We could all use a little help every once in a while when it comes to cleaning our homes. Whether you’re someone who loves cleaning, or you would rather put it off and forget about it, learning some of the best house cleaning tips around will help you learn how to clean small parts (and some not so small parts) of your house in record time.
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If you get a call that someone is dropping by in 10 minutes and your house is not prepared for company, grab a couple of the house cleaning tips that you learn in this list and put them to good use to quickly and effortlessly clean your house and make it presentable for guests.
You may already be using a few of these house cleaning tips, but I’m guessing there are going to be at least a few on this list that you haven’t heard of.
I, personally, am not the fondest of cleaning, so I am all for finding ways and various house cleaning tips that will help me create a clean home in minimal time, and with minimal effort. And that is why I put this list of house cleaning secrets together.
Before we get to the good stuff (the best house cleaning tips), I want to let you in on a little secret about dryer sheets and how you can use them in your house.
When you use your regular old cleaning cloth to dust around your house, you wipe the dust up and it usually isn’t long before new dust settles right back into place on the surface you just dusted.
Here’s the thing:
If you use any old dryer sheets you have laying around your house (yes, they can be used dryer sheets) to dust, the dryer sheets not only pick up the dust like a normal cleaning cloth, but they also leave behind a residue that helps repel dust for several days, which means they are preventing dust to settle back onto the surface that you just dusted.
You’re not only dusting your house, but you’re also repelling dust from settling on that surface again. You’re dusting your house AND making it so you don’t have to dust as often…
…It’s a win-win situation!
If you don’t want to use dryer sheets around your house, you can also use these special dusting cloths to dust your house and they do a very similar job to the dryer sheets.
These cleaning cloths don’t leave behind a residue that repels dust like the dryer sheets do, instead, they don’t leave behind any dust-attracting residue (like normal cleaning rags do), which means you are also able to dust less often when you use these particular rags. (I use them and they are AWESOME – here are the ones I use.)
Now, if you paired dusting with these cleaning cloths together with using dryer sheets, you’d never have to dust!
…Or maybe you would, but it’s an interesting thought nonetheless.
21 BEST HOUSE CLEANING TIPS TO MAKE CLEANING EFFORTLESS
1. DUST BLINDS WITH KITCHEN TONGS AND CLEANING CLOTHS
You can buy a blind cleaner here, or you can create your own blind cleaner with objects you most likely have around your house already.
Using salad tongs and two of your everyday cleaning rags could save you a bunch of money and time when it comes to cleaning your blinds.
Simply wrap one cleaning cloth around one side of the tongs, using elastics to hold the cloth in place, and repeat with the other side of the tong and the second cleaning cloth.
Place the blind between the cleaning cloths and clamp the tong together so you have a firm grasp on the blind, but not too hard.
Then slide the tong all the way across the blind, repeating until you have completed all the blinds – and just like that, you have blinds that are completely dust free, top and bottom.
2. USE VINEGAR TO KEEP YOUR TOILET RUNNING CLEAN
Pour a couple cups of vinegar into the water tank of your toilet, then let it sit without flushing for at least half an hour. This will give the vinegar a chance to break down any buildup that has accumulated back there.
When you flush your toilet the vinegar will then work its way through the toilet and out the drain, cleaning the entire way.
Do this once a month with this particular kind of vinegar to keep your toilet free from odors and buildup.
3. PUT VINEGAR IN WITH YOUR LAUNDRY
Next time you go to throw a load of laundry in, after the clothes are in the wash, pour a cup of vinegar into the machine with your laundry.
Vinegar works in many different ways when combined with laundry, it naturally brightens, whitens, and softens your clothes and gets rid of any lingering odors.
It does the work of softening your fabrics, whitening your whites, brightening colors, and deodorizing your clothes all without using any chemicals – just good old vinegar.
(Vinegar is amazing in so many ways!)
4. CLEAN YOUR CEILING FAN WITH A PILLOW CASE
If it’s been a while since you last cleaned your ceiling fan here’s a cleaning tip you’re going to want to hang on to.
Using a pillowcase to clean your ceiling fan not only eliminates the need for you to reach in awkward angles to be sure you wipe every side of the fan blades, but it also traps all the dust inside the pillowcase so you don’t have dust from the fan falling directly onto you and the floor and any other surfaces beneath it.
Stand on the step stool so you can comfortably reach the fan, then slide the fan blade inside the pillowcase. Slide the pillowcase all the way to the base of the fan, then pull back.
As you’re pulling the pillowcase off the fan blade, be sure there is pressure on the top of the blade so all the dust is getting scraped off – and be sure you’re holding the pillowcase in such a way so that dust then falls directly into the pillowcase.
(It sounds confusing, but it’s really not.)
Repeat this with the rest of the blades, shake the pillowcase out outside, throw it into the wash, and just like that you’re done.
Now the next time you turn your ceiling fan on you don’t have to worry about showering your room with dust.
5. DUST BASEBOARDS WITH A BROOM
Some people like to use a baseboard buddy for dusting their baseboards (this is what I like), but if you’re looking for a solution to help you dust your baseboards now and you don’t have time to wait for the baseboard buddy to be shipped to you, a quick fix is using a broom to dust the baseboards around your house.
I’ll be the first to admit that dusting baseboards can really suck.
Crawling around every room of your house on your hands and knees and dragging a cleaning bucket around with you really isn’t what I call fun.
A quick solution to cleaning your baseboards without busting your back is to use your broom with a cloth or pillowcase over the head of the broom. (Why didn’t I think about this before I spent two hours crawling around our house?)
Place the cloth or pillowcase so it’s completely covering the head of the broom, then use an elastic to tie it onto the broom handle so it stays in place.
Take your homemade baseboard buddy and walk around the rooms of your house, dusting your baseboards as you go. This is a much quicker and easier option than crawling around on your hands and knees.
Do keep in mind that you can’t exactly scrub your baseboards with your homemade baseboard cleaning tool, it is purely to get the layer of dust off the tops of your baseboards.
If you’re looking for a way to get scuff marks off of your baseboard, you will likely want to look at getting a baseboard buddy.
6. BAKING SODA + YOUR MATTRESS = THE PERFECT MATCH
Using baking soda on your mattress works in two wonderful ways. First, this baking soda is a natural deodorizer, so it will remove any funky smells from your mattress.
Second, baking soda wicks away moisture, so if there is any moisture in or on your mattress the baking soda will absorb it to reduce the chance of your mattress molding.
Rather than just masking odors like these do, baking soda actually absorbs the odors – so rather than temporarily masking the odors coming from your mattress with another smell, the baking soda will absorb the odors and completely get rid of them.
To use baking soda to deodorize and de-moisturize your mattress, you will want to start by stripping your bed so the entire mattress is exposed.
Then, take your baking soda and apply a generous layer over the entire surface of the mattress. Use this kind of strainer to get an even layer over the whole mattress.
Let your mattress sit, exposed, with the baking soda on it for at least 6 hours. The longer you can let it sit, the better.
Once the baking soda has sat for the appropriate amount of time, take your vacuum cleaner and, using this attachment, vacuum the entire mattress to remove all traces of baking soda.
Be sure you get in the deep crevices, too.
Then you’re done. You can now sleep assured that your mattress isn’t harboring any bad smells or moisture.
Do you want your stainless steel appliances to shine, but find they always end up with little fingerprints all over them?
I picked this trick up from back when I worked as a housekeeper, and I think it’s a very clever tip, so it definitely made the list of best house cleaning tips.
To get your stainless steel appliances shining like they’re new – and to add a wonderful smell to your home – the secret ingredient (and only ingredient) is baby oil.
If you have littles running around your house dirtying up your stainless steel appliances, I’m willing to bet you have some baby oil hiding somewhere in your house, too.
If you don’t, you can grab the kind I use right here.
Keep in mind that the baby oil isn’t going to actually clean your appliances, so you will want to give them a wipe first to remove dirt.
After you’ve wiped the appliances to get rid of dirt, take your cleaning cloth (these ones work best for applying oil without streaks) and apply some baby oil to the cloth.
Take your cloth, with the baby oil on it, and start wiping your stainless steel appliances. Wipe in the same direction as the grain of the stainless steel to get the best results.
Once you’ve wiped the baby oil onto the surface, turn your cloth over (or get a new one) to the dry side, and buff the oil with your cloth to work out any streaks. If you still see streaks, grab a bit more oil and repeat the process until you get that perfect, streak-free surface you’re looking for.
Baby oil not only makes your stainless steel shine, but it also repels a certain amount of marks and fingerprints so you won’t find your appliances getting scuffed up as fast as usual.
If you ask me, an appliance that doesn’t get scuffed up as fast means it doesn’t have to be cleaned as often, and not having to clean as often is worth it.
8. CLEAN YOUR BLENDER WITHOUT TAKING IT APART
I always try to find an alternative to pulling our blender out and using it. Not because I don’t like it, but because I hate cleaning it.
Taking it apart and cleaning each piece individually just seems like a waste of time to me, so if I can find a way to not use our blender, I’m doing it.
That was how I looked at using our blender until I learned a neat little cleaning trick that takes very little effort (and that’s what I’m all about!).
After you use your blender, pour warm, soapy water into it until it is almost full and turn on. Let it run for a couple of moments, then pour out the soapy water and rinse the blender, and just like that – you have a clean blender again.
It’s SO simple!
9. UNCLOG DRAINS WITHOUT CALLING A PLUMBER
If you have a drain in your house that is draining much slower than it should be, try using this homemade drain cleaner.
To unclog your drain first you will want to boil a kettle (or pot) full of water.
Once the water is boiling, take it and pour it directly down the drain, then pour a 1/2 cup of baking soda down the drain immediately after. Let this sit for a minute or two.
While you’re letting the hot water and baking soda sit in your drain, boil another two cups of water.
Once the next batch of water is boiling, pour 1 cup of white vinegar down the drain, immediately followed by two cups of boiling water.
You may want to cover your drain plug at this point so the solution doesn’t work its way up into your sink – you want it to stay in the pipes.
Now you are going to want to boil yet another pot of water.
After a couple minutes of the vinegar/baking soda/hot water sitting in the pipes, take the last pot of hot water and pour it down your drain, flushing the grime that was causing your drain to be clogged away.
10. CLEAN YOUR RANGE HOOD FILTER WITH WATER AND SOAP
Have you looked at your range hood filter anytime recently? Unless you clean it regularly, there’s a good chance it’s full of dust and grease.
To keep it doing its job properly, pull the filter out and stick it in a sink full of hot, soapy water. This soap is recommended for cleaning your range hood filter as it is the best grease remover.
Let the filter soak in the sink for a couple minutes, flipping it over if the entire filter doesn’t fit under the water at the same time.
Then, take a brush like this one and gently start scrubbing the filter.
Once the grease has been scrubbed off, rinse the filter, pat dry with a clean cloth, and put it back in place.
If you didn’t already know, I’m sure by now you’re getting a good idea that vinegar truly is the magic home cleaner. It can be used for such a wide variety of things, it’s a wonder people use anything else.
If you want to remove hard-water stains from the shower heads in your house and make them shine like new again, simply find a small baggie that will fit over the shower head with room to be tied around the top to keep it from falling off.
Fill the baggie with a bit of vinegar (enough that the whole shower head is submerged, but not overflowing), place it over the shower head and use an elastic to tie around the top to keep the bag in place.
Let the bag sit for 10 – 30 minutes. When the bag is ready to be removed, take a cleaning cloth or soft sponge and wipe the shower head to remove the grime that has been loosened off by the vinegar.
Now your shower head should be shining like new.
12. DUST BLINDS WITH A VACUUM
If dusting your blinds with a tong and cleaning cloths wasn’t so much your style, grab your vacuum cleaner and, using this head attachment, vacuum your blinds. Close your blinds one way and vacuum them.
Open the blinds up and close them the opposite way, and vacuum them again.
The trick here is to make sure you use this vacuum attachment so you don’t damage your blinds when you vacuum them.
13. WASH YOUR PLASTIC SHOWER CURTAINS WITH NO EFFORT
Do you envy those people that have cloth shower curtains because they can just throw the shower curtain in the washing machine to clean it, while you’re stuck scrubbing away that lovely slimy substance at the bottom of your plastic shower curtain?
If that’s how you’ve been cleaning your plastic shower curtain this entire time, I have some good news and some bad news for you.
The bad news is you might get a bit upset that you didn’t know this earlier.
The good news is that you CAN stick your plastic shower curtain in the washing machine to clean it, just like with a cloth one.
When you put your plastic shower curtain in the washing machine to clean it make sure you also add a handful of towels into the washing machine to wash along with your shower curtain.
You can safely wash your plastic shower curtain, along with some towels, in your washing machine on the warm cycle just like you would wash a regular load of laundry.
If you’re looking for an easy way to clean your microwave, this is it.
There are two ways you can easily clean your microwave. The first way is to use this angry mama. Put it into your microwave with some vinegar inside it and it will steam clean and disinfect your microwave in just a couple minutes, and you won’t have to do any scrubbing. Here’s how you can do it.
The second way to clean your microwave is a little bit more hands on but it’s still pretty simple:
Place a cup of water along with about 1/4 – 1/2 cup of vinegar in a microwave safe dish, and put it in the microwave.
Turn the microwave on high for about 5 minutes. You want the vinegar/water solution to come to a boil.
When the microwave is done, let the dish cool down so you don’t burn yourself, then remove it from the microwave. Take a cloth and wipe the whole interior of your microwave.
You should find all the substances that were once stuck on in there are now easily wiping off thanks to the boiling water and vinegar.
15. CLEAN WOODEN CUTTING BOARDS WITH TWO INGREDIENTS
Grab your well-loved cutting board and sprinkle a layer of salt onto it, trying to keep it away from the edges as it will get pushed around.
Be sure the salt you use is coarse salt so it has some scrubbing power behind it.
Cut a lemon in half, and, with the cut side down, start rubbing the half lemon over your cutting board, working your way around the entire board.
While you are rubbing the lemon on the cutting board, gently squeeze to let some of the lemon juices out.
Now just wash it with some soapy water to get the lemon juice and salt off of it and it will be sparkling clean.
There’s a certain odor wafting through your house, and it’s coming from the pile of shoes at the door.
I think you know what I’m talking about.
That stench that makes you embarrassed to go out in public because it follows you everywhere. Because it’s attached to your feet.
Well – it’s time to change that, and there’s a quick fix that you can do right now to get rid of the smell.
THE BEST SHOE ODOR ELIMINATOR
So, your shoes stink. And here’s what you can do about it.
Take a dry tea bag – the kind of tea doesn’t matter (but I do usually use this kind since it’s cheaper) – and stuff it in your shoe. Now, take another dry tea bag, and stuff it into the other shoe.
And that’s it.
It probably sounds too good to be true, but I promise you it’s not. When I was housekeeping, I had some of the stinkiest shoes. It wasn’t pleasant. So, I experimented with putting dry tea bags in my shoes and letting them sit in there overnight.
What I came to the next day was a very pleasant surprise, that the tea bag trick had worked.
This method for removing shoe odor works so well because the dry tea bags don’t just add a nice smell to your shoes, they actually absorb all the moisture and smells that are happening in your shoes into the tea leaves.
This trick works incredibly well – though I do recommend you immediately throw the tea bags into the trash, as to not get them confused with new tea bags and go to brew yourself a cup of tea…
17. USE HOUSEHOLD OILS TO CONDITION LEATHER
Is your leather sofa in dire need of a conditioning? Maybe the leather seats in your car are starting to crack and need some TLC.
Rather than going out and buying some pricey leather conditioner, did you know you can use some simpler ingredients that you likely have around your home to condition your leather?
Work the coconut oil into the leather with a soft rag or your hands, then use a clean rag to buff up the leather and really rub the oil in.
My husband and I used this coconut oil just a couple days ago to condition the leather seats in our car, and it worked wonderfully. My only recommendation is to be sure the temperature is not too cold while applying the coconut oil.
While where most of you live it won’t be too cold, my husband and I seem to live up in the great white north and the temperature outside was just a touch too cold for the oil, causing it to crumble when being applied to the leather, rather than spreading on smoothly.
I was able to solve this problem by rubbing the leather in with my fingers, to use the heat from my hands to help melt the oil and work it into the leather.
After I had worked the oil into the leather with my hands, I took a clean cloth and rubbed the oil in completely and buffed it up.
We were quite pleased with the results.
The second option is to use flaxseed oil to condition your leather.
I have not personally used flaxseed oil as a leather conditioner, but I have heard good things about it.
You would apply your flaxseed oil onto your cloth and slowly work into the leather, being sure to rub it in. Then you would take a clean cloth and buff the leather furniture to remove excess oil and create a nice shine.
Both options are incredibly inexpensive and do a great job, especially when compared to the pricey leather conditioners that many people buy.
18. CLEAN YOUR COFFEE MAKER FROM THE INSIDE
Coffee makers are that kind of thing that it just feels impossible to ever fully clean, since they have so many lines and inside parts that aren’t accessible to the human hand unless the whole machine is taken apart.
I was able to find a solution that allowed me to clean the whole inside of our coffee machine without taking it apart piece by piece.
That solution? Vinegar. (Of course!)
Vinegar works so well for so many different things, and cleaning the inside of your coffee maker is one of those things.
Simply fill the coffee pot with water, and add about 1/4 cup of vinegar to the water, then pour it into the coffee maker. Turn the coffee maker on (without any coffee grinds, of course), and let it run its course.
As the water/vinegar solution works its way through the coffee maker, running through all the unreachable lines, it’s cleaning the whole way and loosening buildup and grime.
Once the water/vinegar has worked its way into the coffee pot, dump it out and fill the pot with plain water, and turn the machine on again.
Dump the water, and repeat the step with plain water once again.
Repeat this step until you no longer get a vinegary smell coming from the coffee maker, and your machine should be cleaned all the way through it.
19. CLEAN YOUR FABRIC SOFA WITH BAKING SODA
As we talked about earlier, baking soda also doubles as an awesome household cleaner.
To clean your couch with baking soda, first, take your vacuum cleaner and give the couch a quick vacuum to remove any hair and loose debris, then sprinkle baking soda over the entire couch.
Let the baking soda sit for around half an hour, then take your vacuum and, using the upholstery attachment, vacuum up all the baking soda.
Since baking soda absorbs odors and moisture, it will do just that to your couch – just like it did to your mattress.
Removing any odd-smelling odors from your sofa and wicking up the moisture, the baking soda will help you restore your sofa to a like-new state.
20. REMOVE CARPET STAINS WITH TOOTHPASTE
This is a simple, little-known secret that works well to take stains out of carpets.
Whether it’s mud, liquid, or some other substance that has your carpet stained, squirt toothpaste directly onto the stained area of the carpet, then grab your trusty cleaning toothbrush and start scrubbing at it.
After a bit of scrubbing, take a cleaning cloth and dab the toothpaste away, using water to wash the area clean.
If the stubborn stain is still there, repeat the process until the stain is completely gone.
It really is that simple.
21. CLEAN YOUR WASHING MACHINE TO GET RID OF MOLD AND ODORS
Did you know when your clothes come out of the wash with a funky smell, it most likely isn’t just because the clothes smelled so bad to start out with.
Washing machines, if not cleaned regularly, can start to give off an odor that can then leech onto your clothes. On top of that, mold and mildew can start growing inside the machines, too.
Yuck – that’s not what you want to be washing your clothes in.
Cleaning your washing machine is extremely simple. Though it is a bit time consuming, it really doesn’t require much effort on your part.
And the bonus is, you don’t need any fancy cleaners or chemical-filled detergents. To clean the machine, you can use good old vinegar and baking soda.
The process is simple, but there are a few steps to it, so go ahead and click on the link above to learn how to clean your washing machine, and learn why it should be done on a regular basis to keep your machine performing the best it can be.
With this large list of 21 house cleaning tips under your belt, you’re now fully equipped to whip up a clean house in no time – perfect for those days when company decides to surprise you.
Which of these house cleaning tips didn’t you know of before? Do you have some house cleaning tips to share? I’d love to hear from you!
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