Keeping your abode clean

dryer

Do you ever pick up your bath towel and you can’t remember when you switched it out? Or a pair of jeans that get the ol’ sniff test? Life is hectic and crazy and sometimes it’s easy to overlook the little chores around your apartment – like switching out the dish sponge or dusting the blinds (I say this like I actually dust the blinds – don’t tell my mother). So since things can be tough to remember, here’s a little cheat sheet to stash in your cleaning closet.

Towels – Twice a week

You should wash your bath towel and washcloth or replace it every 3 uses or so.

Bed Linens – Once a week

To keep them looking nice, according to Martha Stewart, wash linens in warm water rather than hot. Most pillows are washable too, but require much less frequent care. Pillows can be washed every few months.

Toilet – Once a week

Not only is this a sanitary practice, but if you have guests they won’t see the awful ring if it’s clean.

Kitchen Sink – Once a Day

It’s a good idea to wash your sink out with soap and water each day since it is a hot spot for germs, especially if you cook meat with your meals.

Rugs and floor mats – Once a week

Vacuum or wash (if applicable) rugs and mats once a week to keep the dust and grime from shoes to a minimum.

Curtains – Once a month

You can also take your blinds down and wash them, too with warm soapy water and a soft scrub brush.

The Only Cleaners You Need In Your Apartment

cleaner

Apartments don’t always come with your ideal amount of storage space. When you look under your kitchen or bathroom sink and it’s cluttered up with bottle after bottle of various cleaning products you might wonder how you could get better use out of your precious storage areas. The simplest answer is to minimize the number of cleaning products you use – it will save you space and money in time.

How many spray bottles and cleaners do you have piled up under the sink? First, clean out what you don’t want for sure – products that are old or ones you don’t use anymore. Do this responsibly by following the instructions on the bottle for safe disposal. Water soluble cleaners can be poured down the drain, but not all products can be disposed of this way. Make sure you follow directions or look up an alternative method to safely empty the container.

Identify what you need then ask yourself – What kinds of surfaces do you have in your apartment? If you have marble countertops or other special surfaces, you might want a specific cleaner for those because they can be damaged with standard solutions.

Otherwise, most hard surfaces can be cleaned with simple, natural cleaners. If you want something that will cut grease on counters and surfaces but does not have harsh chemicals in it, try a product like Mrs. Meyer’s Clean Day multi-surface cleaner. This is just one example of a number of products made from non-chemical ingredients that’s safe on a number of surfaces. You can also make your own vinegar based cleaning solution by mixing equal parts vinegar and water. Most surfaces are safe to use vinegar on except porous ones like marble and hardwood floors because the vinegar can harm the finish. Another benefit to using a vinegar cleaner is it disinfects.

Once you’ve identified what you need, you should be able to minimize your under-the-kitchen sink to about 3 bottles – a basic hard surface cleaner, a disinfectant or window cleaner, and a carpet or upholstery cleaner.

When you get simple, multi-purpose cleaners that work harder for you, you’ll benefit from the extra space.

 

4 places in your apartment home that you might be forgetting to clean

When you do your regular cleaning, you probably only clean the things and places that are right in sight. However, there are several places that you may overlook.  However, not taking some time to clean these places may contribute to allergies or even funky smells, and no one wants that!  Here are some things in your home that you might have forgotten to clean.

Under things

Whether it is under the bed, under the sofa, or under dressers, if these places are not attended to, it will lead to an accumulation of dust.  All that dust can cause musty smells and even allergies making it impossible to breathe freely in your own home. Make sure to run a vacuum under those places to get those dust bunnies out!

 Between couch cushions

We lay, sit, and even eat on our couches, so they are bound to catch a few mystery items, like loose change, hair pins, crumbs, or even remotes you thought were long gone.  Remember to clean in-between the cushions to get all of that gunk out.   Move the couch and vacuum under it too.

 Make-up brushes

For something you girls use on your face almost every day, it also happens to be a thing that you might forget to clean.  All that accumulation of old makeup, dust, and oil is not good to put on your face so be sure to wash your brushes regularly with some shampoo to get them like brand new again.

Air vents

Just like the dust under your bed, the dust on your air vents can contribute to musty smells and allergies.  All of that dust being blown into your home is not good, so be sure to wipe them down regularly with a microfiber cloth or duster

http://www.apartmenttherapy.com/six-things-youre-probably-forgetting-to-clean-211953

Remove your apartment of allergens

Allergies are not just something to be afraid of in the spring. With the new fall semester starting at the University of Florida and Santa Fe College; fall allergies are something to be wary of.  Here are some ways to cleanse your apartment/home of possible allergens.

-Wash stuffed animals in the washing machine but if you can’t, put the toy in a plastic bag and leave it in the freezer for 24 hours to kill dust mites that may be hiding in the stuffing.

-Wash your bed linens regularly to rid your bed of dust.

-Scrub your bathtub often to prevent mold and mildew; dust is not the only thing that can cause allergies!

-Buy washable rugs so you can wash/shampoo them, and vacuum them throughout the week

Keeping your apartment/home clean can be the difference between breathing free and an allergy attacking existence.

 

One place in your home to NOT use vinegar

Vinegar is known for being one of the best multi-purpose materials around. From using it in your food to using it to clean your home, the benefits of vinegar are plentiful. However, there is one place in your home that you should never use vinegar: your wood floors. The reason why vinegar is such a great cleaner is because it contains acetic acid, the same acid that wears down the germs in your kitchen and bathroom, and removes stains from your dishes. Keeping that in mind, that same acid on your wood floors will wear down the color of the floor and make them look dull and worn. Find a cleaner that is made specifically for wood floors to keep your home in pristine condition.

The benefits of baking soda for your apartment/home

Aside from using baking soda in your cakes and cookies, some of you may know that sprinkling a bit of baking soda in your cat’s kitty litter, on the carpet, or even keeping a bit in the fridge helps keep pesky odors away. You may be surprised to know that is not where the benefits of baking soda ends. Using a bit of baking soda in various aspects of your cleaning routine is a must, and here are a few ways you can do so:

 Hand wash dishes and pots

-Adding 2 tablespoons in your dish soap and letting your dishes soak in the baking soda/dish soap mixture with some water helps remove food and grease with ease.

Freshen sponges

-Help your sponges last longer by soaking them in 1 quart of warm water mixed with 4 tablespoons of baking soda.

Make your liquid laundry detergent even stronger

-Adding ½ a cup of baking soda to your laundry detergent makes the pH balance higher, thus, making it work harder to remove those pesky stains

 Remove coffee and tea stains

-Soaking coffee pots and mugs in a solution of 1 quart warm water and ¼ cup of baking soda overnight will help get rid of those brown stains.

For more useful tips, check out the link below and get your apartment/home cleaner today.

http://www.care2.com/greenliving/51-fantastic-uses-for-baking-soda.html

Lemon’s natural ability to make your apartment/home a better place

As you may know, there are a variety of ways to naturally clean your house and keep it in tip-top shape. Store bought fresheners and cleaners can be full of strong, harmful materials and chemicals that are not healthy for you to breathe in, let alone if you have pets or kids. Luckily, lemons can help.  The natural acid in lemons can help kill molds and bacterias that may be growing in those certain dirty areas of your home like bathrooms and sinks. The acid in lemons is not the only benefit that lemons have. Lemons also naturally have a strong citrus, refreshing smell so lemon rinds can be used as a natural deodorizer. Check out the link below to find out all the ways that you can add lemons in your everyday cleaning.

http://www.care2.com/greenliving/lovely-lemons-14-uses-in-the-home.html

Keeping your home clean with vinegar

You’d be surprised at the amount of cooking materials that can also double as cleaning and refreshing tools in your home. Vinegar is no expectation. Though it has a high acidity lever, perfect for killing mold and bacteria, it also happens to be environmentally friendly and great for your budget.  Keeping your home clean is really quite easy with just a touch of vinegar, such as:

-Using it to shine chrome fixtures by making a paste of 2 tablespoons salt and 1 teaspoon distilled vinegar

-Cleaning and deodorizing drains by pouring 1 cup of baking soda and ½ cup distilled vinegar down the drain, letting it sit for 5 minutes and running it out with water

-Cleaning your microwave by mixing ½ cup vinegar ad ½ cup water in a microwave-safe bowl and bring it to a boil. This allows you to easily remove food buildup and get rid of odors

-Removing soap build up from the dishwasher, pour a cup of white distilled vinegar inside an empty machine and let it run through a whole cycle once a month to keep your machine clean

-Removing stains from plastic food containers by wiping them with a cloth that has been dampened with white distilled vinegar

-Get rid of those annoying fruit flies by leaving out a small dish of undiluted white distilled vinegar in the worst areas of your home

Vinegar is the all around cleaner that is capable of getting rid of your pesky stains and messes, while also deodorizing and making your home smell fresh and crisp. Check out the link below to review a list of all the ways that vinegar can benefit you.

http://www.vinegartips.com/scripts/pageViewSec.asp?id=7

Quick and easy carpet freshener

If you have carpeting in your dorm, apartment, or house, you know how it can get when your carpet starts getting a little dingy and dirty. No matter how many times you go over it with a vacuum, that slightly musty smell still remains. However, here is a quick and very popular tip that will help you keep your carpet fresh without having to call in a cleaner. Pouring a little baking soda over your carpet, letting it sit for a few minutes and then vacuuming up the excess baking powder helps keep your carpet smelling fresh and clean. If you have the baking power that comes in a little box and want to avoid pouring too much, you can pour the powder into a shaker bottle and shake that around your carpet. You will be guaranteed to smell the difference.

http://naturesnurtureblog.com/2013/07/18/homemade-air-fresheners-room-deodorizers/

Household uses for vinegar

Most people don’t think of much when they think of vinegar. They pretty much only associate it with cooking in some way and forget about it after that. However, you would be surprised to know that vinegar can also be very useful in a variety of ways around your home that will make your life way easier. From cleaning out that old shower head of yours, to several ways to clean, and even gardening, vinegar seems to have a way of making some tasks around your home, a lot more bearable. In this link below is the full list of ten uses for vinegar that you would have never thought of.

http://www.thisoldhouse.com/toh/photos/0,,20260150,00.html