We are hiring! We are seeking people with drive, commitment and enthusiasm to join our expanding business. Click here for more information.
Autumn Cleaning – clearing the home for the shorter days ahead
How often have you heard the term Autumn Cleaning? Following a long winter, we will see a lot of articles about spring cleaning. It’s a term that’s been used for many years but what about deep cleaning at other times of the year? Autumn house cleaning is about getting the home ready for darker and colder days ahead and clearing up after what has hopefully been an enjoyable summer of long, warm days. Here at The White Cleaning Co we’ve been helping clients prepare for the longer days ahead. What does this entail and is it necessary?
Why is there a need for autumn cleaning?
Autumn cleaning is similar to spring cleaning but with an emphasis on ensuring the home is bright, safe and prepared for days when the heating is switched on and windows are closed. Autumn is a glorious time when we enjoy the sight of trees transforming through stunning colours until the leaves drop off. Who doesn’t love the sound of fallen leaves crunching underfoot and watching the joy of children kicking through piles on the ground? But the leaves and their crumbling debris will blow into our homes through open doors or attach themselves to clothing and pets, who also enjoy rolling around in them.
It is not only leaf debris that makes its way into our homes. Autumn is spider season. Love them or fear them, they make their presence known with plentiful strands of cobwebs in corners, behind furniture and on ceilings. We get more wet and windy weather as the summer fades, trampling mud and causing steamed-up windows. This is on top of the dust and clutter that has built up as we’ve enjoyed our summers. So how do we go about an autumn house cleaning regime?
Setting about cleaning your home in autumn
You will already have a regular routine for keeping your house clean. Autumn cleaning is about a deeper clean. The first thing to do is make a list of jobs that need doing and allocate time to carry them out. You could make it a family affair, give everyone their own tasks and blitz the house over a weekend, or you could take things slower and do the jobs over several days.
Hiring others for autumn cleaning services
First, look at large jobs where you need to engage tradespeople. For example, it’s a good idea to have your boiler serviced in early autumn to ensure it’s in good order before it’s needed. If you have an open fire or a wood-burning stove, you will need to have the chimney swept and the flue inspected. You can find out more about this here: Do I Need a Chimney Inspection?
Another job that can be done once the leaves have fallen is to have gutters checked and cleaned, either by yourselves or by engaging a tradesperson. After a busy summer, your carpets may need cleaning, especially in the throughways of your home. Again, you could hire a machine and do this yourself, or engage a tradesperson. Such tradespeople can get busy at this time of the year, so book early!
You may wish to hand over the cleaning jobs and engage a reputable company that offers autumn cleaning services, like The White Cleaning Co, to carry out a deep clean for you.
Another important job is to check smoke and CO2 alarms. As advised by Royal Berkshire Fire and Rescue Services. It’s a good Memo to do this job the weekend that the clocks change, both in the spring and in the autumn.
Getting down to that list!
Once you have delegated some of the tasks, then it’s time to roll up your sleeves and begin. Here are some of the jobs that are likely to need doing and some that are recommended.
It is a good idea to declutter before deep cleaning, this clears out cupboards and storage making it easier to clean them.
- Kitchen cupboards and pantries can be cleared of out-of-date items, worn-out appliances, cracked and chipped dishes and all those tubs without their lids.
- Bathroom cabinets should be cleared of unused cosmetics and toiletries. Unused medication should be cleared out and taken to a pharmacy for disposal.
- Clothing can be sorted out. Any summer clothing that won’t be stored away for next year along with other clothing no longer worn can be sorted for recycling, charity shop or general disposal. Wardrobes and drawers can be cleaned ready for the clothes to be put back tidily.
An autumn cleaning regime
After decluttering you will be ready for a good deep clean. Take it room by room.
- Dust and cobwebs will accumulate behind large items of furniture. If they can be moved then do so and clean the wall, and the back of the furniture and vacuum the floor before putting it back in its place.
- Display cabinets, even those with doors, get dusty inside, to remove the items clean the cupboard and ten the items before returning them to the display. Glass and porcelain can be carefully cleaned with warm, soapy water on a lint-free cloth.
- Upholstery will benefit from a clean. Depending upon type this may be something that you can do yourself, or you may choose to engage an upholstery cleaning company.
- With darker nights arriving earlier, it is unlikely you will want to take down curtains to send away for cleaning unless you have a spare pair to hang whilst they are away. If you need to keep them in place, there are often attachments to the vacuum cleaner to draw any dust away.
- Rugs can be taken outside to be shaken and vacuumed on return. Some can be washed, or they may need professional cleaning. If you are having your carpets professionally cleaned, you can ask about rugs when booking.
Kitchens and utility rooms
You will have cleaned your cupboards after decluttering, so the remaining cleaning will be appliances and not forgetting the tops of cupboards, which can get very greasy if not cleaned regularly.
- Cleaning a freezer will require it to be defrosted. Unless you have a second freezer, you need to plan this and use up any contents before switching off. A bowl of warm water inside can speed up defrosting but watch out for drips and leakage onto the floor. Once fully defrosted a mix of warm water and bicarbonate of soda is the best thing to use to wipe the inside. Allow to dry before switching on again. Ensure the correct temperature has been reached before restocking.
- Fridges are cleaned the same way as freezers, though no waiting for defrosting and items can be put into a cool bag as the job won’t take too long.
- For appliances whose job it is to clean things, washing machines and dishwashers can become surprisingly dirty. Use proprietary cleaners to do these jobs.
- If it’s possible to easily pull an appliance out of position, this is an opportunity to clean the cavity and the back, top and sides of the appliance.
- Lastly, those ghastly cupboard tops. This job entails using stepladders to reach the tops, so take care and ensure these are on level ground and stable when climbing. Use a cleaner made to remove greasy deposits and be prepared to wipe more than once.
Bathrooms and cloakrooms
Bathrooms are cleaned regularly, but there are parts that we tend not to do as often. These items include shower curtain rails, tops of shower screens and wall tiles. All can be washed with mild detergent.
- A proprietary cleaner can be used to remove any mould that has formed.
- Bathroom cabinets should be decluttered, and any unused medicines taken to a pharmacy for disposal.
Are you ready to change over from your summer duvet to a warmer weight? If so, many summer duvets are light enough to fit into a domestic washing machine and will dry outside on a sunny day, even if cold. It can be placed in an airing cupboard to ensure it is completely dry before storing. Alternatively, you can arrange for it to be laundered.
It is surprising how dusty a mattress can get, so now is also the time to vacuum it. Many vacuum cleaners have a mattress head, if it doesn’t any similar brush-style head will work. Cleaning underneath and behind the bed should also be done. The less dust the better it is for your health.
- Dust light fittings
- Any uncarpeted flooring, skirting boards and doors washed
- Windows cleaned inside and out
- Window frames cleaned
- Any ventilation grilles cleaned
Autumn House Cleaning Checklist
Calling the professionals
- Book your boiler service early
- Book your chimney sweep/inspection
- Book other tradespeople, including Gutter Cleaning, Carpet and Upholstery Cleaning
For yourself or a cleaning company to tackle
- Soft furnishings
- Carpets and Rugs
- Hard flooring
- Beds and Duvets
- General dusting, cleaning and vacuuming
Autumn cleaning summed up
This may seem a lot of work, but if you organise it well and schedule it over time, it can be done. Not all of this comprehensive list may be necessary, but it’s worth checking for a clean, sparkling and healthy home. Alternatively, why not engage professionals like The White Cleaning Co. We offer bespoke autumn cleaning services, so if you have worked out your schedule and there are parts you want help with, we’re here to save you time and stress. Get in touch today!