Now that winter has finally ended here in Ohio, we can look forward to warmer and longer days. Spring is the season of open windows, fresh, warm breezes, and mild weather that requires only a light sweater at most when heading outside.
However, when the warm spring sun starts shining into your home, dust on untouched surfaces becomes more noticeable. With your windows and doors closed tight all winter, dust and dirt settle in your home with no way to escape.
When the trees outside start growing new leaves, it’s the perfect time to make your inside world as fresh and renewed as the outside world. Throw those windows open, let the stuffy air from winter waft out to be replaced with fresh, clean air, and get down to giving your home a thorough spring cleaning.
The origin of spring cleaning
The practice of spring cleaning started very long ago before homes had electricity. During the winter months, coal and wood were burned to provide heat, which left a layer of soot behind on most surfaces. When doors could finally be opened without wasting valuable heat, all of that accumulated dirt could finally be swept out.
Fortunately, today we have modern heating systems to keep our homes cozy when the temperature dips. Even so, the need for spring cleaning remains an annual task, and springtime relaxation is much more pleasant in a clean, clutter-free home.
Start spring cleaning
Ready to get started on your spring cleaning project? Follow our checklist to tackle the mess and whip your home into spic-and-span shape so you can enjoy the warm months to come. These are just cleaning basics to help get you started, and once you’ve tackled them you may find that you want to clean other spaces – like the garage, patio, or finally digging into those cluttered closets in desperate need of organization.
☑ Dust everything
Arguably the best place to start is dusting, as it tends to cast debris onto the floor, where it can be scooped up by the vacuum later. When dusting, you can use anything from an old sock to something like a Swiffer that is designed specifically for removing dust. Whatever you choose, make sure that you methodically wipe down every surface in your home – mantles, dressers, televisions and their stands, lamps – even the tops of photo frames.
Once everything has had a thorough wipe-down, it’s also wise to dust lower areas like baseboards or underneath the furniture. Dust has an annoying tendency to get into all sorts of tight spaces. Remember also that regular dusting helps ensure that the inside air you breathe stays fresh and free of allergens.
☑ Vacuum your carpet
Once you’ve completed dusting your home’s exposed surfaces, it’s time to start on your flooring. You’re most likely doing this year-round, but spring is the ideal time to make sure you get into all the spots you might not otherwise bother with.
If you have any rugs, take them outside and give them a vigorous shaking-out. This will knock loose any dirt that your vacuum may not have been able to get, and while they’re off the floor, you can clean underneath where the rug usually rests.
☑ Mop your floors
For homes with hardwood, laminate or vinyl floors, a mop or wood surface-specific cleaner will usually do the trick. This can be a multi-step process, as some wood floor cleaning systems use different types of pads. To start, use the dusting pad to pick up any larger debris. The pad’s long fibers will allow dirt cling to it without smearing the dust and dirt across your floor. Next, use the microfiber cleaning pad and a floor solution to get rid of smears and smudges. When you’re done, your floors will shine, and you can walk around your home barefoot without worrying about having dirty feet.
☑ Clean behind your furniture
If you haven’t already moved your furniture to get to those hard-to-reach spots, now is the time. While the areas behind your furniture don’t see any use or traffic, they still collect a surprising amount of dust. Also, even though you can’t see the dirt back there, give yourself the peace of mind that your home is spotless from end to end by getting underneath and behind any furniture. As with dusting your exposed surfaces, dusting behind your furniture helps ensure that the inside air you breathe stays as fresh and allergen-free as it can be.
☑ Wash your windows inside and out
Let that spring light really shine through by giving your windows a thorough washing and then a finishing wipe-down with Windex or another similar glass cleaner. After a winter full of snowy days spent indoors, your windows are probably covered in dirt, smudges, and water spots. Clean windows will make your rooms feel brighter, and will also give an airier feel to your living space.
☑ Scrub your bathroom
While bathrooms aren’t usually prone to dust and dirt from outside, they still see a great deal of use. This means that soap scum builds up in the tub, residue accumulates on tile grout, and remnants of toothpaste get left on the sink. Spend some quality time in your bathroom by giving it a good cleaning. This way, no matter which room you’re in, everything will feel fresh and ready for spring.
☑ Clean your vents and replace your filter
All winter long, your vents deliver warm air into your home to keep you comfortable. Over time, your furnace filter traps layers of dirt, and your ducts themselves can accumulate dust, which is ready to be tossed back out into your newly-cleaned home.
Don’t give that dust a chance – clean your air vents and replace your air filter! Depending on the complexity of your heating and cooling system, it may be easier to hire the pros to clean your air ducts. A professional cleaning will ensure that your system runs as efficiently as possible as well.
Hop to it!
Spring is when we all begin enjoying the outdoors once again, and by following this guide, you’ll love being in your home when you finally do head back indoors. Every surface will be clear of dust and you’ll be starting with a clean slate, making it much easier to keep things clean all spring and summer long.