Home Cleaning Tips, Tricks, & Hacks

Few people enjoy the chores involved with the upkeep of their home or apartment. However, almost everyone can agree that dusting, sweeping, and scrubbing is a necessary evil crucial to keeping a comfortable living space. What many do not realize, however, is that there are numerous ways to speed up the cleaning process and make the job feel a bit more manageable. The following are just a handful of common suggestions for sprucing a place up that are often overlooked or unknown. Chances are that a few simple changes can make your cleansing routine more efficient, more affordable, and less harmful to you and your family’s well being. Here’s our list of the top home cleaning tips and tricks:

Few people enjoy the chores involved with the upkeep of their home or apartment. However, almost everyone can agree that dusting, sweeping, and scrubbing is a necessary evil crucial to keeping a comfortable living space. What many do not realize, however, is that there are numerous ways to speed up the cleaning process and make the job feel a bit more manageable. The following are just a handful of common suggestions for sprucing a place up that are often overlooked or unknown. Chances are that a few simple changes can make your cleansing routine more efficient, more affordable, and less harmful to you and your family’s well being. Here’s our list of the top home cleaning tips and tricks:

1. Put an end to pet hair once and for all

Anyone with a dog or cat in their life will attest to how troublesome pet hair can sometimes be. The clothes, furniture, and carpets of pet owners are often covered with whatever their pet happens to naturally shed off. Luckily, there’s a very simple solution to cleaning up the mess. As it happens, rubber gloves attract pet hair like magnets. By simply stroking your hand over an afflicted area, you’ll find that the majority of hair and dander will stick to the rubber. Clean up is just as simple – dunk the gloves in water and the hair instantly detach from the glove’s surface and float to the surface!
 

2. Scrub away baked on food from pots and pans
Burnt food can be a nightmare to clean. Even after hours of soaking in soapy water, it may still stick to a pan, pot, or plate like glue. When faced with this scenario, don’t give up hope – there are a few solutions that might be able to restore your vessel. For instance, baking soda covered with just enough water to cover the surface of a pot or pan can be brought to a simmer to remove a mess without much hassle. Another particularly effective, albeit unexpected, agent in loosening up overcooked food is ketchup. Because of the high acidity of tomatoes, the mess is easily eaten away. 

3. Create a homemade all-purpose cleaner

Common household staples can often make for the best household cleaners. A simple online search for chemical-free cleaner ingredients yield a variety of inexpensive recipes and options. Hydrogen peroxide, vinegar, and castile soap are often used as base ingredients to create cleaners. Almost every family keeps one (if not all) of these supplies in their household for cooking and hygienic purposes – if you happen to have a surplus of any one of those materials, you’ll have no trouble at all creating an all-purpose cleaner in a matter of minutes. If you choose to, everything from essential oils to herbs and lemon juice can be added to personalize the scent of your cleaner.


4. Ditch the feather duster for coffee filters

Although they’ve been a commonly used cleaning tool for ages, many feather dusters actually aren’t all that effective. Poorly made models may actually push around dirt and debris rather than pick it up off of dusty surfaces. On the other hand, coffee filters make for an inexpensive, practical alternative. By working the thin, fibrous paper in circular movements, it’s possible to pick up any sort of lingering dust. Better yet, it doesn’t leave behind streaks and is delicate enough to avoid scratching surfaces such as LCD screens.

5. Give your grout new life

However many times your scrub a tile floor, chances are that grime and dirt will remain inside of the grout. By hand, it can be nearly impossible to eliminate grout grime. But, a simple mixture of ammonia, vinegar, baking soda, and warm water can work magic for cleaning large areas with a scrubbing brush From there, you can maintain the cleanliness of your grout by working isolated, small stains with white toothpaste or a pencil eraser.

6. Cut chemicals out of the equation with vinegar

As you may have noticed from some of the earlier tips, vinegar can be used and combined in a variety ways as a sort of miracle cleanser. Cutting boards and microwaves can disinfected quickly with white vinegar poured into a spray bottle for convenience and portability. Vinegar also does an excellent job at ridding showers, toilets, and tile surfaces of bacteria. Vinegar can even be used to disinfect mattresses and polish glass windows. A gallon of distilled vinegar often costs less than $4.00 – picking up a jug the next time you visit the grocery store can take you a long way when it comes to cleaning the house. 

7. Use bins to avoid refrigerator clutter

No one likes to find barely recognizable leftovers hiding in the back of their fridge. The solution to decluttering your refrigerator and avoiding food waste? Invest in some plastic bins for organization. Bins work to separate food, making it easier to keep track of what’s being stored in your freezer or fridge while simultaneously increasing accessibility to the things you love to eat. Although the switch may seem small and insignificant, it can make a huge difference in keeping track of your supplies.

8. Get your stainless steel sparkling

Modern appliances, cookware, and faucets are often made with stainless steel. With proper upkeep, they look sleek and stylish. Unfortunately, the material has a tendency to pick up fingerprints and smudges. If you’re looking to refresh the appearance of your stainless steel, buffing surfaces in olive oil is a surefire way of keeping everything shiny. As an alternative to olive oil, all purpose flour can also be used to to buff out splotches and streaks.


9. Help your potted plants look their best

Although potted plants living creatures, they require the help of human caretakers to stay healthy indoors. Often times, even individuals born with a green thumb can overlook the benefits of actually keeping their plants clean. Be sure to trim away dead or dying leaves or branches. Take the time to remove dust and debris that may collect on your plant’s surfaces – misting down a specimen is a great way to keep things clean and avoid overwatering. Milk, beer, and even a dab of mayonnaise have all been suggested by plant affectionados to polish down leaves and give them a little bit of a glow.

10. Rid yourself of stubborn carpet stains

Carpet stains can be tenacious, but there’s no reason why you should have to tolerate soiled floors in your living space. Household cleaners such as dry cleaning fluid, bleach, or ammonia come to mind right away as candidates capable of eviscerating blemishes. However, there are plenty of safer household remedies that can accomplish the same thing. Baking soda lifts and deodorizes stains from pet urine or bodily fluids, and different combinations of vinegar, water, and gentle dish soaps can be used to eliminate virtually everything from red wine to grass. Club soda and even beer can also come in handy if all else fails.

11. Keep your clean machines clean

Often times, we take for granted the job that devices like washing machines and dishwashers provide. Because of this, it’s very easy to forget that these appliances need a bit of cleansing and maintenance to perform perfectly. However, these tools are exposed to germs and bacteria day after day. Thankfully, TLC isn’t too difficult – vinegar is all you need to clean the dishwasher’s filter and racks. For the washing machine, your best bet is to run a cycle with less than a cup of chlorine-free bleach.

12. Disinfect dish sponges in less than two minutes

Kitchen sponges are notorious for harboring bacteria and mold. Considering that most households use sponges to clean surfaces and dishes, they can become a serious cause for concern in spreading food borne illness. Fortunately, there’s a quick and effective way of eliminating festering germs that may have made their way to the sponge. After thoroughly soaking the sponge, place it inside of the microwave for two minutes. This small step can eliminate more than 99% of hidden pathogens.

13. Clear out sink drains and spruce up the garbage disposal

At one point or another, everyone experiences a clogged drain or funky smell coming from their sink. There’s no need for noxious chemicals when this inevitably happens. Boiling hot water with salt works wonders on clogs – the heat works to melt fats and greases stuck to the insides of pipes, while salt is completely harmless yet abrasive enough loosen material stuck to the drain. If you’re looking to eliminate odor, add a bit of baking soda. For garbage disposals, grinding ice cubes does an excellent job of cleaning out caked on sludge. Adding citrus peels to the disposal afterwards gives the sink a fresh scent after all of the work within the piping is taken care of.

14. Switch out paper towels for microfiber cloths

Though incredibly popular and often on hand, paper towels can be inefficient and wasteful during clean up. Some people instead opt for rags to take on spills and stains, but they can quickly become worn and dirty. A more environmentally friendly and durable option is the microfiber cloth. These cloths are very versatile, capable of absorbing spills and liquid residues as well as swiping away dry dirt, dust, and debris. Much like a rag, the sturdier cloths can be cleaned and reused again and again for hundreds of tasks around the house.

15. Polish out imperfections in wooden surfaces

Knicks and scratches can be incredibly difficult to rid yourself of. A quick, pain-free solution to getting rid of minor imperfections actually may lie somewhere in your cabinet. Walnuts can be used to buff out scrapes thanks to the natural oils they contain, which work perfectly for filling in empty spaces within wood surfacing. To work this magic, all that’s necessary is to rub the walnut across the length of the scratch. After allowing the oils from the nut to soak in for a few minutes, a quick polish with a cloth will eliminate all evidence of the flaw’s existence. 

16. Avoid wires from tangling up and taking space

Cables can be a pain to tame and maintain. They’re easily tangled, misplaced, or confused with one another. A homemade charging station can be an attractive solution to keeping your cords in one place – a plastic toolbox with drilled holes in the sides can make for an excellent base, hiding untidy and unsightly cords. If you’d like to keep your unused cords neat and tidy, you can wrap them around a cardboard paper towel or bathroom tissue roll. Even labeled binder clips can be attached to the edge of a desk or table and fed wires through their metal handles, providing convenient accessibility.

17. Reuse an old picture frames as a DIY white board

Do you find yourself constantly writing to do and grocery lists on scraps on paper around the house? A whiteboard can be an incredibly helpful eco-friendly replacement. In fact, you may already have one hiding in your attic or basement. Rather than going out and buying a brand new board, repurpose an old picture frame collecting dust – dry erase marker easily wipes off of the glass plate.. You can even put an attractive piece of wallpaper or fabric inside of the frame to add a bit of creative flare to your DIY white board.

 

 

Our Service Area

Maid in Boston cleans many beautiful homes in the Arlington, Belmont, Brighton, Brookline, Cambridge, Charlestown,

Chelmsford, Chestnut Hill, Jamaica Plain, Lexington, Malden, Medford, Melrose, Needham, Newton, Roslindale, Saugus, Somerville,

Sudbury and Tewksbury areas.

Cleaning Tips You'll Be Glad To Know!