During the spring season, there’s no better time to spring clean your home, so it’s fresh, decluttered and ready for the months ahead. Whether that’s clearing out your wardrobe, dusting your ceilings or scrubbing the bathtub, there are still a few spaces that you might be missing, especially in your kitchen.
The kitchen is arguably one of the most used places in your house and as it’s where you handle food, it can get dirty and unhygienic. When you spring clean your kitchen this year, it’s important to cover every area, but you might be overlooking spots like your taps, kettle and extractor fan.
To find out more, I spoke to Polly Shearer, cleaning expert at Tap Warehouse who outlined 7 parts of your kitchen that you’re probably not spring cleaning… and why you should be! For more cleaning tips, check out these 12 spring cleaning hacks.
The sink is used to clean your kitchen items, so it’s not surprising if you forget to actually clean the sink. If you have a smelly sink, it’s likely that there are small bits of food stuck and built up down the plug so make sure to thoroughly clean your sink. But how? Shearer says “one simple trick is to pour boiling water down the drain to break down the food. If it doesn’t, a small cup of white vinegar down the drain followed by a hot rinse 30 minutes later should unclog it. If this still isn’t enough, mix white vinegar with baking soda and pour the solution down the drain; leave it for a couple of hours to work its magic, followed by a kettle of boiling water.”
Along the same vein, your kitchen and bathroom taps are often overlooked but they can develop stubborn limescale overtime. As you and the other people in your household touch taps on a regular basis, this can also capture and spread dirt and diseases, so it’s important to give your taps a clean this spring. To clean your taps, Shearer recommends using lemons. “Lemons can perform miracles when it comes to removing limescale because of their acidic nature. Simply rub the citrus onto taps or faucets and rinse with clean water. Ensuring you rinse the tap with water afterwards is a vital step, otherwise you’re at risk of eroding the finish on your tap.”
3. Fridge coils
Cleaning the best fridge is a big job, from clearing out old food to scrubbing the shelves. But while we tend to focus on the inside, the outside can be forgotten which can shorten the life of your appliance and affect how it runs. Shearer says that “dirty fridge coils can overload the compressor which can result in a repair totalling hundreds of pounds.” To clean these coils, hoover them once a year, which can go a long way to keeping your fridge functioning efficiently. Just remember to turn the appliance off first before cleaning!
The best kettles are used a lot in every household so cleaning and descaling your kettle should be a priority to avoid floating bits in your tea and coffee. All you have to do is “throw a few sliced lemons into the kettle and boil it. Let it sit for ten minutes before boiling again. The natural acids from the lemon will break up the limescale in the kettle and can be rinsed away.” Alternatively, “if you have a significant build up of limescale in your kettle, try filling it with a 50/50 mixture of white wine vinegar and water to about a third of the kettle. Boil it and let it soak for five minutes before draining the solution and scrubbing the inside. A few clean water boils should get rid of any remnants of vinegar,” states Shearer.
5. Extractor fan
Extractor fans collect grime and food odours which can leave your kitchen feeling stuffy and smelly. Aside from a nasty smell, having a dirty extractor fan can affect how well it performs, so to avoid this, start by cleaning its filters. Do this by “taking them out and washing them with hot soapy water one by one, ensuring they’re dried fully before placing them back in. If you use your extractor fan regularly, aim to clean the filters every three months to keep them in good condition”.
No one likes a smelly bin and I’m sorry to say that changing your bin bags won’t make this smell go away! Give your bin a proper clean “using hot, soapy water to eradicate leftover grime. If your bin is regularly giving off a foul odour, try putting ground coffee in the bottom which will neutralise any funky smells,” says Shearer. As spring comes with warmer weather, it’s worth noting that this can have an effect on your bin so you should be cleaning it more frequently using “a white vinegar and water solution boiled in the kettle to extinguish flies, maggots and their eggs.”
7. Underneath appliances
Cleaning around the appliances that sit on your kitchen counter is pretty redundant as there will be stains, spills and crumbs underneath them. Not only that but as “grime and bits of food can build up under amenities, this can hold all kinds of germs including Salmonella and E coli,” says Shearer. “A simple wipe down underneath of your appliances once in a while will ensure there’s no build up of potential harmful bacteria.”