Here at HouseDox, we understand that life is busy and often times the simple chores get pushed off to another day. However, most of us feel better and happier when things are neat, clean and orderly. Thus, we’re glad to provide these quick and easy tips to create a clean and tidy home with minimal effort! But, when all else fails, don’t hesitate to secure a professional on HouseDox….we make it convenient and transparent to find the top-rated providers.
Cleaning stainless steel – with a shiny and gleaming finish, it’s no surprise that stainless steel has become such a popular kitchen product. But despite its name, stainless steel can and will stain. Here are some quick and easy tips to keep your stainless steel appliances clean.
- First, don’t use abrasive cleaners or abrasive scrubbing pads
- Begin with warm water and a cloth, add a drop of mild dish soap for grease or other stubborn, grimy spots. Wipe in the direction of the grain.
- Rinse and towel dry the surface to prevent stains and water spots.
- Use glass cleaner to remove fingerprints. Spray the cleaner on a microfiber cloth and wipe gently. Do not apply the cleaner directly onto the stainless surface as this can result in drips and a spotty look.
- Tough stains and stubborn dirt can be removed by applying a paste of baking soda* mixed with liquid dish soap and gently scrubbing with a nylon.
- Stainless steel cleaner can be used to clean the toughest stains, remove scratches and add a polished look.
*Baking soda makes a great mild abrasive cleaner that also helps remove odors. It’s non-toxic, multi-purpose and inexpensive.
Clean your shower while you shower – This approach saves times and water as the walls and tile are already damp and steamy.
- For a cheap and easy approach, apply everyday shampoo or body wash to a cloth and scrub the walls
- Spray cleaner at beginning of your shower and allow it to sink in. After cleaning yourself, use a brush (a firm toothbrush is great for cleaning grout) to clean the walls. For an efficient approach, clean one wall each day rather than doing it all at once.
- Create a homemade cleaner of vinegar and water (or vinegar and dishsoap) if you want to avoid showering with strong commercial cleaners. Vinegar is great at dissolving mineral deposits but can be harsh on your tile grout, so do not leave it on for extended periods…however, it is harmless on your skin and rinses easily.
- Use a squeegee to wipe water from your shower walls, glass and tub after every shower. This removes excess water that leads to mold and mildew growth.
- Leaving your fan on improves air flow and dries your shower quickly
- Clean your shower curtain and rugs in the washer on frequent basis to remove mildew and keep them fresh and fluffy (be sure to check labels for proper cleaning).
Clear clogged shower drains
- To clear the shower drain of hair and other buildup, avoid using commercial drain cleaners. While they seem convenient and easy, most plumbers will warn against it because they contain acid that damage your pipes and cause rust.
- A better approach is to remove the drain cover with a screwdriver, then remove the gunk with your fingers (rubber gloves are encouraged!), a bent wire hanger, pliers or any other handy tool…embrace the foul odor!
- Then, pour hot/boiling water down the drain to melt soap buildup on the pipes. Add 1-2 teaspoons of ammonia for a more potent cleanser. A mixture of water and baking soda is also useful in eating through soap scum in addition to deodorizing the drain. Boiling water is not advised with PVC pipes as it can loosen the joints.
- Flush the drain with more hot water.
- Or, keep your hands clean by hiring a professional!
Get smell of pet (or kid!) urine out of carpets – Pets can bring a certain joy and happiness to our lives, but with the good comes the bad, and most pet owners (and parents!) know that accidents will happen. Try this approach to clean up stains and salvage your carpet.
- Quickly clean up wet urine. If urine dries, it can stain the carpet and increase the likelihood of bacteria growth. Place a layer of paper towels over the spot and apply pressure to absorb as much of the wetness as possible.
- Create a cleaning solution based on one part white vinegar to one part water. Vinegar neutralizes the odor without fading your carpet. Apply the solution on the carpet and allow it to sink in for 10 minutes. You want the mixture to reach the lower fibers in the carpet. Then, use more paper towels to soak up the liquid.
- Once dry, absorb the odor by sprinkling some baking soda on the affected area. Let the baking soda settle in for 15 minutes, then vacuum the area.
- If this approach fails, try one of the widely available commercial pet stain removers
- As a last resort, or to get a deep clean that prolongs the life of your carpet, hire a professional carpet cleaner. We have great deals on HouseDox, including 4 rooms for only $99!
Make more space in your pantry/closet garage
- Maximize vertical space by using undershelf baskets
- Install wire racks on cabinet doors
- Sort items by category (baking, breakfast, snacks)
- Use clear OXO containers. These help use the full height of your shelves, keep food fresh and are dishwasher safe
- In the garage, install a ceiling storage system. This can be a DIY project and is a great way to store seasonal items like holiday decorations
- Store garden tools and other supplies on the wall with a tool rack or a pegboard