We're all looking for ways to make cleaning faster and easier. Believe it or not, sometimes taking certain "shortcuts" actually makes it harder on you in the long haul. You and your family may even have developed some bad habits that are inhibiting your ability to get the job done more efficiently and you may even be causing harm to your home! It's time to start breaking these habits so you can get to a cleaner home, faster.
Allowing Paper Clutter to Accumulate
Even with online billing and banking, there is still a mountain of paper that ends up in our homes. Magazines, newspapers, school papers and projects; they tend to pile up. Don't let that happen. Designate a place near the entryway for all mail, periodicals, and paper forms and keep a shredder or recycling bin close by. At least once a week, sort through and complete the needed action or toss. File important papers like tax receipts. Take digital photos of children's special artwork or frame them for display. Share magazines with retirement homes, schools, or simply read the articles online.
Using Too Much Cleaning Product
If a little bit of cleaner works, then a lot of cleaner will work better and faster? Right? That's not how it works. Using too much cleaner or laundry detergent can actually cause more harm than good. If an excess of cleaning product is not rinsed away completely, the residue becomes a dirt magnet, trapping soil. That's why you should read directions and always use the recommended amount or even a little less. You're wasting time and money on the extra product and the water to rinse it away.
Cleaning with Dirty Tools
How can you expect clean results when you are using dirty cleaning tools? If your washer has an odor from built-up bacteria in detergent residue, your clothes are going to stink. If your vacuum bag or filter is filled with dust, it won't do a good job sucking up any more. A dirty mop or sponge simply pushes around more soil and bacteria. Take the time to thoroughly clean tools after every use by emptying completely or washing in hot water and adding a disinfectant. Periodically, replace with new tools.
Wearing Outside Shoes in the House
Taking just a few seconds to remove your shoes each time you come in from the outside will save you hours of vacuuming. Not to mention the bacteria and germs that will stay out of living areas. Whether entry is through a mudroom or the front door, make this habit simple for everyone by providing a bench or chair for easier shoe removal. Keep a shoe tray close by for wet or muddy shoes and a bin to collect each family member's footwear.
Dusting Last When Cleaning
Save yourself some effort by dusting before you vacuum. A room should be cleaned from the top down so the dust lands on the floor to be swept or vacuumed away. And remember how that one disinfectant wipe can't effectively clean an entire bathroom? The same goes for a disposable duster. If it has been awhile since you dusted, grab a clean duster when the one you're using turns a solid grey. You're no longer trapping dust, you're just pushing it around with a dirty duster.