With changing seasons come changing priorities —and the same goes for your home. From tips on how to make sure your home is clean and safe for your family to relax in to easy paint jobs you can do in a weekend, Canadian Tire and Yahoo Canada are bringing you everything you need for the season.
Just because Spring cleaning may get the most attention doesn’t mean that you should neglect your home throughout the rest of the year. As the seasons change and your family’s activities change along with them, it’s just as important to make time to maintain a fresh and clean home that suits your busy lifestyle.
Since a clean home is a healthy home, it’s never been more important to make sure that you take time to ensure that every room in the house is in tip-top shape. With just a few quick tricks, you can even have your entire home ready for Fall so you can go back to enjoying the season.
We spoke to Richard Ward, owner of Ottawa’s top cleaning service Never2Clean, for his tips on how you can get ready to take on all the important jobs around the house this season quickly and efficiently.
Wash your hands frequently
One of the most important ways to keep your family safe and healthy this fall is to exercise good hand hygiene — and educate your little ones early on the importance of washing hands. Health officials recommend washing your hands for at least 20 seconds with soap and warm water after going outside, going to the bathroom, before and after eating and after playing with any toys or pets.
It can be tough for kids to gauge how long they’re washing their hands for — but a pro tip that will make the important exercise a little more fun is to have them sing one of their favourite songs while doing it — parents, you can time them or let them know a cut off point in the song (we recommend adding a few extra seconds for padding, since kids love to rush!)
If you need to stock up on hand soap ahead of fall, Canadian Tire has you covered with dozens of great options — as the weather cools down, we’re partial to something with a moisturizing element.
Upgrade indoor air quality
According to Ward, Fall is equally as important as Spring when it comes to cleaning, but there are different things that you’ll want to keep in mind.
“Spring is about cleaning, but Fall is about prep,” he says.
It’s an ideal time to tackle projects that focus on indoor air quality, especially since you’ll likely be spending more time inside as the season progresses. Ward recommends cleaning out vents and exhaust fans to remove any dust that has built up, as well as changing air filters and replacing them with ones like these filters from Noma, for the best possible circulation.
He also suggests cleaning and dusting your baseboards before turning on the furnace as a way to avoid spreading particles once heat begins blowing throughout your home.
“I always tend to turn my fireplace [and] my furnace on very early, because inside your furnace there’s dust that builds up,” he notes. “When you turn on your furnace it burns off fast.”
Another great way to improve the air quality of your home, especially the areas where you sleep, is to invest in an air purifier. This top-of-the-line model from Dyson not only purifies, but serves a dual purpose as either a heater or fan depending on which season you’re in. Sealed HEPA filters automatically purifies the air to remove 99.97% of gases, allergens and pollutants as small as 0.3 microns while keeping you warm in the colder months, and cool once Spring rolls back around next year.
Deep clean your kitchen and bathroom
Kitchens and bathrooms are some of the most-frequented areas for germy hands — so give them extra attention when cleaning to ensure your family stays as healthy as possible throughout the colder months of the year.
In the bathroom, focus on disinfection by utilizing a multi-purpose cleaner. It can be used for sanitizing everything from toilet bowls to sinks and bathtubs, and will also remove calcium and lime deposits to make surfaces sparkle.
In the kitchen, use this season to clean out garbage bins and trash cans to freshen them up and get rid of any lingering smells. Ward suggests using bleach for this task, since it’s effective and can more easily be used in the Fall with windows or doors wide open to provide ventilation.
And while you’re probably used to cleaning your stovetops and floors— don’t forget to frequently sanitize food-prep areas, like the countertop, too. Countertops, as well as sinks and taps, can be one of the germiest areas in your home, especially if you’re working with raw meat frequently. To ensure your family stays safe when it comes to foodborne bacteria, make sure you’re giving your countertop and sink a good wipe down with a kitchen cleaning spray every time you cook.
Opt for a 24-hour germ killer
Hate cleaning and sanitizing your most-used surfaces every day? We totally get it. If you’re crunched for time, or if you have kids who love to touch every surface, a great way to extend the life of a clean and sanitize is to use a product like Microban. With room specific and all-purpose products, Microban products keep hard, non-porous surfaces sanitized for a full 24 hours, eliminating 99.9% of germs including cold and flu viruses. Even better, keeps killing bacteria even after multiple touches, and as an added bonus, the products also prevent the growth of mold and mildew for 7 days on hard surfaces.
Clean your windows and let the sun shine in
Ward recommends thoroughly cleaning your windows before you hunker down for cold weather, using either a pressure washer like this one from Champion, or some good old-fashioned elbow grease.
He also recommends removing the screens on the inside of the windows for an extra boost of light that can last you through the Winter.
“Taking your screens out of your window [is great] because it lets more sunlight in,” he revealed. “In the Winter you obviously don’t need screens to keep bugs out, but taking the screens out of your window just gives that extra little daylight in there.”
Sanitize your frequently used items
Keeping yourself and your family healthy is of course a high priority, but when was the last time you gave a good clean to your electronics and other necessities, like your phone or keys? A UV wand or UV phone box is a quick and easy way to sanitize without any waste — and make sure some of your most-used items are as clean as you need them to be.
From sanitizing boxes specifically made for your phone to UV wands, Canadian Tire has a variety of UV cleaning products to go the extra mile when it comes to sanitation this Fall.