Friday, May 23, 2008

Spring Cleaning 101

The month of March is typically the time when families stop using their heater. It is also noted as the beginning of spring. Many people use this time to get a fresh start in their lives as well as in their homes. Spring cleaning is not just for homeowners. People who reside in townhouses, condominiums, and apartments can also take advantage of this perfect time to remove clutter and get organized. While some people will devote an entire week to spring cleaning, not everyone is fortunate to have such time available. You can spring clean your home in one as little as a day, and in such a way that it will last longer than the spring season itself.

Most people who start a spring cleaning project have good intentions. However, what often happens is that they only do half a job; often losing steam halfway through the project. Problems that creep up and sabotage your good intentions can often be traced to lack of planning. Before you pick up a broom, grab a pen and paper a couple of days in advance and design your plan for the day. Remember to make a list of the items you will need to perform each task. When you design your plan, make sure you include the tasks that each person will perform. Something else you don’t want to neglect to include in your planning is food. Pizza or other quick snacks can provide quick energy that will keep everyone motivated to work. You may also want to play some upbeat music. If you’re not sure what to list on your plan, the items listed below are ideas that can get you started.

Indoor Cleaning
A good place to start your spring cleaning is with actual cleaning. Filters and vents can accumulate dust and dirt particles that can cause them to become clogged. With the hot temperatures of summer just around the corner, the last thing you want to worry about is a broken air conditioner. Replace old filters and make sure all vents in the home are free of dust. Excessive dust can also cause allergy problems, especially in young children. Now is also a good time to have your carpet steam cleaned. You can pay someone to do the job for you or rent a machine at your local grocery store for less than $40. Other indoor cleaning tasks include vacuuming your furniture and draperies, flipping your mattresses, and cleaning all your windows. If you have household pets, you should freshen up the area where they spend most of their time. While you’re cleaning indoors, make note to replace anything you discover that is damaged or broken. Areas that people typically neglect include the dishwasher, shower curtain, and kitchen cabinets. Be sure to clean these areas thoroughly because bacteria can become a problem in these areas and cause a host of health problem.

Focusing on the Landscape
What people will notice first about your home is its outside appearance. Remove any weeds that have accumulated in your garden or in your yard. If the majority of your foliage is dead, you should replace them with bushes and bright spring flowers. Although you are probably already mowing your yard on a regular basis, be sure you don’t neglect to do so during your spring cleaning.

Getting Organized
There are two areas of a home that most people fail to keep organized: closets and garages. It is just too easy to store excessive amounts of things in these areas. Spring cleaning is a perfect time to go through both areas and throw away anything that you no longer need or want. You can set these items aside in a bag and give them to charity.

Sunday, April 27, 2008

How to Remove Cat Urine From Carpets

Removing cat urine from carpets or rugs is a whole lot more difficult than from your hardwood floors, tiles or linoleum. No one can pretend that to know why your cat is "doing it" outside his litter box, but there could be many varied reasons.

Perhaps he has found a new way to test your threshold, or maybe he believes that urinating where he should not is a great new sport to partake or maybe, just maybe, this is his new hobby. Whichever the case may be, and whatever your cat's reason for being naughty is, do try to convince him to do it, if he must, off and away from your carpets.

Knowing cats, however, your cat will most likely not be dissuaded very readily because cats tend to be stubborn creatures. And if this assessment is correct, you will have to learn how to clean up after him because, you know well, he will not clean up after himself. While this may be bad news, you may be removing cat urine from carpets for quite a while, so you might as well do it correctly and as thoroughly as possible.

There is some good news to deliver. And the good news is that you that removing cat urine from carpets does not have to be as difficult as you might think. Just do what specialists do when removing cat urine in carpets with the following easy steps, and it does not even matter if the stains are old and dry or new and wet:

Step 1: Find the areas where the stains are visible or where the odors are evident. If you cannot see the stains but you can smell them, use a stain detection black light.

Step 2: Put in a new bag into your vacuum cleaner to maximize its suction power.

Step 3: Thoroughly vacuum the soiled areas and then generously apply a mixture of 1/3 cup of white vinegar, 2/3 cup warm water, 1/4 cup mouthwash (any brand that contains alcohol) and 1/4 cup of dish washing detergent. Let it all stand for about 45 minutes.

Step 4: Gently scrub the entire area in a circular motion with a soft clean brush and soak up the remaining moisture with clean white paper towels. Colorful patterned paper towels may bleed color onto your carpet and create stains of a different nature.

Step 5: Generously apply warm water and let it stand for 15 minutes then soak it up with a clean towel or a rag.

Step 6: Thoroughly vacuum the entire area and sprinkle with baking soda. Let it stand for a couple of hours and then vacuum it all up.

Your carpet should now be clean and smelling fresh. Congratulations! You did it!

You have just learned all about removing cat urine from carpets and you did it without any abrasive chemicals.