Winter means we will be spending extended periods of time inside. Homes collect dust, allergens, and germs during the winter months due to the continuous circulation of warm and dry air inside. Here’s how to make sure your home is squeaky clean for the holiday season
1 Furnace check 101
A dirty air filter (of your oven, air conditioner or boiler) means harmful debris flowing inside your home, allowing for dust, bacteria, and germs to circulate in the air. This is particularly harmful to people with asthma, allergies, and respiratory conditions. To improve your indoor ventilation, check with your product service provider how to properly clean it.
2 Deep clean porous surfaces
Although dust collects on all surfaces, it’s easier to go unnoticed on porous areas. Use a steam cleaner on your carpets, couches, and cushions to ensure germs, pet dander, and other bits do not remain in the fibres. Don’t forget overlooked areas, such as ceiling fan blades, light fixtures, tops of window mouldings, and bookcases, which are often dust magnets. Do you use a microfibre cloth, feather duster, vacuum, or all three? Find out the correct way to dust your home here.
3 Refresh your filters
Upgrade or replenish old air filters to make your home more energy efficient. The average household should change HVAC filters at least once every three months to ensure clean airflow. Also, when replacing the filters, remember to clean the ventilation covers with hot water and a soap solution. Air filters not only keep the air cleaner, but also prevent dust from gathering on the floors and furniture. Here’s what to look for if you are planning to replace your air filters.
4 Declutter and discard
The more you have in your home, the more surfaces there are to settle on. Organisation guru Marie Kondo claims that the best approach to successful decluttering starts with a commitment. She suggests that instead of sorting by rooms, you should tackle decluttering by categories. Kondo also gives a reminder that nostalgia is not a friend in this process. For more organisation lessons and best practices from her best-selling book, click here.
5 Air purifiers, helpful or harmful?
Although air purifiers seem enticing, do they actually work? Most air purifiers neutralise some air pollution and bacteria, but not all are created equal. Experts say that air purifiers are not a “cure-all” solution as there is very little medical evidence to support their health benefit claims. However, if you want to reduce indoor toxins and circulate more breathable air, look for air purifiers with HEPA (High Efficiency Particulate Air) and CADR (Clean-Air Delivery Rate) markings to get the most out of your purchase.