The beginning of spring is the one time of year that I get super jazzed about cleaning, so I always make sure to take it seriously. I leave no blind un-dusted and no pillow cover un-washed. Dust, dirt and allergens don’t stand a chance in my home.
This spring, you owe it to yourself to enjoy a clean that’s more than dirt-deep. I’m talking allergen-deep. Dust mite-deep. Get down to the nitty gritty and really tackle what’s lurking in your home’s air. With the help of these 10 spring cleaning tips, you can do it without making yourself crazy.
1. Make a schedule. If you have a basement, start there – this room usually has the worst air quality. The next day, tackle germs and bacteria in the bathroom. Move onto the living room on day three, and so on. Even if you live in a 600 square foot apartment like mine, this method helps you stay focused on the task at hand and avoid becoming overwhelmed with the amount of work ahead of you.
2. Ditch the store-bought cleaners for a vapor steam cleaner. Typical household cleaners often contain harsh toxic chemicals that can aggravate allergies and ultimately cause health complications. Steam cleaners use pure vapor steam to naturally disinfect and deodorize counter tops, windows, appliances, and upholstery.
3. De-clutter. Studies have shown that a disorganized home adds to your stress level. The scientific implications of inhaling dust gathered on piles of old magazines – combined with the psychological stress of coming home to a pile of unsorted laundry after a hard day at work – can take a sudden, unexpected toll. Spend some time organizing your home and eliminate unnecessary stress from your life.
4. Choose the right vacuum. Many store-bought vacuums simply move dirt around and can actually leave your air dirtier than before you started cleaning. And bagless vacuums can seem tempting and convenient – until it’s time to empty the bin and unseen dust particles fly back into your air. To avoid undoing all your vacuuming efforts, look for a vacuum cleaner with sealed filters and bags, or empty the dust bags outside. For an extra level of cleaning, use a vacuum with a HEPA (High-Efficiency Particulate Air) filter, which captures tiny airborne particles in your air as you clean.
5. Safeguard your air with an air purifier. All this cleaning likely shifted some dust into your environment. To avoid a miserable cleaning experience, use a HEPA air purifier to remove dust particles as tiny as 0.3 microns (typical atmospheric dust is between .001 and 30 microns). An air purifier will also help keep your home clean longer after you’ve finished your rounds.
6. Check your filter-based appliances. Their filters may need to be cleaned or replaced, depending on the manufacturer’s specifications.
7. Test for aggravating allergens. There’s no time like springtime to expect your air to be full of particles. Make sure it doesn’t include anything toxic or out-of-the-ordinary by testing it for harmful pollutants with an Allergen Testing Kit. If you suspect certain allergens may be lurking in your air, use a specialized test to check for formaldehyde, lead, mold, and fiberglass.
8. Get that stagnant air moving around! It’s good to get some ventilation going after months of winter buildup. Turn on your central air or a well-filtered window air conditioner. Although it may be tempting, avoid opening your windows as pollen counts soar during springtime. (If you just can’t resist getting some fresh air, open the windows briefly after rain, which washes pollen away.)
9. Make sure your air is healthy with a laser particle counter. After you’ve worked so hard to clean your air, make sure it stays that way. Even if your air purifier includes an air quality monitor (like the Winix 5300), use a laser particle counter to get readings throughout your home. These devices measure the exact number of particles per cubic foot and store the data so you can get an idea of your air quality over time. They can also help you monitor how effective your cleaning methods were in improving your air quality.
10. Stock your cleaning closet with chemical-free cleaners. Whether you make your own or choose brands that only use natural ingredients, now is the perfect time to make sure your regular cleaning supply will last.
Need to stock up on cleaning supplies? Our Spring Cleaning Essentials Sale includes all the products you’ll need to create a clean and healthy home this springtime. Now through March 30th, you can save up to 20% on steam cleaners, HEPA vacuums, air purifiers, allergy bedding, and air testing equipment!
Also as a part of the sale, buy any Dyson upright or canister vacuum and receive a free VISA gift card for up to $50! That will help fill a few holes in your wardrobe where fuzzy sweaters have gone into storage.