It’s often said that a clean home is a proud home, but just how clean is ‘clean’?
Some will tell you that cleaning above eye level is a waste of time. Out of sight, out of mind – or so they say. Unfortunately, ‘out of sight’ isn’t a viable ethos for anyone looking to keep their home hygienically clean.
And that’s precisely when clean really is clean – when it’s safe and sanitary.
In which case, evidence would seem to suggest that most homes aren’t quite as clean as their respective owners may think. Even if you invest a fair amount of time in your domestic comings and goings, you’re probably overlooking a few key areas that warrant a little TLC.
To put things in context, here’s a brief summary of the most overlooked places in the average home that you probably haven’t cleaned in a while:
The Washing Machine
Ask yourself – when was the last time you treated your washing machine to a proper clean? Contrary to popular belief, clean clothes that smell great don’t confirm a clean and sanitary appliance. Unless you’re cleaning your washing machine every few weeks, it’s probably harbouring more germs and bacteria than you could possibly believe.
Curtains and Drapes
Surprisingly easy to clean, yet equally easy to overlook. Nevertheless, the fact that most curtains and drapes these days are machine-washable means they couldn’t be easier to keep clean and sanitary.
Take a torch and have a quick look underneath your microwave, your refrigerator and your food processer…if you dare. You may be somewhat alarmed as to how much general detritus that accumulates in the spaces over time, if you’ve not addressed them for a while.
They’re made to accommodate all kinds of unpleasantness, though it’s surprising how many people rarely (or never) actually clean the bin itself. A good spray with sanitizer followed by a blast with a hosepipe outdoors is the quickest and easiest way of getting the job done.
You’re not using your ceiling fan throughout the cooler months of the year, so you don’t need to pay much attention to it, right? Wrong – it takes almost no time at all for a stationary ceiling fan to build a thick and sticky layer of dust and nastiness, which will subsequently be splattered all over your room when you next turn it on.
Statistically one of the most probable places in the average home to harbour germs, bacteria and viruses, which should therefore be appropriately cleaned and sanitised on a regular basis. For the record, the same also applies to door handles, cupboard doors and so on.
It’s interesting how despite the fact that we shove our toothbrushes straight into our mouths for a good few minutes each day, most people make little to no effort to keep them clean. The average toothbrush holder being rather on the grim side, to say the least.
Research also suggests that the overwhelming majority of households fail to keep their remote controls (and general handheld devices) in a clean and sanitary condition. When you think about how many grubby hands they come into contact with on a daily basis, you get some idea as to what might be lurking on your remotes.
The general approach is to wait for a shower curtain to fall into a state of disrepair, before replacing it. Not the most hygienic or economical approach, given how easy it is to give almost any shower curtain a hygienic clean with an appropriate spray and a cold-water rinse with the shower head.
Soft furnishings that are neither machine-washable nor have removable covers can be particularly problematic. Hence, it’s a good idea to keep them as clean and sanitary as you can on an ongoing basis, rather than allowing them to get dangerously dirty in the first place.
Last up, the tools and supplies you use to keep your home clean and hygienic also need to be cleaned on a regular basis. Examples of which include your vacuum cleaners, mops, brushes, dusters, sponges and so on. Contrary to popular belief, cleaning equipment doesn’t actually clean itself!