Clean House Faster: Great Cleaning Shortcuts
Have Good Cleaning Tools continued...
Smallin also uses disposable wipes for quick cleaning jobs. She keeps
containers of wipes around the house -- under the bathroom sink, for example --
so she can give the sink or the bathtub a quick wipe down without hauling out
the bucket and sponge. "What I like about the wipes is that you aren't just
getting rid of dirt, you're getting rid of germs as well," she says. Smallin
recommends biodegradable wipes to minimize waste.
If you avoid using your vacuum cleaner because it's heavy, unwieldy,
ineffective -- or all of the above -- consider buying a new one. Many new
models are lighter than their older counterparts, with ergonomic design
features; they also clean more efficiently. "You're more likely to use your
vacuum if it's easy on your back," says Smallin, who uses a lightweight,
full-power canister vacuum cleaner. If you purchase a new vacuum cleaner,
consider buying a model with a High Efficiency Particulate Air (HEPA) filter.
HEPA filters trap smaller particles better than regular filters, thus helping
to reduce dust and allergens in your home.
Store Cleaning Tools in a Convenient Spot
If you have to hunt down your supplies before getting started, cleaning will
be even more of a chore. Instead, keep all your products and tools together,
and put them back in the same place when you're done.
Beyer recommends storing products and tools in a container with a center
handle. She keeps a set of cleaning products in different spots around the
house, so they're easily accessible for quick jobs.
And keep it simple, Smallin advises. "If you pare your products down to the
basics, you'll have less to tote around," she says. "There's a lot you can do
with a multipurpose cleaner -- you can wipe counters, scrub the shower, and use
it to clean the toilet."
Change Air Filters Regularly
Replace the air filter in your furnace every three months or so. A
clean filter will catch more of the dust and particles in the air, and minimize
wear and tear on your furnace. A clean filter also reduces the energy your
furnace consumes, according to the Environmental Protection Agency.
Use Your Dishwasher More
Your dishwasher offers a variety of cleaning shortcuts. Many pots and pans
can go in the dishwasher (check the label first), as can refrigerator shelves,
drawers, and ice trays. Beyer recommends putting sponges in the dishwasher to
sterilize them for reuse.
Put Clothes Hampers All Over
If you place clothes hampers in every bedroom and bathroom in your house,
you're likely to find fewer cast-off clothes and towels on the floor -- even if
you share your home with teenagers.