As we welcome spring, so too do we want our homes to be inviting and cheerful, free of the paraphernalia associated with winter, and sparkling spring clean with bright, airy spaces. Spring cleaning is an annual house cleaning ritual that marks this transition to a new season, and is a great opportunity to tackle some domestic chores that have been put on hold all winter.
While we no longer have to contend with the sooty residue from oil and coal burning heating systems of years past, winter still finds its way into the home. Top to bottom house cleaning can be overwhelming, so it’s best to prioritize jobs into a few manageable projects.
First on the list should be a thorough cleaning of the front entrance, and hallway, which has had salt and sand tracked through for months. “You want to clear out winter clutter, such as de-icing salt, skates, coats and accessories,” says Amelia Mackie, a Molly Maid franchise owner in Mississauga South/Malton. “Clean out the closet and launder outdoor winter clothes before you put them away. Sweep and mop out the closet and clean mats or replace them if they’re too worn and dirty.”
In addition, homeowners should spot clean front hallway walls and put away boot trays. The front door and glass inserts should be cleaned and the front porch should be swept. If you have an outdoor mat, this should also be well cleaned to remove any residual salt and sand that could still be tracked into the home.
Longer days mean more sunlight and the need to wash winter grime from windows. By washing one side horizontally and the other vertically, it’s easier to see which side of the glass has any streaks. If window dressings can’t be taken down and washed, a good vacuuming will remove any accumulated dust and furnace residue. Use a damp cloth for cleaning blinds or cover your hand with an odd sock and run your hand across the slats. This method gets the job done quickly and you’re re-using a sock that would otherwise be thrown out.
According to Mackie, a third house cleaning must is the laundry room. “This area often gets neglected,” she says. “This is where you bring the kids’ wet mitts and dirty snow pants, so there’s a lot of dirt that collects in the laundry room. With the dryer, there can be mould and mildew, so you want to give everything a good cleaning.”
Mackie recommends wiping down both the outside and the inside of the dryer and washing machine, including the washer’s agitator and dispensers that have a build-up of detergent. Although people clean the dryer lint screen on a regular basis, fabric softener creates a film over time, so that nothing can get through. Soak the screen in warm soapy water, and then thoroughly clean and dry it.
Spring is also a good time to have your furnace and air ducts cleaned. Rule of thumb is to have residential HVAC systems cleaned every five to seven years, but some exceptions require more frequent cleaning to ensure that you have a healthy home. Annual service is recommended for people with allergies, for homes with newborns or infants, homes with pets, if there is a large number of occupants in the home, or if anyone smokes. Typically, duct cleaning services take approximately two to three hours with a two-person crew, in homes that are sized from 2,000 sq. ft. to 3,000 sq. ft.
“During winter, everything is enclosed and air tight, making the home literally an incubator,” says Stanley Santos, an air duct cleaning technician for Dave’s Duct Cleaning. “Pollutants and particulates that come into the home remain in the HVAC system and bacteria adhere to these porous items. Duct cleaning improves air circulation for a healthier home.”
Now that you have your house cleaning to-do list for this spring, you can get the job done in no time but for those busy, working moms, having some help is always welcome. eieihome makes it easier for you to find the right company for the job with their house cleaning directory that includes maid services, duct cleaning and even eco-friendly cleaners.