Fall Cleaning Checklist
In the past, once-a-year only spring cleaning tasks were done- and that was it for the year.
Over the years, I've gradually moved many of my cleaning chores to the fall.
Don't get me wrong!
I haven't stopped spring cleaning, I just do it in the fall now too, because it makes more sense to do some of the chores later in the year or break larger jobs into 2 smaller tasks, once in the spring and once in the fall.
If you have friends or family over for Thanksgiving or winter holidays, fall is the perfect time to do many things. It will ensure that you have a cleaner house, don’t end up putting things off until the last minute and it can make the holidays a lot less stressful.
Sometimes you just need a little inspiration to get started. Below are some interesting tidbits about what to clean and how to clean for Fall.
Are you ready then? Let's get busy cleaning!
1. Clean the Dirty Carpets
According to carpeting industry experts, you should have your carpet professionally cleaned every 6-18 months depending on the foot traffic. If you do it once a year, fall could be the perfect time for you. Your carpet will be beautiful for holiday family gatherings and parties.
Most carpet cleaning companies offer a special deal where they will come back and take care of any stain within so many months of cleaning. If you clean in the fall and one of the kids spills cranberry sauce on the carpet at Thanksgiving, you’re covered. You should also let them professionally vacuum your carpet before cleaning. They have special tools to dig up more dirt than a regular vacuum can.
2. Clean out the Attic
When the weather cools down, it’s the best time to get up there and get rid of the dust and mildew breeding factory. All you have to do is take a vacuum up into the attic, start at the ceilings, and work your way down.
If you've never been in your attic or just don’t want to try this project yourself (some attics require some dangerous maneuvering), you can hire someone to do it for you. There are many companies that do Attic Cleaning & Decontamination Services.
The benefit is you will increase the air quality in the whole house. You’ll also have a clean place for storage. Be sure to use a dust mask and protective eye wear, especially if you've never cleaned your attic. You may create a lot of particle clouds floating around up there. And don't forget to check for wet areas caused by roof leaks.
3. Clean Dirty Ceiling Fans, Chandeliers & Light Fixtures
The beginning of fall is the best time to clean chandeliers, light globes, and light diffusers, etc. You are probably going to have people over for the holidays, and let’s face it – that’s the only time you notice how dirty your lights are.
The easiest way to clean a chandelier is to leave it where it is. Taking apart the chandelier creates a much larger job, and you might not know how to put everything back together again. Get a step stool or a ladder and clean with a damp cloth. Another method is to use two cotton gloves – one sprayed with window cleaner and one dry.
Next tackle the light globes on ceiling fans and other fixtures. You should do a room at a time. Detach the globes carefully and let them soak while you are cleaning that room. Rinse and wipe them clean and replace them afterward.
4. Clean Dusty Light Bulbs
If light bulbs need to be cleaned, wait to take them down until they have cooled. Remove them and clean them with warm water using a damp microfiber cloth. Make sure the light switch is off before removing or replacing light bulbs
When you've finished cleaning the light bulbs, carefully wipe them down including the metal parts and replace them when you are sure they are completely dry.
It’s not difficult, but most people have a lot of light fixtures. You’ll notice a change in lighting immediately and don’t forget your porch lights.
5. Clean the Draperies
Check the labels of your draperies. If they are machine washable, wash them on a gentle cycle with Woolite or other gentle detergent and let them hang dry. If they say dry clean only, don’t take chances.
6. Clean the Oven/Range
You probably do this as needed, but this is a good time to do a thorough oven and range cleaning, especially if you cook and bake a lot during the holidays. Use a spray cleaner and let it sit overnight. Wipe clean in the morning, the previously hard to remove grease should come off easily. This is also a much safer technique than using a self-cleaning oven and there's no baby sitting involved.
Starting with a clean oven makes it a lot easier to simply wipe the oven clean the day after Thanksgiving. Don’t forget to take off the range and oven dials themselves and let them soak in soapy dishwater.
7. Clean out the Refrigerator & Freezer
This is the time to do a thorough job where you take everything out and clean the shelves and drawers. It shouldn't take so long to clean that you have worry about food spoiling, just get in there and do it. Use an antibacterial household cleaner and clean off all the shelves.
Remove the drawers and wash/rinse them in the kitchen sink. When you’re done, take everything out of the freezer and put it in one side of the sink. Use the same cleaner to wipe down all surfaces. If you have ice cube trays, wash them in the top shelf of the dishwasher or let them soak in the sink.
8. Shine your Silver
Most people only use their good silver around the holidays, so this is the perfect time to polish silver serving pieces and tarnished silver flatware.
9. Vacuum under the Furniture and Rugs
Move heavy furniture and mop or vacuum underneath it. This only has to be done once a year, so don’t break your back doing it more often.
Turn over area rugs and vacuum the backs of them. This will help get out any dirt that is hiding out at the base of the rug fibers and keep your floor cleaner at the same time.
Never beat an area rug to clean it. It will break down the rug backing and fibers.
10. Clean out the Gutters
Of course, fall is the time of year that your gutters get filled with leaves. Clean them with a special hose attachment that has a hooked end to get down into the gutters.
Better yet, look into attaching “hoods” or “helmets” to your gutters so you won’t have to worry as much about leaves in the future.
Now you have some great ideas for your fall cleaning.
Not only will these ideas help with the overall clean of your home but they will get you ahead of the game.
Fall cleaning may not be as common as spring cleaning but it can be just as important, especially with the holiday's right around the corner.