Before you roll up your sleeves and break out the cleaning supplies, take a look at these spring cleaning tips and use our handy spring cleaning checklist to help get your house in tip-top shape. We’re here to make tidying up the easiest part of your spring home maintenance.

General Spring Cleaning Tips

Spring cleaning takes a bit of hard work and can seem daunting, but you don’t have to be afraid of it. These general tips for spring cleaning can help you as you dive deeper into the process.

Don’t Wait for Warm Weather

Here in Alberta, we are usually well into the spring months by the time the weather stays consistently warm. However, you don’t have to wait for warm weather to start your spring cleaning. Starting early and spreading the tasks out over a period of time means you won't have to rush or stress once spring officially arrives.

Delegate

If you have a spouse and/or kids, don’t take on the burden of spring cleaning by yourself! The entire household contributed to the mess; they should definitely help clean it up. Make sure to get everyone involved in the deep cleaning.

If you have kids, try incentivizing them to help out by promising a special treat for the whole family once the cleaning is done. You could take them to see a movie or enjoy a meal at your family’s favourite restaurant—positive reinforcement goes a long way!

Avoid Harsh Chemicals

As a spring cleaning safety tip, you may want to avoid using harsh chemicals. Exposure to bleach and other commercial cleaners can pose a risk to your family’s health. There may be instances where you choose to use a stronger chemical cleaner (e.g. cleaning the toilet), but try to do so sparingly.

White vinegar happens to be a versatile and viable alternative to commercial household cleaning products. White vinegar is non-toxic, has anti-bacterial properties and you can find it at just about any grocery store. Mix up a solution of equal parts water and white vinegar in a spray bottle, and you should have a very effective cleanser to use on hard surfaces like stainless steel, porcelain, glass and tile. Keep in mind, however, that you should avoid using vinegar or other acidic cleaners on granite or marble.

Baking soda is also a common natural cleansing alternative. Its grittiness may be effective on surfaces with stubborn grime and stains, like your kitchen sink or oven. For the most effective cleaning solution, start by coating the dirty surface in a mixture of three-parts baking soda to one-part water. Next, spray your mixture of vinegar and water over the layer of baking soda. Let the solution sit and fizz for a few minutes, then wipe clean with a wet cloth.

Decluttering Your House

A spring cleaning checklist wouldn’t be complete without an item for decluttering your house. As you go through cleaning the various rooms in your home, a big part of the process will be deciding on what you want to keep and what you can donate or throw away. As you are decluttering consider the following:

  • When you are making the decision to either keep or discard an item, be realistic about how often you use it. If you didn’t use the item in the past year, you probably don’t need it.
  • Before you stick something in storage, ask yourself how likely you are to ever pull that item out of storage.
  • One person’s trash is another person’s treasure! Consider donating items and clothing you no longer need or want to organizations like the Alberta Goodwill.

Kitchen Spring Cleaning Tips

Tidying up the kitchen might be the most labour-intensive part of spring cleaning. Depending on the type of person you are, you might want to tackle the kitchen first to get it out of the way.

Even if you regularly clean your kitchen, a periodic deep cleaning can be very beneficial. Over time, food residue, grease and dust may build up in areas you don’t regularly clean or pay attention to. Your kitchen sink may also be suffering from water spots and dry soap buildup.

Keep these kitchen spring cleaning tips in mind for a safe and effective cleaning session:

  • Scrub your sink with baking soda and vinegar to remove stuck-on grease and food particles.
  • Run cut up lemons through your garbage disposal to help clean the blades and get rid of bad smells.
  • Place a bowl of water and cut up lemon in your microwave and run until the microwave is steamy. Wait 10 to 15 minutes before removing the bowl and wiping the microwave clean.
  • Empty your trash and recycling bins and take them outside for a good washing.
  • Throw away any old and expiring food from your refrigerator. Then, take out the shelves and clean them with soap and water.
  • Run your oven’s self-cleaning cycle; for a deeper clean, follow with a solution of baking soda and vinegar.
  • Empty your cabinets and drawers and clean the insides thoroughly.
  • Clean the vent hood and filter over your stove where grease may build up over time. To clean the filter, soak it in warm water before giving it a good rinse; you may need a degreaser to clean the underside of the vent hood.

Tips for Spring Cleaning Bathrooms

Your home’s bathrooms might be the next part of spring cleaning you want to get out of the way early on in the process. Cleaning your bathrooms is probably already a part of your regular household maintenance, but consider these spring cleaning tips:

  • Throw away any expired lotions, soaps and shampoos.
  • Remove expired items from your medicine cabinet. Take any expired medications to your local pharmacy where they can properly dispose of your prescriptions.
  • Get rid of old grooming and beauty supplies.
  • According to Good Housekeeping, you can clean plastic and vinyl shower curtains in the washing machine. At the end, make sure to hang dry rather than run them through the clothes dryer.
  • Clean all the areas you might not usually clean during routine bathroom cleaning such as:
    • Grout
    • Inside cabinets
    • High and hard-to-reach places
    • Light fixtures
    • Sink bowl and faucet

Bedrooms

As you continue your spring cleaning, now is a good time to go through the routine cleaning tasks you typically do for your bedroom (vacuuming, dusting, washing sheets). To take your bedroom cleaning further, follow these spring cleaning tips:

  • Empty your closets and dressers and set aside any clothes you’re ready to donate or throw away.
  • While your closet and dresser are empty, clean areas that you otherwise wouldn’t be able to clean (hanging rods, inside drawers, etc.).
  • Wash your comforter. According to the Spruce, you can machine-wash down comforters with warm water on the delicate cycle. Throw a couple of tennis balls in with the load to help keep the feathers from bunching up.
  • Clean your mattress. Sprinkle baking soda over your mattress and let sit for 20 to 30 minutes. Then use your vacuum’s hose extension to remove the baking soda from the mattress.

Spring Cleaning Tips for Common Areas

When it comes to spring cleaning in common areas, like the living room or dining room, you want to pay attention to the spots you might miss during your regular cleaning routine. Consider the following tips:

  • Clear off all shelves and wipe them clean.
  • Empty out all cabinets to clean the interiors.
  • Consider getting rid of older decorative items; spring cleaning is the perfect time to give your common areas an aesthetic update!
  • If you are able, move big pieces of furniture to clean the areas underneath.
  • Rent an industrial carpet steamer to remove stubborn stains and smells from your carpeting.
  • If you have rugs, make sure to vacuum underneath them.

Walls, Windows and Other Parts of Your Home

We’ve already gone over spring cleaning tips for the specific areas of your house, but what about the parts of your home that are in every room? Follow these spring cleaning tips to ensure every nook and cranny of your home is spotless:

  • Walls and baseboards: It’s easy to see the thick layers of dust that build up on flat surfaces in your house. What you might not be aware of are the thinner layers of dust that collect on your walls. Wipe your walls and baseboards clean with warm water and a bit of gentle, non-abrasive cleaning solution. Don’t forget to clean behind any hanging artwork or pictures.
  • Ceiling fans: From below, your ceiling fan might look clean enough. From above, however, you may find a mountain of dust on your ceiling fan blades. Use a step stool and a long duster to reach the top of your ceiling fan and if you can reach, wipe clean with a cloth.
  • Window tracks: There’s a good chance you already keep your windows clean as it’s typically pretty easy to see when they’re dirty. However, you might be missing the window tracks where dirt and dust often collect. Check these parts of your windows and clean them out; the same goes for sliding door tracks.
  • Blinds and curtains: You can wash cloth curtains in the washing machine, or you can vacuum them. You can easily clean your blinds with a rag and warm water.

Garage and Exterior Spring Cleaning Tips

Don’t forget your garage. Often, the garage becomes home to items your family no longer uses. Comb through the things you store in your garage and get rid of anything that is just taking up space. Now is also the time to organize the tools and supplies you keep in the garage.

If the floor in your garage is especially dirty, consider washing it with a pressure washer. You can rent a pressure washer by the hour at most hardware and tool stores. Pressure washers are also effective for cleaning sidewalks, driveways and even the exterior walls of your house.

Through the cold, snowy and wet winter, your doormats probably took a beating. Now is the time to clean or even replace them.
Finally, pull weeds in your front and backyard as they start growing out. Doing so will make your spring lawn care routine easier to manage. You might also find that some of your plants died during the winter season. Make sure to remove these so they don’t rot and put your other plants at risk for pests and disease.

Spring Cleaning Safety Tips

Spring cleaning can be a physically demanding job. Make sure you take precautions to ensure that you and others in your home are safe. Consider these safety tips for spring cleaning:

  • Make sure you put your “keep”, “donate”, “sell” or “trash” piles out of walkways or other places you may need to access.
  • Be careful on ladders and step stools. Don’t lean and overreach while using them.
  • Follow instructions and read the warning labels on any chemical cleaners you use.
  • Be cautious when moving heavy furniture. Always ask for assistance if you are straining to move something on your own.

While we are on the subject of spring safety, this a great time to check on the smoke detectors and carbon monoxide detectors in your house. Make sure they are working and change out any batteries.

As your neighbour and Alberta energy provider, we hope our spring cleaning checklist and tips help you tackle your annual big clean. For more information about our Alberta energy rates, give us a call at 1.866.420.3174.