FORT WORTH, Texas, Nov. 18, 2017 — It’s easy to hide some rooms from dinner guests. In contrast, the kitchen and bathroom are open to all. Last week we covered deep cleaning your kitchen. This week addresses the bathroom.
Bathroom Cleaning Top to Bottom, Side to Side”
The old axiom to clean “top to bottom, side to side” is the best way to accomplish your cleaning goals for any room including the restroom.
You’ll need bathroom cleaner, spray bleach cleaner, window cleaner (name brands seem to work best), toilet bowl cleaner, toilet brush, scrub sponge, magic sponges, big cup, several drying cloths, paper towels and trash bags. Keep supplies in each bathroom or put them in a small bucket you can take with you throughout the house.
Mop Water: Use hot water. Simple Green® works really well if you don’t want to use harsh chemicals. Other alternatives include: 1 cup ammonia per gallon of water. Never mix ammonia with bleach or any other chemical!
You can also use ½ cup vinegar in a gallon of water; or splash a bit of dish soap in a gallon of water. This works best on travertine and marble.
If you have more than one bathroom start with the first, removing rugs, vacuuming, and spraying down with cleaners and let sit while you repeat with next bathroom cleaning. This gives the cleaners in the original bathroom time to work.
That makes your job much easier.
Step-by-Step Bathroom Cleaning
1. Pick Up: trash cans, scale, laundry baskets, rugs and anything else and put them out of the room. Shake excess dirt from rugs onto the floor. Vacuum master closet if there is one.
2. Vacuum Floors – Use Swiffer Extendable on baseboards and a small canister vacuum. This works much better than a broom especially if dust bunnies are stuck in corners and around toilet.
Vacuum the floors, then take the head off the end of the hose and suck out the corners, baseboards and behind the toilet. If the bathtub and shower are dry, vacuum any hair off the walls or bottom. Do not vacuum anything that is wet!!
You can also extract hairs from the sink (if dry) with the vacuum and countertops as well. It’s so much faster than chasing after them with a cloth.
3. Counters and sink – Put away combs, brushes, lotions, toothpaste, curling iron, blow dryer, etc. Scrub sink and faucet with scrub sponge, making sure you get the faucet, around faucet base and in between knobs. Use a cloth if the sponge won’t fit.
Rinse with the big cup; wipe away excess water with drying cloth. Use sponge on counters and wipe dry. If counters are granite, travertine or other natural stone, fill sink with soapy water using dish soap and clean with that using a cloth. Wipe dry.
4. Clean Mirror – Next, turn the light off (use hall light or other indirect light) – clean the mirror using microfiber cloth made for glass or paper towels. The lights heat the mirror when turned on, causing serious streaks.
If necessary, wipe away any lingering dust or fibers with a paper towel or coffee filter.
5. Bathtub – Wipe area around windowsill if applicable. Removable bathmat should be sprayed with bleach solution on both sides. Clean tub with scrub sponge.
For soap, body oil and dirt build on tub sides and bottom up use a magic sponge. The store brands usually work as well as the name brands.
Rinse the tub and mat using the big cup. Wipe tub and walls with drying cloth.
Don’t forget the shower curtain and liner. If they can be washed and ironed, do so. Otherwise generously spray the inside of the shower curtain with a bleach based cleaner.
6. Shower – Scrub glass, tiles or fiberglass using scrub sponge. Use magic sponge if necessary. Pick up hair stuck in drain, on edges and in corners using a paper towel. Rinse with big cup or shower hose using hot water. Squeegee if you have one.
If not, get one. It will make the job much almost effortless. Dry with cloth.
Go over any glass with window cleaner and microfiber cloth and/or paper towel. Replace shampoo bottles and cleansing puffs in the shower.
*Note: hard water stains, soap, shampoo, conditioner, body oil and dirt build up over time in showers. CLR cleaner is great for rust and calcium buildup.
Note 2: Remember, when using bleach, ammonia or other cleaners in the bathroom, make sure you have adequate ventilation.
If it’s been there for a long time, it may take several cleaning sessions to get it all off.
A paste made of vinegar and baking soda cuts through grime easily and should work in one or two sessions.
7. Mop floor – Make sure to get all the way around the toilet if possible, baseboards if necessary, and under cabinets as far as you can go. Use old towels to dry the floor. Make sure it’s completely dry before putting rugs back down and other items in their places.
8. Replace trash bag – If you don’t, it’s a good idea to get into the habit of lining wastebaskets with bags made for them or even discarded plastic grocery bags. It helps keep the inside of the trashcan clean and, if you put new bags under the present bag it will save you a lot of steps. All you’ll have to do is remove the filled bag and put a clean one in its place.
Read more of Claire’s work at Feed the Mind, Nourish the Soul in the Communities Digital News and Greater Fort Worth Writers. Join her on Twitter; Facebook; Feed the Mind, Nourish the Soul FB Page; Greater Fort Worth Writers Group FB Page