While there are some people who enjoy spending hours dusting, scrubbing and polishing their home to perfection, the majority of people lack the time, interest or energy to exert this type of effort. Keeping up with basic housework like mopping, dishes and laundry will keep a home looking cleaner, but there may still be the problem of unappealing odors that make it seem dirtier than it should. Here are some tips for keeping that fresh-scrubbed smell in a home all the time.
Keep Drains Clean
Many musty, unpleasant odors stem from grimy drains. Once a month pour baking soda down every drain in the bathroom and kitchen and follow it with a ¼ cup of white vinegar. Allow it to foam for several minutes and then rinse it down with some boiling water. The vinegar smell will disappear quickly, but it is easy to eliminate it faster by rubbing a lemon wedge around the outer surface of the drain and rinsing with water. In the kitchen, use the lemon over the entire surface of a stainless steel sink to polish the finish.
Tackling the Toilet
Pouring vinegar, coca cola or an all-purpose cleaner into a bowl and following it with a vigorous scrub with a toilet brush will remove stains and leave the bowl sparkling as long as it is done at least once a week. The big problem is that many people will have a bowl that looks clean, but will still notice a not-so-pleasant aroma. This is because the rim under the toilet seat is often missed during cleaning. Brushes are not able to properly reach this out-of-sight spot, and nasty stains can accumulate. Always wipe with a paper towel or cleansing wipe underneath this rim. It is fast and easy and it will make the bathroom smell as clean as it looks.
Laundry Room Mustiness
Bad odors in the laundry room can transfer to the clothing and make laundry smell musty, even after it is washed. These odors tend to come from three places; the washer, the dryer and the hamper. To eliminate this, always leave the washer door open in-between uses. Once a month, run the washer empty with only a cup of bleach, no soap. While the washer is cleaning, use hot water and bleach and wash the interior of the dryer with a rag. Dry thoroughly after cleaning. Empty the lint trap in the dryer after every use and wipe it down with a damp rag occasionally. Never leave wet clothes or towels in the clothes hamper. When stored together they can begin to mildew in as little as 24-hours. If they cannot be washed immediately, use a portable clothes rack to drape them across so they will air-dry and not create funky odors in the hamper.
Use the Microwave
The average microwave gets enough use to require a cleaning every few days. To make it easier, and to freshen the kitchen at the same time, use boiling water and vanilla extract. Add several drops of vanilla to a bowl of water and heat for a couple of minutes in the microwave. The vanilla will sweeten the air in the kitchen and the steam from the water will soften any food debris in the microwave. Remove the bowl and wipe out the microwave.
Freshening a home is simple, and it is much more effective and healthier for people to use natural methods rather than deodorizing sprays or scented candles that only mask the smell. By creating a pleasant aroma in the home, it will feel much cleaner and more comfortable to everyone.