How to Care for Hardwood Floors {and Laminate too!}

Know What Type of Flooring You’re Dealing With

How to care for your wood floors will vary to a certain extent depending on the type and especially the finish of the wood.  Be sure to ask about the care instructions when purchasing new flooring and choose an option that works well for your lifestyle.  If you’re “inheriting” wood floors through the purchase of a new home, have your realtor confirm the type of flooring or have a professional help you identify it.

An area rug over high traffic areas and entry ways will go a long way in saving your flooring – especially if you have pets!  Rugs can help you tie your room together and define your space. They also allow you to change up the look of your home without making a major investment!  Be sure to always use a rug pad underneath your area rug.  Not only do they prevent the rug from slipping {which can cause scratches as well as injuries!}, but they also prevent the rug from staining the floor underneath.  Unfortunately, I learned this the hard way and little bits from the rubber of the rug under our kitchen table actually transferred to the flooring.

Leave Your Shoes at the Door

Create a spot to store your shoes at all of your main entryways and get in the habit of taking your shoes off {and putting them away!} as soon as you walk in the door.  This can take a little while to do with kids {and husbands!} but if you stay consistent, they’ll soon learn.  Shoes can leave scuff marks and sport cleats and high heels can create dents in the floor.  Leaving your shoes at the door will also cut down on dirt and debris being spread around the rest of the house.

Watch Out for the Pets

If you have dogs {especially really excitable ones that love to come charging to the door to greet you!}, be sure to keep their nails trimmed.  If they’re really doing damage, you can purchase pet “booties” that can be worn inside the house, but basic training to work on calming them down might be more agreeable to them.  Also get in the habit of wiping down your pets’ paws before they come into the house if they are wet or muddy.  We have a dog bin with a few cleaning supplies always stashed at our back door. If our dog sees a towel, he knows to sit and wait at the door until he’s all cleaned up.  You can find more tips on keeping your home clean with pets here.

Do a Little Daily Maintenance

Spending 5 or 10 minutes at the end of the day sweeping up around entry ways and other high traffic areas can prevent the dirt, hairs, and grime from being transferred and dragged around the rest of the house.  The Swiffer Sweep and Vac, sucks up all of the larger particles while trapping all of the finer dust and debris with the Swiffer cloths.  It’s light weight and easily portable to get around quickly to all of those trouble spots.

12 Spring Cleaning Tasks That Take 10 Minutes Each

It's that time of year again -- time for spring cleaning! If you're like me, this annual ritual strikes fear and dread in your heart. Does spring cleaning seem like the Mt. Everest of housekeeping tasks? A challenge only a few have undertaken successfully? Don't worry, spring cleaning doesn’t have to be scary, but it is something we should all do. It's not just about cleaning blinds and sweeping baseboards, though doing these things is great. You can also use spring cleaning as a prompt to schedule household maintenance and service checks that will prevent problems down the line. The tips below are going to help you do all of this in just 10 minutes a day. So have a read and get cleaning!

The first step to successful spring cleaning is to find the time to take care of it and schedule it in. My suggestion is to find a four-week-stretch and block off a convenient time of day or night (before dinner, before bed) to work. If you miss a night, don’t worry, you can always make up the ten minutes the next day. The goal is to get you and your family to commit to cleaning every day for 28 days.

 

While I'm sure you have a list of what you'd like to get done to prepare for spring, summer and beyond, I want to leave you with 12 tasks to consider adding to your list. Happy Housework!

12 Spring Cleaning Tasks That Take 10 Minutes Each

  1. Wash and dry the slipcovers from your pillows, sofas and chairs. Put in the washer and dryer one day. Put back on the furniture the next day.
  2. Take 10 minutes and clean the junk drawer in your house. For many people, this drawer is in the kitchen. Toss the junk and use a silverware organizer to manage the chaos going forward.
  3. Clean the blades on the ceiling fans.
  4. Make today toy clean-up day. Put all the game pieces together in Ziploc bags, throw out broken items and donate toys your kids have outgrown.
  5. Clean out your refrigerator. Check expiration dates and toss everything that is old or will not be eaten.
  6. Clean out your medicine cabinet and toss old medications (both prescription and over-the-counter). Go to safeguardmymeds.org to find out how to safely dispose of these items.
  7. Clean your most cluttered countertop. For many it's the dining room table or kitchen counters. Recycle what you can and shred sensitive materials.
  8. Change the batteries in your smoke and CO2 alarms. Why wait for the annoying beeping sound?
  9. Clean your blinds. Try using fabric softener sheets (you can show your kids how to do this).
  10. Take three days to clean windows. Start with the dirtiest windows and go from there.
  11. Wash and dust the baseboards in each room. This is another task the whole family can get in on. Just remember, 10 minutes with five people is almost an hour of cleaning time.
  12. Dedicate a day to maintaining and fixing things. Oil a lock, fix a broken toilet paper holder, etc. Just make a punch-list and start checking off items.

Sometime in the next 30 minutes block off 28 days and determine what time each day you'll use to tackle spring cleaning. After all, getting started is the hardest part.

Why Green Clean?

Why focus on “Green” Cleaning. Well, we care about your family, and their health, not just our bottom line. Believe us, we could us typical cleaning products, it would be less expensive and easier for us to obtain in large quantities. It would be easier on our bottom line. But we won’t, nor will we ever. That’s why we’re the greenest maid service in Rhode Island.

We are “green” for one reason and one reason only – your family’s health. Our product clean as good or better than any traditional cleaning product. Our Rhode Island Home Cleaning experts are thorough and knowledgeable. If you need to clean a little bit in between visits, we also sell all of our Green Cleaning home cleaning products. Just drop us a line or shoot over an email.

Green Oven Cleaning

Here’s What you Need to Clean your Oven Without Toxic Cleaners:

  • bicarb soda
  • vinegar in a spray bottle
  • clean, damp cloth
  • dry microfibre cloth
  • elbow grease

 

How to Green Clean Your Oven:

  1. Remove the trays and shelves, as these need to be washed by hand, and wipe out (or vacuum out!) the loose crumbs and crap on the bottom of the oven.
  2. Sprinkle the inside of the oven door liberally with bicarb, and a little on the inside of the oven itself.
  3. Spray the whole internal surface of the oven liberally with the vinegar, as well as inside the door. You’ll see the bicarb fizz and bubble.
  4. Leave for 15-30 minutes.
  5. Use the damp cloth to wipe the inside of the oven thoroughly. You will need to rinse the cloth out multiple times.
  6. Use the cloth then to scrub the glass inside the oven door. This is where the sticky build-up is worst, and it will take a bit of elbow grease to lift the grime off.
  7. Once the glass is clean, rinse the cloth thoroughly and wipe out the inside of the oven.
  8. Use the dry microfibre cloth to clean up any excess and clean the glass.
  9. Use the microfibre cloth to wipe over the front of the oven, removing fingerprints, drips and smudges.

 

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