We are all guilty of letting things slide and not being totally on top of the housekeeping so below is a check list to how often various items around your home are recommended to be cleaned. Some may surprise you!!
BED LINEN – WEEKLY
Over the course of an average night sleep, we sweat 25ml per hour. If you get eight hours sleep, this is the equivalent of a whole bottle of perfume drenching your sheets!! As well as sweating a considerable amount per night, we also naturally shed our skin - creating a warm environment for dust mites. This soon makes your cosy bed a battlefield of germs and nasty bugs. To keep your bed and your body clean, it is recommended that you wash your bed sheets every week at 60˚C. A top tip is to avoid making your bed first thing in the morning as it seals in the bacteria and germs. Instead, pull back your bed linen when you wake and open the window to air out your bed to reduce humidity which will help to kill off mites.
PILLOWS & DUVETS – EVERY 3 MONTHS
Pillows and duvets should be cleaned every three months to keep dust mites at bay. If your duvet is too large for your washing machine then take it to the dry cleaners. By keeping pillows and pillow cases clean, skin will be clearer, hair will be cleaner and it also helps to keep colds and sniffles at bay.
MATTRESS – EVERY 2 MONTHS
Carolyn Forte of the Good Housekeeping Institute advises cleaning your mattress every two months. The easiest way? Sprinkle it with baking soda, leave for a while and then use a hoover to swoop it up.
BATH TOWELS – EVERY 3 DAYS
No matter how clean your body or your towel is - they are dirtier than you would expect. Each time a towel is used, it removes a layer of dead skin cells, acting as an exfoliator. Damp towels are also the perfect breeding ground for germs, the longer they are left, the more the bacteria multiplies. To stop towels smelling musty add half a cup of baking powder to your wash to freshen them up. Towels can be used up to three times before needing to be washed at 60˚C. Hand towels however, should be changed every one to two days since they are getting used more frequently and might even be drying hands that are not completely clean.
BATH MATS – WEEKLY
Bath mats collect germs straight from soggy feet and should be washed at least once a week at a high temperature.
SURFACES – DAILY
It is important to clean your surfaces every single day, especially the area around the sink which is the dirtiest part of your kitchen. You should also replace kitchen sponges and washcloths weekly.
DISHCLOTHS – DAILY
The Food Standards Agency recommends using disposable cloths wherever possible and cleaning all others after every use. The best way to do that is to hand wash them in 90°C or above with soapy water then soak them in diluted bleach for an hour.
KITCHEN TEA TOWELS – DAILY
They can be one of the most-used items in the kitchen, but their maintenance can sometimes be overlooked. Due to their multi-functional nature, they can be cross contamination culprits. Bacteria from raw meat and dirty vegetables can be easily transferred onto kitchen towels when kitchen utensils are dried. Then if those towels are used to dry hands, this can cause sickness. By keeping a towel separate for drying hands, this stops the risk of spreading germs and will keep illness at bay. Kitchen tea towels should be washed every day at 60°C.
MICROWAVE – WEEKLY
Experts say you should wipe down your microwave once a week and then perform a deep clean every 2 weeks. A top tip for cleaning your microwave is to make up a mixture of half a cup of water and half a cup of white vinegar, pop it in a microwaveable dish and heat on high until the window of the microwave steams up. This will help to dissolve any foodstuffs which can then be easily wiped clean.
FRIDGE – MONTHLY
Scientists say we should thoroughly clean our fridge once a month, particularly the salad drawer, which can contain up to 750 times the safe level of bacteria! A wipe down weekly is also recommended.
COMPUTERS – WEEKLY
A recent study revealed that our keyboards have five times the amount of bacteria as a toilet seat!! Despite 70% of people eating lunch at their desk, 10% of those people never clean it.
Experts say we should spritz our desks with disinfectant spray once a week and always remember to clean between the keys with a cotton swab.
CARPETS - EVERY 6 – 12 MONTHS
A recent study noted that carpets could contain up to 200,000 bacteria per square inch so it's essential to steam it every six months because hoovering it doesn't equate to cleaning it.
By following these simple guidelines, you can ensure your home is a clean and healthy place to live. However, if you are just too busy, then remember that Urban Assistants can do it all for you!!