Spring Cleaning Guides & Tips

It’s oficially spring (yaaaay!) but along comes the Spring Cleaning (meeeeh!). This is not the first time I try to “spring clean” my small apartment, but I have to tell you, for me is both exciting 😀 and overwhelming D:

So I decided to do some research on Organising specialised blogs, to give you tips from the very professionals and make it less overwhelming and exhausting as well. I found these tips, I hope they are useful. Personally I will start on Monday 24th, a little bit every day so the Spring Cleaning doesn’t have to be a Torture and such exhausting days. Which in the end I know is very satisfying, but not everybody is very into this tradition, so why not make it a light and organised (family) time?

First things first, the BEST tip I found is this from Organize and Decorate Everything:

Spring Cleaning Guides & Tips [Program] | ecogreenlove

Also, in order to avoid Spring Cleaning, the best way is to clean often enough to keep your place in good shape in order to skip a deep cleaning. This I found it on One Good Thing by Jillee, and is printable so you can have it as a guide, to tick the boxes (which also brings satisfaction to see a progress, doesn’t it?):

House Cleaning [Cheat Sheet] | ecogreenlove

Here is a weekly program from Classy Clutter and is printable as well:

Cleaning Schedule [Guide] | ecogreenlove

Now, getting into the Spring Cleaning thing, I found on organize your stuff now a 30 day Spring Cleaning (which is the one I will follow). This guide was posted last year:

Spring Cleaning Guides & Tips [Program] | ecogreenlove
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Knowledge is Power. Please share this Guide:

<a href="https://ecogreenlove.files.wordpress.com/2014/03/ecogreenlove_30dayspringcleaningguideblck.png" target="_blank"><img class="wp-image-1963 size-full" title="Spring Cleaning Guides &amp; Tips [Program] | ecogreenlove" src="https://ecogreenlove.files.wordpress.com/2014/03/ecogreenlove_30dayspringcleaningguideblck.png" alt="Spring Cleaning Guides &amp; Tips [Program] | ecogreenlove" width="1760" height="1702" /></a> click on image to see full size [opens new tab]

Here are some descriptions and tips that Leanne shared on her FB page for some tasks:

Day 1: Oven, Microwave and Small Appliances. After cleaning the inside of the oven, don’t forget to pull it out and clean the sides, behind it and the floor. Ask Anna has an awesome tutorial on how to clean between oven glass. Clean the microwave by filling a microwave safe bowl half-way with water and a tablespoon of white vinegar and placing it inside the microwave, turn it on for about 5 minutes. The steam will loosen all the gunk. Remove the bowl of water and wipe the microwave down using a cloth or paper towel. Wash the turn table with soap and water. A mixture of vinegar and water will work on other small appliances also.

Day 2: Refrigerator and Dishwasher. Clean the inside of the fridge using warm water and white vinegar. Take the bins and baskets out and wash in the sink. Wash top and sides of fridge, again using warm water and vinegar. Take bottom front grill off and wash then vacuum coils under fridge. Pull out and vacuum the back and floor under fridge, if possible. In the dishwasher, remove the utensil basket and any other loose parts that can be removed. Use a mixture of water and vinegar in the sink to clean these parts. Use a wet vinegar cloth to wipe down the inside door and edges. Run a short cycle using 2-3 cups of vinegar, stop mid cycle and let set for about 30 minutes, then continue cycle. Wipe down the outside of the dishwasher. Sparkling Clean!

Day 3: Cabinets, Inside and Out. Cabinets are my favorite thing to clean, probably because I can declutter at the same time. Start by clearing everything out of a cabinet, wash the inside: top, sides, bottom and under. If you have baskets holding small things, clean those too. Return things only back to the cabinet that you use frequently, if there’s something that hasn’t been used for a long time it’s probably time to get rid of it either by donating or tossing. When cleaning food cabinets, check the expiration dates before returning the food. Wipe down any bottle or containers that need it. Now it’s time to clean the outside, wash the top, sides, fronts, and under the outside of the cabinets. Clean around the knobs and panels really well. I cleaned the inside and out of all my cabinets using just E-cloths and water and they are sparkling clean. I love this particular micro-fiber cloth because it cut through any grime that was built up on the front of my cabinets quickly and easily. I’ll be having a giveaway later this month for some E-cloths so you can try it out for yourself.

Day 4: Pantry. Start by emptying everything out of your pantry. Keep your garbage can close by to toss any expired food items. I placed all my pantry items on my kitchen island, but use the table or countertop if that’s what you have. I put things where they’ll be in my way when I’m cleaning so I get it finished faster (just a little trick I play on myself). Once everything is out wash the walls, ceiling, shelves, floor. Get in the corners and tight spots really well, crumbs like to accumulate there. Use a mixture of water and vinegar or a micro-fiber cloth. For scuffs from cans I use a magic eraser, it takes them right off. Return everything back to your pantry. I’m going to have a post on my blog later this evening showing how I organize my teeny tiny pantry. Oh, and I actually painted my shelves yesterday while I had everything out. Not what I would recommend while trying to Spring clean but the shelves were never painted well in the first place, so after being cleaned they still didn’t look good. Now they do!

Day 5: Light Fixtures/Floors and Baseboards. Get a ladder, stool or stand on the table to reach the light fixtures. Warm water with a small amount of dish soap should be enough to clean the grime off the light fixtures. A damp micro fiber cloth works well too. Make sure to get all the tight spaces. Wipe with a clean damp cloth to get the soap residue off. While you’re there don’t forget to change the light bulbs. Use a damp micro fiber floor cloth (like the e-cloth) to clean your floors. Use 1/2 vinegar to a gallon of water as your cleaning solution. Vinegar is safe to use on all types of floors. Make sure to get under the cabinets and corners well. Use a damp cloth to get the kick area under the cabinets. Enjoy your sparkling clean kitchen. Now you’ll just have everyday clean-up and can enjoy the warm weather.

Day 6: Bathroom, Walls/Ceiling Corners and Doors/ Switch Plates. Let’s start in the bathroom with the walls and ceiling. Use a damp micro fiber cloth or a cloth dipped in a vinegar/water solution wrung out well. Wash the walls starting in the upper corners and working out and down. Clean doors and switch plates in the same manner. Pay special attention to small areas and door panels. I use a toothpick to get in the really small areas on the switch plates. Ask Anna has a really good tutorial to get hairspray residue off everything in the bathroom.

Day 7: Bathroom, Light fixtures/bulbs and Vents/floor & ceiling. Take the vent covers off. There’s usually a clip or something holding the ceiling ones in place. I had to pinch the wires in mine together to get it to come off. It’s easy to get clean by washing it in the sink. Wash around the vent opening and use a vacuum attachment to vacuum inside of the vent. Put the cover back in place. Wash the floor vents and vacuum inside vent as far as you can get. Use a damp micro fiber cloth to wash the light fixtures. Change any burned out light bulbs.

I made today’s cleaning really easy so if you don’t want to clean on Sunday, you can double up on Monday.

Day 8: Bathroom Cabinets, inside and out. Empty out the cabinets and clean the inside using a damp micro fiber cloth. It does really well with getting the draws clean and rid of any sticky messes. Take out and clean any containers. Toss any old medications, make-up or things that aren’t being used. See if you city police department takes the old medications (ours does). Clean the outside using the same damp cloth, pay special attention to the small crevices. I like to use a toothpick to get in the small spaces, a reader also recommended a cheap toothbrush. Clean any mirrored surfaces using a damp micro fiber cloth and a clean dry one. Wipe down all bottles and other items and return to cabinet. It’s a light day so if you have some days to make up, now would be a good day.

Day 9: Bathroom, shower curtain, rugs, garbage can, baseboards, floor. Remove shower curtain and rugs and wash separately in machine. Do not place shower curtain in dryer, hang to dry. While the shower curtain is off, wash rod with water and vinegar. Empty garbage can and wash thoroughly with soapy water. Clean baseboards using a damp micro fiber cloth, for scuffs and tough marks use a magic eraser. Wash tile floors with a water/vinegar solution using a micro fiber mop or another type wrung out really well. Do not use vinegar on marble floors. Warm water with a tiny bit of soap will work great. To clean grout, make a paste out of water and baking soda and let sit for a while, even overnight. Use a soft bristle brush or toothbrush to clean the grout. Wash off residue using water. Seal grout with a grout sealer. Now your bathroom should be sparkling clean.

Day 10: Laundry Room/Mud Room, Wall, shelves, cabinets. These rooms can get really dusting so take the time to wash everything down with a damp cloth (and vinegar). Remove everything out of the cabinets (if you’re lucky enough to have them) and off the shelves. Now is a great time to clean off all the bottles and other containers and access what you have and what you need to keep. Combine half used bottles of the same product and toss things you aren’t using. Totes and bins are great things to use in these rooms to contain needed supplies. Pick ones that have an easy to clean surface. The ones in my laundry room are nylon and wipe down easily. I think paint finish in these rooms make a huge difference. Shelves painted in at least a semi-gloss are so much easier to clean than a flat or egg shell. While I love the look of these paint finishes normally, on shelves a semi-gloss is much easier to wipe down. When we are finished with our Spring cleaning you might want to consider painting the shelves if you need too. It will make your cleaning much easier.

Day 11: Laundry Room/Mud Room, Doors, Door Trim, Lights, Switch Plates. Clean painted doors with vinegar and water or a small amount of detergent and water. Start at the top and work down. Take special care to get in the corners of the panels. For wood doors use oil soap and rinse clean and dry well. For stubborn areas or scuffs on painted doors use a magic eraser. It really works magic! Clean door trims in the same way. Clean switch plates and lights using a damp micro fiber cloth. Replace any burned out light bulbs.

Day 12: Cleaning the Washing Machine. Since I wanted to show pictures with more detail I wrote a blog post about cleaning the washing machine. Please come over to the blog to see the full post.

Day 13: Cleaning the Dryer. Since this is another detailed clean I wrote another blog post about cleaning the dryer. Please come over to the blog to get all the details. Heads up: tomorrow is going the floors so you might want to clean that area while the dryer’s out.

Day 14: Laundry Room/Mud Room Floors, Washer/Dryer Tray. Clean the tray or pan under your washer and dryer by pulling the appliances out and vacuuming the pan to get up most of the lint and dust. Pick up all the lost socks. I’m not kidding, I found 5 of them and a washcloth. Spray the tray down with vinegar and water, let set for 30 minutes, then wipe clean with a cloth. Almost all floors can be washed with a mixture of water and vinegar. Make sure the mop is damp, not wet so it dries fast. Clean tile grout with a paste made from baking soda and water, let it sit for a while, scrub with a toothbrush, then wash clean with water. Seal grout with a sealer to prevent more stains.

Day 15: Living room/Family room/Play room, walls, ceiling, corners, baseboards, trim. Start by wiping down the walls with a dry microfiber cloth to get all the dust off. Pay special attention around electronics, those areas are especially dusty. Use a vacuum attachment to get those areas really well. You can use the cloth for the corners too or a dusting wand. Now take a damp microfiber cloth and wash down the walls using just water or a water and vinegar solution. Move to the trim and baseboards using a water and vinegar solution. For tough spots or scuffs on the baseboards or trim use a magic eraser.

Day 16: Living room/Family room/ Play room, light fixtures, ceiling fans, light switchplates. Dust the ceiling fan, top bottom, sides, everywhere. I use a micro fiber dusting wand (dry) to get all the dust from the top of the fan blades. Use a damp cloth to wipe down the fan light covers. Change the light bulbs if needed. Use a lint brush to clean lampshades. It works like magic to get every bit of lint and dust off. Clean the lamp harp and surrounding areas using a damp cloth. Clean all switch plates and outlets using a damp micro fiber cloth with a vinegar/water solution. I also use a toothpick to get the dust and grime out of the small spaces.

Day 17: Living room/Family/room/ Play room, Wash throws & pillows, Vacuum & wash furniture. Wash throws on delicate or gentle cycle in washing machine. If your pillows have a cover, remove cover and wash with throws. I hang dry my pillow covers so they don’t shrink or you can dry on low heat. Iron covers to take out any wrinkles. If your pillows don’t have a cover that can be removed, spot clean with a damp cloth then fluff in dryer on low or no heat with a few tennis balls. Pillows can be tossed in the dryer with a few tennis balls also to fluff them up. Vacuum the furniture first, anywhere and everywhere your attachments can reach. Make sure to follow manufacturers instructions on the cleaning of your furniture. For small stains or spots, you can try a little white shaving cream in a hidden test area, apply to spot using a small amount of shaving cream and a damp cloth, follow with a clean damp cloth to get out the residue. For leather furniture, check the manufacturers label for the best way to clean your leather piece. Dust and vacuum leather furniture weekly. Never use any kind of oils, ammonia based products, bleach, or furniture polish on your leather furniture. Usually water with a few drops of dish soap in the water should be fine for a cleaning solution, but check your label first. Rotate your cushions if possible.

Day 18: Living room/Family room/ Play room, Curtains and Blinds. First vacuum curtains using a vacuum attachment to remove dust. Launder according to manufacturers instructions. Vacuum blinds to remove loose dust. Use a damp cloth with a vinegar solution to clean wood blinds by running the cloth over each slat. Rinse cloth as needed. For vinyl blinds you can place them in a tub of water with a small amount of dish soap. Clean by rubbing with a cloth in the tough areas. Rinse with clean water. For blinds that are too long to place in the tub you can take them out side and clean using a small amount of dish soap and a wet cloth. Spray clean with a hose and let dry. To avoid spots, wipe down with a clean, dry cloth. For cloth blinds use a rubber dry sponge to clean off dust. Wipe down the slats of the blinds with a fabric softener sheet to prolong the dust build-up.

Day 19: Living room/ Family room/ Play room, Windows and window tracks. Wash windows using a water and vinegar solution and a squeegee. Use a dry cloth to get the edges. You can also use a wet micro fiber cloth and a dry polisher cloth to clean the windows streak-free. Clean window tracks by removing the screen first if you can. Use a vacuum attachment to get the loose dirt and dust from the track. Wash the track using a damp cloth dipped in soapy water. For tough spots use a small brush or tooth brush dipped in soapy water and scrub, scrub, scrub. Wipe with a clean dry cloth. I’m away at a conference so I don’t have any pictures for you today. Happy cleaning!

Day 20: Living room/ Family room/ Play room, vacuum edges, floor vents, wall vents. Use the vacuum attachment to clean the dust off floor and wall vents. Remove floor vents, use attachment to clean inside vent as far as you can. Wash vents with soapy water in sink, set aside to dry. Vacuum carpet edges using vacuum attachment.

Day 22: Bedrooms/ light fixtures, bulbs, switch plates, doors. Clean doors from top to bottom using a damp cloth dipped in a 4 part water, 1 part vinegar solution. For tough areas use a magic eraser. A magic eraser also works well for discoloration around hinges also. Clean ceiling light fixtures by taking the light down and wash in sink using gentle soap and water. Dry thoroughly. While the fixture is down replace any burned out bulbs. If you have a chandelier fixture, clean with a damp micro fiber cloth. Refer to Day 16 for ceiling fan cleaning tips. Clean switch plates and other covers using a damp rag. Use a toothpick for small spaces. If you cover your plates like mine, finish with a layer of mod podge so it’s easy to clean.

Well, there it is, I hope you achieve the challenge and the information I gathered for you is useful. And if you need more information, here is a link that also found interesting:
25+ Spring Cleaning Tutorials {Room by Room} by Dukes & Duchesses where they show a list of external tutorials to clean EVERyTHING.

If you want to go beyond, here is an ebook from Clean Mama where you can find motivation and insight to figure out the best way to do a little deep cleaning. Click here to visit Clean Mama – Clean Mama Printables.

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Be Eco: Join the Green and Share the Love! | ecogreenlove

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