Warm summer evenings are a thing of the past - it's time to bring on the season of sweaters, falling leaves and pumpkin spice! Fall is the perfect time to tackle some heavy-duty household chores before the weather gets too cold to crack open the windows. As the season grows colder, you'll be spending more time inside, so it's a great idea to handle some deep cleaning tasks before you hole up with your PJs and hot chocolate.
Tune up your appliances: If you're planning on any holiday entertaining, your appliances are going to be put into overdrive. Make sure they're ready to perform their best by giving them a deep clean and a tune up.
- Refrigerator: Throw away any leftovers, condiments or anything else that's beyond it's life expectancy. Wipe down shelves, drawers, and doors with a spray cleaner that cleans and deodorizes, like our Baking Soda All-Purpose cleaner. Use the brush attachment on your vacuum to gently remove dust and debris from the coils. And make sure to clean under the fridge too!
- Oven and stove top: Clean off any baked or burnt on food reside - our Lemon Cream Cleanser is a great option with a little bit of grit to help you scour off anything stuck on. In case of really stuck-on food, make a paste with baking soda and water, apply to the stain, and let sit for a while before wiping away. Make sure to clear out any crumbs and debris from under the stove top too - mice love these spots.
- Ceiling fans: Thoroughly dust the blades and wipe them down with an all-purpose cleaner. Now is also a good time to switch the directional fan setting to clockwise to circulate the warmer air that rises to the top of a room. Also: check any bowl-like ceiling fixtures for dead bugs that may have collected over the summer.
- HVAC/Heater: Now is a great time to schedule an inspection of your HVAC or heating unit before the temps drop. In the meantime, make sure any vents and registers are free of debris. Check to make sure the air filter is clean, and replace it if necessary. Also, take a peek at the thermostat and make sure its not set too high - 68 degrees is the recommended temperature for optimal energy use.
Deep clean everywhere: Since you'll be spending more time indoors, you'll probably want to spruce up your home so you're not staring at summer's greasy BBQ fingerprints all winter long. Tackle the deepest, darkest corners of your home to get it feeling fresh and allergen free before you hibernate.
- Vacuum: Any spaces that are neglected during normal cleaning routines: underneath furniture, along baseboards, behind shelves. Pay special attention to upholstered furniture - run the brush attachment all over, and make sure to lift off cushions and clean underneath (and check for loose change).
- Disinfect: Any high-traffic surfaces: door knobs, handles, light switches, remote controls, keyboards. Spray on a sanitizing cleaner and let sit long enough to kill any bacteria. Make sure to wipe these surfaces regularly (especially during cold and flu season) to keep them from getting too grimy.
- Wash: Any areas that aren't frequently tended to. A universal cleaner can be your best friend here - we like our Lavender Universal cleaner because lavender naturally repels bugs an fungus in addition to smelling great.
- launder your curtains and window treatments;
- refresh your winter linens in the laundry;
- clean out your interior garbage cans;
- wipe down walls, baseboards and shelves;
- wash your windows and screens.
Treat your floors: You'll not only be spending more time indoors, as the weather changes you'll also be tracking more moisture, salt and autumnal debris home with you too. Get your floors ready for more quality time, as well as prepared for some extra moisture, too:
- Deep clean your carpets -- Fall is the perfect time to throw open the windows and air out carpets. Hire a pro or get a steam cleaner in to really wash out summer pollen and smog from your carpets. Keep the windows open to really help them dry out.
- Keep up with hard floors -- Keep slips and salt stains to a minimum by regularly spot cleaning and wiping down any hard floors. Avoid letting salty, muddy water dry on your floors - that will make stains harder to remove in the future. Keep a dry mop handy, and spot clean with a gentle cleaner - our pH neutral cleaner is a favorite for most floor types.
- Set up a space for shoes -- Avoid tracking salt, snow and mud through your house (as well as outdoor allergens). Lay down a heavy duty welcome mat and set up a station near the front door where you and your family can take off boots and shoes.
Get energy efficient: Energy bills spike in colder temps as we crank the thermostat to stay cozy. Reduce heating costs (and your impact on the environment) by optimizing your home's ability to stay warm:
- Upgrade your thermostat
- Install weatherizing strips on your windows and doors
- Seal any cracks, leaks, or drafts
- Install heavier curtains to keep heat inside
Bonus: Before you use your fireplace this season, make sure your home is safe!
- Check the batteries in your smoke detector
- Test your carbon monoxide detector (or install one if you haven't already)
- Get your fireplace inspected and your chimney cleaned before use
- Make sure your fire extinguisher is up to date and usable
How do you prepare your home for colder seasons? Share your best tip in the comments!
Photo by Alex Geerts on Unsplash