woman cleaning counter.

15 Household Items and Spaces You Should Clean More Often

If you haven’t already performed your annual spring clean, now is your time to dig in and put some elbow grease into the deep clean of the season. Everyone always addresses the apparent items and spaces, such as the floors around the toilets or inside the refrigerator. 

However, a home has so many nooks, crannies, and fixtures that are constantly overlooked when it comes to the deep cleaning necessary to keep it in immaculate condition. 

How often have you cleaned the coils on the backside of your fridge or washed all the pillows in your home, decorative or not? These items need your attention, too.

1. Light Switches

cleaning light switch
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You would be surprised at the germs and bacteria that collect on the light switches throughout your home. Think about how often you and your family, especially grubby-handed little kids, touch these surfaces daily. This is why it’s essential to clean the switches and the plates regularly. 

Dampen a cloth with your preferred cleaning agent and scrub those switches clean. If you notice that grime has built up in the tiny grooves where the switch meets the plate, you can always use an old toothbrush to remove it. 

2. Trash Cans

trash can
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Trash bins might seem like obvious items that deserve a deep cleaning, but you’d be surprised how often trash cans and recycling bins are overlooked when cleaning the house. Placing a trash bag in the can doesn’t protect it from all the gross contents you put in there.

Molly Maid’s president, Marla Mock, recently told Southern Living, “At the very least, you should thoroughly clean your garbage can every month. If your family is large and you go through a lot of trash each week, you might need to increase this frequency.”

3. Baseboards

woman cleaning baseboards
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Baseboards should generally be cleaned at least once a month to avoid dust build-up. If you have pets, they should be cleaned much more frequently. 

I attempt to clean the baseboards in one room of my home every week because I own two dogs, but I’m not always successful. I do, however, make it a point to clean them monthly. How about you?

4. Closet Floors

Young woman folding her clothes and packing them in a delivery box, she is changing her wardrobe, decluttering closet.
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During your annual spring cleaning spree, be sure to include those closet floors you’ve been neglecting. Pull out all items sitting on the floor and thoroughly vacuum and mop before tackling the baseboards. It’s also a good idea to clean the walls and remove the accumulated cobwebs over the years. 

5. Oven

Close up of hands cleaning inside of oven/microwave.
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If you’re anything like me, you despise cleaning the oven. It has got to be one of the worst chores that require our attention. However, it’s crucial to stay on top of it. 

If your oven doesn’t have a self-cleaning setting, it’s recommended that you deep clean the remnants of old food and liquids at least monthly to avoid breaking your back when the annual cleaning comes around. 

6. Garbage Disposal

garbage disposal
Image Credit: Deposit Photos.

Have you noticed a foul odor emanating from your kitchen sink? If so, your garbage disposal is likely the source of the smell. 

To address this issue, thoroughly clean under the splash guard using a sponge or an old toothbrush to remove any trapped food particles. Next, take some citrus peels, such as lemon or orange, and put them down the drain. After that, run the garbage disposal with hot water to help freshen it up and eliminate any lingering odors.

7. Refrigerator and Freezer Coils

dirty refrigerator coils
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Many people forget or never think about cleaning their fridges’ coils, which can lead to appliance failure. Dust and debris can accumulate on refrigerator coils over time, especially if you have pets. Dirty coils affect performance and increase energy bills, so cleaning them every six months is important.

To clean the coils on your refrigerator or freezer, start by unplugging the appliance. After locating the coils on the back of the fridge, unscrew the panel and use a brush attachment on your vacuum cleaner to gently remove the debris from the coils. 

8. Shower Door Tracks

Woman cleaning washing glass shower door.
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If your shower has a door that slides on a track, cleaning out the mineral build-up on the metal is imperative for allowing the door to open and shut properly. However, you’re not alone if you rarely, or ever, tackle this tedious task. 

Merry Maids has some beneficial tips on how to remove the scum accumulation with the use of vinegar or a steamer.

9. Remotes

Woman relaxing on the couch, she is using the remote control and choosing a TV show or movie on the television menu.
Image Credit: Stock-Asso and Shutterstock

Remember to include remote controls in your regular cleaning routine. Like light switches, remote controls are frequently touched and can harbor bacteria.

To keep them clean, it’s best to wipe them down with alcohol swabs at least once a week and ensure they dry completely. This simple step can help maintain a healthier and more hygienic environment in your home.

10. Pillows

steam cleaning pillow
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To maintain the cleanliness of your pillows, it’s important to wash or steam clean them at least every four months. Start by placing them in the washing machine on a gentle cycle with hot water, as this will effectively remove dead skin cells and sweat that have accumulated over time. 

Additionally, consider adding a couple of clean tennis balls to the machine, as they can help speed up the drying process and prevent the filling from clumping, ensuring that your pillows remain fluffy and comfortable.

11. Outdoor Lights

porch lights home entry
Image Credit: Sheila Say/Shutterstock.

Like anything else outside, outdoor lights inevitably get dirty and accumulate a film of dead bugs and cobwebs. It’s essential to check your outdoor lights at least once a year, if not bi-annually, to ensure that no pests are building nests in the light alcoves. Besides, keeping the outdoor lights free from debris and in top-notch condition improves your home’s aesthetic. 

12. Door Knobs

cleaning door knob
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We all have them, and we all touch them hundreds of times a day, but how often do we clean the door knobs in our homes? I know I’m guilty of only cleaning them when there has been a string of illnesses in my home, and I frantically wipe down all the surfaces that get touched the most. 

Including door knobs in your weekly cleaning routine is imperative to keeping those yucky germs at bay, but if you don’t do it weekly, at least try to do it every month by using a simple alcohol-based cleaner.

13. Mattresses

man cleaning mattress
Image Credit: JulieK2/Shutterstock.

How many ignore or overlook cleaning the mattresses we regularly sleep on? You probably have a mindset similar to mine–why do I need to clean it if it’s covered in sheets and has a mattress protector? 

Despite those coverings, your mattress can still get dirty, so it’s important to vacuum and spot-treat any stains. It’s also a good idea to take it outside at least once a year, let it sit in the sun, and air out any lingering musty smells.

14. Computer Keyboard

Young cheerful woman using laptop computer and eating cereal in the kitchen at home.
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Remember to clean your keyboard regularly. Over time, in addition to picking up germs from your hands, your keyboard can also accumulate food crumbs, hair, and dead skin cells, which is pretty gross.

To keep it clean, use compressed air every two months to remove all the crumbs, and then use a cotton swab dampened with rubbing alcohol to clean between the keys.

15. Bathroom Fan Grill

dirty bathroom fan
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To keep your bathroom exhaust fans in good working condition, it’s essential to clean them regularly. They can quickly accumulate household dust, moisture, and humidity.

Cleaning the bath fan grills is an easy task. Start by grabbing the edge of the cover and pulling it down. Then, squeeze the springs to release them from the slots and carefully remove the cover. Vacuum the debris off and run a wet cloth over the grill to get any remaining dirt. 

Why Can’t I Keep My House Clean? Understanding the Root Causes of Clutter

frustrated woman with cleaning.
Image Credit: Peopleimages and iStock

Look around. Is your place a mess, again? Why does this keep happening? It’s not just about being lazy or busy; it’s deeper than that. You’ve got emotional baggage crammed in every drawer and decision fatigue draped over every chair.

This isn’t just about cleaning up. It’s about understanding and digging up the roots of your clutter. Here are 13 reasons your home looks like a before photo, even on its best days.

Why Can’t I Keep My House Clean? Understanding the Root Causes of Clutter

18 Bathroom Items You Can Toss for a Cleaner, Clutter-Free Space

Happy young woman standing in front of open drawers of dressing table and taking out toiletries from drawer.
Image Credit: Kostikova Natalia and Shutterstock

Bathrooms serve as hubs for bustling morning rituals, nightly routines, and essential private functions. However, amidst this flurry of activity, clutter and dust inevitably accumulate.

In the limited space of the bathroom, every inch counts. Clearing out outdated or redundant items will clean, organize, and streamline your space to make your daily routine easier and more efficient. Here are 18 bathroom items to toss for a more functional bathroom today.

18 Bathroom Items You Can Toss for a Cleaner, Clutter-Free Space

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With a passion for travel, great food, and beautiful art, Julie put aside her 15-year career in the tech industry and dove head-first into a more creative sphere. Utilizing her degree in Communications, she is pursuing freelance writing. An avid traveler, Julie has experience writing and documenting the amazing spots she has visited and explored, the delicious food she has tasted, and the incredible art she has admired and purchased! When she’s not writing, she can be spotted around Austin, TX, at various art gallery openings, having a delicious meal with her husband and friends, and playing with her two dogs.