Ahhhh, spring cleaning. The perfect way to shake off the winter blues and get your home ready for a beautiful spring. Plus, spring cleaning can also make your home more energy efficient, allowing your appliances to work more effectively.
But when you’re busy washing windows, changing your furnace filter and dusting in those hard-to-reach places, do you sometimes forget the hub of your home – the kitchen.
We probably spend more time in our kitchens than anywhere else in our house or apartment. It’s where we cook and eat our family meals, where the kids do their homework, where we deconstruct our workday after walking through the front door.
It gets used, a lot. And it gets dirty!
A deep cleaning in the kitchen should be a centerpiece of your spring cleaning routine. Check out these ideas for getting your kitchen spick-and-span.
Start with dusting
- Unless you’re uber tall, you probably don’t see the top of your refrigerator very often. But trust us – it needs some attention. Make sure to dust the top before starting other areas of the kitchen.
- Dust the door and window frames as well as any wall hangings.
- Dust loves to collect on your light fixtures. It’s also a good idea to remove light fixtures and give them a good cleaning with soap and water.
Don’t forget the small appliances
- From your mixer to your crockpot to your air fryer, spend a little time with each appliance. Wipe them down thoroughly, inside and out.
- While you’re getting the appliances nice and shiny, take a few minutes to do any minor maintenance needed.
- Not only will a clean oven look and smell better, it will make your kitchen safer. Ovens are one of the most common areas in a home to start a fire. Food debris as well as grease and oil buildup in an oven can start on fire. It will also produce smoke, which could fill your kitchen and ruin the food in your oven. If you’re looking to save energy, consider skipping the self-cleaning option on your oven and clean it by hand instead.
- Wipe down the top and front of your oven. You can use an equal mix of vinegar and warm water to get your oven looking like new.
- Is the ketchup that spilled in the fall still languishing on the top shelf of your fridge? Has it been ages since you wiped out the veggie drawers? Spring cleaning is a perfect time to clean the inside of your refrigerator. Start by taking everything out and use this opportunity to throw out expired items. Seriously, the chutney in the back expired two years ago. Once you’ve removed everything, use a little elbow grease and cleaner to wipe out any debris, spillage or dirt.
- Wipe down the outside of your refrigerator. If you have stainless steel, you already know that it attracts fingerprints in a big way. Avoid any abrasive cleaning solutions, bleach or ammonia. Those can damage the stainless steel finish. Check your product manual for the best cleaning advice for both stainless steel and other finishes.
- While you’re cleaning the refrigerator, consider turning the temperature to between 36-38 degrees and setting the freezer to between 0-5 degrees. This will decrease your energy usage and lower your monthly bills.
- It works hard all year long, so why not give it some love. Grab a cleaner formulated for your dishwasher’s surface and scrub the outside door.
- Move inside, wiping down the interior door and edges. You can purchase cleaners to sanitize the inside of your dishwasher, but you can also use vinegar. Fill a dishwasher safe bowl with one cup of white vinegar. Place it on the bottom of your appliance and run a hot cycle. Once done, remove the bowl and sprinkle baking soda on the bottom. Run a short cycle. This will make your dishwasher smell and look so clean.
- Does your pantry look as if a food bomb went off? Is there food in there from the Ice Age? Take time to organize your pantry and throw out expired food. Wipe down the shelves and drawers. You’ll love how it looks.
- Spring cleaning is also a great time to reorganize your pantry. Do you really want to store your cleaning supplies next to your pancake mix. Take time to get organized.
Wipe it down
- Now that you’ve dusted and organized, it’s time to wipe down your counters, chairs, handles/knobs and any other surface.
- Give your sink a little extra cleaning, making sure to clean the area behind your sink. Check your sink’s manufacturer for the best cleaners.
- Don’t forget to wipe down your cabinets, especially around the knobs. If you have wood cabinets, this is also the perfect time to oil them.
Look under your appliances – yuck!
- Vacuum and clean under your refrigerator and oven. Did you know that removing the dust bunnies and dirt under your appliances will improve efficiency and make them run more efficiently. And an efficiently running appliance will use less energy which means you’ll save money!
- After all the organizing, wiping, cleaning and dusting, your floor probably looks a bit rough. This is the last step in your kitchen spring cleaning process. Thoroughly sweep the floor and then give it a good cleaning. The type of cleaning solution you use will depend on the type of floor you have, but don’t miss those corners and tough-to-reach areas. You might even have to get on your hands and knees to clean those corners, but it will be worth it.
Once you’ve completed these steps, your kitchen will look brand new. And you’ll have made it safer and more energy efficient. It’s a win-win!
We’ve put together an extensive resource center to help you help your home with topics ranging from creating an emergency kit to installing a smart thermostat. So, what can we do for you today?
Black Hills Energy Blog
The ghosts, goblins and ghouls will be prowling this month, looking for a little light-hearted mischief. Unfortunately, so will the cyber criminals, whose mischief is far more frightful. Online or cyber criminals take tricks to the extreme this and every month. Don’t let a scammer pull you…
Emergencies come in all forms. Whether a forest fire threatens your home, your house has a natural gas leak, or a major storm has caused extensive damage, emergencies leave us feeling unprepared. But there’s one way to feel a little more in control in these situations — have a plan. In this case…
When severe weather strikes, it pays to have an emergency kit ready and waiting. That way, a weather emergency is … well, less of an emergency. Even better, a kit doesn’t have to be super complicated. Most of the items you already have around the house. So, let’s get started. Begin with some…
Don’t let high energy bills turn you into a Grinch this holiday season. Instead, gather your elves and get to work making your home as energy efficient as possible. From wrapping your water heater to caulking drafty windows, our 12 days of energy savings will help you keep energy efficiency top…