Monthly Archives: September 2013

Take time out for some tile TLC

Floor tiles may be low maintenance compared to carpets, but that doesn’t mean they don’t need special care at times. Fear not though, employ some easy cleaning routines and you can keep them looking as good as new for years to come.  Read on folks…

woman-sweeping-tile-floor

Keep the shine

Dirt which has built-up over a number of months can really make your tiles look worn down. That’s why cleaning with detergent once a week is your best bet in order to maintain that shine. A dry buff also works wonders – if you can spare the time and muscle effort involved.

The soap catch

Ever found yourself thinking “more soap will do the trick”?  We often – wrongly – believe the more soap we use the cleaner the surface. But when it comes to tiles that just isn’t the case. That’s because using too much soap when mopping floors leaves a cloudy layer on floor tiles – as well as a sticky residue too (meaning you have to clean them all over again!). 

Get rid of stains

Nothing will make your tiles look more worn-out than stains, and stained grout in particular. This can be a nightmare at times to clean but don’t despair, there are remedies to make the work easier. You could, for instance, try mixing your own grout cleaning solution with a paste of two-thirds baking soda and one third water.  Then just scrub the grout thoroughly, leave it a few minutes and rinse clean. Voila!

Know your tiles

Nature stone tiles are prone to acid damage and won’t do well with the majority of tile cleaners currently on the market (although you can buy cleaners specially for natural stone). They can be treated with a very mild detergent. Ceramic tiles on the other hand are much more resilient and can put up with more chemical bombardment. 

But listen, if the thought of cleaning your tiles on a regular basis to keep them looking good makes you want to run for the hills, then why not give us a call here at  Budget Maids?  We offer professional maid services in Vienna and Potomac, house cleaning in Columbia and cleaning services in the rest of VA and Maryland.  Really – your tiles will love you for it!

image via sheknows.com

Keep those kitchen items in constant working order by cleaning

Here at Budget Maids we are aware that there are certain items in our kitchens that we use every day and rely on so heavily that it would be painful if they broke down. So – all the more reason to give them a service and clean up every now and again to prevent any future tears.

how-to-clean-a-washing-machine.WidePlayer

Here we list three of our most used kitchen items – the oven, washing machine and that all important coffee roaster.

Keeping your oven clean

Ok, we’re probably all guilty of having an oven that isn’t exactly sparkling. But that’s because it’s used so often there’s little chance to clean it. But, if you get into the habit of wiping it down every time you use it, you’ll never again have to face that dreaded big scrub with chemicals and plenty of elbow grease again.

Ammonia bleach and water usually does the trick but remember to wear rubber gloves and even a face mask as we’re talking strong chemicals here (and avoid if pregnant). Alternatively you could use bicarbonate of soda and water, smear it on the oven and leave overnight then get ready for some heavy elbow grease action next day.

In terms of the ammonia, take the shelves out and spray them separately and leave for two hours before soaking in water then washing with detergent. Spray the inside of the oven too and rinse.

Make sure your washing machine cycle continues

When you think of what we expect our washing machines to do, it’s no wonder they get dirty and bunged up with gunge sometimes. Do the following every month or so and you should be able to keep cleaning clothes to your heart’s content:

  • Defluff the filter – always lots of lint in there
  • Refresh the detergent drawer – wipe with a cloth and a toothbrush for corners
  • Rinse the machine – run empty on a hot wash with some vinegar to get rid of soap   scum

Manage your coffee machine

Cafetieres can be kept clean by just immersing them in hot soapy water, as can the filter and jug of electric coffee machines. Descale with water and white vinegar.

The same applies for a cappuccino or expresso maker, except wash the steam nozzle too in hot soapy water.

None of the above take long to do but they sure save a heap of time when it comes to once a year cleans on the above items (especially the oven – yeuch).

Budget Maids runs a house cleaning service in Reston, maid service in Potomac and undertake house cleaning in Columbia as well as other areas of VA and Maryland. You can always contact us here for further advice and details of our service.

image via videojug.com

Back to school household cleaning

No matter how much we try to deny it, summer’s definitely over. How do we know? Because the kids have been back at school for more than a week or two now and the house is starting to get messy again with their gym kit, school books and general detritus.

BackToSchool

As a result, it’s time to gather them together for some household cleaning pointers, such as:

Get rid of the holiday gear and gadgets

Whether your kids were out and about this summer swimming, fishing gear, or doing their annual summer camping stuff, all items related to those activities need to go back into storage NOW (goodbye summer). Have each member in the family take care of their own summer holiday belongings.

The bathroom speedway

You know the drill; getting in and out of the bathroom on weekday mornings can prove a rough start to your day, to say the least. So why not simplify the morning bathroom schedule by organizing everyone beforehand. And we don’t just mean in terms of allocated times. No, allocate space in the bathroom too. Your teenage daughter’s numerous shampoo bottles dotted around the side of the bath, the seven-year-old twins’ bath toys scattered across the floor and hubby’s magazines lying in a wet puddle – here at Budget Maids this is what we’d term clutter and mess. Don’t put up with it!

The mini-office work space

Getting schoolwork done with all the distractions of media and entertainment is a huge challenge these days. That’s why often a dedicated ‘kids-work space’ really works. But not only should this be a media and entertainment free zone, it should also have a cleaning routine attached. After all no-one can work in mess, really. A clear surface tends to equal a clear and ordered mind and is far more inspiring than a pile of paper and crayons scattered everywhere.

How’s your home coping with the whole back-to-school routine? You can always call on our services at Budget Maids for professional assistance with house cleaning in Falls Church, maid service in Rockville or if the kids just can’t do their bit, for a cleaning service in Arlington.

image via sc.chinaz.com

Hot tips for cleaning an indoor heating system

We’ve all started to notice the slight change in the air, telling us that fall is on our doorstep.  Most people bemoan the thought of winter and it’s certainly a time when we rely on our home’s heating system. But if the thought of stale indoor air leaves you cold then it’s time to get cleaning.

indoor-air

Cleaning furnace ducts – is it really necessary? The answer is no!  Only consider cleaning your air ducts if you are aware of any pest infestations, if you can visibly see mold or if excessive dirt and debris are released into your home via the ducts.  These are extreme cases, thankfully.

Prevention is better than cure. Stopping dust, dirt and other filthy matter from entering your air duct system is the best way to prevent indoor air contamination.  Regularly check your heating system’s filters for efficient functioning.  When the time comes to replace the filter system, opt for the highest quality that you can afford.  Routine vacuuming with a high quality vacuum cleaner (and that means high quality vacuum filters) is one of the best ways to ensure your indoor heating system is up to the mark.

Clean-up the components. Be sure to clean your heating system’s components at least once a year.  This means giving the furnace fan blower and furnace heat exchange a thorough clean.  If you do this regularly, your indoor air quality will last you throughout winter with no hassles. 

Cleaning indoor air and heating systems all boils down to good household cleaning routines.  And that’s where Budget Maids can help. If you need household cleaning in Potomac, a maid’s service in Olney or a cleaning service in Vienna and throughout Maryland and VA then please do get in touch!