Looking to Spring Clean Your Home?

Spring has arrived, and even though the weather can often involve rain it doesn’t mean we can’t get our homes cleaned, starting from the inside out.  Here are some easy tips straight from the National Home Warranty manual on how to get your spring cleaning done right!
Brass Fixtures
Manufacturers often treat brass fixtures with a clear protective coating to protect and reduce maintenance.  The coating can be damaged by intense sunlight and caustics or mineral spirits such as acetone found in nail polish remover.  The finish can also be damaged by scratches or chips from sharp objects.  Care of these coated products requires only periodic cleaning with a mild household cleaner.  For any uncoated polished brass which will gradually tarnish and eventually take on an antique appearance- use an approved product to clean and polish these types of brass fixtures.
Products such as lemon oil or polishes that include scratch cover are usually recommended for wood cabinet care by the manufacturer.  Follow the cabinet manufacturer’s directions, or the cleaning product directions.  Avoid washing cabinets with water or ammonia cleaners.
Cabinets with synthetic finishes such as melamine can usually be cleaned with mild soapy water and dried immediately afterward.  If in doubt, consult the manufacturer’s recommendations for care and cleaning.
Your carpeting will have a manufacturer’s warranty depending on the style and quality you purchased and whether it was factory treated with a stain resistant material.  Have your carpet professionally cleaned regularly, typically after 18 months in your home and then once a year after that depending on local conditions.
Ceramic Tiles and Grout Discoloration
Ceramic tile is low maintenance.  Vacuum or sweep floor tile for normal cleaning.  Tile can also be cleaned with a wet mop and warm water.  Depending on the finish of the tile surface it is recommended homeowners avoid adding detergent to the water.  The ceramic tile installed on walls, countertops, or backsplashes in your home may be cleaned with any approved nonabrasive soap, detergent, or tile cleaner.  Some high gloss or unfished tile may be damaged by abrasive cleaners.
Clean grout that becomes yellowed or stained with a fiber brush, cleanser and water.  Products for cleaning grout are available at most home hardware stores.
Glass Doors on Fireplace
On fireplaces with glass enclosed fireboxes a white haze will appear on the inside of the glass.  This is a normal accumulation of minerals which are the by -product of combustion.  Glass enclosures can be removed for cleaning according to the instructions in the manual.  Use only approved cleaners available at the fireplace supplier or home hardware stores.  Do not use household cleaners with ammonia or detergents.
Painted Surfaces
Avoid abrasive cleaners, scouring pads, or scrub brushes on any paint surface since these will cause damage.  If cleaning with soap and water is not successful a commercial cleaner may be required followed by touch-up of the paint.
Stained wood, enameled aluminum or wrought iron railings in your home require little maintenance beyond occasional dusting or polishing.  Protect railing from damage.  It is suggested that homeowners cover railings with protective mats during move-in.
Windows, Screens and Sliding Glass Doors
Clean the glass as needed with vinegar and water, a commercial glass cleaner, or the product recommended by the window manufacturer.  Always consult the manufacturer’s literature and maintenance recommendations if there are special window glazing treatments.
Clean acrylic, vinyl and glass blocks during moderate temperatures using a mild solution of soap and warm water.  Wash using a sponge or soft cloth or brush and dry with a towel.  Avoid abrasive cleaners, commercial glass cleaner, razors, stiff brushes or scrubbing devices of any kind.
Clean aluminum metal surfaces with warm, clear water.  Do not use abrasive cleaners or steel wool.  After each cleaning apply a silicone lubricant with a cloth.

Go Green with Cleaning Products and Don’t Forget… Make the Job Fun!

‘Gone are the days of using a toxic soup of chemicals for all our cleaning needs.  These days, consumers are demanding products that are environmentally friendly and that don’t expose their families to dangerous fumes’.  Click here to read more from this article ‘Go Green for your Annual Spring Clean’, written by Tara Nolan from Style at Home.

Don’t get too serious with spring cleaning.  Think of some ways to make it fun.  For example, you could take some tips from the Ellen Degeneres way of spring cleaning.  Click here to watch her video>

For more information about maintaining your home, please view the Spruceland Homes Home Owner’s Manual.