by Merry Maids cleaning expert, Debra Johnson
Summer slips away to fall forcing lifestyle changes once again. Summer cleaning can sometimes be lax with the laid back atmosphere. Winter is lurking and most of us will be forced indoors the majority of the time. To prepare for indoor living, get busy cleaning.
As daylight grows shorter, be sure the garage/carport is cleaned and organized so that cars are able to be inside. As this area is lighted it is best to park and enter the home from here. Declutter and organize the garage. This is a huge undertaking which may be a family project. Add a shelving system along the wall to store items. Declutter by placing items in a storage container. Label each container so that items are easy to find. Use Dawn Dishwashing Detergent to get the garage floor clean so that less dirt is tracked into the house.
Remove and store any cushions. Wash down patio furniture with Windex Outdoor Multi-surface Cleaner. Attach the cleaner to a garden hose and follow label instructions. Cover or store furniture so that it is ready for spring. Don’t forget to cover or store the grill.
For outside windows, attach a garden hose to Windex Outdoor Multi-surface Cleaner. Follow instructions on the bottle. For inside windows, clean with a microfiber cloth. Lightly spray window cleaner on the surface and wipe dry with the microfiber cloth. Be sure to remove any cobwebs around the window frame. Quarter fold the cloth to allow eight clean surfaces with one cloth. Be sure to clean window tracks. Use a small brush to scrub the trash away and wipe clean with paper towels. Vacuum the screens.
Fall is a great time for carpet cleaning, to pick up all the dirt everyone has tracked in and out of the house enjoying summer. Carpet cleaning is best left to the experts. Should you be a do it yourself person, set aside a day to rent the equipment and make the most of your time cleaning. Follow instructions closely. Some soiled areas need cleaning more than once. Don’t forget to vacuum the carpet once it has had time to dry.
Fall is a great time to remove the backs off the appliances and vacuum out the dirt and dust that has accumulated over time. On the refrigerator be sure to vacuum around the coils well. On the dryer, it is advised to clean out the dryer duct as well. Be sure to move out and clean the floor underneath the appliances.
Be sure clean filters are ready for the heating system. It is also a good idea to replace the AC filter so that it will be ready for spring. Be sure to know the type of filter you have. Some filters are washable and reusable. Other filters need to be replaced.
Organize the “mud room.”
Buy a two tier shoe rack so that all shoes have a place once the house is entered. Consider adding hooks on the walls to hang damp jackets. Have an umbrella container near the door for quick storage. Add a nice entry mat to the floor. The mat should be large enough that one can take 5 – 7 steps. The mat will trap dirt and moisture to keep it from spreading through the house. Of course taking shoes off and placing on the shoe rack will prevent dirt from being tracked in as well.
Remove all light fixtures or globes, place in the dishwasher and clean. Remove items and replace. Bright light will make the long winter seem less dreary!