Category Archives: Cleaning

12 tips for an easier spring clean

easier spring clean

When spring arrives, it’s time to start cleaning it, getting it ready for a season for having friends over and spending time with family. But cleaning the house from top-to-bottom can seem like a daunting task for many. However, don’t be put off. We’ve put together this handy guide of 12 tips to make spring cleaning easier this year.

  1. Make a schedule or clean in chunks

It can be tempting to put off cleaning if you don’t know where to start or if you’re envisioning having to clean all day. But you can beat back procrastination with a cleaning schedule. Decide on one room to clean each day — even one part of a room — so that you can do a little each day. This way, you can complete your spring cleaning in a matter of days.

It can also help to try cleaning for small periods of time. Even 5–10 minutes can give you enough time to tick one task off your list. You may even find too that once you get started, you keep going and clean for longer than expected.

  1. Get rid of clutter first

Once you’ve got your schedule sorted, it’s best to get rid of any clutter in the room. This makes it easier to get to the items and surfaces that need to be cleaned, rather than having to wade through rubbish.

If you expect to be getting rid of a lot of clutter, it’s a good idea to hire a skip bin to make the process easier on yourself, rather than having piles of bin bags waiting for garbage day.

  1. Stop more dirt with two doormats

Minimize the dirt that gets into your home by adding an extra doormat to your front door. Have one outside the house and one inside. This way, when someone walks inside, there’s double the chance that all dirt will be removed from their shoes.

  1. Clean the microwave

The microwave often gets overlooked for cleaning in the kitchen. Unfortunately, this can leaving it smelling foul. But don’t worry if your microwave needs a good clean; there’s a simple trick you can use.

Put a mixture of water and vinegar into your microwave. Heat it until it begins to boil. Let it sit in your microwave for a little while. Then remove it and wipe the inside of your microwave. You’ll find that stubborn stains will vanish easily.

  1. Deep clean your pots

Along with your microwave, your pots may also be screaming out for a deep clean, particularly if there are stains or marks that have cooked on.

Simmer a mixture of water and dish-washing liquid in the pot for a short while. Then start scrubbing. This should lift any baked-on food and stubborn stains with minimal effort on your part.

  1.  Remove stubborn stains from oven

And if there are stubborn stains in your oven, with food that has been left to bake time and time again, don’t despair. Simply dip a cloth in hot water and then place it over the stain. Leave it to cool and for the stain to soften. You should find the stain shifts easily after that.

  1. Get rid of fingerprints on stainless steel

While stainless steel is a wonderful modern trimming and material, it looks far better when it’s gleaming rather than covered in greasy fingerprints. To get it sparkling again, mix up some dish-washing liquid with water. Using a soft cloth, rub this mixture with the grain of the steel. Rinse it with hot water before drying it off with a clean cloth.

  1. Wash plastic toys

If you have children, it’s important to give their toys a spring clean too. While soft items may need to be hand washed or put in the washing machine, you can bulk wash plastic toys in the dish-washing machine. Remember to turn off the heated dry, however, as this can melt the plastic.

Also know about Soap or Detergent – Which is best?

  1. Clean your dishwasher

And once you’ve finished cleaning those toys, you can give your dishwasher a good clean too. Pour in some white vinegar and let it run through a wash cycle. This can help disinfect your dishwasher, neutralizing unpleasant odors and making for cleaner dishes in the future. 

  1. Keep your shower clean

Make sure your shower is always clean by incorporating cleaning into your daily hygiene routine. Keep a squeegee in the shower so that as you wash, you can scrape any excess water from the glass and tiles, keeping soap scum and mildew at bay.

  1. Clean ceiling fans

Ceiling fans can be tricky to clean but they need to be cleaned after a long winter without use. Otherwise, the dust that has gather can fly off and spread around your room when you turn them on for the first warm day.

Use a step stool and a long duster to reach the ceiling fans easily. Lay down a drop sheet to catch any dust that falls.

  1. Use an electrostatic duster

If there are numerous blinds in your home, you need an electrostatic duster. Dust is attracted to the duster, making for a quicker clean. You can then also wipe the blinds with dryer sheets to repel dust in the future. Try out these cleaning tips this spring and see the difference for yourself. You can then enjoy a fresh and clean home for the rest of the season.

How to avoid the big clean-up after a party?

cleaning after party

Many people prefer being a guest at a party rather than the host. Hosting a party can be stressful: preparing food, organizing entertainment and then dealing with dreaded post-party clean-up. While a party can be great fun at the time, when your home is left a mess, you can quickly find yourself swearing off parties.

But if you don’t like cleaning up, it doesn’t mean you can’t ever host a party. All you have to do is be prepared and minimize the potential mess made. Just follow our tips and tricks and you can have a great party without the painful clean-up.

To-do list for BEFORE the party:

  • Establish party space

The best space for parties at home is outside. This can make it easier to clean up and easily restricts the mess to outside.

However, if you don’t have an outdoor entertaining area, you can still minimize mess. All you need to do is establish the boundaries of the party. For instance, close doors to rooms you don’t want guests entering, like bedrooms or home offices.

Make it clear where the party is by decorating and setting out food and drinks too. When choosing decorations, avoid decorations that shed, like those covered in glitter or made from tinsel. Paper lanterns are a great option as they can be easily stored and reused.

To protect your belongings, store anything precious or breakable outside of the party space. You can even put rugs away if you’re worried about stains.

  • Pick food and drinks wisely

When planning your party menu, keep in mind the likelihood of spills. Certain dishes are more likely to spill, like soups or snacks dripping in oil, and leave a stain.

It can help to also keep food to specific areas of your home. For instance, it may be better to host a traditional dinner party where everyone eats at the table rather than a more low-key affair where people walk about eating snacks.

To protect surfaces from stains, you can use coasters and place-mats. This can also help to direct guests as to where they should be eating.

  • Clean party area beforehand

Before the party starts, make sure you clean the party area to minimize what you have to clean up at the end of the night. This ensures that you have a neat home for guests to enjoy as well.

  • Make it possible to clean throughout the party

With the invention of disposable dishes, glasses and cutlery, it’s gotten easier to clean up as the party goes on. Make sure guests know where they can dispose of their items by making bins visible.

Or for an eco-friendlier approach, hire crockery, cutlery and glasses and leaving the cleaning for the rental company.

If you’re intending on using your own dishes and glasses, make it easy to clean as you go by making sure the dishwasher is empty before the party starts. This way, you have somewhere to put dirty dishes without letting them pile up. And then when the party is over, you just need to start the machine.

Be ready to spot clean as needed throughout the night too. Have some cleaning supplies ready, like paper towels or a microfiber cloth as well as a suitable cleaning agent. Stains need to be dealt with quickly, so don’t wait until the party is over to tackle them.

To-do list for AFTER the party:

  • Throw out or store leftovers

As soon as the last guest leaves, turn your attention to any leftover food. Make a decision now about whether you’re keeping it or throwing it out. Don’t leave this decision until morning, otherwise food may go off and attract pests, like cockroaches and ants.

Store leftovers in sealed containers in your fridge or pantry. Bag up anything you’re going to throw away and put it in an outside rubbish bin to prevent unpleasant odors in your home.

  • Wash dishes

Run the dishwasher if you’ve been packing it throughout the night. For other plates and glasses, wash them in the sink or dispose of them if possible. Do this before going to bed as food can be much harder to wash off plates and bowls when left to sit. It can also make your home smell unpleasant.

Also read here to know Soap or Detergent – which is best?

  • Wipe down surfaces

Wipe down all surfaces to ensure no crumbs or spills are left. This is also good practice for ensuring your home is hygienic. Remember to do kitchen countertops, coffee tables and anywhere else guests may have set food and drink down on.

Do a quick check around the rest of your house for missed spills as well. If you spot any, clean them up as best as you can before they have any more time to settle in.

  • Sweep and vacuum

Finally, finish the clean-up by sweeping and vacuuming. You can leave this until the next day if you don’t think your neighbors will appreciate hearing a vacuum late at night. However, it’s best to get this done as soon as possible to deal with any dirt, dust and crumbs that have fallen on your floor. 

  • Call professionals

The easiest way to clean your home after a party is to hire cleaning professionals. They can handle washing dishes, carpet cleaning and taking out the rubbish, among many other tasks. You can also schedule them ahead of time. Cleaning should never get in the way of a good time. So don’t let it stop you from throwing a great party with friends and family. Just remember the tips we’ve discussed and you can make the clean-up all the easier.

Tips for Creating the Perfect Nursery

Nursery Room

Having a new addition to the family can be one of the greatest things in life. However, this joy comes with big responsibilities. From purchasing a crib to picking the right toys – you need to take care when creating the perfect nursery for your child. Children are very sensitive to their surroundings, so you need a nursery specially designed for them. But this can be a tricky task. So, here are some tips to help you create a perfect nursery for your baby.

Safety comes first!

The safety of your kid should be top priority with every decision you make while designing the nursery. Kids are curious and aren’t aware of possible dangers around the home. Simple things like electrical cords and blinds can present great risks to them. If you aren’t certain if an item is safe for your child, research and find out. Your child should not be left alone for long periods of times either.

Lighting

Lighting and the ability to control it is essential to any nursery. Young children will need to nap during the day, so you need to make the space dark enough to sleep in easily even when the sun is shining. Use black-out blinds or curtains for this.

You can use small nightlights or string lights to add a little light to the space if your child is afraid of the dark or to help you quickly check on them as they sleep.

The nursery should also receive plenty of natural light. Exposure to natural light can improve and help with your child’s sleep patterns.

Pick a style or theme for your decor

Choose a style or theme that suits your home and child. There are lots to choose from and having a set style or theme can make it easy to shop for furniture and decor. This is because you can easily discount items that do not match the theme.

Here are a few examples of popular nursery themes:

  • Jungle — Choose greens and browns to create a natural feeling space. You can even use natural materials like jute or sea grass to add texture to rugs or decor. Make sure there are plenty of colorful and cheerful characters too, like lions, giraffes and zebras.
  • Fairy tale — Fairy tales are a childhood favorite. From sleeping princesses, dashing knights and flying dragons, there’s plenty to get a child’s imagination going. Pick rich colors and materials, like red and velvet. Add some magical or royal touches like a draping curtain or a friendly knight to tie the room together.
  • Under the sea—The ocean is almost like another world, with brightly colored fish and plants. Create a calming underwater atmosphere in your child’s room with some soft blues. Make sure to have plenty of fish featured, whether they’re in pictures, part of a mobile or a cuddly friend.
  • Dinosaurs—All kids love dinosaurs and a dinosaur nursery is easy to achieve. Pick greens and browns for base colors. Then you’ve got plenty of options for dinosaur-patterned fabric, as well as books and toys.
Perfect Nursery with carpet cleaning

Be prepared for mess

Young kids are very active and don’t always know exactly what they should or shouldn’t do. When they start playing, they might quickly make a mess in their excitement.

To make it easy to clean up these messes, plan your nursery accordingly. Choose furniture and textiles that are easy to clean and highly durable. You want to be able to spend as much time with your child as possible, rather than having to forgo that bonding time for carpet cleaning.

Nursing station

For ease and a quick clean-up, have a designated nursing space in your child’s room. Have sturdy furniture and everything you need ready. Then you can nurse your child without any problems.

Changing area

It will be some time until your child is toilet trained. As a result, you’ll need to be ready for dirty nappies. A space to change them is vital for a nursery. Make sure it can be easily sanitized and that your child will be safe. Have everything handy so you can get the job done quickly and efficiently.

Storage

Kids need a lot of stuff so storage is a must in any room. Try and be creative, incorporating storage into furniture. For items that children shouldn’t play with, make sure these are out for each or can be locked away. Toys and other things meant for children should be easily accessible so kids can play as they wish.

Read here to know Should I Choose Carpet or Floorboards For My Home?

Be creative but flexible

Decorate your child’s room as you want but remember to keep the design flexible. Firstly, this is to ensure that the room is as safe as possible. But also so that the room can grow you’re your child. Your child may become embarrassed if the room is too young for them.

Additionally, as they grow older certain items may not be necessary and should be easy to replace.

Have fun creating your child’s nursery but always keep safety mind.

How to Remove Moss from Your Roof?

roof cleaning

Moss grows in damp and shady environments. It not only looks unclean but also gives your home a ghostly look. If it grows on roofs, it can severely damage the surface and structural integrity of your roof and home. So, removing it is a must-do. We’ve put together a roof cleaning guide for you to get rid of any moss on your roof and to keep it from coming back.

Why does moss grow on roof?

Moss is a soft green plant that can quickly grow in humid areas with a pH range of 5.0 to 5.5. Its development depends upon the type of surfaces like wood, clay, asphalt or metal.

How to remove moss from your roof?

  1. Gather equipment

To remove the moss, first you need to gather the following equipment:

  • Safety glasses or goggles
  • Rubber gloves
  • Safety rope
  • Work clothes, including a cap to protect your hair, and slip-resistant footwear
  • Ladder
  • Garden hose equipped with a spray nozzle
  • Moss-remover of choice
  • Backpack-style garden pump sprayer or a large spray bottle
  • Scrub brush
  • Long-handled soft-bristle brush
  1. Pick a cloudy day

Choose a cloudy day to do this job. Cloud cover gives the chemicals and roof cleaning products time to be absorbed into the roof. The longer the chemicals can sit, the better they will be absorbed. However, don’t leave them too long. About 20 minutes is enough.

  1. Dress for the job

Cleaning moss off a roof is a messy job and can be somewhat dangerous. Wear old clothes that fit well, so they do not snag or restrict your movement. Put on safety glasses, rubber gloves, a cap and slip-resistant shoes too.

  1. Protect nearby plants

Before getting on the roof, you’ll need to protect any nearby plants and trees. This is because some moss removers can kill other plants. As you clean the roof, some chemical run off may land on nearby plants.

If possible, choose an environmentally friendly product. Otherwise, use plastic sheets to cover nearby plants and wash plants off after you’ve finished cleaning the roof.

  1. Hose moss off

Use a hose to spray water over your roof. This should remove any loose moss. Remember to work down from the top of the roof so that the moss washes off the roof.

  1. Scrub the moss

Using the two brushes, work from the top down to scrub any remaining moss from the roof. Rub it gently and do not scrape or scour the roof. It is best to work in small sections to avoid any breaking or cracking roof shingles or tiles.

  1. Apply chemicals

To prevent moss from growing back, use your moss killer. Use a spray bottle or backpack-sprayer and only use what you need.

You can also install strips of zinc or copper-coated sheets below the ridge to change the pH balance on your roof. These metals are toxic to moss and algae, and you can purchase them in rolls. Attach these sheets using screws and roofing nails.

When it rains, the metal elements are washed off the sheets and onto the roof, making it unpleasant for moss to grow on the roof.

Don’t forget to trim back any overhanging trees and branches so that your roof gets as much sun as possible, so the damp conditions that moss likes are less likely.

  1. Rinse the roof thoroughly

Once the chemicals have had time to sit, use a hose to rinse them off the roof. Don’t use a power washer as it can break or chip tiles or shingles.

Even if you do not use any chemicals, rinse your roof thoroughly to clear away any remaining moss.

Don’t forget gutter cleaning either. Make sure your gutters aren’t clogged with moss debris.

  1. Scrub again if needed

After rinsing, if there is any moss remaining, scrub it off and then rinse again to clean the roof. Any remaining moss can quickly grow back and take over the roof once more.

Why is moss prevention needed?

If moss grows on your roof, it can damage your roof and home’s structural integrity. It can cause holes and leaks in your roof, damaging the ceilings, walls and furniture. So, it is better to handle moss before it gets worse. Clean your roof thoroughly, using chemicals if you need to and then make sure to install metal strips and make your roof as unpleasant as possible for moss.

Read here, 5 Important Things to Keep In Mind While High Pressure Cleaning the Roof

Why is safety necessary while removing the moss?

It’s important to take safety precautions when removing moss from your roof. Working on a roof is dangerous anyway, you can easily lose your balance and fall or misjudge where the edge is.

As moss is slippery, this makes working on the roof even more dangerous. Moss-removers can also be harmful to people, so it’s important to avoid contact with them.

Dress appropriately, including goggles, gloves and slip-proof footwear. Take your own safety seriously. Every roof can develop moss but by following the above cleaning steps, you can get rid of it and prevent it from coming back.

How to Clean a Tile Roof?

Tiles are the perfect choice when you want to have a roof that is both durable and aesthetically pleasing. The reason why tiled roofs are popular among many Melbourne residents is that they can withstand harsh weather conditions better than other roofing materials. Whether it’s a the baking summer sun, a storm or heavy rains, tile roofs offer guaranteed protection to your home, all seasons in all weather. They also provide excellent insulation, keeping your home warmer in winter and cooler in summer.

However, like all roof materials, tiles also need proper care and maintenance to give you long-lasting protection. Whether you want to prevent leaks or to keep your roof looking brand new, you must include tile roof cleaning as part of your regular home maintenance. When you ignore this regular cleaning, you will notice a build-up of organic matter on the tiles that changes the roof’s appearance and thus affects the overall look of your home.Moss, dirt and debris can affect the quality of your roof, leading to leaks and other roof damage.To prevent this, you should have a regular roof maintenance schedule that includes cleaning your roof.

But how do you clean a tile roof and what equipment do you need? Thankfully, we’ve put together this guide just for you.

Tools and Materials Required:

  • Extension cord
  • Rubber gloves
  • Safety equipment (like safety glasses, non-slip shoes)
  • Garden hose and garden spray nozzle
  • Non-corrosive mild cleaner
  • Supplemental water pump
  • High-pressure cleaner
  • Outdoor cleaner with a power sprayer
  • Roof guard rails

Procedure for Roof Cleaning

  • Safety first

Before you get on the roof, make sure you are wearing non-slip shoes as well as safety glasses to protect your eyes from harmful chemicals and splashing water. Once on the roof, install a strong and sturdy roof guard rail so you have something to hold on to and prevent you from falling. It’s also recommended that you have someone else with you at all times. While you clean, they can help by passing tools and ensure that you do not fall or have an accident.

  • Disconnect any water tanks

If you have any water tanks that are connected to your guttering, for instance, rain water tanks, disconnect them so that any run-off from your cleaning does not go into the tanks. As you will be using chemicals to clean, this keeps your tank free from harmful chemicals.

  • Prepare the tiles

The first cleaning step is to remove the visible dirt and debris that’s accumulated on the roof tiles. For this, you can use a high-pressure water pump to wash off any dirt and loose leaves. When you are doing this, remember to walk only on the overlapped portion of the tile roof as it’s the strongest part.

  • Apply anti-moss spray

The next step is applying the anti-moss spray. Start by spraying the cleaning solution on the lower part of the roof. This is because you will need to walk backwards to spray and not step on the tiles that have been sprayed, so by working from the base of the roof to the peak, you are less likely to fall off the roof.

  • Let the spray sit for a few minutes

For effective cleaning, leave the spray on the roof for a few minutes. This ensures that the cleaning solution seeps into the tile’s pores completely. When this happens, the chemicals have a chance to dissolve the spores and thus remove dirt.

  • High-pressure water spray

The last step is to wash away the chemicals by using a high-pressure washer. This step is crucial to get your roof looking brand new. Increase the pressure where there are stubborn stains and make sure to keep spraying until the dirt is completely gone. Also, it’s best practice to start from the peak of the roof and work your way down to the lower tiles so that you are gradually pushing all the dirt off the roof.

Don’t forget about gutter cleaning!

Gutter and roof cleaning go hand in hand as anything that washes off your roof goes into the gutters. Gutters are often filled with debris, moss and algae and regular gutter cleaning is need to prevent these build-ups and keeping your gutters working as intended. Therefore, once you have washed your roof, remove any dirt and debris that has fallen into your gutters.

The Bottom Line

If you have a tile roof, then no doubt your house looks beautiful, but to keep it that way means regularly cleaning and maintaining the tiles. Follow the above guide correctly and you will have a roof that’s super clean. Alternatively, you can always avoid the hassle and call in the professionals who are experts when it comes to roof and gutter cleaning. Read more related Articles here.

Soap or Detergent – Which is best?

Materials like soap and detergents are two of the major products used in commercial cleaning and office cleaning. They play a huge role in removing the dirt, stains, and easing the cleaning process.

But not many people understand the difference between soap and detergent. While they essentially do the same thing, they are very different products with different compositions, different environmental impacts and a range of pros and cons when it comes to cleaning. Also, to know about the importance of office cleaning – prefer only professional clean, click here.

So, let’s find out a little more about the differences between soaps and detergents. 

Soap

Soaps are created by the chemical reaction of a fatty acid with an alkaline substance. This is generally achieved by processing fats and oils with a base substance in a process called saponification.

Soap is usually made of potassium or sodium salts of fatty acids having a long aliphatic carbon skeleton with or without branches with a carboxylic acid chain. A fatty acid is a natural component of animal or plant origin. The long hydrocarbon chain might be made of monounsaturated, polyunsaturated, or saturated. 

Soaps are usually made of naturally occurring substances, although commercially produced soap will include chemical agents, especially for colour and perfume.

Detergent

Detergents are surfactant or a mixture of surfactants that are used to break up or clean grease and grime. They are made up of chemicals and have better and more varied cleaning properties than soaps.

Detergents are made from varieties of petrochemicals and oleochemicals derived from fats and oils. Other chemicals like sulphuric acid, sulphur trioxide and ethylene oxide are also used in making detergent.

Office Cleaning

How they work?

There are three types of energies that are required to clean effectively: 

  1. Chemical energy – provided by the soap or detergent
  2. Mechanical energy– provided by hand or machine washing
  3. Thermal energy – provided by the water

These three energies work together to remove the dirt, stains and other contaminants.

Let’s have a look at how the cleaning process works. Imagine you’re trying to remove and oily soil stain. The oil or grease in the soil will repel the water molecules, so cleaning with plain water will not work.

Since soapsand detergentsare surfactants, they contain water-hating (hydrophobic)components that are repelled by water and attracted to the oils in the stain. The also contain water-loving (hydrophilic) components that are attracted to the water molecules.

These opposing forces help to loosen the stain from the surface, suspending it in the water.

Pros and cons of soaps and detergents

While soaps and detergents essentially do the same work, they have a range of pros and cons.

  • While soaps are entirely biodegradable and made from naturally occurring products, detergents contain a branched hydrocarbon chain, which is non-biodegradable and can be dangerous for aquatic life
  • Detergents are synthetic derivatives, while soaps are made from the natural products
  • Soaps tend to form dirt when used with hard water while detergents don’t form the dirt
  • Soaps are not effective in saline or hard water while detergents don’t lose their effectiveness in saline or hard water
  • Soaps tend to require hot water to get the best results, while detergents are effective in cold water
  • Detergents have stronger and more versatile cleaning properties compared with soap
  • Detergents are cheaper to manufacture than soap

What is the environmental impact of both?

After the cleaning process, soaps and detergents are generally flushed into the drainage system. This can have adverse effects on the environment. Solvents which are used for commercial cleaning are made with natural resources like vegetable oil. These products need more water and energy to clean.

Since detergents are made from non-renewable resources, they are bad for the environment. However, you generally need less detergent compared to soap, which means less material is flushed into the drainage system. While both soap and detergents are made from different materials, they both have adverse effects on the environment. But since they are essential in day to day life, you should always make informed decisions and find the product best suited to your needs and least harmful to the environment.