We love the idea of spring cleaning. Take on a few major organization tasks and tidying assignments and you feel complete for another calendar year. But in between the big chores, there are smaller cleaning routines that are easy and if done frequently will lower your electricity bill significantly and help you live in a healthier home.
Dust your light bulbs
It may seem like a lot, but you really should dust your light bulbs once a week. Clean light bulbs shine brighter, so you can get away with using a lower wattage bulb or dimming your LED bulbs in order to save energy and money. Clean light bulbs with a soft duster or even an inexpensive paint brush weekly and you’ll be seeing things a bit brighter.
Clean your ceiling fan
Weekly wipe downs of your ceiling fan will help eliminate the dust that accumulates on the blades. If not, that dust will be spread all over the room and into your lungs when you turn on your fan. Martha Stewart suggests that you gently slide the inside of a pillowcase over each of the blades of the fan. You can then throw the pillowcase in the washing machine with the rest of your laundry.
Clean your vents
Ideally, you should clean your air vents once a month by soaking and scrubbing the cover with soap and water. While the cover soaks, you should vacuum out the inside of the vent. By constantly removing the dust in your vents, you’ll breathe better air and your HVAC system will run more efficiently.
Clean your small appliances
If you want your appliances to last longer, clean them on a monthly basis. Your microwave, toaster, and coffee maker work harder if they are dirty, causing them to use more energy to get the job done. Plus, you’ll save money by not having to replace them. An easy way to clean your coffee maker is to just fill it up with a half water-half vinegar mixture, then let it run. One cycle of the water-vinegar mix followed by three cycles of just water should clean your coffeemaker and ensure there isn’t a vinegar taste to your next cup of coffee.
Thoroughly wash your windows
A great way to save energy is to use the extra hours of sunlight in the summer time to naturally brighten your home. However, if your windows have smudges and are dirty, you may be less likely to open your blinds or curtains. You really only need to do a deep clean of your windows twice a year, so make sure your windows are on your spring cleaning list. Green cleaning expert Leslie Reichert suggests using a mixture of a few drops of dish soap, half a cup of white vinegar, and three cups of distilled water to wash your windows. Use a made-for-glass microfiber cloth to dry your windows.