6 Deep-Cleaning Tips To Keep Your Home Spotless

The whole process is so much easier than you think.

March 15, 2019
Photo by Rocky Luten

We've partnered with Miele to give you A Spruce-Up for the Season with smart, doable tips for keeping your home spick and span.

So Tidying Up With Marie Kondo on Netflix really got to you. After binge-watching the entire season, you spent the first month of the year organizing your closets, cupboards, and drawers, and donating anything that didn’t spark joy. Now your home is decluttered, your clothes are neatly folded, and everything has a place. But alas, the work is not complete. Your next (and final) step is to get rid of dust, dirt, and potential allergens. I'm talking about a deep clean.

Deep cleaning is actually nowhere near as intense as the name makes it sound, especially once you break it down into manageable steps. If you can stay even vaguely organized and follow this step-by-step guide, the whole process is actually pretty painless. Here's a full rundown on how to make deep cleaning way easier—and how to conquer two particularly stressful chores without breaking a sweat.

Get organized with a checklist

Simple as it sounds, creating a checklist will make the whole process so much easier. If you’re a visual person like me, take a stroll through your home and jot down everything that could use a good clean. This will range from large appliances like your oven and refrigerator, to furnishings like your carpets, upholstered furniture, and countertops. Once you have that list, group everything together by task type. For example: laundry (cleaning your shower curtain, bath mat, and kitchen towels); wipe-downs (for cabinets, surfaces, and stovetops); scrubbing (toilets, sinks, and shower walls); and vacuuming (carpets, tiled floors, under the bed, and baseboards).

Make a schedule that works for you

Once you have all your tasks written down, it’s easy to slot them into your schedule—even if that means tackling just a couple of items per day. Because I live in a one-bedroom apartment, it’s easy to knock out an entire task group in one afternoon because the whole thing takes just an hour or two. If you have a bigger home, deep cleaning will probably take a bit longer, so you might want to split up the tasks by room or by floor over the span of a couple of weeks.

Assemble your cleaning kit

Having a checklist also makes it much easier to understand what you need to get the job done. A basic cleaning kit should include gloves, an all-purpose cleaner, a special cleaner for mirrors and glass, disinfectant (like a spray or wipes), furniture polish (if you have wooden furniture), microfiber cleaning cloths, sponges, paper towels, a mop, and a good vacuum with attachments—I find a dust brush, upholstery tool, and crevice tool (which is great for hard-to-reach places like in between furniture, window tracks, or the lint vent in your washing machine) to be the most useful for deep cleaning.

Rent equipment for major cleaning projects

Local hardware stores, home improvement stores, and even some grocery stores rent out large cleaning appliances by the hour or day. You can rent a floor polisher, furniture steamer, or pressure washer for situations where elbow grease just won’t do the trick.

Clean upholstery by yourself (yes, you can!)

Think that cleaning your upholstered furniture is a task for the professionals? Think again—the process is super straightforward. Step one: Take any cushions off your furniture and use your vacuum's upholstery attachment to suck up crumbs, dust, and pet hair. Then check the tag on your furniture (or look it up on the internet) to see if there are any specific care instructions.

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Top Comment:
“I lived in a high rise (NYC), with pets, kids, worked 10-12 hour days, and REFUSED to work on the weekend. The issue is you have to get sick of your home being disorderly and have systems with basic procedures in place. Here's how I did it - hope it helps someone. * Entryway - Get a basket/cabinet/shelf for all shoes at your front door. I got a shoe cabinet from Ikea and kept all shoes for the entire season there. NO outdoor SHOES IN THE HOUSE. A metal bowl on top received my keys as I walked in. Phone popped onto the docking station. * Get a clothes sorter and teach your children to sort their clothes into the correct bin as they take their clothes off. You do the same. If you can't afford a sorter, then 3 different colors (whites/meds/darks). ‣ Pick a day when your neighbors do not do their laundry. Then go load all of your laundry at one time in all of the machines in a row. My habit was to be there when it opened. My neighbors would come down an hour after me and I'd be folding the final load or walking out. And ... don't tell your neighbors that you do it - they will show up taking machines! * Bathrooms - Hooks and a squeegy in the tub/shower. When you leave the bathroom the towels should be hung, the shower swiped, shampoo/cond bottles back in the shower caddy, all meds and cosmetics should have a place and be back in their home. Ikea and Dollar Tree have small cabinets to hold all that stuff. I also keep Lysol/Clorox wipes under the sink so I can wipe down any drips. (deep cleansed every week 30min flat) ⚙︎ For grout ... go to a hardware store, get grout sealant, the pick a day for the bathroom. Clean the grout, then seal it. * Bedroom - When you stand up out of your bed, make it. Don't walk off unless you're about to wet yourself. 😉 Make your bed, straighten the nightstand. My habit is to do that but every Friday morning when I stand up, I strip the bed, put on fresh sheets, and finish up. (Bedroom w/changing sheets 30 minutes - flat) * Livingroom - all electronics on a powerstrip in a cabinet or on a shelving unit. If you have a monster TV, it should be the only component out. Everything in the cabinet should be on that powerstrip so that it stops the sipping of your electricity! I got my electric bill down to $40 for 10 months out of the year ... I put every "instant on" electronic on a powerstrip. All remotes should have a home. A box from Michael's works fine. Those Swiffer cloths or a microfiber dust cloth to hit all surfaces. * Kitchen - if you have a dishwasher - load it all day, run it at night, empty it every morning. No dishes in the sink or on the counter. If it's too large for the dishwasher, wash it immediately and put it away. When you leave a room it should be put in order unless you're hanging out in there. But once the TV is going off and you're headed to be, remotes up, powerstrip OFF, pillows straight, etc. I was not born like this - I got tired of a dirty home, lost keys, dirt or melted snow on my floor (I bought a Waterhog rug for that), or spending HOURS cleaning on my days off because the mess grew to a small mountain! The final straw came when I got so sick from whomever, had to leave my dirty abode, walk across a dark parking lot in the dead of winter, with driving ice cold rain blasting me in the face, to the store to get meds, take the meds and lie down in a dirty home! I swore then that I would never do that again. I put systems in place and anyone who came there had to accept it or not come there. Shoes off - wash your hands and dry them with a paper towel so whatever germs go into the trash - not in ME! I haven't had so much as a cold in 12+ years let alone whatever that plague was that tried to kill me. I work hard and I know one thing - no one cares about my mental/physical/emotional health, only whether they get work out of me. So, it's on ME to be firm, CONSISTENT, and highly intentional about what time I do have for myself and family. You have a right to a peaceful, orderly, clean home. Talk to your family and get their buy-in on systems and what to do with 48 free hours on the weekend. Make sure that your weekends are fun, restful, and if possible FREE. If you're thoughtful, creative, and consistent, you will have FIFTY-TWO mini vacations every year. No one will do it for you. Your boss does not care nor do your friends. Get it done. If you watch TV, are on social media, or on here, even, you have the time. Get. It. Done. We all get the same 24 hours. If you want to be brutal - start with Marie Kondo and then move on to Fly Lady (YouTube). ”
— Liora

If the care tag says steam is okay, move on to step two: Use a professional steamer (a handheld clothing steamer also works) to kill bacteria and lift smells from the fabric. Steam an inconspicuous corner first to do a spot check (in case something weird happens), then simply hover your steamer about six inches from the fabric and eject steam as you move the tool over the furniture (move as if you were vacuuming). Once you’re done, let everything dry for at least one hour.

Don’t forget about the window treatments

Curtains and blinds can get very dusty, so it’s really in your best interest to clean them regularly (you don’t want to breathe in all that grime!). You can easily dust blinds using a tube sock, tongs with socks on the ends, or—the easiest—a vacuum with a dust brush attachment (you can also vacuum shades using this attachment). If your curtains are machine washable, wash them on a cold cycle, and lay them flat or hang them on a line to dry. And if the idea of taking down your curtains is just too much (I feel you), try vacuuming them with an upholstery attachment to get rid of dust, followed by a quick steam to lift bacteria.

Do you have any deep-cleaning tips? Share them in the comments below!

Looking for a vacuum that works well for all types of floors? Check out the Miele HomeCare Collection to find the vacuum that is best suited for your needs.

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    Mohammad Saad
Nina is a writer, editor, and enthusiastic home cook in New York City.


allergycare July 6, 2021
Hey Nina, Glad to got found your blog about deep cleaning tip that keeps your home spotless. All stuff that you're mentioned are 100% true. There is no doubt that all 6 tips you told us here are very essential for any home owner to clean his/her home. If you could clean your home by remembering such things then you don't need for any housekeeping services. As you mentioned that renting cleaning equipment's are good option bcoz these cleaning equipment's are very costly at some point. So, hiring a cleaning services is also better option. Bcoz Carpert rugs are very hard to clean bcoz of its big size and heavy in weight. That's why you needed any carpet cleaning services provider for that. Checkout
elham.llwh June 21, 2021
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Bugoy N. November 23, 2020
This Deep cleaning tips is great ! Thank you for this !

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itematoz2 September 19, 2020
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Bedroom Deep Cleaning Checklist: We spend about 1/3 of our lives in bed. Since sleep deprivation can have a huge impact on your quality of life and even your life expectancy, it’s important to make sure your bedroom is a clean, tidy, and relaxing space.

Get your bedroom cleaner than ever before—and keep it that way—with these easy step-by-step tips.

Pick up clothes and clutter. Better yet, try to make it a habit to keep your room tidy all the time. Toss dirty clothes straight in the clothes hamper after wearing. If your dirty laundry never makes it to the chair or floor, it doesn’t just look better—it’s also one fewer step you need to clean the room. Also, give everything a place. Get a bookshelf for your books and a shoe rack for your shoes.

Strip the bed. Wash your sheets every week, pillow covers every month, mattress covers every 3 months, and your comforter and pillows every 6 months or when soiled.

Rotate your mattress. Rotate the position of your mattress every 3 months to keep it from sagging. This is especially important when you share a bed with a partner because this can quickly cause uneven wear on your mattress.

Clean and tidy the closet. Tidy clothes, shoes, and other stored items. Wipe down the walls and doors with a damp microfiber cloth, if needed. Vacuum the floor.

Dust all surfaces. Work from top to bottom so you won’t have to clean anything twice. Dust the ceiling fan with a pillowcase. Dust the furniture with a damp microfiber cloth. Don’t forget the baseboards, light fixtures, and switches. If needed, wash the walls with a microfiber mop.

Wipe windows and mirrors. Get a streak-free shine with microfiber and polishing cloths. Wipe with a damp microfiber cloth, then buff with a dry polishing cloth.

Clean the floors. Vacuum carpets, or sweep, vacuum, and mop hardwood floors. Launder throw rugs at least once a month or when soiled. Clean under the bed with vacuum attachments.

Vacuum the drapes. Clean the drapes with your vacuum’s upholstery attachment. If they’re machine washable, toss them in the washer every 1–2 months.

Make the bed neatly. Take your sheets straight from the dryer to your bed to prevent wrinkles from folding. Plus, who doesn’t love crawling into a nice, warm, freshly made bed?! Enjoy your wonderfully clean room!

Make your bed every day to improve sleep quality and keep your bedroom tidy. That’s right—making your bed may seem like just another annoying and unnecessary chore, but a National Sleep Foundation poll found that most people say making their bed every morning improves their sleep quality. Making your bed every morning also keeps your sheets clean, your bedroom neat and tidy, and your bed linens newer longer, and it may help you start your day off right.

Hang shirts so that they’ll stay put. Hang the shirt as usual, and thread the clothing tag at the neck of the shirt through the hook of the clothes hanger to prevent the garment from sliding off the hanger.

Save time finding linen sets in your linen closet by storing sheet sets in pillowcases. Store each set of sheets together in a pillowcase to keep your linen closet neat and organized. When you make your bed, you can just grab a set and go.

Get a better night’s rest with DIY lavender linen spray. Lavender essential oil has a calming effect on the body and helps reduce stress and improve sleep quality. This homemade spray will freshen linens between washes, so you can sleep better and wake up feeling rejuvenated! Never use essential oils around cats and birds. Lavender is considered safe for use around children and dogs.

2 tablespoons witch hazel or vodka
10 drops lavender essential oil
6 tablespoons water
4-ounce glass spray bottle

Add the witch hazel or vodka and lavender essential oil to the spray bottle.
Cover the bottle opening with your finger, and shake well to combine. (Essential oils don’t emulsify with water, and this step will help all the ingredients mix together.)
Add the water, screw on the spray cap, and shake again to combine. Use this spray on your pillows and linens anytime they need refreshing.

Wash your bedsheets at least once a week. Sweat causes bacteria to grow on your sheets, and skin cells attract dust mites and bedbugs, which can aggravate allergies, asthma, and other health issues. If you are sick or you perspire a lot, wash more often than once a week. Wash and dry your sheets on the hottest settings allowed for the fabric.

Use all your space by storing belongings under the bed. Some beds have builtin storage. You can use the same idea even if you don’t have this type of bed by storing items in flat plastic bins or repurposed old dresser drawers. To make dresser drawers easy to move, install 4 little wheels on the bottoms of the drawers so they can be wheeled in and out easily.

Store bulky clothes and linens in vacuum storage bags. You can store bulky comforters, sweaters, blankets, coats, and more without taking up so much space if you suck the air out of the bags. Put your bulky items in the special bags and seal them. Vacuum out the air to make it nice and compact.
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