Every once in a while, we all have to get up and dust the house. It can become a bit overwhelming especially when we have let the dust accumulate for a while. We then suddenly have to make decisions on which room to start with, what cleaner to use and which rag to use.
The first step to follow is to collect all the equipment that you will need to dust the whole house. You will need a few microfibre cloths, a soft brush with a handle, warm water and soap, furniture polisher, a dry cloth for polishing and a cobweb remover. You will also need a CD player and a few good music CDs to listen to so that you enjoy dusting and keep at it without getting bored.
Start by setting aside the time that you will need to do your dusting. Don’t plan any other activities for this time because you do not want any distractions. Multi-tasking may only help to steer you off course and get you tired faster. In the beginning, decide the routine that you want to follow. Do you want to start with the living room or the bedrooms? Decide the order you will follow and if need be, write it down.
When you start on a room, begin by picking up anything that may be lying on the floor. Then start at the top of one side and work your way down. You will want to begin with one side of a room. Work clockwise until you go round the room. When you start at the top, begin by removing all cobwebs and wiping off the dust from the wall. Work your way down to the window tops. Wherever you find a thick layer of dust, use a wet cloth to wipe it off. Where the layer of dust is greasy, wipe it with a wet cloth that has been soaked in warm, soapy water. Wipe the shelves as you reach them and remember to dust the back of the shelves as well.
For the items on the shelves, you will need to wipe those with a thin layer of dust. If they are plastic, you can wash them in the warm soapy water. If made out of wood, then just wipe them with the microfibre cloth. Remember to wipe the dust off any books.
At this stage, you might be tempted to leave off some items, but remember that if you clean well now you will have a lot more time before the next dusting session. You only need to be this thorough once in a couple of months.
When you get to the bottom, you will find that the dust has dropped from the top to the bottom. This will make your work easier at the end because all you will need to do will be to mop the floor or vacuum it to get rid of the dust.
You may want to take a break after the first room but don’t make it a long one. A short ten-minute break is enough. A longer one will make you lazy and zap your energy. Mark off the room you have done on the list and move on to the next one.
Follow the same procedure and remember to have the music on to keep you motivated.
CLEANING SPECIFIC ITEMS
Always unplug the television set and other electronics before cleaning them. As these items really attract dust, you may want to clean them weekly rather than waiting for your quarterly or bi-annual dusting. Use a microfibre cloth or a damp cloth if dust layer is thick. The brush you got ready will aid you in getting the dust out of any crevices on the electronics. Don’t forget to dust off the cables before plugging them back into the sockets.
Plastic toys – As you always want the children to be clean and germ-free, wash the plastic toys in warm, soapy water and dry them completely.
Teddy bears – Place teddy bears and bean bags in a plastic bag with a handful of baking soda and shake well. The baking soda will work with the static to draw out the dust. Remove them from the plastic bag and vacuum them.
If you are interested to read more you should have a look at the following article on killing dust mites on soft toys by the University of Otago.
The kitchen walls will be a bit greasy especially the areas around your cooker. Soak a rag in the warm soapy water and wipe these surfaces. Remember to keep changing the water so that you are not using dirty water to wipe any surface.
In the kitchen, you will also want to clean the inside and outside of the microwave. Use a warm damp cloth for this as well as for the fridge.
Remember to remove all the bedding and to vacuum your mattress. Also change the linen and wipe off the dust from the bed posts.
Remove all the dirty clothes hanging around the bedroom and wipe the closet and any bed stools and drawers.
Ensure that you clean the cabinets holding your toothpaste and toothbrushes. If possible disinfect the toothbrushes one at a time with mouthwash. Also use a disinfecting cleaner for the cabinet and the surfaces of the bathroom because when you flush the toilet, there is splatter and faecal matter can be on the surfaces. Scrub the tub with a good detergent and bleach. Also scrub the tiles as well and use an old toothbrush for the rough borders between the tiles.
For the toilet, use toilet cleaner for all parts including bowl, seat and cover. Get rid of all the germs from the whole toilet. Give special attention to the tissue holder and wipe it clean.
General House Dusting Tips
Always remember to wipe the door handles for all the rooms and the outside door with a disinfecting cleaner. This will prevent the spread of germs between people in the house.
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