Even the most house-proud homeowner could learn a thing or two from this list of common cleaning mistakes.
The cleaning gurus at Expert Home Tips revealed the blunders we’re all guilty of when it comes to domestic chores – and some of them could even mean all of our elbow grease is going to waste.
Read on to discover why washing your windows on a warm day is a waste of time.
1. WASHING UP LIQUID ON CHOPPING BOARDS
You might think a good scrub with hot water and washing up liquid will suffice after you’ve chopped raw meat.
That’s perfectly fine for pots and pans containing remnants of cooked food, but to eliminate harmful bacteria that poses a risk to health you need something stronger.
To really make sure chopping boards are spotlessly clean, try soaking them in bleach after every use instead.
2. SPRAYING POLISH ONTO FURNITURE
Try not to spray polish directly onto furniture as it will build up over time and become harder to remove.
Instead, spray the cleaning solution onto a cloth first, and then wipe it over the furniture.
This method will, says Expert Home Tips, prevent any marks or stains being left afterwards – and you’ll even be using less product.
3. USING A FEATHER DUSTER EVERYWHERE
Feather dusters are incredibly useful for cleaning places that are high up or hard to reach. But unlike dusting with a wet cloth, it doesn’t actually remove the dirt.
They often just transfer dust from one place to another.
Instead, use microfibre cloths with a little bit of water to pick up dust much more effectively.
4. WASHING WINDOWS ON A WARM DAY
A warm day might seem like the perfect time to go outside and clean the windows, but Expert Home Tips says this is a mistake.
‘This is because the sun will evaporate the water and cleaning solution before you’ve had time to finish,’ said the team.
‘You’ll be left with streaks, cleaning product build-up and all sorts – not exactly the gleaming glass you had in mind.’
5. MAKING THE BED TOO OFTEN
Making your bed might be one of the first things you do after you wake up, but it is in fact one of the worst cleaning mistakes that can be made.
Expert Home Tips explains: ‘When we make our beds, we’re trapping bacteria, dust mites and dampness inside, creating an environment that encourages the multiplication of germs.
‘By leaving our covers thrown back, we allow our sheets to properly dry out, and aerate the bedding. This makes dust mites and bed bugs much more unlikely.’
6. FORGETTING TO CLEAN THE VACUUM CLEANER
We might clean our homes with the vac, but do we ever really clean the hoover itself?
Hairs can be tricky as they often wind their way around the base of the cleaning device, which can affect their ability to function properly.
To ensure it keeps working, make you sure you remove the hair and any other bits of dirt that have become entangled after each use.
7. NOT ALLOWING CLEANING PRODUCTS TIME TO WORK
Spraying cleaning products onto surfaces and wiping them away straight after doesn’t always work.
Patience is key so make sure you allow your cleaning products to sit before you scrub or wipe away the dirt.
8. FLUSHING THE TOILET WITH THE LID OPEN
Expert Home Tips says that flushing the toilet with the lid still up means that water can be sprayed up to six feet in the air.
They write: ‘This fact explains why flushing the toilet with the lid open is one of the most horrible cleaning mistakes.
‘After you’ve finished scrubbing, be sure to close the lid before flushing clean. The last thing you want to do is germ up a bathroom you’ve just thoroughly disinfected.’
9. A WET TOILET BRUSH
Toilet brushes need to be allowed to dry after they have been used.
Wet environments create breeding grounds for germs so make sure you let yours dry out before you put it back in its holder.
10. FORGETTING TO CLEAN THE CLEANING TOOLS
If you start off with grubby tools, you’re making cleaning your home a lot harder.
Make sure you begin all deep cleans by using sterile cloths and sponges.
11. NOT WEARING RUBBER GLOVES
If you have a tendency to forget your Marigolds, now is the time to invest in a pair.
Expert Home Tips says: ‘The durable barrier they provide between your hands and the outside world provides protection against all the germs and bacteria you come in contact with.
‘If you want to preserve your soft skin, forgoing the rubber gloves is a real mistake. The harsh chemicals in our cleaning products can be extremely harmful.’