Your furniture is often the centerpiece of your room. Keep it clean and looking like new with these tips from the experts.
Dusting is a boring chore, but it must be done. There’s no need to go out and buy expensive dusting cloths, though. Colin Bishop, CEO and president of The Maids, says you probably have a few items lying around your home that will work just as well.
“Socks are not just for keeping feet warm — they also work well for dusting and cleaning. Slip the sock over your hand, dampen with polish or window cleaner and wipe away fingerprints and dust,” he says.
“Do not throw fabric sheets away after one use in the dryer,” he adds. “Used fabric softener sheets are excellent for dusting furniture and non-plasma television and computer screens.”
Wood furniture can start to look dull and unattractive if it’s not polished frequently. Thankfully, a little elbow grease will usually bring it right back to life.
“For wood furniture, begin by dusting the entire piece. Then, use a cloth to massage furniture oil into the wood. You will get the best results if you work along the grain of the wood,” says Meg Roberts, president of Molly Maid. “This mixture works very well on both finished and unfinished wood. It will increase the gloss and durability of finished wood, and it will prevent drying and cracking in unfinished wood. Rub the oil in thoroughly and allow the furniture to air dry.”
Bishop warns that you should take care with your polish. “Always spray the cloth, not the furniture. Overspray may damage surfaces nearby, like painted or wallpapered walls,” he says.
“Removing the dust from upholstered furniture is very easy,” says Roberts. “Use the furniture attachments provided with your vacuum cleaner. Take each cushion out to vacuum separately. Collecting the lost change can be your cleaning tip!”
Sometimes, the cushions on our sofa and chairs may need more than a little vacuuming. Leslie Reichert, “The Cleaning Coach," says the first thing you should do is research the fabric used on your furniture to learn how it can be cleaned.
“Remove the covers and see if they can be washed. Place in washer and let them air dry. If they cannot be washed, place them in just the dryer,” she says. “For oily spills and spots, use corn starch, let it sit and then brush off with the vacuum attachment. Dirty spots can be removed with a drop of dish soap in a spray bottle of warm water. Test the area first, though — remember that putting water on certain fabrics can leave a water ring that can be just a frustrating as a spot.”
Clean those hard-to-reach places behind furniture by putting an old cloth around a yard stick and attaching it with a rubber band.
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