As the seasons change, duties around the house change as well. Each summer offers an opportunity to freshen up the home and make it as ready as possible for the buzz of activity the season represents. From keeping the outside from coming inside to seasonal maintenance activities, the onset of the warmer months demands a little extra attention to keep the home functioning smoothly. Please read on for tips on six critical areas of summer cleaning.
Related: Why is Spring Cleaning Important?
Optimize Your Air Handling Systems
When the weather gets warm, it’s time to focus on keeping the house cool. Whether you prefer to blast the air conditioner or let the breeze in and circulate it with fans, there are a few things you can do to optimize airflow and minimize airborne dust and particles.
Your air conditioner can be your best friend during the sweltering summer heat. Properly maintaining it makes sure you get the most for your cooling money. There are three main areas on which to focus: the air conditioning unit itself, the filter, and the vents.
To clean your air conditioning unit:
- Use a blower and vacuum to clear dust and debris inside the enclosure.
- Sweep away any leaves, grime, or residue from the unit’s base to the fan opening at the top.
- For adamant stains, use a bucket with soap and water and a sponge to clean off the casing.
Once the unit itself is clean, it’s time to make sure it won’t be blocked or blowing dust all over your house. Remove air filters and use a vacuum cleaner to remove dust and dirt. Alternately, replace the old filter with a new one. Subsequently, use a damp rag to wipe the dust from inside and outside of all vents. Be sure to sweep or vacuum afterward as ceiling vents tend to drop dust all over the floor.
While ceiling fans are generally low maintenance, they tend to become repositories for dust. One clever way to clean the blade is by using a fabric bag. A pillowcase or laundry bag will do. Spray the inside of the bag with a cleaning solution, then slip it over each blade in turn. Use the bag to wipe the blade. The dust will collect in the bag, which you can then empty in the trashcan.
Keep the Dirt Outside the Door
Summer means lots of outdoor activities, which means an increased likelihood for mud, dirt, and plant matter to migrate inside your home. To prevent this, ensure clean mats both outside and inside each of your exterior doors. You may want to invest in a mud scraper so your family can remove more significant chunks of dirt before wiping their feet. Finally, it’s a good idea to have a rack for shoes in the entryway. It encourages people to remove their shoes before coming inside.
Related: What Time of Year Should You Clean Out Your Gutters?
Clear and Clean the Gutters
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When it’s cold outside, it’s easy to let the gutters get out of hand. With the possibility of summer rain on the horizon, clear gutters are essential to keep debris from spilling down the side of your house. The most direct way to tackle this task requires four pieces of equipment: an extension ladder, a pair of leather gloves, a tarp, and a hose with a high-pressure nozzle. Lay the tarp below the work area. Working in sections, remove debris from the gutter and toss it on the tarp below. After clearing each section, use the high-pressure hose to clean the gutter of the remaining residue. Work your way around the entire building until the gutters are squeaky clean. When you finish, empty the tarp into a compost bin or lawn and leaf collection receptacle.
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Make Your Kitchen and Bathrooms Odor-free
The additional heat and humidity of summer weather create the ideal environment for micro-organisms. Bacteria and fungi are key creators of odor in the home environment. By working proactively, you can curb these critters and stifle the smells.
Trash and Recycling Cans
As food matter collects in waste receptacles, it creates a breeding ground for bacteria. To tackle this problem, pay special attention to trash and recycling receptacles. Empty them more often than you might during the winter months and clean them thoroughly with soap, water, and disinfectant every time they’re empty.
Mold and Mildew
The big tip with mold and mildew is to stop it before it starts. That means cleaning all tiled areas of the house regularly to keep ahead of it. Consider scrubbing and squeegeeing the walls while you shower. Mop the floors at least once per week. Dry away all damp areas as soon as possible to prevent the growth of mildew.
Freshen Your Fabrics
Fabric goods are keen collectors of dust, mites, and mildew. Summer is an excellent time to refresh them and clear your home of the accumulation from the winter months.
Because towels become damp with frequency, they offer an ideal environment for mildew to begin to grow. To prevent this eventuality, replace them more frequently in the summer. To kill the odor, wash them in hot water, then add half a cup of baking soda to the rinse cycle. Dry on the highest recommended heat level.
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Summer is a great time to refresh fabric curtains and drapes. Remove them from the windows and take them outside to shake them off. Then, leave them in the sun to eradicate old smells. While the curtains are airing, tackle the blinds. Grab two old socks and a half and half solution of water and vinegar. Dip one sock in the solution and wipe the blinds side to side. Then, use the other sock to dry them.
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You should flip and clean your mattresses twice per year to prevent the buildup of dust, mites, and dead skin cells. It also keeps you from wearing out one side of the mattress. Remove all the bedclothes and vacuum the top of the mattress. Flip it and sweep the other side. Replace the bedclothes.
Make Your Windows Shine
Dirt, smudges, and debris tend to accumulate on windows during the winter months. This residue is a combination of the weather and the fact that it’s uncomfortable to get outside in the cold weather. Use the opportunity of warmth to tackle this task. Remove all screens before you start. Rinse the windows with a hose. Wash them with soap, water, and a soft rag. Rinse away the soap. Finally, spray the surface with a window cleaner and squeegee it away. Work from top to bottom with the squeegee until the windows are crystal clear.
Summer offers endless opportunities for outdoor enjoyment, punctuated with cooling off inside. These few simple tasks create a cleaner, more comfortable, and more beautiful environment to enjoy the warmer months. Start setting up for summer today!
Do you need help to make your home as squeaky clean as possible? Check out Shine Window Cleaning to see how they can help!