We’re only three days away from the official start of spring, and although there’s still a nip in the air, the weather folks say that tomorrow we can look forward to a high in the 70s. Time to open the windows wide and get rid of all that stale air that built up over the winter.
It may be also time to get a head start on your spring cleaning – especially if you plan on taking advantage of the spring home seller’s market.
We’ve put together a list of some of the things many homeowners neglect during this annual clean-a-thon – hacks that will help ring in spring with fresh air and sunshine.
Let the sunshine in
Windows take a beating in winter, especially one like we just lived through here in Billings. If you long for the warmth and glorious beauty of sunshine, let’s get that winter grime off the glass. And, no, washing windows doesn’t necessarily have to be labor-intensive.
You’ll need something to hold soapy water, such as a bucket or a big bowl, some liquid dishwashing soap, a couple of rags (lint-free are the best), a squeegee and a chamois.
Fill the container with water and squirt in a couple of drops of soap. The lint-free rags are for washing, so dip one into the solution and get to work. After washing off the grime, use the squeegee to wipe away the soapy, dirty water. Then, run the chamois around any areas that are still wet.
Sliding glass doors need extra attention
Probably one of the dirtiest places in most homes I view, the tracks for sliding glass doors get pretty disgusting. Full of pet hair, dirt from the outdoors and dust, the buildup can prevent the door and the screen from rolling properly.
Vacuum out all the debris and then use an all-purpose cleaner to remove the stubborn stuff (vinegar and water work well).
Use any non-stick silicone lubricant or WD-40 to lubricate the rails. I had a listing client once who used non-stick vegetable oil spray (the type for cooking) and it worked well.
If the door still doesn’t function properly, you may need to remove it so that you can lubricate the wheels. Check out how in this walk-through from wikihow.
Drapes and curtains absorb and hold all those winter cooking smells so get them washed or dry cleaned. If you have blinds on your windows, check out this cool blind-cleaning hack at momasaurus.com.
Registers, grilles and vents
The last thing we need in spring is additional allergens in our lives and that’s just what builds up in the home’s registers, grilles and vents. The dust that accumulates in these areas makes the HVAC system work harder and less efficient as well, so getting rid of it is a must during the spring cleaning session.
Cover anything beneath the vents that would be damaged or hard to clean when the fuzz starts flying. Either vacuum the stuff away or use a microfiber cloth to remove it. You may need to remove the vents if there’s a large buildup of debris. Soak them in a tub or sink full of hot, soapy water and allow them to dry completely before replacing.
While they’re soaking, run down to the hardware store and get yourself a brand-new HAVAC filter so you’ll have fresh air circulating when spring arrives.