This weekend I spent a lot of time deep cleaning our house. I like to do fall cleaning before the main levels of my house get filled with seasonal decorations.
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So if I am really going to deep clean my house, it needs to be now, as a part of fall cleaning. Otherwise I will be just making things harder on myself with more stuff to clean around when I bring out fall and Halloween decorations out of storage. And when the fall decorations get packed up, it’s time to bring out Christmas decorations.
This is also a time of year when spiders and mice like to start making a home in your home. Just yesterday my husband killed a wolf spider in our house. (I may have a phobia of spiders.)
Since I work during the week and commute 30 minutes each way, any cleaning happens on the weekend. In all honesty, I don’t really do much cleaning aside from laundry each weekend and the occasional sweeping of hard wood floors, vacuuming, and dusting TV stand.
This weekend I changed that.
Cleaning Tasks I Chose for Fall Cleaning
This is by no means a comprehensive list of everything that needs to be cleaned in my house.
Deep Cleaned Kitchen
My kitchen gets a lot of use and will continue to get a lot of use in the coming months with baking all sorts of casseroles and festive desserts for fall and winter. I started by cleaning my kitchen walls with a wet sponge and dish soap. The dish soap is great removing the grease that stains the walls near my stove.
My sink was also in need of a good cleaning. I scrubbed the stains with baking soda and the same sponge I used on my walls. I use the walnut scrubber sponges from Grove Collaborative because the walnut scrubbing side is effective without scratching my dishes and it also doesn’t tear apart on my walls.
Then I pulled out my stove to deep clean the surrounding walls where food gets spilled and never cleaned up. I also completely scrubbed the floor under the stove. Again I used my sponge and dish soap to clean up all the food stains.
Cleaned Windows Inside and Out
I washed most of our windows inside and out. Most of them fold in making it easy to clean both sides from inside my house.
I admit, I used Windex to clean my windows. For those of you that like to check your household products on the Environmental Working Group website, Windex Original Glass Cleaner scores a D-rating.
Since I really don’t clean much (don’t even look at my baseboards!) I still had cleaners under my sink that I bought years ago. I know that I haven’t bought glass cleaner since I have lived in my current house, and I have lived here since 2010!
Even though I know the Windex is not exactly healthy, I am not one to throw out something that works just to buy another product that will do the same thing. My frugal side often out-weighs my healthy side.
So I used the Windex because it works. Next time I need to buy glass cleaner, which will still be a while, I will choose a healthier option.
Put up Fall and Halloween Decorations
My kids were a big help with unboxing decorations and deciding where to put things. This was super helpful for me because they didn’t necessarily want to help with most of the cleaning, but they love decorating and it is something we could do together.
This was the main reason that I wanted to start cleaning this weekend. I really wanted to decorate, but I knew I would want to do some cleaning that doesn’t normally get done before putting up decorations.
I did extra laundry because I washed all of the curtains on the main level of our house. The curtains collect dust and as long as I am cleaning the windows I might as well clean the curtains that surround those windows too.
When I hung the curtains back up, I sprayed them with a peppermint spray. I did this because a quick Google search with tell you many bugs, spiders, and rodents don’t like peppermint. I also sprayed the peppermint spray around exterior doors and baseboards.
Peppermint Spray to Repel Bugs, Spiders and Rodents
- Glass bottle – I use one from Grove Collaborative.
- Fill bottle with water
- Add 20-30 drops peppermint essential oil – I used Plant Therapy, which is also available from Amazon .
Spray liberally on areas where critters are likely to enter and move about your home.
Be careful not to spray around pet food bowls or litter boxes. I have read that cats also don’t like peppermint. I am not sure about dogs because we don’t have one, so I didn’t research that.
Cleaned Dishwasher Filter
My friend Bren convinced me I need to clean my dishwasher. Before that, it had never occurred to my to clean my dishwasher because I had always thought of it as self-cleaning.
I had trouble finding an online manual for my dishwasher to help me remove and clean the filter, but I did find a helpful You Tube video for my dishwasher. My filter was pretty gross and I am glad I cleaned it.
Wiped Down Ceiling Fan Blades
We have 7 ceiling fans in our house. I normally clean these in the spring and fall.
For this I used Pledge wipes. Again, these have been under my kitchen sink for years, and I wanted to be done with them. Normally I use Swiffer-style dry dusting cloths for all of my dusting. I didn’t find my exact Pledge wipes at EWG.org, but the Pledge wipes that were rated got a D or F rating.
Organized Cleaning Supplies
I basically used the KonMari method on my cleaning supplies. If I hadn’t used it in the past year, I got rid of it. If I didn’t want to use it, I got rid of it.
That means dusting sprays, carpet powders, and tarnish removers that my husband or I purchased years ago were disposed of. As described above, some cleaners I simply used as a way to get rid of them.
The space under my kitchen sink is much more user-friendly now so I can see what I have and find what I need quickly.
I you are interested in the KonMari method of organizing, you can listed to the audio version of The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up for free on You Tube.
I know I didn’t clean everything. I still need to tackle bedding and closets, among other things. I would love to hear about your own fall cleaning routine.