Spring is right around the corner and the fresh air presents the perfect time for renewal. As the days grow longer, the increased exposure to sunlight revives energy lost within the dark winter months. Now is the time to open the windows and thoroughly rid your home of the mess that accumulated over the cold season. Fresh Tech Maid, one of the house cleaning services Chicago, offers a detailed, step-by-step Ultimate Spring Cleaning Guide to restore your clean and healthy home in as little as four hours for a family of two people.

The Preparation Process

Preparation is key to Ultimate Spring Cleaning. To ensure efficiency and improve the end result, follow our Preparation Process to personalize your Ultimate Spring Cleaning plan!

Cleaning Motivation

If the thought of waking up to a fresh start in your sparkling clean home isn’t quite enough motivation, we have some ideas to jumpstart the cleaning process: make cleaning fun and involve your family; listen to your favorite music; set a timer and turn cleaning into a contest; or treat yourself to a reward for a job well done.

Cleaning Method

Before you begin the Spring Cleaning process, choose the proper cleaning method for your home: Standard, Green, or Chemical Free.

The Standard Method is commonly used and the most well known form of cleaning. This method uses cleaning solutions with chemical based solvents that can be purchased from most retailers.

The Green Method is a more eco-friendly approach to cleaning. This method also uses cleaning solutions with chemical based solvents.  However, it uses cleaning chemicals that are less harmful to humans, animals, and the environment and can be found in most stores or made at home.

The Chemical Free Method is a cleaner, safer, and healthier style of cleaning based on physical process, instead of chemical process. For instance, steam could be used to sanitize and disinfect all non-porous surfaces and Deionized Water (DI Water) is used as a “super hungry” solvent that absorbs and detaches dirt and germs from surfaces. This method is not a total rejection of all chemical-based solvents, but the use of chemicals is limited only to when absolutely necessary.

Cleaning Management

Fresh Tech Maid, one of the top house cleaning services Chicago, suggests the Chemical Free Method of cleaning to safely refresh your home before spring arrives. We use DI Water as an all-purpose cleaner.  However, Aquafina Distilled Water is a reasonable substitute to DI Water and can be found in most stores. Chemical-based specialty cleaners should be used only when necessary. To minimize the risk of cross-contamination, microfiber cloths and scrubby sponges should be divided into three categories and either color-coded or labeled for use in the Kitchen, Bathrooms, or “Other Rooms.” We also recommend separating your cleaning supplies into two caddies – one for “Wet Rooms” and the other for “Dry Rooms.”

“Wet Rooms” include the Kitchen, Bathrooms, and Utility Room. The “Wet Room” Caddy should contain: (6) Kitchen microfiber cloths; (8) Bathroom microfiber cloths; cleaning solution (DI Water, Aquafina Distilled Water, or Kitchen/Bathroom Cleaner); extended dusters; Kitchen scrubby sponge; Bathroom scrubby sponge; and gloves.

“Dry Rooms” include the Dining Room, Living Room, Family Room, Bedrooms, Offices, Hallways, and Staircases. The “Dry Room” Caddy should contain: (6) “Other Room” microfiber cloths; cleaning solution (DI Water, Aquafina Distilled Water, or Kitchen/Bathroom Cleaner); extended dusters; “Other Room” scrubby sponge; and gloves.

Additionally, you will need the following cleaning tools: a vacuum with attachments, tools, and extra bags; a toilet brush; a mop and bucket; a broom and dust pan; contact paper; a microwave-safe bowl; a large box; and a two-step ladder.

Cleaning Mode

Never underestimate the importance of a cleaning sequence. Clean smart by following the basic “STAR” Cleaning System.

  • Soak First – let nature do the work. Soak the hard-to-clean, moisture-resistant surfaces in the kitchen and bathrooms in advance.
  • Top Down – eliminate re-cleaning by working from top to bottom.
  • Always Start in One Location – move around the room in a complete circle to finish at your starting point.
  • Rank Floors the Last to Clean – dust drops, so clean the floors only once by cleaning them last.

The Ultimate Spring Cleaning Guide

Kitchen(80 minutes for one person)

Supplies: “Wet Room” Caddy, Contact Paper, Two-Step Ladder, and Microwave-Safe Bowl

Step 1: Fresh Air(5 minutes)

Open the windows to air out the Kitchen while cleaning. Strategically open the windows in a way that there is natural air flow through your kitchen.

Step 2: Soak Hard-To-Clean Areas(5 minutes)

Use DI Water to soak the hard-to-clean areas, such as the stove, countertops, and refrigerator/microwave handles. If necessary for tough areas, use Kitchen Cleaner.

Step 3: Cabinets(20 minutes)

Empty the cabinets from top to bottom. Spray the shelves and drawers with DI Water and wipe down completely with Kitchen microfiber cloths. Then line the shelves and drawers with contact paper and neatly replace the contents.

Step 4: Refrigerator(20 minutes)

Empty the refrigerator from top to bottom. Spray inside with DI Water and scrub the shelves and walls. Before neatly replacing the contents, check the expiration dates – when in doubt, throw it out!

Step 5: Self-Cleaning Oven(2 minutes)

Start the self-cleaning mode on the oven. Ensure air flow is important when you self-cleaning oven.

Step 6: Microwave(3 minutes)

Fill a microwave-safe bowl with tap water and place inside microwave for 5 minutes. The water will boil for about 2 minutes and the steam will sanitize the inside walls. When the 5 minutes are up, open the microwave and easily clean inside.

Step 7: High Dust(5 minutes)

Use the two-step ladder to dust all high areas in the Kitchen. Start at one spot and move around the room in a complete circle.

Step 8: Top Down(20 minutes)

Clean the Kitchen from top down. Start at one spot and move around the room in a complete circle. Now the hard-to-clean areas should be easier to clean after soaking. Spray surfaces with DI Water and wipe down with Kitchen microfiber cloths. If appliances are stainless steel, clean along the grain to avoid surface damage. Skip the Kitchen floor for now!

Bathrooms(90 minutes for one person – 1 Master and 2 Smaller Bathrooms)

Supplies: “Wet Room” Caddy, Contact Paper, Two-Step Ladder, and Toilet Brush

Step 1: Fresh Air(10 minutes)

Open the windows to air out the Bathrooms while cleaning. Open windows strategically so that there is a nice flow of fresh air across bathroom if possible.

Step 2: Soak Hard-To-Clean Areas10 minutes)

Use DI Water to soak the hard-to-clean areas, such as the toilets, countertops, shower walls, and bathtubs. If necessary for tough areas, use Bathroom Cleaner.

Step 3: Cabinets(20 minutes)

Empty the medicine cabinets and drawers from top to bottom. Spray the shelves and drawers with DI Water and wipe down completely with Bathroom microfiber cloths. Then line the drawers with contact paper and neatly replace the contents.

Step 4: High Dust(10 minutes)

Use the two-step ladder to dust all high areas in the Bathrooms. Start at one spot and move around the room in a complete circle.

Step 5: Top Down(40 minutes)

Clean the Bathrooms from top down. Start at one spot and move around the room in a complete circle. Now the hard-to-clean areas should be easier to clean after soaking. Spray surfaces with DI Water and wipe down with Bathroom microfiber cloths. Remove and wash the toilet seat cover and rug, if applicable. Then clean the inside, outside, and seat of the toilet. Wipe all toiletries around the sink and clear them out of the way. Then clean the inside of the sink, countertop, and mirror. Remove and wash or replace the shower curtain and liner. Wipe all toiletries and clear them out of the way. Then scrub the bathtub and shower walls. Remove towels from holders and clean each hook/bar. Wash the bathmats, towels, and curtains and wipe down the windowsills, walls, and baseboards. Skip the floor for now!

Dining Room(30 minutes)

Supplies: “Dry Room” Caddy and Two-Step Ladder

Step 1: Soak the Dry Foods on Floor(15 minutes)

If the floor is moisture-resistant, use DI Water to soak dry foods on the floor. If the floor is sensitive to moisture, do not soak dry foods on the floor. Instead, use a scraper or scrubby sponge. Then remove the dry food deposits from the floor.

Step 2: High Dust(5 minutes)

Use the two-step ladder to dust all high areas in the Dining Room. Start at one spot and move around the room in a complete circle.

Step 3: Top Down(10 minutes)

Clean the Dining Room from top down. Start at one spot and move around the room in a complete circle. Skip the floor for now!

Living Room/Family Room(50 minutes)

Supplies: “Dry Room” Caddy, Two-Step Ladder, and Vacuum with Attachments

Step 1: De-Clutter(20 minutes)

The Living/Family Room tends to get the most use, which results in the most clutter. Remove the clutter by returning the items that do not belong in the Living/Family Room to their proper place.

Step 2: High Dust(10 minutes)

Use the two-step ladder to dust all high areas in the Living/Family Room. Start at one spot and move around the room in a complete circle.

Step 3: Top Down(20 minutes)

Clean the Living/Family Room from top down. Start at one spot and move around the room in a complete circle. Disconnect all electric appliances before cleaning them to avoid injury. Dry dust or lightly spray DI Water on microfiber cloths and wipe down each appliance. Vacuum upholstered furniture to remove dirt and pet hair. Take down and wash the curtains or wipe down the mini-blinds. Skip the floor for now!

Bedrooms(90 minutes – 1 Master and 2 Smaller Bedrooms)

Supplies: “Dry Room” Caddy, Two-Step Ladder, and Large Box

Step 1: De-Clutter(20 minutes)

Pick up the clothes, shoes, toys, and other items lying around the Bedrooms and return them to their proper place.

Step 2: Organize(30 minutes)

Neatly organize the closets, shelves, and drawers. Collect items that are no longer used or needed in a large box and donate to charity.

Step 3: High Dust(10 minutes)

Use the two-step ladder to dust all high areas in the Bedrooms. Start at one spot and move around the room in a complete circle.

Step 4: Top Down(30 minutes)

Clean the Bedrooms from top down. Start at one spot and move around the room in a complete circle. Strip the bed and wash all of the bedding and blankets. Before remaking the bed, rotate the mattress. Skip the floors for now!

Hallways/Staircases(20 minutes)

Supplies: “Dry Room” Caddy and Two-Step Ladder

Step 1: High Dust(5 minutes)

Treat the Hallways and Staircases as rooms. Use the two-step ladder to dust all high areas in the Hallways and Staircases. Start at one spot and move around the Hallways and Staircases in a complete circle.

Step 2: Top Down(15 minutes)

Clean the Hallways and Staircases from top down. Start at one spot and move around the Hallways and Staircases in a complete circle. Make sure to dust the hanging picture frames and wall décor. Spot-check the walls and wipe down the banister, posts, and handrails.

Floors(120 minutes)

Supplies: “Dry Room” Caddy, Broom and Dust Pan, Vacuum with Attachments, and Mop and Bucket

Step 1: Hand-Wipe Around Furniture(10 minutes)

Hand-wipe the floors surrounding furniture legs and near baseboards to avoid damage from the vacuum or mop.

Step 2: Sweep and Vacuum(55 minutes)

Sweep and vacuum the floors throughout the house. Make sure the vacuum bag is less than half full for maximum power. Remember to vacuum upholstered furniture. For thorough results, vacuum the same area a second time moving in a perpendicular direction.

Step 3: Mop(55 minutes)

Lightly spray the floors with DI Water and mop over. When mopping is complete, the floors should almost be completely dry. If using a bucket instead of the spray, be careful not to use too much water or the floor will form streaks when dry. Change the mop and water when dirty.

As spring approaches, the time has come to open your windows and feel renewed! Safely restore your clean and healthy home by following this Ultimate Spring Cleaning Guide in as little as 4 hours with the help of another adult.  It would even be shorter if you got your kids to help! If our step-by-step process has you feeling overwhelmed or you can’t seem to find the motivation to start, book a cleaning with Fresh Tech Maid, the top house cleaning service Chicago, in just 60 seconds and we’ll revive your home in time for spring’s arrival. Give us a call at (847) 469-3386 or visit FreshTechMaids.com today!