Well, it's summertime again!
If you followed our Spring Cleaning guide a couple months back,
you shouldn't need to do any major thorough cleaning while the sun is at it's brightest; that said, cleaning in summer can be a big sweaty nightmare, and the dust mites won't take a summer vacation just to keep you from being uncomfortable!
These quick-tips should help you spend less time stuck indoors cleaning, and more time doing fun summer activities with your family!
Keep dirt outside. In the summertime, kids, pets and adults are constantly running in and out of the home, tracking dirt with them every step of the way. The single most important investment you can make for your home this summer is a reliable nylon doormat - one for each entrance. Remind your family members to wipe their feet on them on the way in, and consider taking a cue from the Japanese, and ban outdoor footwear (shoes and sandals) from being worn inside the home. This will keep your floors much cleaner, and will result in less frequent sweeping and mopping!
It's not the heat, it's the humidity! Humidity is at its highest in the summer, and this can lead to home cleaning challenges. In the bathroom, mold thrives in humid conditions; keep your bathroom's exhaust fan running while you take a shower or bath, and leave it on for 30-60 minutes afterwards to suck up all that humidity. This will keep your tile grout, mirrors, shower tracks, and all the surfaces cleaner. If your bathroom doesn't have an exhaust fan, a small portable dehumidifier can do the trick just as well!
Don't touch that! In the summer, our skin is naturally more oily, and we're more likely to have dirty hands and skin, whether it be from gardening in the front lawn or, in the kids' case, roughhousing in the back lawn. This can lead to a "don't touch that!" phobia, where we don't want any of our surfaces to get dirty from touching. I've talked before about the benefits of handwashing whenever you come inside, and never is it more important to practice this principle than in the summer. Keep those digits dirt-free!
If you do get dirt, sweat or skin oils on your furniture or surfaces, don't panic! Extra Strength Sandy Wipes clean all that gunk away quickly and effortlessly. I like to stock a couple packs in the most-needed areas of the home, so I don't have to run around fetching my Sandy Wipes when they're needed.
Guard that Glass. Another summertime struggle is keeping glass surfaces, like mirrors or surfaces, clean and sparkly. Because of the raised humidity, glass attracts gunk more quickly. The solution is simple: wipe them down with a moist paper towel or Sandy Wipes whenever you get the chance. If you take the 10 seconds out of your day once or twice a week, there won't be much to clean up and it'll go quickly and painlessly. Otherwise, in the fall, you'll have a much bigger job on your hands!
Air Conditioning Advantages. Air conditioning is great for keeping your home pleasantly cool, but did you know there are cleaning benefits to air conditioning as well? It's good practice to keep your windows closed while the air conditioner is running, to save money on electricity and to keep the home cooler, but this has the secondary benefit of keeping dust and dirt outside. If you don't have air conditioning and/or like to have the windows open in the summer, consider getting window filters, available at your local hardware store, to keep airborne particles, dust, dirt, and outdoor allergens out of the home!
Summer Entertaining. If you like to throw pool parties, backyard barbeques, or other summer get-togethers, don't be afraid to use paper/plastic dishware and cutlery! It cuts down significantly on your clean-up time, letting you have more fun in the sum and less whining after dining! Just be sure to recycle and/or compost, to minimize the environmental impact!
Smelly Trash. With that hot sun baking everything around, outdoor garbage cans can really put a damper on your yard's appeal. There are a few tricks we can deploy to keep our backyard smelling fresh and clean! Store extra liners at the bottom of the can to cover leaks and spills, double-bag food-related trash, get a securely-closing bin to create a more effective seal, and spray down the empty bins with a hose after trash pickup!
Summer is my favorite season of the year, and I'm betting it's yours too (who doesn't love summer?!) - I hope these tricks have helped you cut down on cleaning, and soak up more sunshine!
As always, I'd love to hear what you think, and I can be reached via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.