4 easy places to overlook when you're cleaning
Top of the fridge
When it comes to the weekly round of dusting, out of sight can be out of mind. The top of the fridge and the top of eye-level kitchen cupboards often harbour a surprising amount of dust. Arm yourself with a dustpan and brush to sweep up the worst of it, then wipe with a microfibre cloth. Wipe down sticky cupboard tops with a cleaning cloth soaked in a weak solution of all-purpose surface cleaner and wring out.
GHI tip: The top of picture frames is also a hot-spot for dust. Use a soft bristled brush to remove any thick dust deposits then wipe with a damp cleaning cloth, as before.
Underneath kitchen cupboards
Greasy residue from cooking can build up quickly here, as well as on the underside of the cooker hood. Wipe away the worst of the oily gunk using a kitchen towel. Use a sponge dipped in equal parts all-purpose surface cleaner and water, then squeezed, to work away the rest of the grease. Remember to turn off electricity to the cooker hood or any under-cupboard lighting before you start cleaning.
Hidden areas of carpet
The carpet under heavy or hard-to-move furniture may not get vacuumed often, and this, coupled with the fact that it’s lovely and dark under there, makes it an attractive spot for moths to breed. Their larvae have quite an appetite for the natural fibres in carpets.
Once you’ve moved the furniture to one side, vacuum the exposed area of carpet thoroughly then spritz with a few drops of lavender essential oil – a natural moth repellent – shaken with water in a spray bottle. Allow the carpet to dry completely before you move the furniture back to its original position. Don’t forget about carpet at the bottom of fitted cupboards and wardrobes, either, for all the same reasons.
Use the upholstery brush attachment of your vacuum cleaner to vacuum curtains, then take them down and prepare them for washing. Remove curtain hooks and let out the heading tape. Unless your curtains are machine washable, soak them overnight in cold water, then hand wash in lukewarm water, using a detergent for delicate fabrics. As it can be hard to wring out water from large curtains by hand, use the slowest speed spin cycle on your washing machine after rinsing. Reshape the curtains as much as possible while damp. If they are made of a delicate fabric, dry as flat as possible. Otherwise, peg them out to dry using soft grip pegs.
Curtains should be ironed when they’re still slightly damp. For very heavy fabrics or fabrics with a delicate, raised pile, such as velvet, use a handheld steamer to spruce them up instead of washing.