How to Clean a Living Room So You Don’t Gross Out Your Guests
This article from Realtor.com is a must read. Helpful tips and tricks from cleaning professionals that will get anyone’s living room spotless. One of the most helpful and common tips they start with is beginning to clean your living room from top to bottom, thus not undoing any of the cleaning you have done with knocking more dirt and germs to lower surfaces. This article also breaks down simple tricks from cleaning your dusty light fixtures to hardwood floors . Adhering to these helpful guidelines ensures your living will look its best so you can impress your guests.
How to clean a living room is a question any conscientious homeowner will ponder. Don’t your family and guests deserve a pristine place to hang out in? Don’t you? This showpiece area of your home cries out for white-glove treatment—but let’s get real, no one has white gloves anymore. Which is why, in this latest installment of our comprehensive House Cleaning Guide, we’ll show you how to clean a living room with minimal mess, drama, or trauma.
How to clean lights, lamps, and chandeliers
When tackling any room in the house, clean from top to bottom, says Jan Dougherty, author of “The Lost Art of House Cleaning”—otherwise you’ll have to clean the floors twice. Therefore, the best starting point in a living room is to look up at its light fixtures.
First off, whatever type of lights you have, don’t forget to dust the lightbulbs at least once a month—dirty bulbs shed 30% less light than clean ones, according to the U.S. Department of Energy. The best way to clean them is with a dry cloth; don’t spray cleaning solutions directly onto the bulb, which could damage it, according to the GE Lighting Institute.
Beyond the bulb itself, hanging lamps and chandeliers can be easily cleaned with a feather duster; crystal chandeliers should be thoroughly washed once or twice a year. If the chandelier is lightweight, you’ll want to take it down and lay it on top of a towel spread on a table. Mix 1 ounce of liquid dish soap with a quarter-cup of white vinegar and 3 cups of water. Put the mix in a spray bottle, spray each crystal, and let it dry before polishing with a microfiber cloth.
How to clean leather furniture
Your first step is to suck up debris and dirt with the soft brush attachment of your vacuum, says Beth McGee, author of “Get Your House Clean Now: The Home Cleaning Method Anyone Can Master.”
Then, to remove spots or stains, dip a clean microfiber cloth in a lather of soap and water and rub the surface; then dry it with a clean towel. To condition—a process that helps the leather stay clean and pliable—use a dab of coconut oil on a cloth and gently rub it in with a circular motion. Leather furniture should be conditioned twice a year, says green cleaning expert Leslie Reichert.
How to clean upholstered furniture
Upholstered furniture comes with a code that shows what products should be used to clean it. This code can be found on the care tag, which is typically on its underside. Here’s a cheat sheet on what the letters on this tag mean:
- W: Clean with water.
- WS: Clean with water and dish soap.
- S: Vacuum and spot-clean only; do not apply water.
- X: Vacuum only.
How to clean microfiber furniture
Fortunately, “microfiber furniture tends to be more forgiving of stains such as wines, juices, and inks” than other fabrics, says McGee. However, it still needs to be spot-cleaned as needed.
To treat stains, mix 1 teaspoon of liquid dish soap with a quart of warm water, then dampen a clean cloth with the mixture and blot the problem areas, says Jotham Hatch, director of training at Chem-Dry, a carpet and upholstery cleaning franchise.
When satisfied, dampen a clean cloth with warm water and clean the areas again to remove any potential residue. Dry the wet areas quickly using a dry cloth and a fan. If the fabric is stiff afterward, “take a dry cloth and groom the microfiber in a downward direction until the fabric softens,” says Hatch.
How to clean a TV
You can remove dust behind and on top of a TV using a dry microfiber cloth. However, to clean the TV screen, check online to see the manufacturer’s cleaning instructions. No matter what, don’t clean the screen with a glass cleaner such as Windex; most modern HDTVs have special coatings on their surface that can be ruined by strong cleaners.
How to clean carpets and rugs
To keep carpets and rugs looking fresh and plush, you’ll want to vacuum them regularly—at least weekly, or more often in high-traffic areas. You can amp up your vacuum with rug-cleaning products such as powders, foam sprays, and liquid shampoos that you can pick up at grocery and hardware stores.
To remove deep stains or embedded dirt, you’ll want to use an industrial-style carpet-cleaning machine (e.g., Rug Doctor), which sprays hot water with a detergent over the carpet and extracts it with a high-powered vacuum. You can rent one from a hardware store for about $30 per day. Just make sure to buy a cleaning solution that’s designed for your type of machine and carpet (wool or nylon). Here’s more on how to clean carpets and rugs.
How to clean hardwood floors
Hardwood floors are easier to clean than carpets or rugs, but they still require a little TLC. Your first step is to use a vacuum or broom to remove dirt and debris, since even the smallest specks of dirt act like sandpaper and can scratch the floor’s surface. Ideally, you do this once every two to three days, or more for high-traffic areas. If you vacuum, use the hard surface setting on your machine, which turns off the beater bar and lowers the vacuum to the floor for better suction power.
A damp mop can also help keep a hardwood floor clean, provided you use the right cleaner. To make your own solution for a monthly clean, add a capful of white vinegar to a gallon of water; this mixture will help dissolve grease and grime on the floor without stripping the finish. To remove shoe scuffs, rub marks with a tennis ball, which cleans without scratching the finish. Here’s more info on how to clean hardwood floors
By Daniel Bortz | Aug 23, 2017