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Fire & Water - Cleanup & Restoration

Oops! Top 5 Spring Cleaning Mistakes to Avoid!

4/22/2019 (Permalink)

Sunny, warmer Spring days are upon us, which calls for a deep cleaning. Maybe it’s some deep-rooted aspect of human nature, preparing for the “hunting and gathering” of warmer days,  or maybe it’s that extra sunshine streaming in and making the dust and grime more noticeable.

Either way, you want to give your home that fresh, deep clean that only a true spring cleaning can inspire. Instead of a list of what you should do, today we are sharing what NOT to do.

Here are 5 spring cleaning mistakes to avoid:

Mistake #1 - DIY Cleaning Chemistry Projects

While there are many “DIY” cleaners that can be effective (like using rubbing alcohol on sticker adhesive on glass or to clean mirrors, grinding rice in your coffee grinder to remove old grounds and oils, or running ice through your garbage disposal), combining cleaning chemicals can be extremely dangerous, if not deadly.

Accidentally combining bleach and vinegar can produce chlorine gas; even at low levels of exposure, this toxic brew causes respiratory and eye irritation. Higher levels (say, for example mixing a bleaching scouring scrub with vinegar in a closed bathroom) can lead to chest pain, vomiting, and severe breathing difficulties.

Other toxic combinations include peroxide & vinegar, bleach and rubbing alcohol, and different brands of drain cleaners. As a general rule, combining any commercial cleaners or mixing ANYTHING with bleach is a bad idea. If the cleaner you are using isn’t effective, clear the item in question of any residue before trying another solution.

Mistake #2 - Scrubbing Away At Stains

When you find a spot on your carpet or upholstery, it’s tempting to scrub at it to try and remove it. This can actually work the stain deeper into the carpet or fabric, making it far more difficult to remove. Instead, blot the stain with an appropriate cleaning solution and a white rag or towel to remove any excess liquid.

Mistake #3 - Using Paper Towels to Clean and Dry Surfaces

No matter what the commercials may say, paper products will leave lint behind. Nothing is more frustrating than wiping a mirror or window clean only for the paper towel to leave little bits of fluff and lint behind.

Paper towels have a  rough surface that might scratch delicate glass, furniture, computers, and TV screens. Instead, opt for microfiber cloths;  they are more efficient at drying, they’re reusable, and they won’t leave lint behind. (You can find microfiber cloths in multi-packs in the automotive section at big box stores.)

Mistake #4 - Cleaning in the Wrong Order

Many people begin tackling cleaning a room by vacuuming the carpet or mopping the floor, when in fact this is the opposite of what should be done for best results. Consider what happens when you dust off the ceiling fan and furniture; any dust that doesn’t make it onto the rag floats down to whatever is below it, eventually landing on the floor.  

Consider starting at the top. Clean the ceiling fans and air registers, then work your way down from there. Clear cobwebs from the ceiling, corners, and walls, then furniture. Then wipe lower walls, doors, knobs, and light switches. Swipe the baseboards, and now you are ready to vacuum or mop.

Mistake #5 - Leaving Carpets and Rugs Too Wet When Cleaning

There are many home carpet cleaning machines on the market today that do a fairly decent job - if they are used correctly. Unfortunately, they often are not. Consumer-grade carpet cleaners use a hot water extraction method; hot water and cleaning solution are pumped into the carpet and then basically vacuumed out.

Many of these machines are underpowered. They must be used in a precise manner to pull water, dirt, and cleaning solution out. If the carpet is left too wet, it can cause a multitude of problems. It won’t get as clean as it could, excess cleaning solution becomes sticky and attracts dirt, the carpet stretches and warps, and you could potentially see mold or mildew growth.

If you do choose to use a DIY carpet cleaner, be sure to follow the manufacturer’s recommendations for cleaning solution, and make several, slow passes over the entire area with just the extraction activated.

Leave It to the Pros

You can save yourself the time, effort, and potential for costly mistakes by hiring an expert cleaning and restoration team, like SERVPRO of Rutherford County. Our pros know the best methods for stain removal, carpet, and upholstery care. We can achieve that fresh spring clean when you don’t have the time, desire, or ability to do it yourself. Call us today to have us take care of your Symrna or Murfreesboro home!

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