The lounge is often the main communal room of the house and therefore not only prone to clutter but also dust, all of which is on show for impromptu or expected guests to freely observe whilst you busy yourself in the kitchen preparing beverages. Of course, it's your home, but putting aside the problem of inquisitive guests can you truly relax in a room degraded by clutter and dust? If for you the answer is no, then perhaps it's time to follow this simple guide on effective lounge cleaning techniques.
Vacuum Cleaning Techniques
Make it a house rule that personal belongings such as clothes, shoes, personal stereos are not left in the lounge but placed in their owners rooms.
Ornaments may add character or compliment a themed lounge, but remember 'less is more'. If for example you need to cover every surface with raffia artifacts and dried flowers to create a rustic theme then perhaps it's time to start again. For greater effect choose appropriate base colours for walls and carpets, compliment with carefully selected ornaments to enhance the theme.
Don't be afraid to tell relatives and friends not to give ornaments to you as a gift unless of course it's one that you have chosen personally.
Even more difficult to do is to put away bits and pieces given to you by you children and grandchildren. To save any upset simply announce you have put the items away for safe keeping. Remember dust does not discriminate, therefore you may have to.
Probably the most versatile piece of cleaning equipment. Taking time to familiarise yourself which each of the attachments will in the long run save you time and energy. I suggest when using an upright cleaner get into the habit of attaching the extension hose at the outset and vacuuming all areas that require the extension hose before embarking on the centre of the room.
Lounge Suites especially the upholstered variety benefit for a periodic vacuuming. Remove all loose cushions and use the appropriate attachment, to access the out of the way places that harbour dust, crumbs, sweet wrappers etc.
Curtains To avoid pulling down curtains, drapes and scarves it is advisable to firstly reduce suction by opening the vent on the extension hoseand selecting the preferred attachment. In a downward movement for vertical fittings and across for horizontal fittings, gently vacuum paying careful attention to folds as this is where most of the dust accumulates.
Using either the vacuum extension hose or a long handled feather or micro fibre duster target the area where the ceiling meets the walls. Walls behind the television generally benefit from a routine vaccuuming as the static electricity is a magnet for dust.
Picture Rails & Skirting Boards
The brush type attachment is probably best for this job. Vacuumed regularly, then for that extra finish wipe down periodically with a damp cloth.
Once again using the extension hose and selecting the longer cylindrical attachment with a squashed end, pay particular attention to the carpet or flooring edges and corners.
You may not be able to see the dust lurking behind but it will still be there. By using a feather or micro fibre handled duster it may be possible to clear the dust without removing the picture or hanging.
Vents & Grills
Depending on the width and depth of the panel use either a new paintbrush, make up brush or handled duster. Always ensure naked flames are extinguished and electrical, gas or coal effect fires are allowed to cool before cleaning.
For upright vacuum cleaners whenever possible adjust the brushes to suit depth of pile (this facility will be indicated on the case) for better results. If you have pets, in particular dogs and cats choose a more powerful vacuum cleaner (1600W+)it may cost more initially but the time and effort put in to removing hair and fur will definitely make it worthwhile.
Vacuuming carpets under lounge suites can generally be done routinely rather than weekly. From my experience moving heavy furniture can cause undue wear and tear on the carpets and leave deep impressions if the furniture is not put back in the exact place. This latter inconvenience can however be easily remedied. Simply place ice cubes in the indentation, which will allow the carpet pile to expand to its usual depth.
There are many trade brand cleaning substances readily available specifically for use on wooden flooring. For a natural solution to cleaning wooden floors, steep one tea bag (tannic acid in tea is great for wood)per litre of boiling water and allow it to cool to room temperature.
Vacuum regularly because dirt can cause invisible scratching that ultimately results in dullness.
Never use soap based or citric oil products on laminate flooring because they may cause dulling.
For a good finish try a water/vinegar solution. Fill a spray bottle with a quarter cup of water to 40 fluid ounces water. Dampen the mop with tap water then spray the floor as you mop.
Never use abrasives such as scouring powder. For the removal of spots stains such as heel marks and crayon, use nail polish remover containing acetone on a clean light colored cloth. Other household stains can usually be removed with warm water.
Always squeeze excess water from mop before commencing mopping to prevent seepage
Mop in the direction of the grain to avoid streaking. For a sparkling finish, dry with a soft dry duster.
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