Sure, you clean your house when guests are coming over and you make sure to keep up on the usual chores. But do you clean just to clean? Or do you clean for your family’s health?

Your home is a hoarder of germs and allergy-inducing molecules, especially during the winter. People are just starting to get outside again after spending nearly the whole last few months indoors. It’s time to wipe the slate clean and make sure you have a happy, healthy home.

At John’s Chem-Dry, our mission is to raise awareness of the importance of a clean home for optimal health. As we’ve cleaned homes and businesses for years, we have noticed some “hotspots” in homes that are often overlooked. High touch points and forgotten areas are where we’ll focus today.

Let’s walk through a few of them.

  • Tile is porous. This means that grout, tile, and stone can act like a magnet for dirt, dust and grimy particles such as mold spores. They become breeding grounds for bacteria. Sometimes this means all that bacteria masks the original color of the tile. Clean tile in the bathroom and kitchen with a neutral pH tile cleaner in order to protect any previously applied sealers.
  • Furniture upholstery collects dust. Sofas, love seats, recliners and dining room chairs provide a cozy haven for dust mites and other allergens. Vacuum these and have them professionally cleaned regularly. You can wash removable upholstery covers in hot water, letting them air dry.
  • Carpets, rugs and mats need to be cleaned more often. These guys pick up everything from pet urine to toenails and can hold approximately 200,000 bacteria per square inch! Gross. Have the area underneath rugs and mats deep cleaned. Vacuum carpet fibers often and have them cleaned professionally two to three times a year. 
  • Curtains and blinds are so often forgotten. Window curtains and blinds collect dust and dirt easily. Remove dust build-up by shutting blinds and dusting with a microfiber cloth. Next, close blinds in the opposite direction for a quick, thorough wipe-down using a non-toxic window cleaner and clean cloth.
  • Your mattress is probably gross. The average bed holds up to 10,000 dust mites, which can cause hay fever, asthma and allergies. Mattresses are a dust mite’s paradise as people sweat up to a half pint of moisture each night and shed up to nine pounds of skin each year while they sleep. Vacuum the mattress thoroughly and turn it over. Mattresses should be vacuumed at least once a month and turned over every six months to reduce dust mites.
  • You have no idea what’s behind your stove and refrigerator. Over time, crumbs, grease and other unwanted particles accumulate in these areas, providing a food source for insects and other pests. If possible, move the appliance out from the wall and unplug. Using a long-handled, slightly damp sponge, mop the back of the appliance to lift dust from the surface and then wipe the floor and walls with hot soapy water.

Starting with these places helps you keep the entire home clean. You’ll see an amazing difference!

Before you go, we want to share with you the EPA’s recommendations for home cleaning. They recommend that most homes have their carpets and upholstery professionally cleaned at least two to three times per year while bathrooms, kitchens, walls and tile or stone surfaces are generally recommended for a professional cleaning every 12 months.

So yes, clean when the guests come over. But be sure to clean for you and your family, too. There is a real physical and emotional benefit of making a home a cleaner and happier place to be.