10 Ways to Spring Clean Your Home From Top to Bottom
1. Take Care of Any Exterior Maintenance
What’s the point of reorganizing and deep cleaning your house if you’re one step away from a leaky roof and a musty attic? Interior water damage is much harder to clean than your normal spring cleaning. Unfortunately, minor roof damage isn’t always easy to spot with an untrained eye. Minor damage is also usually much cheaper to fix so it’s better to get things taken care of as quickly as possible This is why I highly recommend getting an annual roof inspection while you’re already doing your spring cleaning.
If you live in Louisville, KY like me, I highly recommend going to Greater American Roofing for a free roof inspection. Greater American Roofing is a Louisville Commercial roofing company and residential roofing company. They’re also a veteran-owned company and GAF certified and insured so you know that your roof is in the safest of hands.
2. Dust Ceiling Fans and Light Fixtures
I rarely use my ceiling fans so they're usually pretty coated in dust when I go to clean them. I find it easiest to just use my Swiffer floor sweeper for this. It's designed to be used for fans as well, just make sure the Swiffer head is pointed down and it will let you easily reach those high places. Always do this before you vacuum or sweep your floors though as some dust will manage to fall.
For light fixtures, just a regular dusting wipe should do the trick.
3. Go Through All of Your Clothes and Get Rid of Anything You Don’t Need Before Putting Up Winter Sweaters
If you’re anything like me this is kind of a daunting task. It’s both a blessing and a curse that my weight has kind of fluctuated within the same couple sizes for the majority of my adult life.
I love Marie Kondo’s advice of getting rid of anything that doesn’t bring you joy. It’s a great start, but let’s also be real, do you get joy out of your very necessary work clothes? Not necessarily, right?
Here’s my pretty basic system:
Keep anything you need for work as long as it still fits well and is still in style.
When putting away winter clothing, keep anything you wore regularly - these are the obvious keeps. If anything is in disrepair or no longer fits place those in a separate pile to get rid of. Now for the hard part, put aside any items that you did not wear all season. Don’t automatically get rid of this pile of clothing. Things get forgotten or let’s be honest you may not have worn some dressy favorites during quarantine because you had nowhere to go. If something in this pile no longer fits your aesthetic automatically place it in the give-away pile.
So now you have two piles - things that you could still see wearing, but haven’t worn in a while and things that you know you don’t want. For the possible keeps go on ahead and try them all on and decide if you like them in the same way you would in a dressing room at a store. Would you buy this? If the answer is no, just add it to the giveaway pile.
For things that are worn out, either trash these or save them as fabric scraps to do crafts with. Everything else can either be given away to a place like Goodwill or sold on a site like Poshmark.
Do the same thing with any spring/summer clothing you pull out. This will empty your dresser and closet a bit and give you space for new pieces!
4. Clean Out and Reorganize Your Pantry
I recommend doing this one more than once a year, but it’s a must-do for any spring cleaning list.
When reorganizing your pantry I recommend taking out all of the food and organizing it by expiration date. Throw out anything that’s expired.
If there is anything that you no longer eat due to diet changes go on ahead and place those in a bag to donate to a local food bank. Please take this extra step as many food banks were hit hard by quarantine.
Anything that you want to keep that is expiring in the next couple of months should be separated to be used first in upcoming meals. Food waste is such a large problem in the US and it saves you money as well if you can utilize what you have before it goes bad. I also like to put everything back with the food organized by first to expire - for instance, if you have eight cans of green beans make sure they are ordered so that first to expire is the one you reach for first.
5. Clean Out Your Fridge
Cleaning out your fridge is pretty simple. Immediately toss anything that is expired and any produce that no longer looks fresh. For sauces, marinades and dressings make sure that they haven’t been opened for longer than recommended - if you can’t remember how long they’ve been opened then take that as a sign to throw them out.
I always use a bleach cleaner for my fridge to make sure that any potentially moldy or bacteria-filled spills are well cleaned off. If you don't already, make sure to keep an opened box of baking soda in your fridge to eliminate and potential odors - replace this every three months.
6. Throw Out Any Expired Beauty and Skincare Products
This one is pretty easy to forget. In a perfect world, every high-end beauty product lasts until it is emptied. Unfortunately, most of us don't often finish each product before its recommended shelf life is complete.
Unlike food, beauty and skincare products do not come with an expiration date, but they do still go bad.
Here are some guidelines on how long you can keep them for once they are opened:
Three years: body wash, mouth wash (from manufacture date), and sunscreen.
Two years: eye-liner pencil, powder blush, lipstick, body lotion, face cream, hair gel, hair spray, shampoo, conditioner, and shaving cream.
One year: concealer, cream blush, eye shadow, foundation, lip gloss, nail polish, deodorant, eye cream, and teeth whitening strips.
Three months: liquid and stick eyeliner, and mascara.
7. Clean Out Your Coffeemaker
You're probably already pretty regularly cleaning out your coffee pot and the plastic coffee filter in your coffeemaker. But for spring cleaning make sure that it's totally clean on the outside with your favorite kitchen cleaner.
Since you can't wash the entire machine I recommend putting a pot of white vinegar through the machine. Once this is done go on ahead and do the same thing with water to get the vinegar smell/taste far away from your coffee.
8. Reorganize Your Bookshelves by Color
This might just be the easiest way to both spruce up your home and get yourself into a more creative mood.
Simply empty out a bookshelf and separate books by the color of their spines. While going through books if you realize you have a few books that you’ll never want to read again go on ahead and put those aside to give away.
Place them back on the shelf by color to make a classic rainbow (if you have enough of each color) or you can just do your own creative variation. For example, maybe have one shelf be a mix of purple and blue and another black and white.
9. Clean Your Throw Pillows
No matter how well you keep your throw pillows clean, they will inevitably end up trapping some dust mites.
A great tip to quickly kill dust mites is to throw them in a hot dryer cycle for about 20 minutes.
10. Steam Clean Your Carpets
For around $30 you can rent a professional steam cleaner for about a day. This will totally revitalize your carpets in about an hour.
If you’ve been hesitant to rent a carpet cleaner since Covid-19 hit I totally get it. There are some pretty affordable home steam cleaners you can buy for less than $100. They may not work quite as well as a rental, but that shouldn’t matter too much if you use them a bit more regularly.