Great cleaning tips people have given you - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 10 Old 09-14-2010, 10:18 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Do you have any great cleaning tips that you have either found out on your own or someone has told you? I thought it would be neat to see some cleaning tips that have made other peoples lives easier. Here are a few that are good for me:

- For the microwave, take a bowl of water. Microwave it for around 3 minutes then let it sit for about 1-2 minutes so it cools down. Then just spray it down and wipe it out. Its so easy to get some of that yuckiness that seems caked on out of the microwave that way. I didn't believe it would work at first by now my inside looks practically brand new.
-For counter clutter, have a basket on one side of the counter and if you find things that don't belong on the counter throw them in the basket. At the end of the week put everything away. I got a pretty lined basket at the 100 yen store (kind of like a dollar store) that I leave on my kitchen counter to combat the clutter in the kitchen
- Mold issues- use apple cider vinegar instead of bleach if you avoid bleach. My daughter is allergic so we don't use bleach. The apple cider vinegar doesn't have the lasting bleach effect so you need to clean it on a weekly basis if the area is really prone to mold.
- keep two bags in your car, one for trash and one for things to take in. Once a week empty both, it keeps the car reasonably clean.
- when you start to cook/bake fill your sink up with hot soapy water. When you use something and know you won't use it again either put it in your sink or dishwasher. I don't wash my big bowls (don't fit), pans (messes them up) or knives (dulls them out) in the dishwasher so they all go straight into the water.
- to avoid getting cut with knives in your dish water, I get cut at least once a week, my grandma always told me to put your knives to one side instead of putting them in. When you want to wash them dip them in wipe them off and rinse. That way you don't have to put your hands into a knife risk.
One last one:
if you kids have large stuffed animals and you are worried about dust mites or other germs/creppy crawles on them then you can wrap them in a large garbage bag and then throw them in the freezer for a day or two. It kills the yuckiness. I do this once a year or so since my girls love their big stuffed animals.
Whats your favorite cleaning tip(s)

~Heather~ Mama to Miss E (1/07), Miss A (11/08), Mr.T (2/11) and Miss A (10/12) Expecting our newest blessing sometime late Sept/early Oct.. Wife to my Marine since 11/2005
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#2 of 10 Old 09-14-2010, 10:23 PM
 
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Loved this tip from my old friend when we used to live together, when I used to use sponges...

When the kitchen sponge gets demoted from the dishes to the counter top, cut off one corner so you can tell it apart from the new dish sponge. The next time it gets demoted (to floor spills) cut off another corner, and so on.

Mom of one child (2008), wife of one husband, tender of dogs, cats and chickens. Household interests: ocean life (kid), bitcoins (husband), simplifying (me).

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#3 of 10 Old 09-14-2010, 11:57 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LCBMAX View Post
Loved this tip from my old friend when we used to live together, when I used to use sponges...

When the kitchen sponge gets demoted from the dishes to the counter top, cut off one corner so you can tell it apart from the new dish sponge. The next time it gets demoted (to floor spills) cut off another corner, and so on.
I love that idea! For dishes, I use a brush on a stick now, but still have a sponge or two around for cleanups. Used to have a note above the sink "Blue (or Green, whatever) Sponge for DISHES ONLY"....
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#4 of 10 Old 09-15-2010, 12:08 AM
 
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My utensil holder is sectioned out so I do each section for only one type and based on the order I'd put them away. One is for cooking things that all goes in the drawer or the holder on the counter, one for knives, one for forks, one for spoons. Then I don't have to sort.. it actually DOES go faster especially on really full loads.

I also keep a spray bottle of vinegar in the bathroom. After a shower I spray the shower area down. the water that drips and dries gets the vinegar everywhere and it combats mold and mildew.

a battery powered stick vaccuum helps keep my house SO much cleaner. Granted, I do have mostly hard floors and only area rugs but even just a swipe to get the bigger stuff between a deep vaccuuming is really helpful. I do it once or twice a day whenever I can just to keep all the dirt and crumbs at bay with my toddler running in and out.

using a smaller garbage can helps me keep from letting it overflow to the point of stinking up the house. It is too small to get TOO gross. I have to take it out more often, but it keeps things cleaner and fresh.

My house is a lot cleaner now that I have a lot less things. I actually have space to add more things but cleaning up and putting away dishes and laundry and toys goes so fast that I'm not interested in more again

Only one or two hampers helps me do laundry before there are mountains, which in turn makes putting them away faster. My hamper full but not squished full is the perfect size for a load. When it is full, I just toss it in the machine. when we had hampers in each room, it was too easy to ignore laundry til they were ALL full and some overflowing... and then laundry takes forever.
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#5 of 10 Old 09-15-2010, 12:42 AM
 
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I just posted one in another thread! May as well post it here too...

"put 2 tablespoons of bicarb in water in a microwave safe container or bowl. Turn the microwave on high for 3 minutes, remove the bowl and wipe the microwave."

http://hubpages.com/hub/Bicarbonate-of-soda

SAHM to three
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#6 of 10 Old 09-15-2010, 01:01 PM
 
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Always wash/wipe your hands before going on to the next task!
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#7 of 10 Old 09-17-2010, 08:36 AM
 
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Back when I used to clean houses, a particularly over the top client told be that your hands (dust cloth, sweeper, mop) should touch every surface of the room. At first I was irritated with her-because I forgot to dust a very small item. However, that advice has served me well. It helps me to make sure I got everything. That is BEFORE I had kids! Another tip-when cleaning a room-work your way around the room in a circle. Then you don't miss anything.
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#8 of 10 Old 09-17-2010, 10:49 AM
 
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#9 of 10 Old 09-17-2010, 02:32 PM
 
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When you are behind on cleaning and lacking initiative or overwhelmed, set a timer and see how much you can get done in 15 minutes. 15 minutes is much less daunting than the entire downstairs, kwim? Do it several times throughout the day and you'll feel really good about getting it done.

eta: this is a tip from my Mom- she had 6 kids in under 7 years
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#10 of 10 Old 09-18-2010, 04:12 AM
 
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When I worked as a nanny/housekeeper I had a cleaning tool belt like a carpenter has. It was really convenient. Now that I mention it, I should look into getting one again...

Tjej
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