Your DIY guide to spring cleaning your household appliances
Scrubbing every nook and cranny in the house probably isn’t your idea of a fun weekend, but a good old-fashioned spring clean can do wonders for refreshing your home and rejuvenating the soul.
While spring cleaning usually focuses on decluttering and deep cleansing your living spaces, it’s also important to give some love to the unsung heroes of the home: your appliances.
Many of your hard-working household appliances put up with heavy use on a near-daily basis. Giving your appliances some TLC can help keep them running smoothly for years to come and can even help you save on your power bill!
Not sure where to start? We’ve put together a DIY guide to help you get your appliances squeaky clean this spring.
Clean the filter on your heat pump
If your heat pump got a good workout over the winter months, it’s a good idea to clean out the filter before summer rolls around. Cleaning the filter is not only crucial for removing dust, bacteria and mould - it also allows your heat pump to operate more efficiently, which can help you save money on your power bill.
- Switch off the heat pump at the wall.
- Carefully remove the filter from the unit.
- Wipe the filter with a soft cloth.
- Wash the filter in a mixture of mild dish-washing detergent and lukewarm water to remove stubborn dirt.
- Leave the filter to dry in the shade before reassembling and switch the heat pump back on.
Wipe up microwave splatters
One burned bag of popcorn is all it takes to turn your microwave into a smelly mess. Thankfully, there’s an effective way to restore your microwave to its former glory that requires very little effort.
- Combine 1 cup of water, 2 tablespoons of white vinegar and a squeeze of fresh lemon juice in a microwave-safe bowl.
- Microwave the mixture on high for 5 minutes.
- Remove the bowl and use a clean cloth or paper towels to wipe down the inside of the microwave. The steam from the water and white vinegar will have loosened up any splatters, making it a cinch to wipe the surfaces clean.
Clean the lint filter on your dryer
We all know we’re meant to clean the dryer’s lint filter after every load - and we’re all guilty of breaking that rule from time to time.
It’s time to make amends. During your spring clean, take a moment to not only wipe down your lint filter, but also give it a thorough wash with warm water and soap. Scrub gently until the film is clear of debris, and dry completely before putting it back in the dryer.
Maintaining a clean lint filter allows your dryer to work more efficiently and can help keep your electricity costs down.
Give the oven a deep cleanse
Cleaning the oven requires a bit more elbow grease than the other appliances in your home, but the results are absolutely worth it.
- Switch off the oven at the wall.
- Mix ¾ cup baking soda with ¼ cup warm water to make a thick cleaning paste. Do note that baking soda should not be used on aluminum as it can cause discoloration.
- Lay out some newspapers or paper towels on the floor below your oven.
- Remove oven racks, place them in the sink (or bathtub) and let them soak in water and dishwashing liquid for a few hours. After soaking, scrub with a scouring pad and apply the paste to stubborn stains.
- Using your fingers or an old paintbrush, apply the paste throughout the oven’s interior, being careful to avoid electric elements or gas inlets. Close the oven and leave overnight.
- The next day, remove the paste using a damp cloth and a plastic scraper. Wipe with a damp cloth and repeat to remove streaks.
- Wipe the door using a soft cloth and a mixture of equal parts water and white vinegar.
- Switch the oven back on.
Now that the oven’s sparkling clean, check out this blog post to learn more about improving energy efficiency in the kitchen!
Check your smoke alarms
A spring clean is the perfect opportunity to check that all the smoke alarms in your home are working properly.
- Remove the smoke alarm from its bracket.
- Wipe away built-up dust and debris, which can increase the risk of false alarms.
- If you have smoke alarms with replaceable batteries, the batteries should be replaced every year.
- Check the expiry date and replace any alarms that have expired. All alarms should be replaced after 10 years (ideally with new long-life photoelectric smoke alarms).
- Push the test button to ensure the alarm is loud and clear.
Clear out the fridge
You know those condiments you’ve been holding on to since 2014? It’s time to get rid of them. Clearing out the fridge is fairly self-explanatory, but we’ve put together a quick checklist to ensure you don’t miss anything.
- Switch off the fridge.
- Remove all the food.
- Throw away anything that has expired.
- Pull out the drawers and shelves and wash them in the sink with warm soapy water.
- Mix 2 tablespoons of baking soda with 1 litre of hot water. With a damp cloth, use the mixture to wipe the interior of the fridge. Wipe dry with a clean towel.
- Sprinkle some baking soda on a damp sponge to scrub away stubborn stains. Avoid using harsh cleaners as they can be toxic and may leave behind a strong smell that penetrates your food.
- Use a brush to remove dirt, dust and pet hair that may have accumulated around your refrigerator coils (typically found on the back or underside of the fridge). Keeping these coils free of debris helps your fridge run more efficiently.
- Insert the clean drawers and shelves.
- Put the food back in the fridge and switch it back on.
De-crumb the toaster
When was the last time your toaster got a good clean? Unplug the toaster, clear out the crumb tray and wash with warm soapy water, and wipe down the outside with a damp cloth.
Give the washing machine a makeover
Some simple maintenance can help keep your washing machine ticking over smoothly.
Most washing machines have a filter located at the front of the machine, which is designed to collect foreign objects and prevent damage to the pump. Use a towel or bucket to catch any water that might be inside, open up the hatch and pull out any tissues, lint, coins and small toys that you find.
The detergent drawer
Over time, detergent residue can build up in the detergent drawer, which can lead to the growth of mould and mildew.
- Carefully remove the drawer from the washing machine.
- Soak the drawer in a mixture of white vinegar and hot water, and scrub to remove stubborn soap scum.
- While the drawer is drying, use an old toothbrush to scrub the washing machine’s detergent drawer cavity, paying special attention to any mould spots that may have formed.
- Reassemble once the drawer and cavity are clean and dry.
The door seal
Noticed your laundry smelling a little musty recently? If you have a front loader, it’s a good idea to thoroughly clean the rubber seal around the door to remove any residual moisture and detergent that may be trapped in and around the gasket.
Thoroughly wipe the door seal with hot water, detergent and a sponge or an old rag. Leave the washing machine door open when not in use to prevent mould and mildew from building up.
Out with the old, in with the new
Thinking about switching to a new energy provider as part of your spring clean?
With competitive rates and top-notch customer service, Grey Power Electricity is the provider of choice when it comes to low-cost electricity. Give us a call today on 0800 473 976 to learn more.