Spring is right around the corner. With it comes a sense of newness and hope for a great year. One of the best ways you can invite those feelings into your home is by dedicating some time to cleaning around the house. But what should you focus on most as warmer weather makes its way in? Here are seven spring cleaning tips you can start using as springtime approaches.
Clean Your Dryer Vent
At least once a year, you should clean out your dryer vent. Your dryer vent is different from the lint trap (which you should clean after each use).
- Before you begin this part of your spring cleaning, make sure you disconnect your dryer from the power, either by unplugging it or turning off the circuit breaker.
- Move the dryer away from the wall for easier access.
- On the back of your dryer, you’ll likely see a thick, wide, flexible aluminum hose that goes into the wall. Disconnect this hose from the back of your dryer and from the wall (if possible).
- Remove any lint you see by hand first.
- Then, use a vacuum cleaner to clean out all vent holes.
- Next, go outside and use the same process to clean out the outdoor vent.
- Once everything is clean, reconnect the dryer vent hose to the dryer and wall.
- Plug the dryer back in and push it back against the wall.
This simple cleaning trick can improve your dryer’s performance and prevent fire hazards.
Drain Your Water Heater
Draining your water heater is an easy spring cleaning step to overlook. But doing so can help extend your water heater’s life, reduce the time it takes for water to get hot, and protect it against breakdowns. We’ve written an in-depth guide to draining your water heater.
Here are some of the most important things to remember when draining your water heater.
- After turning off the heater’s energy source (electric or gas supply), give the water in the tank time to cool before draining. Trying to drain it immediately can lead to burns or scalding. Generally, give it 30–120 minutes to cool. And please note: Just because the tank is cool doesn’t mean the water is!
- Use a heavier-duty hose to drain the water. Cheap hoses can leak.
- Remember to relight the pilot light (if you have a gas tank) or turn the electricity back on (for electric tanks).
Clean Your Gutters
Cleaning your gutters is a go-to spring cleaning task. This is especially important if you didn’t take this step when winterizing your house. Between melting ice and falling leaves, you’ll want to make sure that your gutters are clear and pointing away from your home’s foundation.
We’ve written a guide to how to properly clean your gutters. Here are just a few important tips:
- When using a ladder, make sure you have a spotter.
- NEVER over-reach while on a ladder. If you cannot reach debris, climb down the ladder and readjust it. Stretching on a ladder is dangerous.
- Check for nests, but be cautious of any animals living in them. When in doubt, call animal control.
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Scrub Down Your Bathroom
You likely spend more time in your bathroom than you think. Bathrooms can be a breeding ground for mold and mildew, which can make you feel sick.
Scrubbing your shower walls, tub, sinks, and fixtures with bleach, soap, and water can prevent mold and mildew growth. That helps keep your bathroom looking and smelling fresh. Additionally, consider washing or changing any shower curtains you have now.
Additionally, make sure you clean your showerheads. You can detach them and let them sit in a mixture of equal parts water and vinegar for an hour. Or you can wrap a plastic bag filled with vinegar and water around it if you don’t want to detach it. This will break down mineral buildup.
Wash Your Walls, Baseboards, Outlets, and Windows
Since most of us are cooped up in the winter, we may not notice dirt, grime, and dander that accumulates on walls, baseboards, outlets, and windows. It’s much easier to clean these areas before we begin opening doors and windows and venturing outdoors more regularly.
All you need to clean these areas are some soap, hot water, and a few rags.
Note: When cleaning electrical outlets, be sure you do two important things.
- Remove the outlet cover to clean it.
- Wait until the cover is totally dry before replacing it.
Additionally, be sure to read our guide on the best way to clean and care for your windows.
Change Your Air Filters to Protect Against Allergens
Your air conditioning and furnace filters do a lot of work all year round. Before pollen and other air particles begin to spread, be sure to change your air filters.
Changing your air filter often depends on your situation. Use this guide to determine how often you should change your air filter. But this is one of the easiest spring cleaning tips you can act on.
Double-Check Your Smoke and Carbon Monoxide Alarms
While checking your smoke and CO alarms might not be cleaning, doing so can save your life. If you didn’t do so on New Year’s Day, make sure you change the batteries (if applicable). Additionally, test them using the test button. If they don’t work even after changing the batteries, get a new one as soon as possible.
Bonus Tip: Consider the Benefits of Your 2-10 HBW Home Service Plan
In addition to the spring cleaning tips above, make sure you take advantage of the benefits you get from your coverage through 2-10 Home Buyers Warranty (2-10 HBW).
From our Appliance Discount Program to our Even If Service Fee Guarantee, 2-10 Members get several benefits from their Home Service Plan on top of quality protection.