We spend 90% of our time indoors, so it's important that the air inside our homes is safe and clean. A home with poor air quality or indoor air pollutants can lead to illness and discomfort. Respiratory infections, sneezing and chronic lung conditions like asthma have been linked to poor indoor air quality. By following a few steps, you can keep your home healthy and comfortable.
• Change filters on your furnace for cleaner air and a more efficient, longer-lasting heating system.
• Replace the batteries in carbon monoxide detectors and smoke alarms.
• Check your dryer vent to make sure that the plastic housing is tight and that the flap is able to swing freely.
• Have your fuel-burning appliances (furnaces, hot water heaters, fireplaces and gas ranges) inspected by a professional to ensure they are working properly.
Even the best housekeeper sometimes forgets hard-to-reach areas. This unintentional neglect can result in increased allergens in your indoor air. Use these tips to help you clean the areas most often forgotten:
• Pull your appliances out from the wall seasonally and clean behind them.
• Clean refrigerators coils by brushing dust off or using a vacuum cleaner hose attachment.
• Clean inside the lint catcher of your dryer using a vacuum cleaner hose attachment.
• Dust inside your light fixtures.
• Clean scuff marks and dust off your front door.
• Wipe down the railings of your staircases.
Taking a few moments to clean out your rugs, blankets, comforters and pillows can eliminate dust and add a refreshing feeling to your home. Vacuum any throw rugs, and then take them outside. Hang them up or dangle them over a fence or deck rail to beat them with a broom. Once you've finished pounding out the dust, spray them with a fabric refresher.
It's easy to overlook the garage as an area that needs to be cleaned, but dirt, leaves and more in the garage can end up coming into your house. A thorough, seasonal garage cleaning will help you keep your home cleaner all year round.
You can clean the floor and the walls of your garage with a hose. Also use the hose to clean off any shovels, spades or gardening tools that have collected debris. Before you close the garage up, though, be sure you let it dry thoroughly to prevent mold and mildew.