Thursday, October 18, 2012

10 Places Allergens Are Hiding In Plain Sight

1. Vacuum- Admit it, you've never cleaned the filters inside your vacuum. Well, obviously that is a source of allergens. But so is the brush and the outside casing of the vacuum. Every time I go to someone's house and see their vacuum the outside is just as dusty as the bin. Take a wet wipe to it after you vacuum to keep the dust away. 

2. Bottles- Look on your bathroom counter. It looks clean, but what about the lid to the Noxema, or the bottle of lotion, or the perfume bottle on your dresser. There is always some collection of dust around the nozzles or the on the lids. 

3. Headboards- It doesn't matter if you have one made of wood, metal, or fabric, allergens collect there too. If you have a fabric headboard, use the upholstery attachment of your vacuum and remove the allergens. If you have a wood headboard use wood cleaner and a wet wipe if its metal. 


4. Vents- Whether you have them on the ceiling, in the wall, or on the floor, chances are, you can't remember the last time you dusted there. The return vent, the one usually low on the wall under your air condition, is always the dustiest place in the house. If you have pets and long haired family members, all that hair, dander, and vacuum dust blow back ends up there. Use the vacuum home to clean there daily. 

5. Curtains- No one ever takes down the curtains to wash them. It's too much of a hassle. But I bet you never shake them out either. The curtains are the first line of defense against dust and allergens in your home. When you open the windows, everything blows past them first. You can either shake them out or use the upholstery attachment once a week to keep them allergen free. Personally, I like to spritz them with homemade Febreeze to keep the allergens away, keep them fresh and to keep the new dust from settling so easily. I vacuum them once a week. Homemade Febreeze works better than the store bought for this purpose. 

6. Blinds- Most people dust the blinds when the see the dust. But by then it's usually an inch thick. Spray a little furniture polish like Pledge on your favorite dusting tool and swipe them clean once or twice a week. he dust won't settle or build up.

7. Sofas- I have a leather sofa so I don't have this problem. But if you have a fabric sofa like my mother does, you have an allergen magnet. There is a reason it's call an upholstery attachment. When doing your daily vacuuming, give the sofas a few swipes with the attachments. You can probably get by with weekly cleaning but if you have severe allergies I recommend doing it daily. 

8. Plants- Sure, flowers are the obvious allergen. But did you know that when vegetable plants feel they are about to die they release as much pollen as they can as an attempt to live on in a new plant? When you have flowers you might hold onto them until they die. But once they begin to wilt, you will need to either get rid of them or remove the dying buds. The same goes for your herb garden. 

9. Appliances- The dryer blows air, so all around it and on top of it will be lint and dust. Don't forget to vacuum under it with a nozzle if you can. Don't forget to wipe down the kitchen counter top appliances. 

10. Clocks- We notice the dust on the picture frames because they contain images of our cherished family members. But we never notice the dust on the clock. We barely notice the time. When you dust the picture frames, don't forget the clocks.

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