Spring has sprung! Time for more sunlight, warmer days, flowers blooming, bike rides, walks, and a complete and total wardrobe change that you've been dreaming about since early February. What's not to like about spring?
Oh, yeah...spring cleaning.
Look, we get it: No one likes spring cleaning. Most of us try to just race through it in the hopes that our cursory wiping down of our homes will officially count as a "deep clean" after the long winter months. Yeah... unfortunately, that's not how spring cleaning works. To really get a good spring cleaning, you've got to clean everywhere, even those places that you have completely forgotten about (or have chosen to completely forget about). Why?
Mold, that's why.
When it comes to spring cleaning, it's not just about removing clutter and giving everything a nice shine. It’s — more importantly — about preventing and removing mold, which can have an impact on your health. So while you may have taken the time to straighten up your closets and even mopped your floors (bravo, btw), you need to take a look at all those areas of your home that have been neglected and give them a real, legit scrub down to make sure no harmful mold or spores live there. What neglected areas, you say? Areas like...
If any of your appliances involve any sort of water or liquid, it offers an excellent environment for mold to grow. (YIKES.) To help prevent this and avoid a contamination issue, deep clean these machines to remove random mold spores, particles a colony could use for growth, pooled moisture, and mineral buildup. Appliances that should be tackled include the dishwasher, washing machine, refrigerator, water spout, blender, and, yes, even your beloved coffee maker,
Take everything off the mattress, HEPA vacuum it, and flip it to the opposite side. This aerates the mattress, which prevents moisture buildup and removes any particles that have made their way onto the surface. With mold's ability to grow in 24–48 hours, maintaining a dry mattress free from particles is crucial so that colonies don’t develop where we sleep. (Which is worse than your worst nightmare.) While cleaning, check for any visible mold growth or a musty, earthy smell that could indicate a hidden problem.
3) Bathroom items
Things like bathmats, towels, washrags, and the shower curtain constantly get wet while the bathroom is in use...cause, duh. Add in the plethora of particles such as organic matter, dust, and skin cells that mold can use for growth, and they become the ideal habitable locations for mold. To prevent this, throw bathroom items in the wash with a botanical cleaner.
It's real easy to forget about grout or caulk (and just as easy to straight up ignore), but, as these are often near areas with some form of moisture, it’s important to keep them clean to remove any mold spores or particles that colonies can use for growth. Tackle these areas with 8% hydrogen peroxide and microfiber rags. While cleaning, take a close look at the grout and caulk to make sure it’s not cracked or aging. The older it is, the more porous it becomes, offering a perfect opportunity for mold to begin growing. If any issues are visible, fix them or replace the grout or caulk as soon as possible to prevent any issues.
Again, no one enjoys the task of spring cleaning. (And if you do, who even are you?) But if you take the time to really give a deep clean to those neglected or forgotten areas of your home, you can prevent mold from taking over and seriously affecting your health. So, when you are finally mentally ready to get into some serious spring cleaning, kick that mold out of your place...
They ain't paying rent, anyways.