How often should you clean this?
THERE ARE some items that you use frequently that you may not be cleaning as often as you should. Go through this list to see how well you are doing.
KITCHEN COUNTERS: DAILY
Wiping down and sanitising kitchen surfaces after each time you use them ensures that stray germs from last night’s dinner prep don’t end up in your next sandwich.
Funky forgotten leftovers in the back of your fridge can leave behind mould spores after you’ve tossed them. To keep germs at bay, empty your refrigerator every three-four months, and clean the shelves and walls with a tablespoon of baking soda dissolved in a quart of water. Rinse and let dry before replacing food.
KITCHEN FLOOR: WEEKLY
If you’ve got kids, chances are you’ll need to sweep up after every meal. But unless there’s a sticky spill, the mop and bucket can go a week between rounds.
Spills should be spotcleaned right away, but for upholstery upkeep, once-amonth vacuuming across the cushions and into nooks and crannies should do. Steam cleaning once a year or so can also extend the life of your furniture.
CEILING FANS: QUARTERLY
These dust collectors also gather grease when they’re in the kitchen. You can give them a wipe whenever you notice build-up, but use a damp cloth and all-purpose cleaner to clean the blades and body well every few months.
The more action your porcelain throne sees in a day, the more reason to squirt your cleaner of choice into the bowl and give it a swish with a longhandled brush. Save the deeper scrub-down for your weekly round-up.
BATH TOWELS: EVERY FEW USES
Wash your towel or grab a new one after three or four normal showers, more often if you work out a lot. Hang up damp towels when you’re done so that they can air out and not give mildew, mould, and bacteria a dark, damp place to grow.
SHOWER CURTAIN: MONTHLY
A plastic curtain, or the plastic liner for a cloth curtain, should get a bath with warm water and baking soda once a month to remove soap scum and prevent mildew. You may be able to stretch this to once a quarter if your shower doesn’t get a lot of use. Spraying it with a cleaner after every shower and wiping it down weekly when you clean the bathroom will also help.
Beyond a few months, the bristles get too worn to work as well as they should. If you see fraying before then, that’s a sign to switch.
BRAS: EVERY FEW USES
Whether you give them ‘off days’ to regain their shape and elasticity or go for multiple wears in a row, it’s best to give bras a good wash after you’ve worn them about two times. But if you’ve been sweating, don’t wait that long.
The rule of thumb is to wash bed linens once a week in water hot enough to kill bacteria (around 140°F) and tumble dry. Your shut-eye habits should determine your timeline. For example, pets, night sweats, and midnight snacks in bed mean you’ll need to change them sooner. Alternating between two sets of sheets can make it easier to keep up.
PILLOWS: TWO TIMES A YEAR
Throw your pillows (and your throw pillows) in the wash on hot every three-six months to kill bacteria and keep them fresh. Same goes for your comforter or duvet. If it’s too big to fit in your machine at home, take it to a laundromat with extra-large commercial-size washers, or have it professionally cleaned.
Any appliance that uses water is at risk for mould and mildew. Wipe down the door and rubber gasket of a front loader after every wash load. Give your machine a deeper cleaning every three-four months by adding one cup of bleach and running a hot cycle
clothes) to sanitise.
WASHING MACHINE: QUARTERLY