Well, we made it. Tomorrow marks the first official day of spring. It’s time for the snow to melt, the air to get warm and lose all those extra layers we’ve all been carrying around. But with warm weather also comes spring cleaning. We’ve got a few tips you must have to make your spring cleaning a little easier this year.
Refrigerator: Remember when the Polar Vortex hit and you stocked up your refrigerator with things you should only eat in an emergency? The emergency is over and it’s time to clean out the fridge. It seems simple, but you’ll be amazed at how much food you forgot about over the last few months. After it’s been cleaned out, wipe the inside out with a solution of baking soda and hot water (1 tablespoon per pint of water).
Bathroom: That tomcat tangerine lipstick looked just as bad in the winter as it did in the summer, so why are you holding on to it? Trash that along with the half-empty bottles of shampoo, nubs of eyeliner and the earring you’ve been saving for five years whose mate you’re sure will turn up. It’s so hard to let go of all of those little things that are cluttering up your bathroom, but it’s so easy to say goodbye – and then you can say hello to a whole new generation of junk that you won’t find until next spring.
Oven cleaning: The spring air is wafting in from the yard and the last thing you want to do is pollute it by cleaning your self-cleaning oven. Instead, use an environmentally gentle oven cleaning method that requires little more than mixing a cup of baking soda with 1/3 of a cup of salt. All you have to do is dampen the oven surface, sprinkle on the mixture, spray it with water and let it sit overnight. Wipe it down the next day with a wet cloth or sponge – you can use soapy water if necessary.
Vents & electronics: Like white noise, you probably don’t notice the dust on your vents and electronics building and mucking up your air space. To clean your TVs, computers and vents use old dryer sheets. The dryer sheets neutralize the charge on surfaces where there is static electricity so they’re able to pick up the dust that’s clinging to them.
Clean your drains: With all the things that go down a bathroom drain or a kitchen drain, water alone can’t keep a drain fresh smelling. A ½ cup of baking soda sprinkled down the drain followed by 4 cups of white or apple cider vinegar will create a furious foam that can scrub away odors caused by bacteria that’s been building up for months.
Clean your dishwasher: Like your drain, the dishwasher can get mucked up with food particles and cause a bit of a stink even though it seems clean. A similar baking soda-vinegar concoction can be used to clean your dishwasher, but if you do it wrong, you might end up with a foamy floor that will double your cleaning duties, so the other easy, non-toxic way to clean your dishwasher is to use a sugar-free drink mix like powdered lemonade. Just take out the filter and soak it in soapy water before returning it to the dishwasher. Then poor the drink mix into the dishwashing detergent compartment – use as much drink mix as you would detergent – and then run a full cycle.