It's that time of year again! Spring is in the air, and spring cleaning is on so many people's minds. But whether you're ready to turn your house upside down or just want your rooms to smell fresh, there is no better place to start than with the carpets. Over the winter months, carpets get matted down with dust from the air and dirt from boots and shoes. Even if you vacuum regularly, your carpets can hold onto some trapped debris, and over time that builds up. If you've noticed that your carpets look a bit drab or just don't smell fresh, now is the time for a thorough carpet cleaning. While you can do some spot cleaning yourself, the best way to get your carpets cleaned is with a TrustDALE certified carpet cleaning professional.
Spring Cleaning Tips
Spring cleaning can seem like a chore, but it can also be fun and rewarding. There's nothing like the feeling of a renewed and refreshed home to start the season out right. Especially this year, after so many of us have spent so much time in our homes, it's well worth the effort to get a fresh start.
Create a Schedule
We know, sometimes you just want to throw yourself at a dirty room and get to it. But that's a recipe for quick fatigue. If you want to get your home clean, it's best to start with a schedule or at least a few checklists.
First, take a look around your home. Are there areas that really bug you? Is there somewhere in your home that you really want to get clean but haven't found the time or energy to devote to it? Second, look for areas of your home that you usually gloss over when doing your routine cleaning. Is there a bookshelf you ignore? A closet? And we all know those dreaded junk drawers. If there's a spot or two in your home that hasn't had some TLC in a while, make sure to put it on your list.
A schedule can also help you stay focused. It's easy to start cleaning one room and then get caught up in another, only to find that no space is actually clean at the end of the day. Cleaning your home is probably a multi-day project. Try to identify which projects can be done in a short burst—like cleaning out a drawer—and which could take hours—like moving around furniture or organizing a closet. Put the short-burst projects on one list. You can tackle one of those in an evening during the week. Then put the more time-consuming items on another list. Dedicate a weekend (or one day of a weekend) to completing just 1-3 of those more significant tasks.
It may help to put your lists in order since some projects may require other tasks to be completed first. For instance, you may want to spend a day organizing your garage before you spend a day cleaning out your closets and separating out clothes to go into storage in the garage.
Take Time to Declutter
There will be time for scrubbing the baseboards (if that's what you're into), but one of the most impactful spring cleaning tasks you can undertake is decluttering. Decluttering is having a bit of a moment with some celebrity organizers and popular books in minimalist living. However, you don't have to live like a monk to enjoy a less cluttered home.
Since clutter is basically having too much stuff lying around, there are two primary ways to declutter. You could take all that extra stuff and find homes for it, or you could gather it up and take it to the trash. Most likely, the best solution for your home will be a mix of the two. Some items can go, while others just need to find a suitable space. Just try not to fall into the trap of the packrat. While not every spoon in your kitchen drawer may spark joy, they are at least useful. But if an item only has a theoretical use (e.g., I saw online that I could use these toilet paper rolls to store wires), let it go. Consider whether you are ready to put those items to use in the next two weeks during your spring cleaning. If the answer is no, let it go. Unless you have tons of storage space, there's no reason to hold onto things that might be useful someday, especially if they are not hard or expensive to replace when the need actually arises.
Use the Right Tools
Woodworkers need saws and clamps and nail guns. Gardeners need spades and hoes and gloves. If you want to do something right, start with the right tools. For starters, take a look at your vacuum. Your vacuum can be an excellent tool for more than just floors. With just the basic attachments, your vacuum can dig crumbs out of furniture, refresh throw pillows, clear dust off of ceiling fans, and suck up intimidating cobwebs. But if your vacuum isn't up to the task, it may be time to consider a replacement.
Your vacuum is likely the most expensive tool in your cleaning arsenal, but it pays to have the best one you can afford. However, before you run out to get a new one—or pull out your phone, as one might these days—take a moment to give that old vacuum some TLC.
It should go without saying, but start by emptying your vacuum's dust bag or bin. Next, take out any filters and give them a good wash. Consult your owner's manual for cleaning details. Most filters can be washed in the sink with plain water and left to air dry. If your hose or attachments seem clogged, use an unbent wire hanger to dig out some debris (just be sure not to tear anything in the process). You'll be amazed at how much better your vacuum performs when it is clean.
In addition to your vacuum, make sure you have tools like a good duster with a long wand. While some swear by the old mop and pail, you may want to take a look at some mopping systems that are easier to handle, like a Swiffer WetJet and similar products. If your broom is starting to look a bit run down, a new broom and dustpan set is a small investment that can boost your cleaning efficiency. Arm yourself with plenty of gloves (or some quality reusable rubber gloves), cleaning wipes, a couple of good brushes, and a variety of surface cleaners. Toilet bowl brushes are mostly cheap and not meant to last forever. Now might be a good time to consider replacing yours.
Finally, if you are ready to splurge, one place to spend a few bucks is on a steam cleaner. Since they use only hot water vapor to clean, they are an environmentally-friendly alternative to harsh surface cleaners. And you will be amazed at the quick work they make of cleaning a variety of surfaces and by how clean the surfaces get. You can use a steam cleaner on your microwave, tile, hard floors, kitchen appliances, bathrooms, and even some outdoor areas.
Spring cleaning can be dirty work, kicking up months of accumulated dust and spreading around some pretty harsh cleaning chemicals. We're all pretty familiar with masks by now, so pull out a good one and mask up for cleaning. Also, remember to use gloves any time you are using harsh chemicals and never mix cleaning fluids.
Get to it!
With your plan in hand, tools at the ready, and safety protocols established, you're ready to get to work. Remember, spring cleaning doesn't have to be done in a day or even a weekend. Spread out the work over a few weeks and go easy on yourself. Any cleaning you do now will feel good, even if you don't hit every item on your list. And while you can do a lot on your own, don't hesitate to call in the pros. For instance, even with a great vacuum, if you want your carpets to feel extra fresh and allergen-free, there is no substitute for a TrustDALE certified professional carpet cleaner. And when you use a TrustDALE certified professional, you're always protected by Dale's trademark $10,000 Make-It-Right™ Guarantee.