Springtime means warmer weather, flowers blooming, and of course – spring cleaning! It’s the perfect time to declutter your home and eliminate all the dirt and dust collected over the winter. But while you’re busy scrubbing down your surfaces and airing out your rooms, don’t forget the importance of keeping everyone safe and healthy.
Here are a few tips to help keep you and your family safe and healthy while spring cleaning.
1. Start with the basics.
Before you start deep cleaning, do the basics like changing your furnace filter, vacuuming regularly, and dusting surfaces. This will help reduce allergens in the air and make it easier to clean other areas. You can also open windows to let fresh air in and reduce the amount of cleaning chemicals you need to use.
Some people are more sensitive to cleaning chemicals than others. If you or someone in your family has asthma or allergies, be sure to read the labels on all cleaning products and follow the manufacturer’s instructions. You may want to consider using natural cleaning products or make your own.
2. Don’t forget about your air conditioner.
Your air conditioner can circulate dust and pollen throughout your home, so it’s essential to clean it regularly. Check the filter monthly and replace it as needed. You should also have your air conditioner serviced by a professional every year.
Some air conditioners have an antimicrobial coating that helps prevent mold and bacteria growth. If you don’t have this air conditioner, you can clean the coils yourself with a brush or cloth. Just be sure to unplug the unit and follow the manufacturer’s instructions.
3. Dispose of wastes properly.
When you’re cleaning, you’ll likely generate a lot of waste, including old clothes, paper, and cardboard. To prevent these items from ending up in a landfill, donate them to a local charity or recycling center. You can usually find a list of accepted articles on the website or by calling the center.
But items that can no longer be used, such as broken electronics or hazardous materials, should be disposed of properly. Many cities have special collection days for these items, or you can find an affordable dumpster for rent to dispose of them yourself. Just as importantly, ensure you follow the manufacturer’s instructions on disposing of any cleaning products you used.
4. Wear the right clothing.
When you’re cleaning, it’s essential to wear the proper clothing to protect your skin and eyes from harsh chemicals. Long-sleeved shirts, long pants, and gloves will help keep your skin safe. And be sure to wear goggles or safety glasses to protect your eyes.
Especially for people with asthma or allergies, it’s important to avoid triggers like dust and pollen. So be sure to shower and change your clothes after cleaning. You may also consider wearing a mask while cleaning to avoid breathing in dust or other allergens. Choose a comfortable mask that fits snugly over your nose and mouth.
5. Keep food safety in mind.
If you’re cleaning the kitchen, follow food safety guidelines. Throw away any food that’s past its expiration date, or that’s been contaminated by mold or other pests. And be sure to clean all surfaces, including countertops, appliances, and utensils.
Use hot, soapy water for cleaning, and disinfect surfaces with a diluted bleach solution. If you’re using any chemicals, read the labels and follow the manufacturer’s instructions. This will help avoid any accidental poisonings. Cover or remove any food before you start cleaning, and wash your hands thoroughly when you’re done.
6. Take breaks and stay hydrated.
Cleaning can be strenuous, so take breaks and stay hydrated. If you’re feeling dizzy, lightheaded, or nauseous, stop what you’re doing and rest in a cool, well-ventilated area. Drink plenty of fluids, especially water, and avoid alcohol.
If you have asthma or allergies, be sure to take your medications as prescribed. And if you start to experience shortness of breath, chest pain, or a rapid heartbeat, seek medical attention immediately.
7. Use caution with chemicals.
Cleaning products, even natural ones, can be harmful if misused. So it’s essential to read the labels and follow the manufacturer’s instructions. When using any chemicals, be sure to ventilate the area and wear the proper clothing and safety gear.
And never mix cleaning products, as this can create dangerous fumes. When storing cleaning products, keep them out of reach of children and pets. Some products, such as bleach, should be stored in a well-ventilated area. And be sure to dispose of them properly when you’re done.
Following these simple tips, you can spring clean without risking your health. You want your home to be clean and healthy, and these tips will help you achieve that goal. Keep your family safe and healthy this spring by taking the time to clean the right way.