Tag Archives: cleaning tips

5 Secrets Hotel Maids Know That You Don’t

If you want advice on how to do something, you go to the professionals—after all, they should know best, right? You go to a mechanic for car advice, a lawyer for legal advice, a chef for cooking advice…so why not go to maids for cleaning advice? Maids clean thousands of hotel rooms a year, so it’s safe to say they know a thing or two about efficient and effective cleaning. While your house may not look exactly like a hotel room, these cleaning tips can be applied to any space in your home. Here are 5 secrets hotel maids know that you don’t— but you certainly should!

Prepare to Clean

In order to clean a lot of rooms in a short amount of time, maids have to be prepared for the tasks ahead of them. They corral all their tools together in their carts and basket. You might not have a fancy cart lying around, you can round up all of your supplies in a caddy, basket or some other storage unit. With your cleaning tools all together, it’ll be much easier to tackle any cleaning task. Also, clear out all the clutter first before you start on a room. Clearing beds, counters, surfaces and floors first will not only make you feel like you have accomplished a lot in a small amount of time, but it’ll also allow for an easier cleaning. Preparing is one way to ensure a thorough clean and a healthy home!

Vacuum Before Mopping

Mopping’s a great way to clean floors in both hotels and homes; however, if there’s dirt, dust, hair or other particles on the ground, mopping can make one mess even messier. Wiping dust and hair with a mop will not effectively remove those things; in fact, it could make them more difficult to remove from the floor. If you don’t vacuum up the dust and dirt, then when you mop, you’re basically dragging dirt around all over your floor—quite the opposite of what you want! So before you start mopping a floor, make sure you vacuum or sweep in order to pick up all the dirt particles on the floor. This allows for a better and deeper clean of your home!

Vacuum the Opposite Way

While we’re on the topic of vacuuming, it’s important to mention a secret that hotel maids do all the time. Contrary to what you may’ve been told, you actually want to vacuum yourself into a room. Many people believe they should start in the farthest corner of the room and vacuum themselves out of the room; however, maids say that you should vacuum yourself into a room and then vacuum yourself out. When you vacuum yourself into the room, you’ll be going over heavily used areas. Then, when you vacuum yourself out of the room, you’re going over the most used/walked on areas twice. This ensures a definite clean!

Whack the Drapes

Drapes and curtains can be magnets for dust particles. You can use the brush attachment on your vacuum to clean the drapes; however, vacuuming them does not fully clean all the nooks and crannies where dust could be hiding. Instead, give the drapes a good whack with a hand towel. Doing so will loosen the dirt and dust onto the ground where you can then use your vacuum to clean. Also, using a towel is strong enough to be effective without tiring your arm out trying to remove dust from the drapes. Whacking all the drapes from top to bottom will remove all dust, dirt and other unwanted particles, making it easier to keep a clean and healthy home!

Let the Cleaner Do the Work

Whether you use store-bought or home-made cleaners, they’re one of the best things to use when doing a deep clean. The whole purpose is to aid in cleaning, so let it sit and do the work! When cleaning surfaces, spray them with the cleaner and then move on to a new task, letting the spray sit. When you come back and wipe to clean, the set cleaner will have done most of the work of removing dust and dirt. All you have to do is wipe away to finish the cleaning off. For example, when cleaning the bathroom, spray the toilet, shower, tub and counter, then move on to cleaning cabinets, mirrors and the floors. The cleaner that you let sit on the surfaces is at work while you are—so at the end of it all, you have a clean and healthy home!

6 Things You Never Think of Cleaning…But Should!

When it comes to cleaning, there’s always a to-do list of tasks. There are probably certain things that you don’t even think twice about doing—they’re just habit! But what about the more overlooked areas that might not appear on your daily list? Whether or not you think you have them, there are many spots or items that people don’t even consider as a chore that definitely needs to be done. Here are 6 things you may have never thought to clean…but definitely should!

Remote Controls
Although they allow for the total relaxation and ease of access to the many wonderful television channels, they’re also home to tons of bacteria. When picking up the remote, the cleanliness of it never crosses most people’s minds, but just think about the bacteria, dirt and germs that get spread through the air and by dirty hands directly onto the  control itself. Clean as often as possible—especially if you have little kids—with a rag, rubbing alcohol, and cotton swabs for the hard to reach places on the remote.

Indoor Trash Cans
Trashcans in your kitchen help you dispose of unwanted food, dirt and other garbage. But have you ever stopped to consider what kind of garbage can get on the actual trash can? Bacteria and germs can gather (and multiply) in trash cans — whether from food or moisture— and cultivate. About every other week—or more if you notice it’s particularly filthy or smelly—take your trashcan outside to clean. Spray the inside and outside of it with  a mixture of vinegar and water, and then wipe down the whole can.

Washing Machine
The washing machine is essential for laundering and cleaning your dirty clothes by taking the dirt and bacteria from the clothes and removing it. However, this means that all those unwanted particles are still left in your washing machine. Once every three months, put 2 cups of white vinegar into your washer and run it empty on a regular cycle. Also, to prevent bacteria and mold growth, take the just-washed load out as soon as the cycle is complete, place the clothes in the dryer, and leave the washer door open to allow the leftover water to evaporate.

Dishwasher
A dishwasher cleans your dirty dishes, but did you know that the actual dishwasher needs to be cleaned on its own? Oftentimes, grease and grime from the dirty dishes can end up stuck in your dishwasher — which not only provides a breeding ground for germs, but also decreases the efficiency of the appliance. Once a month, clear the drain by removing the bottom dish rack and removing any visible gunk caught in the drain. Then, place a dishwasher safe container (like a glass bowl) filled with a cup of white vinegar on the top rack and run through a hot-water cycle. This will freshen and deodorize the inside of your dishwasher!

Light Switches
Light switches are one of the most touched surfaces in your household, being pressed and touched every time someone walks into a room. This means that lots of bacteria and dirt can end up on these switches, and then gets transferred off to other places that you most likely do not want them to be. To clean the light switches, spray a mild cleaner or rubbing alcohol onto a paper towel and wipe them down each week.

Cell Phones & Tablets
Today it seems almost everyone has a cell phone or tablet device attached to them at all times, and for a very good reason:  they’re very handy! However, with a phone or tablet, you aren’t just carrying around a useful tool, but a lot of germs as well. Think of all the places a phone is taken or set down — it can pick up a lot of bacteria. So it pays to wipe down your phone or tablet every once in a while! To clean the screen, dampen a cotton ball or a cotton swab with rubbing alcohol and wipe it down; afterward, dry with a soft cloth. When cleaning the USB and earphone ports, make sure the rubbing alcohol doesn’t seep into the phone. If you have a case on your device, don’t forget to scrub it thoroughly as well.

 

5 Things to Clean When Moving Into a New Home

Moving can be an exciting and crazy time — a chance to start fresh and new! — but sadly the home you move into may not be very fresh or clean. On top of the stress of moving, the messy state of your new home is adding more worries to the list—but that doesn’t have to be the case! Here are 5 things to clean when moving into a new home that every new homeowner should do to ensure a fresh and healthy new start.

  1. The Floors

Whether tile, hardwood, or carpet, those floors have had dirt and dust thrown over them for years, and you want to ensure they’re clean for you and your family. For hardwood or tile, mop and scrub the floors really well. For carpet, you’re going to want to steam clean them, either by yourself or have a professional do it.

  1. The Walls

The walls may not seem like a normal chore on the cleaning to-do list; however, walls can be very dirty from the previous owners (especially if they had pets or kids). Get a bucket with warm, soapy water and a sponge and wipe the walls. Don’t forget to clean any moldings or baseboard, too, as these can be often covered with dust and dirt.

  1. The Bathrooms

The thought of a bathroom used by other complete strangers probably disgusts you—the exact reason the bathrooms are a top spot to clean when you move into a new house. Thoroughly wipe down the sinks and mirrors with a antibacterial cleaner and mop the floors. Also, wash the shower/tub with hot water and a clean, and wear robber gloves when you clear out the drain. Wipe out any drawers and cabinets that may be in the bathroom as well with a damp cloth.

  1. The Kitchen Cabinets and Drawers

The cabinets and drawers are often overlooked on the full house cleaning schedule — yet you’re about to store your clean dishes, pots, pans, and utensils in there! Wipe down the inside and outside of your cabinets, including the doors and dust the top of them too. If there’s any lining paper in the cabinets, take it out and replace it (or leave it out if you prefer no lining). Also, wipe the inside and outside of all drawers.

  1. The Kitchen Appliances

For cleaning appliances that come with your new home, it’s good to use a heavy-duty cleaner (or a more natural solution like baking soda and water) with sponges. Grease removers will also come in handy in getting out those tough, forever-stuck stains. When cleaning appliances, move the appliances (if possible) away from the wall and clean behind them. Try to get all 5 sides (top, sides, back and front) of each appliance in order to have that super-clean space!

Cleaning Tips for Pet Owners

Bringing a pet into your life can be a great addition to your family—until you get to the cleanliness of your house that is! It seems as if you can’t get away from the muddy paw print trails, lingering pet odors and don’t forget the massive balls of pet hair you seem to be drowning in. Fortunately, that doesn’t have to be the case! Here are some cleaning tips for pet owners to make your home clean and pet friendly—and no that isn’t an oxymoron!

  • Brush your pets multiple times per week. The more you brush them, the more the hair and fur ends up in the trash and not on your floors. Do this outside, if you can, in order to eliminate the need to sweep afterwards.
  • Put a washable slip cover or a towel down on your pet’s favorite spot or piece of furniture. Now when they lay down, the fur is on the cover — which makes for a much easier clean-up. Make sure to remove and wash the covering at least once a week.
  • For any pet hair that is on draperies, blankets, furniture, upholstery, etc., slightly dampen rubber gloves and use your hands to sweep the pet hair into an easy-to-pickup pile.
  • Despite all your efforts, there will mostly likely still be pet hair somewhere in your house—it’s practically inevitable—and this is where vacuuming comes in. Pick a vacuum with great suction and use it often over the floors and areas where the fur seems to linger.
  • Wherever your pet sleeps could be a huge culprit of trapping dirt and fur. If your pet sleeps on your bed at night, wash your sheets in high temperature at least once every two weeks. If possible, close the door to your bedroom during the day to limit their access. If your pet sleeps in its own bed, wash the bedding and deodorize it with baking soda as needed.
  • Put placemats under your pet’s food and water bowls/dishes to minimize the mess that can come from eating. Wipe down and clean the mats once a week.
  • If your pet is like some—especially cats—and likes to walk on surfaces that sometimes have food on them, make sure you wipe down your counters before and after you prepare food. Their paws have touched the litterbox, outside and other dirty surfaces and are now contaminating your counters with organisms.

How Often Should You Clean?

Most people probably consider themselves decently clean, picking up after themselves and doing housekeeping daily tasks as time allows. But how often do you really clean and accomplish the big chores in every room in your house? Do you religiously stick to a schedule…or do you base the necessity to clean by the amount of layered gunk and dirt on your surfaces?

How often you need to clean your house usually depends on how frequently you use a particular room and the room’s purpose. Here are some basic tips for how often the different fixtures of a room and the room itself should be cleaned. After all, a clean home is a healthy home…which means a healthier you!

The Kitchen

The kitchen is the usually the most frequently used room in the house, so cleaning as you go is a good idea.

  • For the refrigerator, clean out expired food as needed and make sure to wipe down the shelves inside the fridge at least once a month.
  • Weekly tasks should include: mopping floors, and wiping down spills on cabinets, appliances, the backsplash and dish rack.
  • Consider sweeping daily, or every couple days depending on the dirt level.
  • If you wash the dishes after you cook and wipe down the countertop and stovetop each time they’re used, there will be less of a mess of dirt later on.
  • And clean that trash can! If food spills out of the bag, it can splatter the inside of the can. A good ideas is to hose it down outside and then wipe both the inside, outside, and lid.

 

Bathroom

Unfortunately, the room many people try to shy away from cleaning, is the one that needs to be cleaned regularly—the bathroom.

  • Every time after you shower, turn the fan on, keep the shower curtain open, and hang the bathmat up to dry. This minimizes moisture in the room which lessens the chance for mold to grow.
  • On a weekly basis: change out the towels, wipe down the mirrors, sweep, empty the trashcan and clean your sink.
  • Spot clean areas like mirrors or sinks as needed.
  • Wipe down the bathtub/shower every week with cleanser and hot water.
  • Clean your toilet —with a scrubbing brush and cleaner—at least once a week.

 

Living Room

The living room can mostly be cleaned based on how frequently you use the room. It is a good idea to pick up any clutter left around daily to ensure that bigger pileups do not accumulate.

  • Clean any mirrors, dust and wipe down tables, electronic equipment, lamps, etc.
  • If you have hard floors, sweep on a weekly basis.
  • Consider vacuuming your floors and carpeting at least once a week, depending on your family’s allergy and/or asthma sensitivities.
  • When vacuuming, don’t forget the windowsills and baseboards in the room.
  • Depending on your lifestyle (pet owner or parents whose kids leave sticky prints on surfaces) you may want to wipe down counters and tables daily.

 

Bedroom

To have that fresh feeling bedroom you enjoy relaxing in, you should make your bed every day and straighten any clutter left in the room.

  • Once a week, clean mirrors, dust, and sweep the floors. Again, be sure not to overlook the windowsills or baseboards!
  • Depending on the amount of carpet and soft upholstery, vacuum at least once a week, to ensure you’re removing as many allergens from your sleeping environment as possible.
  • Wipe down fan blades once a month.
  • Wash sheets in hot water weekly, perhaps even more often if your pets sleep in the same room with you.