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Archive for the ‘cleaning mistakes’ Category

Toilet Cleaning Made Easy

Everyone has cleaned a toilet in their life, unless maybe you’re Donald Trump. Would you be surprised if I told you a housekeeper in a hotel cleaned it differently than you or I? I’m going to share with you the tips, and tricks they use. The first thing you’ll need is a good pair of rubber gloves, a toilet bowl brush, and some toilet bowl cleaner. The gloves can be any type of rubber, or latex gloves. Examination gloves are 100 to a box and you throw them away after using. The toilet bowl brush shouldn’t have any exposed metal that will scratch the porcelain. Most hotel housekeepers use a soft brush, or swab. Lastly the cleaner can be a non acid bowl cleaner, or acid. Acid bowl cleaners come in phosphoric acid , or hydrochloric acid. Phosphoric is mild and relatively safe. Hydrochloric acid can be dangerous but in areas where hard water, and minerals are prevalent is sometimes the only thing to get the job done. Hydrochloric acid bowl cleaners come in varying strengths. A 9% is weaker than a 23%. Wearing eye protection when cleaning a toilet bowl is a good rule of thumb especially if you’re using an acid.

Using your brush or bowl swab I want you to flush the toilet, and as water starts to fill it push the water down the hole at the bottom of the toilet. Your goal is to get as much water out of the bowl as possible. The reason being when you add the bowl cleaner you don’t want it diluted by the water. Add the bowl cleaner, and starting under the rim swab the chemical from the top down to the bottom of the bowl. Allow this to sit in the toilet bowl for 5 to 10 minutes so the chemical has time to work. Return with your bowl brush or swab to give it a final scrubbing then flush. Hotel housekeepers will empty the water out of the bowl add the cleaner, and clean the rest of the bathroom before doing the toilet last. A final caution is if your bathroom floor is polished stone make sure you don’t drip any of the bowl cleaner on the stone as it will etch the stone removing the shine. Watch a short video of how this is done by clicking here.


Pine tree needles + your vacuum = a clogged vacuum

It’s the holiday season, and with it comes the raising of the Christmas tree. I remember in my family it was a huge deal. I was the only girl with four older brothers. They, and my father would travel to a Christmas tree farm to select the perfect tree. It was mine, and my mothers job to decorate it. We would keep the tree up a good three weeks to enjoy it. This meant we would experience significant loss of pine needles from the tree. My mother would vacuum them up with her trusty Hoover vacuum, and every year the vacuum would become clogged. It never failed. We knew when she started picking them up what the result was going to be. My father would have to take the thing apart, find the clog, and remove it. The best part was I’d get to hear my dad say words I wasn’t supposed to know, and wasn’t allowed to repeat. My recommendation is to use a shop style vacuum to pick up the bulk of the pine needles. If you’re going to use your good vacuum make sure it has an empty bag when you start, and let the vacuum take small bites of the pine needles. Nothing clogs it quicker than trying to gulp up a big pile of pine needles in one bite. Check your bag frequently, and make sure you don’t break a belt. Watch my video on trouble shooting your vacuum by clicking here.


How to eliminate germs in your home

Did you know your toilet may have less harmful bacteria than your kitchen sink. Food particles left on plates to soak, or rinsed off the plates become a fertile breeding ground for bacteria. Having a garbage disposal gives those crumbs, and pieces of food an area to become lodged. Your drain plug at the bottom of the sink is a favorite repository for unwanted critters. If you use your sink to prepare ground beef or poultry salmonella and ecoli is often present. If you think about it we normally just rinse the sink when we’re done using it. We normally clean our toilets with a bowl cleaner that’s also a disinfectant. It’s no big surprise your kitchen sink could be harboring some nasty  germs. You can remedy this situation by cleaning your sink thoroughly with hot soapy water after each use. In addition a bleach, and water mixture, or a disinfectant diluted will kill any germs lurking in your garbage disposal. Lastly don’t forget to wash your drain plug, and drain at the bottom of the sink.


Care and Cleaning of Wood Floors

The care and cleaning of wood floors requires a little knowledge on the owners part. Is your wood floor factory finished, or urethane coated? If not is it an older floor with paste or liquid wax on it? You need to know because the cleaning chemicals used are different for each. The only common care tip used on both is to dust mop the floors frequently. Dust mopping removes the sandy gritty dirt that wears the finish off the floor. Find out how to tell what kind of wood floor you have, and get floor care tips from the factory experts by clicking here.


The Myth and Mystery of Home Made Cleaning Products

I’d like to discuss the use of bleach as a cleaning product. I’ve had many people tell me they use it to clean. I’m going to explain what bleach will do, and what it won’t do. First of all bleach is an oxidizing agent. It’s most commonly used in laundry to brighten your whites. When used in the laundry, detergent is still added to the load along with the bleach. The reason for this is detergent cleans, and bleach does not. Bleach has no chemical surfactants to lift dirt from a surface. So all you folks using a bleach , and water solution to clean are not accomplishing much.

Now I’ll share with you some other uses for bleach that do work. First of all bleach can be used as a disinfectant. I believe it’s still officially recognized as such by the Center for Disease Control. Mixed with water and mopped on the floor, or wiped on a surface it will kill a broad range of germs. It looses it effectiveness in water after a short time so you want to use the solution fairly soon. Bleach can be used to eliminate mold, and mildew. Again mix it with water, and apply it to the surface. Just remember mold and mildew occur in dark, damp conditions with little air movement. If you don’t eliminate these conditions it will return. Another way I’ve seen bleach used effectively is in meat room sanitation. After cleaning the meatroom with a good food service degreaser, I’ve known people who use a bleach, and water mixture to sanitize the room.

In closing bleach was designed as an oxidizing agent for use in laundry which it does very well. There are great commercial products available to disinfect, sanitize meat rooms, and kill mold. All of these products will do a better job than bleach. I’d love to hear your feedback on this topic.

                                                   Aunt Patti