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The Spokesman-Review Newspaper
Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883

Water Cooler: Summer cleaning tips

Keep up with housecleaning with these cleaning tips.  (Pixabay)

Some chores require a little extra attention in the summer. Here are a few tips for cleaning your home this season.

Dust fans and vents – With the windows closed because of the smoke and high temperatures, it is even more important to keep fans and ventilation covers free of dust and debris in order to promote healthy air quality in the home. When cleaning, make sure that everything below the fan blades or vent is covered or moved out of the way so you don’t have to clean up any dust or other messes twice. This is also a good time to double-check that the fan is rotating counterclockwise so it will push air down and more effectively cool the room.

Clean out the refrigerator – The summer is full of fresh produce and leftovers from large gatherings. Make sure to check the refrigerator regularly to help prevent any fresh food from going to waste and prevent odors from growing in the refrigerator. If something has gone sour in there, try cleaning it during the evening when it is cool enough to open the windows and circulate fresh air throughout the home. Work in sections and take out any removable shelves or drawers so they can be washed with soap and warm water in the sink. You can put an open box of baking soda in the refrigerator to help trap any residual odor.

Freshen the patio – We tend to go in and out of the house a lot during the summer, so give the porches, entrances and decks a sweep to help prevent tracking extra dust and debris into the house. Try to do this every other day or once a week to keep on top of it through the season. Dust and wash any outdoor furniture that needs it to ensure you always have a welcoming space to hang out in on those especially nice days. Start by rinsing outdoor furniture with a spray nozzle and spot clean any dirtier areas with the appropriate cleaning product and a cleaning cloth. Avoid using anything too harsh that would potentially stain fabrics.

Deep clean the cabinets – When it’s too hot to cook or bake, it’s a great time to deep clean. Sort through the pantry and get rid of any expired or old items you know you won’t use. Take the chance to invest in some containers or pantry shelves for reorganizing. Before you put anything away, go through the cabinets and clean out all of the shelves. This will have your cabinets and pantry ready to go when the temperatures drop back down and you get the urge to bake something tasty.

Bathroom maintenance – With the warmer temperatures of summer, it is easy for bathrooms to get mystery odors and provides an even better chance for mold and mildew to grow. Take extra care to keep the bathroom clean and fresh during the summer by keeping a cleaning utensil handy for a quick scrub of the shower after every use or so. Do a quick swish around the toilet bowl with a brush daily or every other day and try to keep the sink clean with a quick wipe up every day. Hang damp towels and bath mats in the sun to dry more quickly and let the sun’s UV rays help kill any residual bacteria.