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Spring Cleaning Guide

Posted on April 30, 2019 by Miller and Smith Blog Team

They say Spring is the best time of year to freshen up both the inside and outside of your home. Why? Just take a peek at the weather forecast! Partially sunny skies, a cool breeze, and 70-degree temperatures make the perfect setting for getting your yard back in shape and your Miller & Smith home looking spotless. Before you dive headfirst into spring cleaning, let us help you get organized with this easy to follow spring cleaning checklist:

Interior Projects

1. Replace air filters
Before you turn on your air conditioning for the first time of the season, be sure to check on your HVAC air filter. While they’re great at capturing any pollen and dust that makes its way into your home, it’s important to change them regularly to prevent any future issues. If not, your air filter may become clogged and, eventually, shut down your HVAC system. Take the necessary precautions now to ensure a nice, cool spring and summer season!

2. Add a pop of color to your home
Goodbye winter, hello spring! Put aside those dark colors and bring in some bright accents to make any room in your home pop. We know it’s not ideal to change the color of your walls with every season, but thankfully there are other ways to refresh your decor. Items like pillows and bedding are great focal points when switching things up. A simple pattern or color change can truly transform the whole look and feel of your room.

Not sure which color to go with? Get creative! Yellow is commonly known as the color of optimism, while red symbolizes energy and strength.

3. Declutter
Sometimes it can be difficult letting go of certain items in your home, even those you haven’t used in ages! Lucky for you, spring marks the perfect time to start parting ways and getting organized in the process. Rather than thinking about decluttering your whole entire home, start out small. Select a room to start in and slowly work your way around the house, and don’t forget your closet!

Once you’ve sorted out which items you need and which ones you don’t, start planning your trip to the local thrift store or, better yet, hold a community yard sale!

4. Clean windows
Through the hustle and bustle of life, it’s easy to forget to clean your windows. Both sills and tracks can get pretty dirty over time and, because they’re used to bring in sunlight and view the beautiful outdoors, their cleanliness is often recognized. For your window sills, all you need is a microfiber cloth, all-purpose spray (or your own homemade half water, half vinegar mixture), and some serious wiping skills. 

Tackling your tracks, on the other hand, require a bit more effort. First, use a vacuum to remove any loose dust. Next, sprinkle some baking soda on the remaining debris and spray vinegar on the tracks. After letting the solution soak for 10 minutes, use an old toothbrush to scrub the now loosened debris and wipe it up with a damp microfiber cloth. To get to those hard to reach areas, wrap a damp cloth around a butter knife and carefully remove the remaining gunk. Before you call it quits, be sure to lubricate the tracks using silicone lubricant!

Looking to clean your window glass? Stay away from Windex and opt for vinegar spray (50% distilled vinegar and 50% tap water).

Exterior Projects

1. Clean the grill and outdoor furniture
With beautiful spring weather comes more time spent outdoors. Before you get too comfortable during your first of the season BBQ, your grill and patio furniture may need a little TLC. When the grime on your outdoor grill just won’t budge, there are a few tricks you can try. We suggest spraying the entire inside of the grill with regular household vinegar, then scraping the grime off with a piece of aluminum foil.

When it comes to cleaning patio furniture, you must first select a solution that works best for the material. For plastic, simply spray the surface with an all-purpose cleaner and wipe with a damp cloth until clean. For metal, use a mild soap and warm water solution and gently scrub with a sponge or brush. Whatever you do, avoid pressure washing!

2. Clean gutters
While you can’t easily reach them, you want to make sure you don’t forget to clean out your gutters after the winter season. It may be a beautiful sight to see the trees change colors, but the second they fall, they get caught in your gutter. To remove, grab a latter and carefully clean out the debris with gloved hands. Once it seems clear, have a friend hand you the garden hose (sans nozzle) to get the rest out with a little water pressure. 

3. Wash siding
Green is a beautiful earthy color, but not when it’s in the form of pollen on your home’s siding. Luckily, cleaning vinyl siding is an easy task, especially with the use of a pressure washer. Before you start, ensure all windows and doors are closed and familiarize yourself with using your pressure washer. Using a solution made of 70% water and 30% vinegar, start cleaning your home from the highest point down. 

4. Prep your garden
The secret to a successful garden is ensuring your soil is in tip-top shape. Taking an at-home soil test will teach you a lot about your yard and help you determine what your garden will need (especially the major ingredients needed to survive!). Once you have your soil ready to go, it’s then time to head to the local nursery to find yourself some of your favorite plants. Speaking of, which plants will you be harvesting this year?

The spring season gives us the opportunity to reflect and refresh, but before you head out to enjoy your beautiful Maryland or Virginia community, be sure to take the time to give your home a pick me up!