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Hints from Housekeepers

Updated: Feb 22

You pride yourself on your own abilities and skills to keep your home clean and healthy. And while you know what you are doing, who doesn’t appreciate a few tips now and then to make the work easier — and more effective?

One source of tips can be professional housekeepers, those who work for maid services… cleaning professionals who spend all day cleaning houses and doing it right.

When it comes to the work they do, here are three easy strategies they use each and every day.

Start with clutter: When faced with a room that might seem a little overwhelming by how much there is to do, tackle big items first. Put things back where they belong, give the room a facelift of sorts and then work on smaller tasks, such as dusting and vacuuming. Think triage, which means doing a preliminary assessment of a situation and determine the order of things to bring it all back to normal.

Vacuum heavy traffic areas three times: Running a vacuum cleaner over carpet at warp speed is what many do. It’s best to slow down. Move the vacuum slowly over the floor and allow the beater bar to do its job. And for areas that are walked on more often, go over those three times, back and forth. What happens is the beater bar loosens soil on the first pass, then on the second it picks up most of it, and on the third gets the rest. Smart vacuuming means less dust in your home. The same principle can be used for hard floors, but the advantage there is you can see the dust and soil that isn’t as easy to see on carpet.

Shine those surfaces: Professional cleaners know that simply cleaning a surface sometimes isn’t enough. You want shine, you don’t want to see fingerprints, smears, or smudges. For glass and metal surfaces, after a thorough cleaning, wipe those surfaces with a lint-free cloth and a little rubbing alcohol. This dry (waterless) solvent makes quick work of fingerprints and smudges and gives surfaces a shine you can be proud of.

While some tasks are easy, others are not. When you need help, with any cleaning task but especially deep cleaning carpet and furniture and other tough chores, do the right thing. Call your favorite cleaning company. After all, it pays to call a pro!

When Mold Attacks Grout

Your bathtub or shower are prime locations for mold to grow and thrive. After all, mold needs moisture, a relatively dark area, and a food source — all of which can be found almost any bathroom.

Mold growth in a home is a concern because of possible health hazards from exposure. If you see mold, it’s best to call a professional restoration company because the root cause may be more serious than you think. Mold under cabinets and in dark areas of a bathroom can be a cause for concern.

But mold on grout, especially in a bath or shower, is a task you should be able to handle on your own easily and safely. When mold attacks grout, you need these tips to get the job done right.

Scrub brush and detergent solution: This is an easy first step. You can use an off-the-shelf bathroom surface cleaning product, or create your own from warm water, a little dish detergent, and some baking soda. The detergent will help clean, and the baking soda will raise the alkalinity which helps clean mold. Apply the solution liberally to the grout and use your scrub brush vigorously and this might do the trick. Rinse and repeat. Grout is tough, scrub away!

Bleaching solutions: If cleaning doesn’t do the trick, it’s time to get creative and do what the pros do — bleach away discolorations. Remember that bleach alone is not the best cleaning agent. The job of a bleach is to remove color, and the dark stains from mold in grout is just that — color. If you clean thoroughly, then bleaching comes next.

You have choices with bleach. The safest to use is hydrogen peroxide, which can be purchased at any grocery store or pharmacy. Pour the peroxide directly on the grout, give it several minutes to work, and scrub and rinse. Let it dry and see how it looks.

This might do the trick. Some recommend chlorine bleach, the common household bleach used in laundry. If you use it, be very careful as this is very strong and must be used according to directions and never mixed with other products.

The professionals have answers to any of your mold questions. When you see mold, do the right thing. Call your favorite disaster restoration company.

After all, it pays to call a pro!

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