The sun comes out, the air is clean, the parka is packed away for the year and you want your home to feel and smell as fresh as a beautiful spring day. We dust the ceiling fans, scrub the floors, and can even see ourselves in every mirror in the house. But what about all those forgotten places? Here are my top ten neglected area’s.
- Can Opener: Have you looked at your can opener lately? Yep, no matter how well you wipe it after each use, it will still collect bit of food, paper, and germs over time. Manual openers are easily refreshed by ‘opening some wax paper’. If you have an electric opener, see if your cutting mechanism comes off. If so, soak it in some white vinegar over night, wipe any remaining gunk, rinse, dry and replace. You’ll be surprised at how much better it works.
- Hair Brushes: The very thought. Ugh. If you’re like me, you hate wasting money or you’d toss that hairy monster in the trash and just buy a new one, HA! Use scissors and slice that hair between the bristles every few rows. You can use the tip of the scissors to pull the sheets of fur hair off. Add a squirt or two of shampoo to hot water in the sink and swish and soak the brush. You can use an old toothbrush (you did replace your toothbrushes during spring cleaning, right??) to get the last little bit. Don’t use a comb to pull the hair off of a brush as it also pulls the little balls at the ends off too. Ouch!
- Refrigerator, Behind and Under. Pull the fridge out from the wall far enough you can vacuum the coils (some models have the coils behind a removable grill under the refrigerator), clean the dust off of the walls, and clean the floor under it. Remember to unplug the fridge while you clean under and behind it. What treasures did you find under there??
- Shower Door Track: Sprinkle the track with baking soda -use that old box fridge, it’s time to replace it. Trust me. Then spray with white vinegar. Let it foam and do it’s work. While you’re waiting, might as well clean that shower head too. If you can’t take it down, fill a plastic bag with white vinegar and tie it securely around the shower head. Let the vinegar soak all that water deposit crust off!
- Microwave/Hood vent filters: Confession, I didn’t even know there were vents until I happened to look under there one day. I think I may have even vomited a little when I saw how gross it was. Lesson: Not all grunge is at eye level. Right? Anyway, I found two ‘recipes’ on Pinterest and since I had two filters, I thought I’d test them out. One was adequate, one was magic! Like I mean abracadabra magic. Soup pot of boiling water ( I wish I hadn’t filled it so full, HA) and add 1/2 cup of baking soda. Yep, used the same old refrigerator box. Add it slowly since it foams. FOAMS! Turn it down to a soft boil or it will boil over when you add your yucky filter. (yes, I speak from experience). Drop your filter in and in a matter of minutes, MINUTES, the grease, the germs, the gunk is gone. I got tired of the just adequate recipe to work and so tossed that filter in the pot. Magic, I tell ya, magic. The sludge soup it created almost made me gag. How did I not know that nastiness was in my kitchen??
- Bathroom Exhaust Fan: Not nearly as exciting as the magic filter potion, the exhaust fan in the bathroom has to be on the top 3 most neglected places to clean in every house. Really. I did find some excellent instructions to get the contraption dust free and able to do its job again at One Good Thing by Jillee
- Bedding, pillows and mattress covers: Sweat, bits of skins, hair, and I can only imagine what the pup brings to bed with her, all squished into your pillows, comforters and mattress covers. Take them to the laundromat and use one of their oversized machines to get them clean, really clean.
- Dishwasher: Pull out the bottom rack and clean the bottom of your machine. Food scraps. soap scum and grease can accumulate and compromise your dishwasher.Detach the bottom rack so that you can access the dishwasher drain. Thoroughly examine this crucial area, removing any gunk or chunks you find. Fill a dishwasher-safe container with one cup of white vinegar, placing it on the upper rack of the otherwise empty machine. Close the door and run the dishwasher through a hot-water cycle. Now sprinkle a cupful of baking soda across the bottom of the appliance, then run it on a short hot-water cycle. When the cycle’s done, you should notice that your fresh-smelling dishwasher now boasts a brightened, stain-free interior.
- Washer and Dryer, including around, under, and the dryer vent: Add a quart of white vinegar and a cup of baking soda and run the hottest, longest cycle on the washer. When it’s finished, do another cycle with more white vinegar to get rid of all the loosed bits that remain. After unplugging your dryer, clean the lint filter thoroughly. Use the narrow wand attachment on your vacuum cleaner to remove as much lint as possible that has built up underneath the filer itself. If you don’t have a vacuum, insert a duster into the filter well and wipe up the lint. Wipe down the inside of the dryer too! Detach the dryer lint duct and clean it out, or vacuum it out. Check the outside vent. Lift the flap and make sure there isn’t any debris or lint blocking the vent, preventing air from escaping freely. Clean the floors under the washer and dryer and don’t forget the globs of dust that stick to the walls behind the set!
- Light switches and door knobs: These are some of the most touched areas in a home but seldom cleaned. Use your favorite cleaner -white vinegar and water for a non-toxic choice- and a rag to scrub those clean. While you’re at it, clean the remotes and computer keyboards.