Spring Cleaning is probably going to look different this year. Most of us have spent a lot of time at home over the past 12 months. A lot. Our homes have often taken on dual, even triple roles as residences, offices, and/or schools. You have probably noticed dust or mess or dirt and grime in places you didn’t used to. Perhaps because you simply were not home as much, or perhaps because your home is getting different types of traffic than before. Either way, as spring really gets going most of us are probably getting antsy to get those windows open, air the place out, and freshen up our whole living space. In this month’s blog we look at some spring cleaning tips and tricks for 2021.
Start with a plan
If you have been working and/or learning from home, that means your house has supported a little more wear-and-tear than usual. More crumbs, more foot traffic, more clutter. These conditions might make spring cleaning feel extra daunting, so it is important to break the process down into something more manageable.
Begin by thinking about how you want your house to feel. “Clean” is too general—think about what you concretely want in your home: less dust? Better air quality? More vibrant textiles? A brighter kitchen or bathroom? These goals can help guide your planning.
Then, do an assessment: walk around and note down everything you notice that needs some sprucing up. (Take advantage of this walk-through to look for signs of water damage. Not every water emergency immediately reveals itself, and slow, but steady leaks from your roof or windows could have been letting in moisture you didn’t even realize. And as we have explored in earlier blogs, water damage is nothing to trifle with.) You don’t necessarily need to clean every inch but make yourself a good list to work with. Then, prioritize. Break your observations into must-do vs. will-do-if-there-is-time. Those secondary tasks could be taken care of later after the big spring cleaning push, and identifying the most critical needs will help the whole job feel like a feasible undertaking.
Once you have identified those priority tasks, then work out a plan—thinking carefully about which tasks need to happen before others. You want to start from high to low, so make sure you tackle ceiling fan dusting before vacuuming, so that you don’t risk undoing the hard work you have already put in.
Decide how much you want to do yourself.
In your planning, consider those priorities you identified and the shape of the areas that need cleaning. Be realistic about effort and results. On some tasks, calling in a professional might seem costlier than doing it yourself, but the time (and energy) you will save plus the benefits of a much more thorough cleaning will almost certainly outweigh the expense. A professional cleaner will have access to products and equipment that are out of reach for the average homeowner. They also have the expertise to get the job done efficiently and without damaging furniture, walls, or the thing you are trying to clean.
When it comes to improving air quality in the home, a thorough dusting is definitely in order, and that is an easy task for just about any homeowner. But what about other ways dust gets into your home? Your ducts and vents have been collecting dust, grime, and other surprises for months, if not years. Calling in a professional can help you get a clearer image of what is happening inside your walls and get them cleaned out safely.
If your furniture is looking a little tired, an upholstery deep clean can help bring it back to life. And really cleaning upholstery safely can be a tricky proposition. We all have stain removers around the house for occasional spills, but would you feel comfortable doing more than a spot clean? Keeping your upholstery looking bright and even requires knowledge of cleaning products and the proportions you should use. It also requires careful extraction of any product or water to avoid damaging the fabric, or risking mildew and mold. A professional cleaner can assess the type of fabric and filling and determine a process that will protect the upholstery and keep it looking its best. Same goes for rugs and carpet—you might not have noticed the encroachment of grime over time, but a deep clean may show you that you didn’t remember the true color of your floor coverings at all!
One of the best ways to brighten up a bathroom or kitchen is to get rid of the grime around your tiles. That might sound simple—just give it a good scrubbing with a strong brush, but as we’ve discussed in an earlier blog, scrubbing grout harshly can break it down, and crumbly grout will just give dirt more spaces to infiltrate. A professional cleaning can maintain the integrity of the grout and apply a sealant that will protect it going forward.
Tackle the cleaning step by step
Once you do have your plan in place, it is time to get started. For some, cleaning is a happy time, a chance to just get everything into shape. For others, spring cleaning might feel like torture. If you fall in the latter camp, don’t force yourself to start and not stop until it is done. Break the process down into smaller tasks, and reward yourself with breaks or other activities between each stage. Can’t finish in one day or one weekend? No worries! If you note down smaller tasks, you can even use them as short breaks throughout your workday, giving yourself a chance to get up and move around. You’ll clear your head while you clear off a counter, and help improve your focus throughout the day. As you get a few tasks under your belt, you will start to see progress, which will help motivate you to follow through and get it done.
Whether Spring Cleaning 2021 takes you a weekend or a couple of weeks, the process will be worth it. At KleenRite, our specialists can help you along the way, with carpet cleaning, special treatments to get rid of pet odors, rug cleaning, upholstery, tile & grout, vents & ducts, and in the worst-case scenario, mold & mildew removal. We look forward to helping make your spring cleaning a little easier!