Spring officially started a few weeks ago and that means that for many of us, its time for annual spring-cleaning. But don’t worry; here are a few great tips to make this year’s cleaning faster and easier than ever. This is our first installment in a two part series. In part one, we will be focusing on the outside of the house. Many people start with the inside spring cleaning without realizing the importance of cleaning around the outside of the house as well. Using our tips, you can have the outside looking ready for spring in no time.
Start with the front door (mat)
Doormats are the first thing that visitors are going to see, but many people forget them when they do their spring cleaning. Shake ‘em, wash ‘em, swat ‘em with a broom. Give them the toughest cleaning they can take. They’re your front line against tracked-in dirt; so keep them clean enough to function at peak efficiency.
Follow These Simple Steps to Wash Windows
Be sure to pick a cloudy day to wash windows. “If it’s too sunny, the cleaning solution will dry too fast and you’ll have streaks,” says Donna Smallin, author of Cleaning Plain & Simple (Storey Publishing, 2005). For a window-washing solution, Smallin combines 1/2 cup of sudsy ammonia (which is a specific type of ammonia), 1 pint of rubbing alcohol, 1 teaspoon of dishwashing liquid, and 1 gallon of water.
Check Your Windows and Your AC Unit
Check the area around your doors and windows for drafts. Weather seals can become damaged or worn over time, allowing unwanted (and expensive!) air to escape, so it’s important to reseal any gaps as soon as possible. And, it may sound crazy, but go ahead and give your air conditioning unit a try. If there’s a problem, you’ll be thankful you know about it now as opposed to when record-breaking temps hit your area. You’ll just want to make sure the temperature is above 60 degrees outside when you give the unit a test run.
Check Your Home Safety Plan
While you are spring-cleaning is the perfect time to do a quick safety inspection. Check the batteries in your smoke detectors and carbon monoxide detectors. If detectors are located in the garage or other dusty area, use a can of condensed air to blow dust and dirt away from the sensors. Its also a good idea to check fire extinguishers and make a fire escape plan with your family. If you don’t already have a home safety plan, check out TLC’s tips on how to make a plan and talk about fires with your family.
And Finally, Add Some Music
Spring cleaning doesn’t have to be depressing. Studies have shown that people who listen to music while they clean get the job done faster and have more fun while they work. Try this Spring Cleaning Playlist from Mashable. This playlist mixes together newer releases by bands like Chvrches and Phoenix with classic hits by Hall and Oats, Depeche Mode, and A-ha.