wash your wiping cloths.
Does the Air Seem Less than Fresh?
Unbeknownst to us, airborne allergens like pollen, dust, pet dander, and mold spores are swirling around our living spaces. Daily, we are subjected to hazardous chemicals emitted from household products and furnishings. In fact, according to the EPA, indoor air pollution levels are typically twice as high as levels outside and this can have dire consequences for your health. Therefore, proper housekeeping guidelines should be followed.
Are You Cleaning in the Right Order?
For instance, always vacuum before you sweep: If you use a broom to sweep the dust away, you'll only succeed in kicking it up so that the dust lands somewhere else. To address dust in curtains and softer surfaces, use the vacuum's brush attachment.
Do You Enforce a No-Shoe Rule?
You should. Outdoor shoes transfer bacteria like E. coli to floors, according to a study done at the University of Arizona. At the door, set out a basket of slippers or skid-resistant socks to encourage the habit for family members and guests alike.
When Was the Last Time You Cleaned Big Appliances?
Major appliances like dishwashers, washers, and dryers do some of the heaviest (and most important) cleaning in your home. So it only makes sense to thoroughly clean the machines that clean your dishes, utensils, cookware, and clothes.
What About Your Walls?
If your walls could talk, they'd be crying out for a good cleaning. Dust, grime, fingerprints, grease, and crayon marks (courtesy of your "budding artists" at home) all line the walls. They each call for a different solution.
Do You Properly Disinfect Electronic Devices?
Your go-to gadgets -- namely, your cell phone, printer, and computer keyboard, mouse, and monitor -- and their affiliated accessories all require a good cleaning to function properly. But besides that, without maintenance, they can become a breeding ground for germs. A can of compressed air can dislodge bigger particles while a deeper disinfecting calls for careful dispensing of an alcohol- or ammonia-based solution.