THE secret to a tidy home may seem obvious, however there are some common mistakes we all make when cleaning that could actually be sabotaging your attempts.
This means that even if you're putting in the required time and effort to scrub top to bottom, you may actually be spreading dirt and germs around your home.
Here, cleaning whizz and mum-of-four Casey Major-Bunce shares the top seven mistakes she sees all the time, and how you can rectify these errors if guilty of them…
Too much of a good thing
When it comes to wiping down surfaces, you may think the more cleaning product you use, the cleaner your home will look – but actually the opposite can be true.
Casey says: "Using too much soap when washing clothes or dishes can leave behind a film that attracts more dirt, making things look dirty.
"To fix this, follow the instructions on the soap packaging."
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Additionally, always ensure you leave a disinfectant for five minutes before wiping away, to ensure it does its job effectively.
Not cleaning your cleaning tools
You use your mop, vacuum, dust pan and brush regularly to keep things clean – but how often do you actually clean the tools themselves?
Casey says: "Many people forget to clean things like mops, brooms, and vacuum filters.
"Over time, these can get really dirty and spread germs around.
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"To fix this, make sure to clean or replace them regularly.
"Also, using the wrong cleaning tools or products for specific surfaces can lead to damage too.
"It's important to use appropriate tools for different surfaces to avoid any unintended harm."
Remember your gadgets
The same goes for all your gadgets – items you use, and touch, every day, but often overlook when it comes to cleaning.
Casey says: "Many people forget to clean things like their computer keyboards, remotes, and phones.
"This can spread germs and make you sick.
"To fix this, use wipes designed for electronics to clean them regularly."
Deep clean denial
A regular surface clean is all and good – but many people neglect areas for years – and the results can be horrifying.
Casey says: "Some people only clean the surface and forget to clean hidden spots.
"Neglecting areas like behind furniture, on top of cabinets, or under appliances can lead to the accumulation of dust and grime over time.
"These areas should be included in regular cleaning routines, and make sure to clean all the nooks and crannies regularly.
"Additionally, leaving dishes in the sink for extended periods can lead to unpleasant odours and attract pests, so it's important to wash dishes promptly to maintain a clean and hygienic kitchen."
Sleep on it
You spend a huge percentage of time in bed – but it's an area that is often neglected in the regular clean.
Casey says: "People often forget to clean their mattresses, which can lead to a buildup of dust and stains.
"This can affect your sleep and health.
"To fix this, vacuum and spot-clean your mattress often, and use a mattress protector."
Casey says: "Many people use the same vacuum attachment for all surfaces, which can lead to ineffective cleaning and even damage to delicate surfaces.
"To fix this, learn about the right attachments for different surfaces and use them correctly."
Bugs be gone
Finally, in order to avoid those dreaded winter bugs, make sure you're airing out your home.
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Casey adds: "Poor ventilation can lead to a buildup of indoor air pollutants and dust, making it harder to maintain a clean environment.
"Regularly opening windows and using fans can improve air circulation."
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