There’s nothing better than taking a step back and admiring your sparkling clean home. Taking in freshly washed sheets, mopped or vacuumed floors, and immaculately cleaned counters can be incredibly satisfying. While you might feel like your job is done, however, you’ve probably missed cleaning a handful of regularly used spaces. What’s even worse is that these spots might be hiding in plain sight, causing unpleasant smells or spreading germs. Follow these tips to find four hidden spaces that still need some elbow grease.
The Garbage Can
Taking out the trash might not be fun, but it’s only the first part of garbage removal. To eliminate odor and bacteria, you need to wash your garbage can at least every month. Trash bags often leak, causing food to seep through the cracks and fall into the bottom, where it continues to smell and rot. Even if your bags are sealed around the lid, the top of your trash can inevitably gets covered in food when you’re trying to add more garbage to a full bag. If you don’t clean the garbage can, your kitchen could continue to smell long after you finish the rest of your chores.
Door Handles and Knobs
Image via Flickr by Mariusz_St
If you’re scrubbing down your home to prevent sickness from spreading, start with the door handle. This unobtrusive home accessory often remains ignored as you focus on sink handles and toilet seats instead. To see how germy handles can be, researchers placed viruses on office door knobs and found that 60 percent of employees had the virus on their hands within two hours. Even if someone isn’t using the door to your home, all it takes is one visitor or one handshake to spread germs.
You probably wash your pillow cases when you clean your sheets, but you shouldn’t assume that your pillows are immune to getting dirty. Skin cells, dust, dirt, and oils from your skin and hair can make it past the protective pillow case and stay on pillows for months or years. Good Housekeeping reports that down and feather pillows are washer-safe, as long as you wash a maximum of two at a time on a gentle cycle. You can also tumble dry pillows, but be sure to fluff them regularly so the stuffing doesn’t clump together.
Air Filters and Ductwork
While most homeowners should change their air filters monthly, some people let time slip by and only change them a few times a year. This clouds the air in your home, which can lead to asthma or allergy attacks. In addition to changing the air filter regularly, you should also have your home’s ducts cleaned periodically. Call an HVAC specialist to eliminate layers of dust from your ductwork and stop allergens from circulating through your home.
These are just a few quick ways to reduce the germs, dust, and dirt from your home. Take these small steps and clean hidden spaces, and you’ll go a long way toward improving your overall health and increasing your family’s happiness.