This list consists of what I think are 3 of the most important things you shouldn’t forget to clean. There’s a lot more, but I think these could be the most dangerous and/or gross! Don’t worry; some of it you can probably get away with having your guy do.. especially this first one. It requires a drill!
3 Things You Always Forget to Clean (Don’t Wait Until It’s Too Late!)
…and by “forget to clean” I mean “F this with a whole bag of dicks” because it’s no fun. Fun or not, you really should do these things every once in a while or risk burning your home down. At the very least, you could ruin some appliances or waste money replacing things before you really have to. You could even make someone sick!
Don’t Forget to Clean Your Dryer Vent at Least Once a Year
We bought our first home almost two years before we finally figured out cleaning the dryer vent is very important. I noticed it was taking longer and longer to dry loads of laundry. Clothes were coming out extremely hot and I worried they were going to all be ruined sooner than later. I did some Google searching and figured out quickly that we really needed to clean the dryer vent. Mediocre homeowners or not, it is now added to our routine of yearly or bi-yearly home maintenance chores.
Determine how often you need to clean your dryer vent. Base it on how big your vent is and how much laundry you do. The smaller the vent and the more laundry you do means you should clean it more often. We settled on twice a year for our setup. Our vent is only about 2 ft. long and goes straight through the wall to the outside, so it fills up with lint quickly. Whatever you settle on, once a year is the absolute minimum!
I found this really cool dryer vent cleaning brush that attaches to your electric drill. The rods are flexible and bend pretty easily, so if your duct does have turns to navigate it should be pretty easy to get around those corners. As I mentioned, our vent was only about 2 ft. long, so it wasn’t difficult to maneuver. My husband was happy to do this task because, like I said, you can pull out the power tools!
Watch the videos below to see how my husband did it:
Don’t Forget to Clean Your Coffee Maker: It’s Probably Disgusting
Your coffee maker (or Keurig) is a potential breeding ground for all kinds of nasty stuff. Yeast, mold, and mineral build up could be lining every interior surface of your brewer. For this reason, I’ve simply abandoned the Keurig in favor of a traditional coffee maker, where it’s easy to get to all the insides to clean.
With the traditional style coffee maker, definitely wash the carafe and the lid. Wash the filter/basket, too. Do this every day using warm, soapy water. I tend to do it in the evening, leaving the components out to air dry over night. I also leave the hinged lid on the coffee maker itself open overnight. The inside of the coffee maker can dry out in between uses, thus minimizing the environment for gross things to multiply.
Clean the inside of your coffee maker about once a month if you have hard water and once every two or three months for soft water.
You can buy solutions to do this, but I prefer just using a 1:1 mixture of white vinegar and water. It works just as well and costs a LOT less.
Here’s a video from Consumer Reports showing you how to do it, including how to remove stains from your carafe using baking soda:
Don’t Forget to Clean Your Pillows!
I’m pretty sure this one freaks me out the most, and yet somehow it’s the one I neglect to do the most often! That’s mostly because ever since we got a king-sized bed with king sized pillows, it means I’d have to take them to a laundromat to get them done because they won’t fit in my washing machine. Who wants to go to the laundromat? I’d really rather stick a fork in my eye!
According to a study by Barts and the London NHS Trust, “up to a third of the weight of your pillow could be made up of bugs, dead skin and house dust mites and their feces.”
Read that quote a couple of times and let it sink in. Got the heebie jeebies yet?
Assuming you aren’t as mediocre a housewife as I am, here’s what to do about those nasty pillows.
Your mattress is probably just as dirty.. You can clean it, too, if you’re a try-hard like that. I just bought a lovely vinyl mattress cover that zips up tight, protecting that new mattress for the life of the cover. It works like a charm!
If your mattress isn’t new, you probably want to clean it first and avoid putting the cover on until you’re sure the mattress is completely dry.
The only downside to a mattress cover like mine is that it does kind of make the bed pretty hot while sleeping. I haven’t found a mattress PAD that allows enough air between body and vinyl yet.
If anyone has any ideas for the most circulation between a mattress cover and pad, let me know in the comments!
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