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12 Commonly Overlooked Spots in Your Home Cleaning Routine: A Comprehensive Guide

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A flat lay of cleaning supplies on a white surface, including pink rubber gloves, a green spray bottle, a pink microfiber cloth, and two sponges, one yellow and one red.

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Keeping your home clean and tidy is a never-ending task. While you may have a thorough cleaning routine, there are certain areas that often go unnoticed. These overlooked spots can harbor dirt, grime, and germs, compromising the cleanliness and hygiene of your home. In this comprehensive guide, we will explore 12 places that are commonly forgotten when it comes to cleaning, providing you with practical tips and techniques to tackle these areas effectively.


1. Dishwasher: A Hidden Haven for Grime

Your dishwasher may leave your dishes sparkling clean, but it also requires regular cleaning to maintain its performance and prevent the buildup of mold and bacteria. Many people overlook the need to clean their dishwasher, leading to unpleasant odors and clogged filters. To clean your dishwasher, start by removing the cylindrical filter located underneath the bottom rack. This filter collects leftover food and grease and should be emptied and cleaned by hand. Next, clean the interior of the dishwasher by running a full cycle with a cleaning agent, such as baking soda or dishwasher detergent. This will help remove soap scum and hard water deposits, leaving your dishwasher fresh and ready for the next load of dishes.

2. Outdoor Furniture: Reviving Your Outdoor Oasis

Outdoor furniture is exposed to the elements and can accumulate dust and dirt over time. While it may be easy to overlook, regular cleaning is essential to maintain its appearance and prolong its lifespan. To clean outdoor furniture, start by hosing it down with water to remove loose dirt and debris. Then, use a mixture of dishwashing liquid and water along with microfiber cloths to gently scrub away any stubborn stains or grime. Pay attention to the specific cleaning requirements of your furniture materials, as different fabrics and materials may require specialized cleaning methods. By regularly cleaning your outdoor furniture, you can ensure that it remains inviting and comfortable for outdoor gatherings and relaxation.

3. Lampshades: Shedding Light on Dust Buildup

Lampshades are often overlooked when it comes to cleaning, yet they can accumulate a significant amount of dust and dirt over time. This buildup not only affects the appearance of your lampshades but also impacts the quality of light in your home. To clean your lampshades, start by determining the appropriate cleaning method based on the fabric or material. For fabric lampshades, use a soft brush attachment on your vacuum cleaner to remove dust and lint. For more delicate materials, such as silk or paper, use a dry microfiber cloth or a soft brush to gently wipe away any dust. Regularly cleaning your lampshades will not only enhance the aesthetics of your lighting fixtures but also ensure the optimal function of your lamps.

4. Throw Pillows: Banishing Odors and Stains

Throw pillows can add style and comfort to your living space, but they can also become a breeding ground for unpleasant odors and bacteria. Over time, throw pillows can accumulate pet stains, food stains, and other contaminants that affect their appearance and hygiene. To keep your throw pillows fresh and clean, it is important to establish a regular cleaning routine. Machine-washable pillow covers should be laundered every other week or as needed, following the instructions on the care label. For decorative pillows that are not machine washable, a gentle hand-cleaning process using special upholstery shampoo can effectively remove stains and odors. By regularly cleaning your throw pillows, you can maintain a clean and inviting living environment.

5. Garbage Disposal: Preventing Odors and Clogs

The garbage disposal is a handy appliance for disposing of excess food waste, but it can also be a breeding ground for mold, decay, and clogs. Regularly cleaning your garbage disposal is essential for preventing unpleasant odors and maintaining its functionality. To clean your garbage disposal, start by turning off the power and running hot water. Pour a solution of equal parts vinegar and baking soda down the drain and let it sit for a few minutes. Then, run the disposal for at least one full minute to flush out any debris. This simple cleaning process will help keep your garbage disposal fresh and free from lingering odors.

6. Drip Coffee Maker: Enhancing the Taste of Your Coffee

A drip coffee maker is a staple appliance in many households, but it requires regular cleaning to ensure the best tasting coffee and prevent mold and mildew growth. Mineral deposits, water stains, and residue can accumulate in the coffee maker, affecting the flavor and quality of your brewed coffee. To clean your drip coffee maker, start by running a half-brew cycle with a mixture of vinegar and water. This will help dissolve mineral deposits and remove any buildup. Follow this with a full brew cycle using clean water to rinse away any remaining vinegar. Regularly cleaning your coffee maker will not only improve the taste of your coffee but also extend the lifespan of the appliance.

7. Curtains and Upholstery: Freshening Up Your Fabrics

Curtains and upholstery can easily collect dust and allergens, compromising the air quality in your home. To keep these fabrics clean and fresh, incorporate regular cleaning into your routine. Start by using the soft brush attachment on your vacuum cleaner to remove dust and lint from your curtains. For deeper cleaning, hand wash them using a gentle soap made for delicates. When it comes to upholstery, vacuum the surfaces regularly to remove loose dirt and debris. For stains or spills, refer to the care instructions on the fabric and use appropriate cleaning methods. By maintaining clean curtains and upholstery, you can create a healthier and more inviting living environment.

8. Door Knobs and Handles: Eliminating Germs and Bacteria

Door knobs and handles are high-touch areas that often go unnoticed when it comes to cleaning. However, they can harbor germs and bacteria, especially in high-traffic areas of your home. To effectively clean door knobs and handles, use damp microfiber cloths and an all-purpose cleaner. Wipe down all surfaces thoroughly, taking care to reach all nooks and crevices. Regularly cleaning your door knobs and handles will help prevent the spread of germs and maintain a hygienic living environment.

9. Toothbrush Holder: Maintaining Dental Hygiene

The toothbrush holder is often overlooked when it comes to cleaning, yet it can harbor bacteria and debris. To keep your toothbrush holder clean, establish a regular cleaning routine. If your holder is dishwasher safe, simply run it through a cycle on the top rack. For holders that are not dishwasher safe, use warm soapy water and a brush to scrub away any buildup. By regularly cleaning your toothbrush holder, you can maintain good dental hygiene and prevent the accumulation of harmful bacteria.

10. Light Switches: Brightening Up Your Living Space

Light switches are frequently touched but rarely cleaned, making them a prime spot for germs and bacteria. To effectively clean light switches, spray an all-purpose cleaner onto a microfiber cloth and wipe down the switches. Take care to avoid spraying the cleaning solution directly onto the switches to prevent any damage to the electrical components. Regularly cleaning your light switches will not only eliminate germs but also keep your living space looking bright and fresh.

11. Fireplace: Creating a Cozy and Clean Ambiance

Fireplaces can add warmth and coziness to your home, but they can also accumulate ash, dust, and soot over time. Regularly cleaning your fireplace is essential for maintaining good indoor air quality, especially for individuals with allergies or respiratory conditions. The cleaning method will vary depending on the type of fireplace you have. For wood-burning fireplaces, start by removing any debris from the firebox and chimney. Use a fireplace brush or vacuum to clean the interior surfaces, and consider hiring a professional chimney cleaner for a more thorough cleaning. Gas fireplaces require less maintenance, but it is still important to clean the glass front and check for any debris or buildup. By cleaning your fireplace regularly, you can enjoy the ambiance without compromising your indoor air quality.

12. Trash Cans: Banishing Odors and Bacteria

Trash cans can harbor odors, bacteria, and mold if not cleaned regularly. To effectively clean your trash cans, start by emptying them and taking them outside. Use a hose to rinse away any loose debris, and then spray the interior and exterior of the cans with a disinfectant cleaner. Let the cleaner sit for a few minutes to kill any bacteria or mildew, and then scrub the cans with a clean toilet brush or scrub brush. Rinse thoroughly with water and let the cans dry completely before using them again. Regularly cleaning your trash cans will help eliminate odors and maintain a hygienic living environment.


In conclusion, it’s important not to overlook these 12 commonly forgotten areas when cleaning your home. By incorporating these tasks into your regular cleaning routine, you can maintain a clean and hygienic living environment. From cleaning your dishwasher and outdoor furniture to paying attention to lampshades and throw pillows, addressing these overlooked areas will help you achieve a truly clean home. Remember to establish a cleaning schedule and follow the appropriate cleaning methods for each specific area. With these tips and techniques, you can banish dirt, grime, and germs from your home, creating a healthier and more inviting living space for you and your family.

Need a Hand with All that Housework?

Are you overwhelmed with other responsibilities and struggling to keep up with thorough cleaning, especially in those easily overlooked areas of your home? Don’t stress – Cleanmate is here to help. With our extensive experience and expertise in cleaning every nook and cranny of your home, including those areas you might not even think of, we’re your ideal solution. Our efficient cleaning strategies are designed to handle even the most challenging cleaning tasks, leaving your home not just looking clean, but feeling deeply sanitized and welcoming.

For more information on our cleaning services, call (267) 433-3399 today.

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