Articles Tagged "checklist"

The Watson Blog Home
July
8

You're probably familiar with the concept of winter home maintenance. Floridians don't exactly have a lot to worry about in winter, but summer? The brutal heat and humidity summer brings can affect your home in unsuspecting ways. Keep your house protected during the hot months with this inclusive summer home maintenance checklist.

Inspect Air Conditioners

Start your summer home maintenance checklist by tending to your home's biggest ally against the sweltering sun: the air conditioner. If you have a central AC unit, a professional servicing may be in order. Check, clean, or replace filters for both central units and window units. Be proactive to ensure your AC doesn't fail mid-summer.

Clean Fans

Airflow is crucial in keeping your home cool during summer months, so give your ceiling and room fans some love. Use a damp rag to wipe down the blades. For room fans, remove the casing and dust away the detritus that blocks airflow.

Treat Your Windows

Applying a sun-blocking window screen or cover keeps your home cooler in an energy-efficient way. They also help to keep summertime bugs and dirt outside where they belong. While you're at it, re-caulk the seals on your windows and doors to boost your energy efficiency.

Inspect Your Home's Exterior

Keep an eye out for rotting or loose siding – it can be a haven for dust, sap, dirt, bird droppings, and any number of things that can spell trouble in the long run. If you have brick or concrete, give it a good power wash. Heat can also do a number on paint, so check for peeling, fading, or chipping in your exterior paint. Refreshing with a new coat not only protects your home, it also pumps up your curb value!

Give the Grill a Bath

Summertime is grilling season! To clean charcoal grills, empty all charcoal and ash, then wash it with hot water, a scrubber, and soap. Let it dry fully before using again. For a gas grill, turn the heat up high and let it cook with the lid closed for half an hour. Once it cools, scrape the grill with a sturdy brush. Wipe down the exterior with a damp sponge and cleanser and empty the drip pans.

Vacuum Vents

Clogged exhaust fans annoy with their loud wheezing, but they can also reduce airflow. Simply remove the covering and use an attachment to vacuum out the dust.

Check the Roof

Summer in Florida also means lots of thunderstorms. Give your roof a thorough inspection for any missing shingles, cracks, sags, or other structural concerns to prevent a much larger accident.

Refinish Your Deck/Patio

Just like the sun's damaging effects on your home's paint, your deck and/or patio can take a lot of hurt from the heat of summer – not to mention the wear and tear of near-daily thunderstorms. And since you'll likely be using your deck more in the summer, it's a good time to give it a good power wash and maybe a new finish.

Take Care of Your Yard

Regular landscaping can help your yard stay strong and healthy even in the punishing summer heat. Pull out weeds and mow regularly to reduce potential infestations and encourage healthy growth. Adding new layers of mulch can also help choke out weeds and retain moisture.

Clean Out the Gutters

Summer storms can put a lot of strain on your gutters with lots of water and debris. Make a point to regularly clean them out to prevent leaks and further damage.

November
6

The holiday season is upon us, and if you're hosting this year, you know how stressful it can be to keep your home spic and span for two whole months. With family and friends visiting non-stop for holiday parties and dinners, it's easy to get overwhelmed. That's why we created our holiday home-cleaning checklist for you. We go room-by-room, highlighting critical areas to focus on and forgotten spaces that could use a good dusting down. In fact, we're confident this is the last holiday home-cleaning checklist you'll ever need. But before we start our room-by-room list, here are some general tips to keep in mind as you go.

Declutter

We're a bit of a broken record when it comes to decluttering on this blog, but it's for good reason. Decluttering is one of the simplest yet most effective ways to keep a space looking clean, open, and sharp. Don't waste valuable scrubbing time moving wallets and mail; keep that stuff where it belongs!

Use the Right Tools for the Job

Just because it says all-purpose on the label doesn't mean you should use it on everything in your house. Find the right cleaner for the surfaces you're working on and stick with that. It's worth the marginal extra effort.

Set the Mood

Make people want to be in your house this holiday season. Light some seasonal candles, plug in your favorite air freshener, and set some nice mood lighting to create a welcoming space.

Show the Forgotten Nooks & Crannies Some Love

When's the last time you wiped down your baseboards? Or polished the smudges off your doorknobs? Don't overlook the little things like light switches, windowsills, and doorframes.

Don't Put it Off

Finally, the most important general tip is the last one you want to hear: don't wait until the last minute to clean! The only things procrastinating will get you are more stress and a less clean house. Now, on to the checklist!

Living Room

  • Wipe down coffee table, accent tables, etc.
  • Dust ceiling fans
  • Vacuum carpet, sweep & mop hard floors
  • Clean any windows and windowsills
  • Dust blinds and/or vacuum curtains with vacuum hose
  • Move furniture and clean underneath
  • Tidy up furniture – neatly arrange pillows or blankets, covers, etc.
  • Dust and wipe down entertainment center if applicable
  • Wipe down lamps and other light sources
  • Clean baseboards

Entryway

  • Sweep debris from outdoor entryway
  • Vacuum, sweep, and mop indoor entryway
  • Move any shoes or coats here to a closet or other storage space
  • Wipe down doorknob and locks
  • Wipe down doorframe
  • Clean any windows and windowsills
  • Clean baseboards

Kitchen

  • Wipe down and disinfect all surfaces
  • Handwash or use the dishwasher to clean any dirty dishes
  • Put all clean dishes away – best to start all holiday gatherings with clean dishes
  • Clean any special occasion dishes and silverware you plan to use – it's probably been awhile since they were last used
  • Wipe down appliances – get rid of fingerprints and spills
  • Clean any windows and windowsills
  • Clear out the fridge to get rid of bad odors and make room for holiday food
  • Mop the floor
  • Remove and wipe down stovetop coils (if you have them)
  • Get rid of garbage disposal odors
  • Clean any baseboards

Bedrooms

  • Wash all bedding, especially if your guests are using it
  • Wipe down tops and sides of all furniture
  • Clean any windows and windowsills
  • Dust ceiling fans
  • Vacuum carpet and/or mop hard floors
  • Clean baseboards
  • Wipe down light switches and doorknobs
  • Wipe down doorframes

Bathrooms

  • Deep clean tub/shower, sink, and toilet
  • Clean all around toilet, including front and sides of bowl and base
  • Clean shower walls
  • Wipe down shower heads, tub faucets, and sink faucets
  • Clean shower door
  • Clean mirrors, windows, and windowsills
  • Wipe down baseboards
  • Organize countertop – don't leave all your toiletries lying around
  • Mop the floor

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