The mere mention of spring evokes pleasant images of planting flowers, flying kites, taking picnics and watching baseball. Springtime house cleaning, on the other hand, is a ritual that many people would rather skip, because they cant imagine devoting an entire day or weekend to tackle the task.
If youre convinced you dont have time to fit spring cleaning into your busy schedule, dont despair. You can take advantage of a few free minutes here and there to spruce up your home.
Try these ideas for tackling household chores when you have a few minutes to spare, and youll make steady progress toward your goal of a spick and span abode.
If you have five minutes
- Clean kitchen countertops.
- Clean the backsplash.
- Wipe out refrigerator crisper drawers. Line drawers with paper towels so next time you can just toss the dirty paper towel and replace with a clean one.
- Clean out one or two shelves in your refrigerator or freezer.
- Disinfect the trash can.
- Clean the microwave. Spritz the inside with water then turn on high for a few seconds. Allow it to sit for a minute, then wipe with a clean cloth.
- Wipe woodwork in your kitchen.
- Wipe a few drawer and cabinet handles.
- Sort through and pare down a junk drawer.
- Clean out a couple of shelves in your medicine cabinet.
- Sort childrens clothing one drawer or shelf at a time.
- Purge a basket of magazines and catalogs.
- Remove clutter from one surface area.
- Wipe fingerprints off a few doorjambs and light switches.
- Put DVDs or CDs back in their cases.
If you have 10 minutes
- Vacuum a room and hallway.
- Wipe off canisters and small appliances.
- Clean glass, mirrors, TVs, computer screens and tabletops.
- Remove dust from the pleats in lampshades with a soft-bristled paintbrush.
- Polish one or two pieces of wood furniture.
- Dust-mop wood floors in a room or two.
- Put damp socks on your hands and wipe dust from broadleaf plants.v
- Dust tabletops, shelves, pictures or mantle.
- Spot-clean sofa cushions and throw pillows. Use a masking-tape lint roller to quickly pick up pet hair.
- Straighten a shelf or two in the linen closet.
- Remove the books from one shelf on a bookcase, dust the books and shelf, and replace books.
- Clean the track of a sliding glass door by using a screwdriver wrapped in a thin towel to pry stubborn dirt.
If you have 20 to 30 minutes
- Vacuum refrigerator coils and front grill. Empty the drip pan.
- Use a handheld vacuum to clean stairs; start at the top and work down.
- Quick-clean blinds, wearing a pair of cotton work gloves. Dip gloved hands into a solution of all-purpose household cleaner and water, and use your fingers to wash the slats.
- Clean your stovetop and replace aluminum drip pans under burners.
- Remove ashes from fireplace and clean hearth.
- Clean bathroom vent fan. Dirt and lint buildup inside the fan can impair efficiency, encourage mildew growth, and shorten the life of the unit, so dont skip this task. To clean, remove the vent cover and wipe the inside with a rag. Use an old toothbrush to clean fan blades. As with any electric fixture, dont use water to clean.
And remember, everyone who enjoys the benefits of home should participate in its upkeep. So make spring cleaning a family affair. If they help clean the house, theyll be more likely to help keep it clean!