This post is sponsored by Spot Shot® Instant Carpet Stain Remover. All opinions are my own.
Use this list of 10 Things to Clean After Summer Vacation to get your home ready for the busy back-to-school season.
Now that the kids are back in school, it’s time to start thinking about getting your home ready for fall entertaining. Without kids tracking dirt and sand indoors or spilling snacks everywhere, you finally have a chance to deal with some of those summer messes and get a jump-start on fall cleaning.
10 Things To Clean After Summer Vacation
1. Patio furniture
Most household cleaners are too harsh for outdoor furniture and can cause them to discolor. Give wicker and other woven-style furnishings a good sweep, then clean them with a solution of 2 quarts warm water, 1/2 cup baking soda, and 3-4 drops liquid dish detergent. Use a soft-bristled brush to dislodge grime and spray it all down with a hose then let it air dry.
2. Carpet stains
Don’t put off treating stains just because you plan to have the carpets shampooed before the holidays. The longer you leave stains untreated, the more permanent they become. Spot Shot® Instant Carpet Stain Remover is a convenient, easy way to treat everything from Koolaid spills to muddy footprints. Just spray it on and blot the stain away – no rubbing or scrubbing required. Click here to get $1 off Spot Shot Instant Carpet Stain Remover. Not sure where to purchase it? Click here to find a nearby retailer.
3. Windows and screens
Sunny days and chilly nights cause window glass to expand and contract. Over time, grime on a window can work its way into the surface glass, and they’ll never look clean again. Though it can be a time-consuming chore, washing windows and screens with a bucket of warm water and a drop of liquid dish detergent will get rid of the grime. Using a high-quality squeegee on the glass will leave it streak-free.
4. Fireplace and chimney
If you didn’t get your chimney swept in Spring, now is the time to do it. Birds and squirrels love to spend the summer making nests in unused chimneys, posing a fire hazard when you light the fire this autumn. Your fireplace could use a good cleaning to get rid of summer’s dust buildup, too.
5. Pool toys
Combine 2 cups white vinegar and 1 gallon of warm water. Spray the dry pool toys until they’re dripping wet then wait 5 minutes and rinse. Allow them to sun dry thoroughly before putting them away for the year.
6. Sleeping bags and tents
Turn sleeping bags and tents inside out and shake vigorously to get rid of sand and dirt. Use a broom to brush away and stubborn grime. Check your bag’s care label to see if it’s machine washable then clean it according to directions. For tents, turn them right side out again and spread them over a clothesline to air for a day before storing.
Wash coolers inside and out with warm, soapy water. Use a soft-bristled brush on particularly soiled areas. Rinse well with water and dry with a towel, then leave the cooler sitting open in the sun for a day to ensure it’s fully dry. Before storing, stuff the inside of your cooler with several sheets of wadded newspaper to absorb odor and prevent moisture buildup.
With kids running in and out of the house, garage floors can get filthy. Back your car(s) out and give the floor a thorough sweep. Treat oil spots by sprinkling them with clay cat litter or cornstarch to absorb the oil then sweep it away and wash the place with hot, soapy water. Let the floor dry fully before moving your car back inside.
9. Coat Closet
Chances are your coat closet hasn’t been used much over the summer, but it still needs a little TLC before cooler days arrive. Give the walls a good dusting and sweep the floor. Go through the contents and donate any items which no longer fit. Make sure gloves have mates, that everyone has a winter hat and coat which fit, and that you’ve got an umbrella or two on hand for rainy autumn days.
Lawns don’t grow as tall once the days start growing shorter, so your lawnmower’s year is almost at an end. Be sure to not store it with gasoline still in the tank, or you may find next spring that the carburetor is ruined or the gas has solidified. Now is also a very good time to take it in to have the blades sharpened.
Take your time
No one is saying that you’ve got to tend to all of these 10 things to clean after summer vacation at once. Except for carpet stains (#2 above), you can take your time and deal with one or two a week throughout the season. Get on those carpet stains right away, though – a carpet that looks clean makes your whole house look cleaner!