Now we’ve all heard about the powers of a good spring clean, where after the winter months when we batten down and nest, we welcome in the Spring/Summer time as a traditional time to freshen the home, open up the windows and pay attention to areas that may have been neglected!
However, many experts are now urging us to have an autumn deep clean before we hibernate for the winter as temperatures plummet and we take sanctuary indoors and the good news is that not only will you end up with a super clean house, but your health could improve also.
Winter months are the perfect time for dust mites, bacteria and mould to take hold in your home as the central heating, closed windows and wet laundry prevent adequate ventilation and create the perfect conditions for growth.
It all sounds a little scary, however the great news is that by following our simple steps you can have a healthy and happy winter:
- Be methodical - A deep clean takes time and preparation is key. It doesn’t have to be daunting if you make a plan and tackle one room at a time
- Be ruthless - Start your deep clean by de-cluttering each room. Make several piles - charity shop or pass on to friends the things that you no longer use/wear. Pack away winter clothes into airtight storage bags or boxes. You will see much greater results after you’ve cleaned if the clutter is gone!
- Be practical - Gather together all your cleaning products into a storage container ready to move around each room
- Be careful - Take care when reaching awkward spots that need your attention. Accidents can happen when balancing on chairs/tables - use the right equipment. Products can also contain harmful chemicals to you and your surfaces/furnishings. Use gloves and be careful with sprays or better still, consider natural products such as white vinegar, baking soda and water. Always read the instructions for use of each product
- Open windows - Mould and condensation occurs when moisture builds up from breathing out moist air or from draping wet washing over radiators. High indoor humidity encourages bacteria, dust mites and fungi to grow - triggering or worsening respiratory infections. Allergy to dust mites' faecal matter can increase the risk of asthma, eczema and perennial allergic rhinitis. Open windows or use a dehumidifier when drying laundry indoors to help alleviate condensation build-up
- Air rooms and bedding - Dust mites love warm environments but can’t stand the cold, so every morning, throwback bedding to release moisture and open the windows for as long as you can
- Clean your carpets - Carpets that look clean can still contain a huge amount of dirt, bacteria and mould. Give your vacuum an MOT by emptying bags and cleaning filters and brushes. Use attachments to get up to carpet edges and vacuum underneath furniture
- Beds - When doing a deep clean, it’s time to consider the whole of the bed rather than just the sheets and pillowcases. Pillows and duvets should be washed 2 or 3 times per year too. Hoover mattresses to clean surfaces and spot clean marks with a stain remover. Finish by using a disinfectant spray
- Sort your settee - More and more people are eating dinner on the settee so now is the time to remove cushions and wash covers if possible. Use the vacuum attachments to get into all the nooks, crevices and creases
- Dishwashers - Run a cycle with a cleaning sachet on a hot wash. It will descale and keep the machine running more efficiently
- Fridge - Pull out all the shelves and wash with warm soap and water, inside and out. Clear out old condiments
- Washing machine - No one wants a smelly washing machine! Run the machine empty on a hot wash or use a cleaning agent such as white vinegar and baking soda. Don’t forget the filter!
- Microwave - Freshen up with a cup of water and a slice of lemon - microwave for 5 minutes to leave a lovely fresh smell and an easier surface to wipe down due to all the condensation
- Oven - Again, white vinegar and baking soda can be used to get old burnt on food and grime to bubble up and be wiped away easily
- Walls - wipe down marks with soapy water and a sponge
- Wardrobes - clear out the clutter and pack away summer wear, leaving clothes organised by colour.