Spring Cleaning

Spring is just around the corner, and you might have already started about what you plan on doing the first nice weekend. For many, they will be pulling back the drapes to let the sun shine in, opening the windows to let fresh air in, and of course, start spring cleaning. As you sit and plan your spring cleaning list make sure you include the kitchen. Most people think of this time as a way to get rid of the dust and cobwebs that have built up without fresh air. However, your kitchen is actually one of the most important areas you should be looking at, and this does not relate to just dust and dirt. Take a few minutes to discover why you should invest a little bit – or more – of your time spring cleaning your kitchen in the near future.

Keeping you and yours healthier…

According to the Mayo Clinic, your home kitchen should be held to the same standards as a public kitchen, as far as being clean is concerned. During the winter months, your kitchen is used more often, as you are unable to go outdoors to cook, eat, and gather. The more you cook and the busier your schedule gets, not to mention the shorter winter days, the less likely you are to follow the basics of health and food safety practices.

There are a few things that more than 25% of all Americans do that could be detrimental to your health. For instance, leaving your jewelry, such as rings and watches on while cooking and preparing food can be hazardous. In addition, placing meat on lower shelves in the refrigerator can also cause a problem, not to mention removing the dust and dirt from your shelves and granite countertops.

Not following these simple rules of food safety can lead to some catastrophies as far as your health is concerned. The simple solution is to make sure that you give your kitchen a little more TLC during the spring cleaning process. Following the simple steps below can lead you into a cleaner, brighter, safer, and healthier kitchen.

The Freezer…

It is a great idea to allow your freezer to defrost before starting the cleaning process. Unplug your freezer, then remove all of its contents. Stir 4 tablespoon of baking soda into one gallon of hot – but not scalding – water in a large bucket. Wipe the interior of your freezer with a soft rag to avoid scratching the surface. Not only does this sanitize the area, but it also helps to remove unpleasant odors.

The Range, Oven, Stove, or Combination…

You also want to pay special attention to your oven. During the winter, it can be quite difficult to open up the windows to really give your appliances the scrub they need, as chemicals can be somewhat potent or harmful if not vented properly. A simple solution to the harmful chemicals is vinegar. Remove your knobs and burner plates, allowing them to soak in vinegar. This will help remove any grease and dirt build-up. Wash with mild soap, rinse, and dry thoroughly before replacing.

The Refrigerator…

You want to make sure your refrigerator is cleaned inside, outside, behind, and underneath. Because it’s not an easy task, many people often do not consider moving their refrigerator to clean behind it. However, due to the amount of dust and dirt that can collect there, spring cleaning is a great time to pull out your refrigerator from the wall and clean. You should also remove the grill to vaccum up any cobwebs that have gathered there, as they could be potential fire hazards.

The Granite Countertops…

Although granite countertops do possess antibacterial properties, it is still a good idea to clean them. Not only is this part of the routine maintenance, but putting in a little extra elbow grease during spring cleaning will really have them shining brand new again. Be sure to use cleaning products safe for granite countertops, and a soft cloth so that you do not damage the surface. Check with your installation company as to how often you need to have your granite countertops resealed. This might be a good time to schedule an appointment.

During the cleaning process, you want to make sure you check every nook and cranny of your kitchen where bacteria can hide. Clean out your cupboards, and be sure to discard any food that is expired, or has been left open for a while. Critters tend to come out in the spring, and open food containers are an invitation into your cupboards and your home.

Be sure to spend as much time on your sink as possible. Use antibacterial cleaning products to ensure that all bacteria has been removed. You also might want to consider pour heated vinegar down the drain to help remove bacteria that has gathered on the pipes. Be careful with harmful cleaners, especially around your granite countertops as you do not want to damage them. Following these simple instructions could lead to a cleaner, healthier kitchen for you and your family this spring.

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