Can dust settle on surfaces minutes after you have cleaned them? Tips to get rid of dust — not simply moving it about.
Dust is a breezy term for some yucky stuff: sloughed-off skin tissues, animal dander and hair, dust mites and their feces and decomposing bug parts — and that is not counting the cloth fibers and tiny particles of soil, wood, sheet rock, plaster and paint. Besides not wanting to live among such detritus, many people are allergic to dust mites and pet dander. You can’t prevent having to dust — just two of the largest components are skin cells and fabric pieces — however, you can lessen the amount you have to do.
- Dust cloth or duster? Instead of using your husband’s older T-shirt or a mod feather duster, use a microfiber or electrostatic cloth to catch dust, not simply move it about. “Nothing beats it. It attracts dust like a magnet,” states Smallin. “And the best thing is when you are done dusting, you can simply throw it in the scrub, allow it to air dry and apply it again.” Microfiber dusters, with strips or loops of microfiber to snare even dust, also are available in a variety of shapes and lengths for reaching blinds and ceiling fans. If you do not use microfiber, dampen your fabric. Damp microfiber fabrics are excellent cleansers — a mirror will come out streak- and – dirt-free without any cleaning solution.
- Wet or dry mop? A damp mop will clean better than a dry one, but water is tough on certain surfaces, like timber. Microfiber mops come in both dry and moist varieties. And, although it may sound like overkill, Smallin says that if you dry mop your hardwood flooring every day, you will pretty much sip dust from the bud stage. This is akin to the boxers/briefs debate: There is evidence for both options, and often it comes down to personal preference. Smallin prefers vacuuming first because vacuums can blow around small dust particles, which you can get rid of by dusting post-vacuuming. However, the many dust-first aficionados point out that gravity is on their side; even lightweight dust will eventually end up on the ground — where you can vacuum it up after you dust. Use a vacuum with a HEPA (high-efficiency particulate air) filter, which traps more of these tiny stuff, and operate it once a week on trafficked areas. And take care of your vacuum: Drain the canister and change straps and bags when needed, keep the brush free of hair and other stuff, check for cracks or loose springs and get it cleaned every so often to keep it functioning smoothly. Change the air filters in your heating and air conditioning system once a month — or even more frequently. Pleated air filters catch dust particles, and some are electrostatically charged to attract pollen and other allergens. Ensure the filter is ranked for the blower capacity of your system. Use the air conditioner to reduce humidity; dust mites love a moist atmosphere.
- Cut down textiles. Whether on your flooring, furniture, windows or in your cupboard, fabrics not only trap dust however they make it as they drop and disintegrate. Leather, wood, plastic and acrylic leave dust no place to hide and can easily be cleaned. Consider going with bare wood flooring with washable scatter rugs. If you have to have carpet, select for shorter heap.
- Declutter and decorate. Books, knickknacks, art — the longer you have, the more nooks and crannies for dust to accumulate. Smallin suggests keeping books in the front of the shelf to rob dust of a spot to settle and keeping things such as shoes and purses in plastic bins. Plastic bins are also a good idea for kids’ stuffed animals, a prime dust-breeding floor. Look at putting collectibles beneath glass.
- Cabinet cleanup. Put your off-season clothing in plastic bins or hanging bags to restrict its own shedding, and keep the floors of your cupboard clear so that you can zip the vacuum cleaner or dust mop over them as you do your usual cleaning.
- Sweep it off. Don’t miss your old friend, the broom. If you have tile floors that have irregular surfaces, Smallin urges an angled, synthetic-bristle broom since it can get into corners and picks up bigger particles than the usual natural-fiber broom. Then damp mop to seal the bargain.
- Dust offenders. The total quantity of dust in your home is as changeable as dust , based on the amount of people who reside in the house. Human skin and fabric fibers are major culprits, and there’s just so much that you can do about either of those. If your residence is a dust magnet even with routine and efficient cleaning, assess your ductwork and caulking to be certain you’re not importing dust out of the garage or from the outside.
- Trust your dusting instincts. Figure out what works for your own house. Vacuuming the hallway daily can cut down on the amount of dusting you’ll have to do.