One-A-Day Challenge: Spring Cleaning

Ask me how I got my shower door so clean
How are you doing on your spring cleaning? I've been knocking things off my to-do list, and it's such a handy one that I thought I'd share it.

Just check off one item every day, and in three weeks you'll have thoroughly spring-cleaned your entire house--easy-peasy and I've included cheapskate tips where applicable! I recommend doing them in order; I've organized it as a top-to-bottom list so you won't end up dusting off your ceiling fan right after you vacuum. . .No, I haven't done that, why do you ask? Um, heh. . .


Spring Cleaning Challenge

  1. Dust light fixtures and ceiling fans-- Microfiber Cleaning Cloths dampened with vinegar work well.
  2. Sweep cobwebs in corners and along the ceiling.
  3. Dust all horizontal surfaces—tops of doors, picture frames, shelves, baseboards, counters...
  4. Magic Eraser or spot-clean the walls.
  5. Wipe down circulating fans, wall, and floor vents with a cloth dampened with vinegar.
  6. Get a new  vacuum filter (seriously, when's the last time you did it?)
  7. Take everything off the bed and launder, including things you might wash less often like comforters or bedskirts.
  8. Sprinkle the mattress with Baking Soda and let sit for at least an hour, then vacuum it all up with the brush attachment. You can do this while your bedclothes are in the wash to save steps!
  9. Vacuum all upholstered furniture and vacuum or launder curtains.
  10. Take rugs and mats outside and beat with a broom handle.
  11. Vacuum the floor REALLY thoroughly before you put the rugs back down.
  12. Spot-clean the carpet.
  13. Give the kitchen a deep clean, especially the parts you usually skip (drip-pans, anyone?)
  14. Check expiration dates in your fridge, pantry, and medicine cabinet, and bring things to the front—or to the garbage!—accordingly.
  15. Give the bathroom(s) a deep clean, especially the parts you usually skip. Here's an easy, green method for the shower!
  16. Go through your make-up and throw out anything that smells funny or you never use.
  17. Wash windows inside and out. A mix of water and vinegar with a microfiber cloth work great!
  18. Scrub out all window tracks with soapy water and an old toothbrush.
  19. Go through your wardrobe and if there's things you never wear or have worn out either donate them or put them in a rag-bag (for craft projects!)
  20. Bring summer clothes to the front and hide winter clothes in the back.
  21. If you have a wool coat, bring it to the dry-cleaner's—I know, not cheap, but it's only once a year!
  22. Treat any dingy whites to a soak in vinegar or borax . Might be a good time to do the dishcloths, too!
  23. Polish and condition wood—anybody know a good green way to do this and nix the orange-glo?

There you have it, 23 steps to a majorly deep-cleaned house.

Shared at: Liz Marie: "Clean It!" Link Party

Tell me, is there anything I missed? What are your favorite spring cleaning rituals?

P.S. Affiliate links are embedded in this post. :) Feel free to support us while you stock up on home essentials!

Comments

Unknown said…
I've used Bar Keeper's friend for years. I use it on glass, stainless steel, porcelain, walls, tile & grout, concrete, siding, grill, oven and it also makes a wonderful polish for all my brass nick knacks.
Anonymous said…
Another endorsement! I have kept Barkeeper's Friend in my cabinet since I was 18. I shared an apartment for a bit with a lady with whom I worked, and she introduced me to it. I used it on my dad's old countertops, and he couldn't believe how amazing they looked after years and years of dinginess! I also use it in the sink and bathtub and anywhere else. It is wonderful!
Anonymous said…
I brew black tea and wipe my hardwood floors once a week,they are beautiful!
Anonymous said…
Urine has Uric Acid..when mixed with bleach it forms a toxic chemical. Not a good combination. I would recommend using vinegar which also works as a disinfectant. However, vinegar and bleach also cause a toxic chemical reaction. I would recommend not using bleach if you plan on cleaning up urine.
Unknown said…
Hi, just found your blog via Pinterest! As for wood polish: I recently learned that mayonnaise removes water rings. I tried it on my grandmother's 1920s cedar hope chest and it worked great. In fact, I ended up wiping the whole thing down with mayo and a paper towel because it looked so good. It's been about a month and it doesn't smell funky or look greasy. It makes sense, though, because it's basically oil and lemon juice (depending on what kind you use). So far it's a great alternative to other furniture polish. I was afraid my dog would get after it, but so far she has left it alone.
Unknown said…
I have used Barkeeper's Friend (it's a cleaning powder you can find in the cleaning isle at Walmart) to clean just about everything. It works great for copper bottom pots and I would imagine it will work well for bronze. It even cleans my glass-top range perfectly. Good luck
Unknown said…
I saw another Pinterest tip that recommended slicing any citrus fruit in half, sprinkling liberally with salt, and rubbing down showers, tubs, and sinks. I've tried it with grapefruit and it works great. Leaves the bathroom smelling heavenly.
Anonymous said…
What is antique wax? Can I use it on my cherry cabinets?
Jennifer said…
I use regular lysol cleaner for that area. It works pretty well for me. I also use it on the kitchen cabinets.
Jennfier said…
That's because it takes the paint right off the walls! I was using one on my walls when I noticed that it changed to the color of the paint.
Anonymous said…
Good green way to polish furniture? 1/2 c olive oil w/ 5 drops Lemon Essential Oil. I like the doTERRA brand best
Stephanie said…
You forgot to clean the fridge out and oven. And kitchen floor.
Stephanie said…
You forgot to clean the fridge out and oven. And kitchen floor.
Anonymous said…
take them to a car detailer or the local self service car wash and hose them out. I have layed mine out flat on my back wood deck and wet with water hose then took a stiff plastic brisle broom and a little tide and scrub then rinse again til clean water runs out. just make sure you have a few days of good nice warm weather so they will dry.
Anonymous said…
sorry netter you lost me at eco friendly, love the idea of the press n seal can't wait to get home and try it thanks for the great idea.
Anonymous said…
what about cleaning the burner pans on the stove?? (sorry forgot what they're actually called.. the pans underneath all the burner coils). Anybody have any good tips to removing the grease and cooked on stuff from those??
Anonymous said…
I also like to dust/vacuum the curtains. Or, put them in the dryer on a delicate cycle for just a few minutes. It's amazing how dusty they get. I use lemon oil on the wood, especially window sills and exterior doors.
Anonymous said…
lemon oil is NOT recommended for wood if you EVER have to refinish it the finish will bubble... was married to a man who refinished furniture for a living and he always scolded people for using lemon oil
Jill W. said…
we use the microfiber cloth in the shower with the blue dawn (no ammonia) walls, tile, and glass doors all shine - we've always done this weekly/or more like every other, not sure how it would work on built up grime.
Jamie said…
While this may not be 'eco friendly' for those of us who are unable to remove the bottom shelf for cleaning and all above shelves are wire sometimes its the only only way to get it clean without totally murdering your electric bill. (I did clean my bottom shelf at least monthly before finding this awesome trick!)
Anonymous said…
3/4 cup canola oil and 1/4 cup white vinegar is wonderful. It will take the grime off of your kitchen cabinets, and usually also covers any scratches in our wood. Try it on any old solid wood finishes before you strip it!
Jamie said…
I was told that using Murphy's oil on grout will help to seal it. I took that to mean, once it's clean use the Murphy's oil. And do it once a month. I've never had real tile so I'm not sure if this is true, but it sounds like it would work and help prevent stains.
Anonymous said…
I use my swiffer and get an old rag with Pinesol water, diluted, and wipe down the walls
Anonymous said…
I always wipe down my walls in every room especially if you have gas heat. It truely makes the room seem so much cleaner. I use a dish towel and my swiffer to clean the walls. Don't forget to clean out the light fixtures, bugs love to die there.
Anonymous said…
Don't forget to wash the curtians while cleaning the window!!
Jennifer said…
One thing that I do every spring and fall is to place the tiny rubber bands that you use for hair braids on each hanger in our closets. When I do laundry through the year I toss the rubber bands. When I do my spring and fall cleaning I know what clothes have been worn and what hasn't been worn.
Anonymous said…
I use a magic eraser on the white grout in our bath rooms. It is amazing at how well this works (& how dirty they were!:)
copperman said…
I have tried the oil for the shower door what a mess, I got some rog3 made for me tub and sprayed it in and the harden soap and hard water just dropped off with gravity no scrubbing. Kohler recommends this as well
Krista said…
I know this was from a year ago but my uncle one time took all his rugs to the car wash and laid them out upside down.. spray washed them then flipped to the good side and just washed with water.. till the soap was gone. He takes everything to the car wash and it works! That is my trick for my giant area rugs now too.
Anonymous said…
For #19 add switch all hangers so they all face backwards and as you wear somelthing the hanger goes back the normal way and after 6 months any hangers still hanging backwards you know you didn't wear the item so you can get rid of it. Very visual as to what you are truly wearing and what you think you are wearing.
Anonymous said…
Wash curtains and blinds!
Unknown said…
BKF is great for stinky disposals....pour some it down the drain and half a lemon, let it sit for a few min. then turn it on. Great smelling disposal
Anonymous said…
I live in the country and have a problem with hard water stains (rust) in my shower.Any helpful ideals.
Unknown said…
Thanks for this list! I've printed it out and posted it to the inside of my cupboard door. You know the most motivating part for me? I don't have carpets, so I get to cross something off right away!
Great post! Thanks! Now, where are my helpers??? :)
Anonymous said…
I use lemon oil on wood to condition it. It will also take soap scum off shower doors like a breeze.
New follower here! Found your site through Pinterest. Love the topics! I'll definitely be referencing you as I make may way through my first swing at homemaking. :-)
-Rosie
frugalfreshmanhomemaker.blogspot.com
Marissa Deen said…
Hey Rosie, thanks for visiting! :) Followed you back.
Anonymous said…
You could add scrubbing out trashcans to the list.
Anonymous said…
Do you have any suggestions about getting hairspray off the walls?
Unknown said…
Most installers of wood flooring recommend only cleaning them with a vinegar and water mixture. A little vinegar goes a long way
Anonymous said…
I tried this and it was a disaster! When I tried to take it off, it left a sticky mess that took me forever to get off the glass shelves. Now I just use laminated placemats.
Anonymous said…
Try Mayo or any kind of oil on your wood furniture. I had white spots on my kitchen table from moisture and used mayo. Took the spots off and shined my table up nice. I use vegetable oil to clean my stove hood. Takes the grease and splatters off.
Anonymous said…
read just recently not to use car wax on shower doors because it contains ground up glass (or pieces that act as such) and will eventually show scratches on the doors.

Found your site today,and love it!
Anonymous said…
Murphy's Oil works great too. It's a cleaner and polisher.
M Richens said…
Wow! I'm loving this blog! I'm giving a lesson/presentation on spring cleaning next month and I am definately going to use some of the ideas posted here! One thing I didn't see a suggestion for was to wipe down your washer and dryer. All other appliances are pretty much covered, but not these. And they get NASTY! I'm actually in the habbit of doing it everytime I do a white load. I just grab a dirty kitchen rag or even a sock.. LOL.. and swipe it under the running water and give the appliances a quick wipe down, no cleaner even needed (if it's done often enough) Then I throw what I used into the load to be washed because I use bleach and soak my whites anyway! Simple, easy, fast.
Also, remove all knobs on appliances ie: washer, oven, etc. and run through the dishwasher. While they're removed, do a more thorough surface cleaning of these appliances.
Love the ideas! Thanx!!
On #3, don't forget the top of the fridge and the top of the exhaust fan over the stove.

And the exhaust fan in the bathroom! Don't look up!! LOL
Anonymous said…
Don't know if someone already mentioned it but follow up fan blade/baseboard dusting with a bounce sheet and it'll help keep the dust off longer.
Anonymous said…
I love Bar Keepers Friend! Then I had a friend who told me to try baking soda on my sink. I did try it and it worked the same as BKF... This saves me money! :) Gotta love that!
Unknown said…
I've always just rubbed a walnut over the scratches on wood, takes them right out.
Anonymous said…
I have to agree, have been using Bar Keepers friend for years. Sinks, tubs, counter tops, stoves, etc. It doesn't scratch and takes stains out. Our countertops would get stained with red Koolaid and coffee and it would take it right out. Tubs and showers it would take the scum and stains out. Having well water would leave mineral deposits and bkf would get them off with little effort. Love it.
Anonymous said…
Don't forget to wash the windows... vinegar and water makes a streak free shine.
Anonymous said…
Love, love, love bar keepers friend. My 10 year old stainless steel pots still look brand new. Great to see all the other uses, going to give them a try. It is very inexpensive and they sell it at Wal-Mart. It comes in a container like comet in the cleaning aisle.

Lots of Good information in your post,
I favorited your blog post
so I can visit again in the future, Thanks.
Unknown said…
There is also a comet like cleanser minus all the chemicals and bleach called Mon Ami works great as a soft scub cleanser for bathrooms stainless steal and cooktop stoves. Rinses very well I think it mostly a baking soda base.
Unknown said…
You can also flavor your white vinegars by adding citrus peels to a canning jar I use a quart jar put the peels in fill with white vinegar let sit for a week or two use as you would white vinegar fresh smelling instead of vinegar.
Copeland Clan said…
I always pull out the fridge, oven, washer and dryer (and inside the dryer, underneath the lint trap and in the dryer hose) and do behind and under all of those. They get really dirty if you don't do them at least once a year.
Lisa Day said…
I have tried the blue Dawn with vinegar mixture as well as the dryer sheets on my shower door with poor results... anxious to try and see if the cooking spray really works.
Unknown said…
This comment has been removed by the author.
Unknown said…
Personally, I would be very cautious about using food products (mayo, coconut oil, olive oil, etc.) on anything that's not washed off afterwards. The mice and bugs may think that you have left them lunch. I've even known them to chow down on baking soda.The diseases that mice and roaches carry are much more serious than a dusty baseboard.
On a positive note, I love your original list and will be putting it to good use as soon as I get off this computor.
Thank You!
Unknown said…
Yes, car wax is great on shower doors. It puts a water repellant on the doors and they stay clean for a long time!
Unknown said…
Your forgot curtains, if you have fabric curtains you should take them down and wash them. This is really important if you have allergies.
wenona said…
BKF good for copper too. My granny used it to shine up the bottom of her Revereware. She'd make a paste of it and wipe it with a lightly damp sponge. I've done it also. Works really well for this.
Unknown said…
@ netter528 agreed
Anonymous said…
Rainex is BRILLIANT! :)
Cleaner London said…
Thanks for the useful information. Would you mink if you share your list on Facebook?
Unknown said…
If you turtle wav the shower tiles and doors after you clean them well, this will help the water/scales with build-up as well as the build-up with soap scum.
Home coupons said…
I would never have thought of sprinkling the mattress with baking soda. I know that baking soda is an effective cleaning agent and I use it in lots of other ways around the house to get rid of germs and odors. Thanks for sharing these vlauable tips.
Anonymous said…
I have been on this site for an hour too! Reading everything! Saved it to my favorites! Great tips...anything to make our lives easier! Thanks Marissa & everyone else!
Absolutely awesome post! Though I am quite lazy at times, my dirty secret is that I also kinda adore cleaning. It can be so refreshing and I really like thе idea of cleaning with green products. Thanks for some more suggestion
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