15 Things to Clean More Often

C’mon, admit it. Cleaning is no fun. It’s a chore that never seems to end. But while you’re cleaning the obvious things in your house like the toilets and kitchen floor, here are some things that you might forget to do…

things you should clean more often

1. Bed Pillows
I’m sure you wash your sheets on a regular basis (well, at least I hope you do…). But oftentimes people forget to wash their bed pillows as well.

2. Washer and Dryer
Yes, you would think since you’re washing your clothes and constantly using detergent that your washer and dryer would be relatively clean. OK, it’s not terribly dirty, but if you want to keep your washer and dryer in the best shape possible, clean it once every 3 months.

washer and dryer stencil

Run 1 cup of white vinegar run through the warm cycle to break up mineral deposits and keep the pipes clean. The vinegar will also serve to neutralize any lingering odors (including that moldy smell). Make sure you check the dryer exhaust and the hose for lint, too.

3. Dishwasher
Remove all debris in the bottom of your dishwasher with a paper towel or rag. Next set a dishwasher-safe cup of white vinegar on the top rack. Run a full cycle with hot water and let steam dry. You can wipe any remaining gunk out when the cycle is complete. 

4. Your Kitchen Sink
Chemical cleaners are an option, but can damage the pipes and sink in the long run. For a more eco-friendly cleaning process, pour half a cup of baking soda down the drain. Wash it down with half a cup of vinegar and a spritz of lemon. Let this set for a few minutes while it fizzles. Then rinse with hot water.

how to clean your kitchen sink

5. Bed Sheets
Oh my, I really hope you do this on a regular basis. To make things easier, have at least one extra set of bed sheets so you’re not scrambling right before bedtime to make the beds.

6. Bathroom Mats
These are another thing that get used on a daily occasion but probably don’t get washed as much as they should. Think about all the mildew and germs they gather everyday, yuck. Wash on the hottest temperature you can (throw in some towels for scrubbing help), then tumble dry low. If needed, use a little cleaning brush to fluff it back into shape. Also, this is another one I recommend having backups for.

7. Makeup Brushes
Considering makeup brushes usually sit in the bottom of a makeup bag with tons of residue, it’s no wonder people get breakouts. You’re basically wiping access oil, dirt and bacteria back into your skin. To clean, just gently wash with warm water and baby shampoo then rise. So simple people. And it will breathe new life into your brushes.

8. Carpets
Urgh, this one makes me wanna barf. Just think for a minute of all the things that could be in your carpets right now… dirt from your shoes, dander, bacteria, dog hair… not to mention what your little kids bring in from their little adventures.

First thing is to VACUUM. Vacuum like crazy in every possible direction. Get all of the dust and allergens out! Then you need to do a deep steaming using the hottest water possible. I almost always suggest calling in the professionals at least twice a year though. You can find coupons in your mail and online. Trust me, it’s worth it. Think of the stuff trapped in your carpets that you’re breathing in daily. Yeah… it’s worth it.

flor carpet tile squares

9. Your Purse
Clean out your purse at least once a month. Or to make it easy, every time you switch your purse to go with an outfit or season, empty out the pockets and start with a clean slate.

To clean, pull the interior fabric out and use a lint roller to grab all of the crumbs and dirt. You can also clean leather with baby wipes.

10. Your Desk at Work
I’ve heard before that an office desk has more germs than a public restroom. Dear goodness, I hope that’s not true since a lot of people eat at their desk everyday. Make sure on Fridays that you wipe it down with cleaners or clean up everytime you eat. While you’re at it, clean off your mouse and computer keyboard (first with the can of compressed air, then wipe with a damp cloth with mild soapy water).

11. Comforter
While I’m sure that most people don’t wash their comforter as much as they should, there’s really no one perfect way to do this. You will need to read the instructions on your comforter tag, or just take it into your dry cleaners once a year for a deep clean.

12. Couches
Vacuum off your couch cushions with your brush attachment once a week, including under the cushions. If you’re going to use any cleansers, make sure you check an inconspicuous spot first to make sure it won’t harm your upholstery. 

how to clean your couches

13. Door Knobs
Every cough, cold, and flu season I think a little more often about cleaning our doorknobs, don’t you? Best and easiest way to clean is with disinfectant wipes.

14. Phones
You probably use this more than any other accessory but hardly ever clean it. Disinfectant wipes are great for a quick clean. Another idea is to get cotton swabs with rubbing alcohol and clean in between the numbers, your phone case, etc.

15. Remote Control
Yeah, this is another one that gets used daily and often forgotten about when cleaning day comes around. To disinfect, use cotton swabs with rubbing alcohol to get in the nooks and crannies, or just use a disinfectant wipe. And make sure you definitely clean the remote when you have a sick kiddo at home laying on the couch watching TV!

15 things you should clean more often

So, anything I forgot to add to this list?
Add it in the comment section below! 

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Comments

    • says

      Sometimes when I sanitize my hands, I’ll lightly rub over my otterbox and/or cell phone…not a lot of residue and makes me feel way better;)

    • says

      My mom made us clean our plastic liners two or three times a year. We laid them flat in the driveway and squirted a little Dawn dishwashing liquid on it and a smidge of bleach. Then we took an old broom and scrubbed them with the side of the broom – To this day I don’t know why we didn’t just put them in the washing machine LOL

    • Jessica says

      I toss ours every 4 months (our recycle into a messy craft mat). We’re on a well and the iron stains won’t come out of the fabric ones, so I have a cheap plastic one behind a nicer fabric one.

  1. Clair says

    Door mats. We usually just shake them out. But germs and other nasties don’t get shaken off. I wash my inside mats and hang them, along with my bathmats, in the sun to dry. Outside mats can be dunked in hot soapy water, then rinsed, and hung on the line or something else to allow sunshine and air to dry them.

  2. Makala says

    The fridge, dresser handles, tables and chairs, light switches, car stealing wheel and knob that ours car in park and drive, emergency break. We use cars all time and how often do we sanitize..toilet Gand
    Es should be obvious( I hope). I like to clean my windows and the tracks and spot they get opened. Sometimes they get mold or have a lot junk on them. Gross. These arethibfs I clean every so often

  3. Cynthia Heimsoth says

    Shower curtains can usually be washed in washer (rubber/plastic on cold wash only!) Hang rubber/plastic curtains in tub to dry. How to clean glass shower doors though?
    Computer keyboards/mice — NONO NO don’t use water near these things! Use a sanitizing wipe or isopropyl alcohol just like your remotes and cell phones.

  4. FebruaryFilly says

    I run my keyboards through the dishwasher – no soap, regular cycle (not pots and pans) and they’ve been working great for years. I first saw the tutorial in 2008. It does take a long time to dry (I leave mine for a whole week), but I have 2 keyboards so I use the one while the other is drying, then rotate. Both keyboards have worked perfectly.

    I implemented Wipe Down Wednesdays. I go through the house with a warm water cleaning cloth and clorox wipes and hit all the doorknobs (both sides), cupboard doors and drawer corners where they are grabbed to open them (inside and out), appliance handles (stove, microwave, dishwasher, fridge/freezer, washer/dryer), button panels, fingerprints on walls and door frames, the stair banister, the spot on the door frames the height of the animals that they rub against, phones, remotes, alarm clock buttons, light/fan switches, lamp on/off knobs, sink/tub faucet handles and the car (seatbelt-the clasp and button, car seat straps and clasps, steering wheel, gear shift, e brake, handles in and out).

  5. Bre says

    I clean the inside and outside of my toilet regularly, but recently I started thinking about how gross the flusher handle is, and have decided that needs, like, a daily sanitizing wipe-down. Gross!

  6. kai says

    I clean everything listed rather often. Cant believe people dont do these. Ewwwww! Id perfer to have a messy house with these things clean than leavr them dirty.

  7. Sarah says

    Your belt! I recently thought of how it’s the first thing you touch after using the bathroom and BEFORE washing your hands. Ewww!

    • Jewely Isham says

      Um, how about the water faucet handles? Same deal – you touch them BEFORE you wash… and then touch them AFTER you’re hands are clean- but the handles aren’t!!! Nurses are taught to wash, let water run and use your paper towel to turn it off (then I use the paper towel to open public bathroom doors… guess what’s on them after someone else doesn’t wash their hands? ICK!)

  8. Fiona burnett says

    Touch screen computers/ipads/tv – hate the idea of sticky fingers over these! Screen wipes work well and also spectacle spray cleaner, makes a super job and smells nice too!

  9. Judy says

    I started thinking how germy the refrigerator door ice and water dispenser is, from the lips of glasses touching them while being refilled . I constantly spray with hydrogen peroxide and wipe with a paper towel. It sanitizers, while being non toxic. Sometimes I use vinegar to clean it, too.

  10. Meg says

    Fridge and freezer handles. Also, dog beds. I have several and always wash the removable liner. I have one that’s foam and I put hot water in the tub and squeeze it all over. It’s really gross. Then I let it dry (for a few days) and febreze that baby.

  11. Ann says

    Love the tips. When you clean the inside of your purse wipe off the outside too. Just think of all the times you set it on the floor, on a chair, in a shopping cart or took it into the public restroom with you. Purses must just have tons of germs on them.

  12. Melissa says

    Don’t use toxic chemicals to sanitize. Vinegar is a safe product to ingest and sanitizes too. Use with equal parts water. This mixture is great for all things mentioned above plus windows and floors.

  13. Cindi says

    The pump soap bottle in the bathroom, which I clean the ones at work daily with bleach. The steering wheel, buttons, and door handles in the car, and I usually grab a wipe on the way out of the grocery store to do this.

  14. Dee Brandvig says

    I liked you list…had about half on my list…. two things I would add. For economy, wipe down any exposed light bulb (any table lamp and/or track lights)…they face upward so their largest surface collects dust all the time…for more light for your money, clean with damp cloth on the ‘once a month’ list. The second is for the ‘once a month’ list in the kitchen, and ‘when the time changes’ for the rest of the house…unplug and clean your electrical wires/plugs. The ones in the kitchen collect cooking grease like mad so I do them when I wash my kitchen window (once a month) because I use the same solution, vinegar/dawn/alcohol/water….

  15. says

    Great list! what about credit cards?? they use to get in where everybody put their own cards and we keep it in our wallet, I use the clean my wallet and purse, all kind of cards and ID and all which is inside with wipes or alcohol :)

  16. ann metzger says

    I like to wash all the garbage cans throughout the house about once a month with a little dish detergent and/or bleach, depending on how dirty they are.

  17. Victoria Hinde says

    The stair banisters….and walls on opposite side, kids use both arm extended when they go down the stairs….

  18. Nanno1707 says

    your bed pillows will stay cleaner if you use the microbial zippered pillow covers that you can wash
    Every week with the pillowcases & sheets.

  19. Amber says

    Good list, I need to remember doorknobs! One thing I’d add to the list (perhaps somebody already mentioned it) is your broom. I try to pull out hairs/clean with bleach water once a week and let it airdry. Ever ytime that water is disgusting, and only after a week of use!

  20. Susan Orwin says

    How can I clean grout? we purchased an older home and the tile is in good shape but the grout is dirty. I don’t like to use chemicals, fumes make me sick. I have tried soap and water, with a wire brush. it helped. Need to add some vinegar I guess.

  21. Fidget says

    Car/house keys and the key fobs are touched constantly – each time you enter/leave the house, start your car, lock your car, open the trunk, etc. When you get gas, you’re touching the pump handle and keypad that hundreds of other people have touched, then you get back in your car and start it with your keys. (And maybe dig something out of your purse, handle your cell phone, eat a snack, sip your coffee… Then you go to work, toss your keys in your purse, and spread those germs all over your desk – it goes on and on.) Ew.

    In addition to the keys – credit card/wallet/purse, steering wheel, gear stick (mentioned previously by another commenter) window buttons, door handles inside and out, seat-belt, GPS, knobs/buttons on the dash… all the things you touch over and over again without even thinking about it.]

    I always keep hand sanitizer and bleach wipes in the car. After using the sanitizer on my hands, I’ll wipe the steering wheel as well while my hands are still wet. I’ll grab a bleach wipe and do a fast wipe-down during a long light or while waiting at a drive-thru, etc. And of course a more thorough cleaning when I can.

    Thank you for all the other tips! It’s always good to get a reminder!

  22. says

    Love this list – thank you! As a mom of a 4yr old little boy, I got this tip from our sitter and wanted to share: wrap your remotes in plastic wrap or place a clear baggie over them! Especially if someone has a cold/flu (aka boys/men in the house as they hog the remote all the time!). This will also keep them looking newer longer and is cheap to do & replace as often as needed.

  23. Darby Connors says

    For those who have lots of Iron in their water and get those awful orange stains on their shower walls and toilets, I HIGHLY recommend Bar Keepers Friend, that stuff is miracle cleaner. Also, don’t just clean the toilet bowl, clean the TANK! The deposits in the water build up in there and every time you flush is running lots of old deposits down through your toilet (which is how you end up with those orange/red streaks going down the toilet bowl!

  24. Alysha Baiori says

    Shoes. No one mentioned shoes. We wear them everywhere, usually put them on hastily and then take them off at the door and walk around the home touching stuff. I keep disinfectant wipes by the door and hand sanitizer.

  25. Amanda says

    I love your site! A quick tip for makeup and brushes though. I have some great friends who work at a high end makeup counter. They use an alcohol spray on all of the products after demonstrations. I have found that using a quick spritz after completing my makeup keeps everything nice and clean. I then deep clean my makeup brushes every weekend. Don’t forget to spritz your eye makeup (also great for fixing a broken eye/cheek/bronzer/compact powder).

  26. Melanie Kelly says

    your tooth brush. soak the bristles in a little cup of hydrogen peroxide every month or so. vinegar would probably work just fine, too. you would think the toothpaste would be kind of a self-cleaning kinda thing, right? it aint.

  27. Amanda says

    Fan blades. Whether ceiling fan or isolating (sp.) fan. :-( yuck!!! I was a cleaning lady for a little while and was surprised at how many people appeared to never clean their fan blades. SERIOUSLY! Also, your air filter. If you’re having a/c problems check your filter before calling to have it repaired. My husband is HVAC certified and this is #1 reason why peoples a/c don’t work or struggle cooling.

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