A Google search on the best cleaning methods for different surfaces around the house would give an overwhelming amount of different recommendations. But which of these cleaning habits would do what their proponents claim? Did you know that there are a ton of inaccurate cleaning habits that are being promoted out there? They might, in fact, render your housekeeping efforts useless or even damage the surfaces that you are attempting to clean! We’ve got you covered as we have singled out some of these misconceptions in the housekeeping world that you should stay clear of. Read on to find the seven cleaning habits that you should avoid at all costs for housekeeping and the proper alternatives that you should follow instead.
Vinegar is a remarkably effective cleaner and is great to wipe off grease and prevent bacteria from growing. Its use as a green cleaning method has been rising in popularity lately but you can’t replace every cleaning method with vinegar. For instance, you should never replace a disinfectant with vinegar as it does not prevent stubborn germs, such as the flu virus, from spreading. So you should stick to using a disinfectant once in a while, especially during peak flu season to prevent the spread of these germs.
You should also never use vinegar to clean up any stains or accidents that have an odour to it, especially pet accidents. As the vinegar already has an overpowering smell to it, it might leave an even more pungent smell to these stains. Instead, use a pet stain remover sold commercially to clean up such pet accidents.
As compared to vinegar, bleach is a great disinfectant but it is not an effective replacement for a general cleaner. Before you apply bleach, you should always clean the area first with a general cleaner to properly remove dirt, mold and other residues from the surface. You should always also be cautious when using bleach as it might damage certain surfaces such as marble or granite.
To counteract the harshness of bleach, some might suggest mixing it with other chemicals such as ammonia which is more environmentally friendly. However, you should never mix ammonia with bleach! That chemical mixture is a safety hazard, so please take note of these safety precautions before you follow any articles online and mix such chemicals unknowingly. You are better off not mixing ammonia in any cleaners unless you are a professional in this field and are aware of the different safety hazards that come with mixing these solutions.
A mistake a lot of new homeowners do is to use a standard cleaner for the floors without considering the type of wood floor or its finishes. You should always find out what kind of flooring you have and more importantly, the floor finishes, to prevent any unintentional damage caused by the cleaner. For example, a sealed floor should be cleaned gently with a pH-balanced cleaner while an untreated or oil-treated floor should rarely be mopped at all. Floors with the latter finishes should only be wiped with a chemical-free damp rag and later covered with wax.
A popular misconception that a lot of people have is that they should skimp on vacuuming carpets and rugs to extend their life. But on the contrary, if you don’t frequently vacuum carpets, you might actually risk damaging them as the dirt and debris are abrasive and would ground into its fibers! So, vacuum your rugs if you don’t want to cause more damage to it!
There is some truth in this misconception though. If you have pets and they leave fur all over your upholstered furniture, vacuuming these pet hairs will actually damage the fabric. Vacuums are not effective in removing pet hair from upholsteries as it will still leave behind some stubborn strands. A better option would be a squeegee where its rubber blade will safely clump the peat hair together which you can then vacuum.
Don’t get confused between a disinfectant and a sanitizer! A sanitiser is meant to eliminate 99% of bacteria in 30 seconds, so you should use it to clean cookware and dishware, or anything that will come into contact with food. A disinfectant is meant to kill all organisms under 10 minutes, so it is more suitable to be used in the toilet.
While washing your clothes in cold water saves money, it isn’t powerful enough to clean away the viruses, bacteria and other germs. Set your washing machine to the hot-water cycle instead, especially when one of your family members is having the flu, to prevent the spread of these allergens. If you want to go one step further to protect yourself against these viruses, dry the laundry on high heat.
Avoid these 6 cleaning habits and you will be able to housekeeping more effectively!
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