Tag Archives: carpet cleaning

House Cleaning Oakton – Bed Bugs!

bedbugsBed bugs – a fact of life, but not a very nice one to think about. Here’s our house cleaning Oakton expert advice on dealing with them.

What are bed bugs?

They are small, blood-sucking insects that live in the cracks and crevices in your bed. They are attracted to body heat and carbon monoxide, and will come out at night to bite exposed skin and feed on your blood.

What happens next depends on how your body reacts to the bites. Not everyone reacts to them, but some people will develop itchy, red bumps as a result. They look like mosquito bites, but mosquito bites often appear in random places, whereas bites from bed bugs tend to appear in straight lines.

On your bedding, you might also notice tiny, black dots (their droppings) or tiny, brown blood stains.

House Cleaning Oakton Advice

Having bed bugs doesn’t mean that you live in a very dirty household. When people travel a lot, they can bring bed bugs back – stuck to clothing and suitcases. They love carpets so if you have a lot of carpets in your home, bed bugs are a risk.

Here’s some ideas for what you can do:

  • Vacuum your carpets regularly – and consider carpet cleaning options. When you vacuum the carpets, make sure you dispose of the vacuum bag or contents every time.
  • Invest in hypo-allergenic bedding and bed linen. Also invest in a bed bug proof mattress cover, which will trap the insects inside and cause them to starve to death. You will need to keep this in place for up to 400 days.
  • Wash your bed linen at a temperature of at least 140 degrees F, or place your bed linen in a dryer on a hot setting for 30 minutes to kill off bugs.
  • Check the woodwork next to your bed and any upholstered furniture as bed bugs can be present there.
  • Use an insecticide spray especially designed for bed bugs. Always read the label and do not spray directly on clothing, bed linen or the mattress.
  • You might need to replace the mattress if it appears to be heavily infested.
  • Metal bed frames and headboards are a better idea than fabric ones.
  • Make a tea-tree oil spray (18oz of water mixed with 18 drops of tea-tree oil) and spray this on furniture, your carpets and your bedding. Check compatibility with furniture first.
  • Consider professional pest control firms if you think you have an infestation problem.

Here at Budget Maids we provide house cleaning Oakton, a maid service in Arlington or carpet cleaning services in Potomac and surrounds, and more. Why not give us a call today and let us help you ensure bed bugs don’t cause you any problems?

 

Carpets and Tiles: cleaning your home flooring

The task of renovating or upgrading your home flooring shouldn’t be taken lightly. It’s important to take time to carefully think about your lifestyle before jumping into flooring choices, for instance.  Ask yourself questions such as whether you have time to clean and polish your flooring on a regular basis. And do you actually like doing that anyhow? What about the pets and the kids? If you are planning on renovating your flooring anytime soon, take a look at our tips:

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Carpets v tiles: which to choose?

Carpets add warmth to your home and are super comfortable and luxurious.  But they do require a lot more cleaning and TLC than tile flooring.  They need to be vacuumed, washed and dried and even deep cleaned whereas tiles can do with some basic sweeping and mopping.  If anyone in your home is suffering from allergies, then carpets are out, really. Having said that, tiles really can’t beat the luxurious feel of a thick, white carpet in the bedroom. So why not restrict carpets to bedrooms and areas where there isn’t a lot of traffic?

Ceramic tiles – the easy cleaning flooring

When it comes to a tile floor, there are no tiles as easily forgiving, durable and great looking as ceramic.  Tile flooring is low maintenance, easy to clean and looks smart once it’s been given a quick wipe-over with the mop. Therefore, just think about all that extra time you’ll have on your hands you would normally have spent cleaning.

The best of both worlds

You could actually have the best of both worlds – a tile floor’s quick and easy cleaning and the warmth of carpeting but investing in a loose rug for your tiled floor. It would be easier to clean than a carpet and, if you only use it during the winter months, won’t even need that much cleaning anyway.

Whether you opt for tile or carpet flooring, here at Budget Maids we offer cleaning services for all surfaces. We specialise in house cleaning in Potomac, cleaning services in Falls Church and maid services in Rockville and surrounding areas of Maryland and VA.

image via cleanforfresh.com

Dealing with the messiness of mold

Mold – it’s a bugbear and one of the most common household problems out there according to the US Environmental Protection Agency. It’s not only unsightly but also unhealthy of course, and leads to a whole host of physical illnesses from allergies to lethargy and even breathing problems. So if you find any in your home – get rid of it. And fast!

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Trace the water

Mold only grows where it can feed off moisture or water.  As a result, the key to getting rid of mold is to control the moisture in your home. Mold spores unfortunately are everywhere – drifting around in dust and various other particles but you can starve them by making sure there’s no wet surfaces on which they can survive and grow.

How to solve moisture problems

If you’re aware of any leaking taps or pipes then have them fixed without delay. Make sure you regularly ventilate rooms where there’s moisture, such as the kitchen and bathroom.  If mold is a chronic problem in your home, consider installing an exhaust fan or even a ventilator system. 

Mold-free means scrubbing

You’ve guessed it: regularly scrubbing and cleaning is the way to get rid of mold. Simply painting over it will get you nowhere. Detergent, water and a good bit of elbow grease will get rid of mild mold problems. For more severe cases of mold you’ll have to use disinfectant.  Dry all visible spots of moisture or water. Carpets and ceilings can be tricky but if you don’t get rid of the mold you’re going to end up having to replace your carpet and re-do your ceiling – so far better to get at the root of the problem from the start.

What to wear when cleaning mold

It’s well know that mold can cause health problems, so take precautions by wearing a paper dust mask and gloves in order to limit your exposure. In more severe cases, you might want to wear goggles to prevent mold spores from irritating your eyes. 

Professional help

Sometimes it ‘s necessary to call in professional help to solve your mold problem and here at Budget Maids we’ve had plenty of experience of dealing with mold and other difficult cleaning issues. As a company we supply cleaning services in Olney, house cleaning in Oakton and a maid’s service in Falls Church and surrounding VA. Feel free to get in touch with any cleaning concerns or needs.

 image via WomenWorld.org

Stay house happy AND pet friendly

We’re betting here at Budget Maids that your furry or feathered friend is treated as part of the family. That means he or she is indoors a good 90 per cent of the time – and which naturally brings its own trials in the form of shedding pet hairs and mucky paws or the occasional bird dropping.

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Keeping your home clean with a pet insitu needn’t be a hassle though once you establish some smart cleaning techniques and a reliable routine.

  • Vacuum, vacuum, vacuum Of course vacuuming is important but you don’t have to go overboard and do the whole house every time. Just concentrate on your pet’s favorite areas: the sunny lounge, bedroom or feeding and grooming areas. Remember too, to clean out the vacuum on a regular basis as the amount of hair flying around during shedding time in particular can be a bit overwhelming. You can actually invest in a vacuum that’s specifically designed for pet hairs. It’s as well to remember that vacuuming is one of your best defenses against fleas – which, of course, is all part and parcel of the furry friend package.
  • Have an emergency cleaning kit ready No pet owner will escape the occasion stain, marking or accident. But, with the help of an emergency cleaning kit nearby and some speedy action it really needn’t be issue. Store the following in a plastic container: rubber gloves, a wash cloth, scrubber, bicarbonate of soda and enzyme cleaners. The latter are great for dealing with stains while bicarbonate of soda will get rid of any odors.
  • Make use of good weather Use warm days for doing all that pet laundry that’s been piling up, and to air any pet bedding. Getting your pet outside for long stretches will also give the house a chance to er, ‘ventilate.’
  • Only feed on tiled or other hard surfaced areas Getting your pet to feed in a hard sufaced area such as tiles or linoleum will be much easier for you to clean up than carpeting.  

If you need some professional help when it comes to house cleaning in Reston with pets, or cleaning services in Arlington or if you’re looking for a maids service in Vienna or other areas of VA and Maryland then don’t hesitate to give us a call here at Budget Maids’. We’ve lots of tips for cleaning up after those furry or feathered friends of yours.

image via BrunswickPropertyServices.co.uk

5 tips for keeping your carpets clean

Even though hardwood floors are more commonplace these days – and understandably so since they make our rooms look larger and tidier – there’s still space in many of our hearts for a lovely thick warm winter carpet. And indeed, here at Budget Maids we can testify that many of you still have them in your homes – all year round.

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What puts many householders off carpeting their home is the need to keep them clean.  Carpets tend to harbor bugs and germs unless vacuumed regularly. In addition, regular foot traffic results in crushed fibers and a flattened look. Here’s our tips to help keep your carpets looking their best:

1.  Vacuum your carpet at least once a week in order to get rid of the accumulated dust and dirt. The thicker the carpet the more dirt it’ll tend to hold. For hallways, bedrooms and areas of the living room which are regularly used, get out the vacuum at least three times a week.

2.  To vacuum correctly separate the carpet into quadrants and completely vacuum one patch several times before going on to the next.

3.   To get rid of smells put some baking soda into the bag in your vacuum or sprinkle it directly onto the carpet.

4.   If you’ve decided to move your furniture around and notice there’s heavy depressions left in the carpet then raise the fibers back up by holding a steam iron over the area so that the steam reaches the fibres (but doesn’t touch them). To get the fibers to stand up simply scrape them with a spoon afterwards.

5.   Rejuvenate your carpet by giving it some shine and spring back through steam cleaning or professional dry cleaning. It’ll get rid of the bugs and revive those fibres enough to give it bounce again. 

At Budget Maids we offer a dry carpet cleaning system which means there’s no chance of water damage to existing furnishings or wooden floors and no lengthy drying off period either. We also provide a House Cleaning service in Potomac, Maid’s Service Olney and a Cleaning Service in Reston as well as most areas in Maryland and VA. See here for further details.

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Budget Maids Tips for Keeping Your Flooring Clean

These days most of us have wooden flooring in our homes although you probably also have the odd rug and carpeted room as well. They tend to be the areas in our home which get the grubbiest and attract the most spills and stains. As a result, here at Budget Maids we’ve listed our tried and tested tips for cleaning all types of flooring from laminate to linoleum to tiles and carpet.

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Laminate floors

These look great but they really need to be swept on a daily basis (whether using a broom or a vacuum). To get rid of marks and to generally brighten up they can also be wiped with warm water (although using as little water as possible). Special cleaning fluid for laminate is also available but can prove quite costly.

 

Linoleum

A favourite flooring material because it’s so versatile and inexpensive, you can add life to linoleum by stripping and reapplying its wax coating. But if it’s stains or marks you want rid off then it’s a fine nylon pad and some elbow grease you’re going to need (although do massage gently).

 

Tiles (ceramic flooring)

The best way to keep tiles clean is to sweep them and give them a quick once over with a wet mop in a little detergent every few days.The grout between the tiles can be kept clean by scouring it with a soft brush dipped in a little bleach and water.

 

Carpets

If something’s just been spilled on your carpet then get a tissue or absorbent cloth and try to blot it out. Next, wipe it inwards (ie from the edge of the stain in towards the centre so you don’t spread it around more). In the worst case when there’s still a mark left try cleaning it with hot water and a little mild detergent (do a patch test first though).

 

You can always find a host of cleaning tips and advice at our website Budgetmaids.com. We provide house cleaning in Vienna, a maids service in Potomac and a cleaning service in Arlington as well as other areas of VA and Maryland.

 

image via NetworkBuildersLondon.co.uk

Cleaning up America’s worst odors

As a professional cleaning company, here at Budget Maids, we’re used to dealing with unpleasant odors so we were intrigued this week to read the results of a British survey listing the 10 worst smells – household and otherwise.

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Number one on the list was, understandably, baby poo. Second place went to sewers. Wet dog came in at number four and rotten food at number seven (we’ll publish the whole list at the end of this blog post).The poll, sponsored by a refuse management firm, interviewed 1000 Brits.

So, we wondered, how does it compare with America’s worst smells? The largest survey we could find for the states was nationwide and conducted a couple of years ago. Number one on that particular list? Garbage can odor. Next was pet odor then mold, body sweat and tobacco odor.

Here’s the British list (in order):

  1. Baby Poo
  2. Sewers on a hot day
  3. Bad breath
  4. Wet Dog
  5. Fart
  6. Human Sweat
  7. Rotten food
  8. Smoking
  9. Smelly feet
  10. The “juice” at the bottom of your bin

The good news is, of course, that wiping and vacuuming can take away a number of those odors. The latter will pick up the likes of pet hair, mold spores and dust easily – since many of them happily lurk in our carpets.

But baring in mind the fact that the human nose is actually capable of picking up something like 10,000 scents, it’s a good idea to invoke other remedies too. These include

·         Sprinkling baking soda in garbage cans and litter boxes

·         Spraying the room with a mix of two teaspoons baking soda and two cups water (mix it together in a trigger top bottle)

·         Putting lemon and orange rinds in the garbage disposer every now and again

What’s your remedies and cleaning tips for eliminating nasty odors in your home? If you need help to get rid of nasty odors then don’t hesitate to contact us here at Budget Maids where we provide services such as House Cleaning in Potomac, a Maid Service in Arlington and a Cleaning Service in Reston as well as other areas of VA.

image via Guardian.co.uk

House cleaning isn’t just about tidiness. Keep your home smelling good too

Part of having a clean house is having it smelling nice. Food smells, pet stains, mould and poor air circulation can all leave unpleasant odors in that sanctuary you call home. So how can you make sure it smells nice at all times?

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Well, there are a few tips we recommend here at Budget Maids. These include:

  • Sprinkling a little of your favorite essential oil onto a light bulb or two (when they’re cool!). Once the light bulb is switched on the heat will allow the scent to flow around your room.
  • Steam cleaning your carpets to get rid of the smell of pet hairs. You could also try sprinkling a little baby powder on the carpets then vacuuming.
  • Neutralizers in the kitchen can take away most food odors and squirting a little fresh lemon juice or slices down the plug hole or garbage disposal can keep the sink smelling nice. Another good tip for the kitchen is to simmer a pot of water, cinnamon and cloves on the cooker.
  •   If poor air circulation is the problem then it’s possible to put scented inserts into your air vents. These will flow through the whole house giving a nicer scent to the air. Alternatively you could always dab cotton wool balls with vanilla and lay them inside the vents.
  •   Like the smell of coffee? Then place a bowl of coffee beans in a room. These will not only fill the room with a lovely coffee scent, they’ll also help neutralize smells by absorbing them.
  •  Use free perfume samples in magazines. Open, dab with water, and place on a windowsill for a couple of days.

Just one thing we’d warn about odors in your home – it’s actually difficult, after a period of time, to identify them because you become so accustomed to them. It’s often only when you have a visitor to your home that you can identify what’s wrong. So maybe ask a good friend what they think?

For more cleaning and household tips see Budget Maids who provide House Cleaning in Olney, a Cleaning Service in Rockville, Maid Service in Falls Church and other areas throughout VA.

image via Tim Sackton, Flickr

Clean Your Home the Natural Way

Here at Budget Maids, when providing our house cleaning services in Columbia, Vienna and other cities and towns in VA, we’re conscious that most clients these days like the idea of eco-friendly house cleaning. As a result, none of our cleaning agents contain harsh chemicals which could prove detrimental to the environment when discharged.

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Meanwhile, we thought you might appreciate our guide to cleaning your home in a 100 per cent non-toxic fashion, using items we bet you have either in your cupboards or lying around at home right this minute:

Distilled vinegar

Most of you are probably already familiar with the window and glass-gleaming effects of wiping these materials with vinegar and newspaper, but did you know it could also be diluted and applied to kitchen counter tops, ceramic tiles and enamel sinks and baths? Add a little salt to provide a scouring texture.

Baking soda

Great at getting rid of unwanted smells, baking soda can clean a sink drain if you pour a mixture of baking soda and vinegar (half a cup each) down the plug hole and rinse with hot water. To get rid of stubborn carpet smells, sprinkle a little baking powder and leave for an hour or so before bringing out the vacuum cleaner. Even just plonk a box in a smelly closet to freshen up the air in there.

Lemons

This natural bleach and disinfectant is brilliant at cleaning the oven hob when mixed into a paste with a little baking soda and hot water.

Beeswax

 

Excellent at providing a shine to wooden coffee tables, dressing tables etc.

 

Cornstarch

 

Stains on fabric such as curtain material can be removed by covering the area with cornstarch and leaving for 30 minutes then rinsing with fizzy club soda.

Essential Oils

Many of these have particular qualities (ie tea tree is antiseptic and grapefruit extract anti-fungal). As a result the latter, when mixed with warm water, can fight mold stains and mildew.

The great thing about the above cleaners is they can be made in advance and stored in an attractive container. You can even put a few drops of essential oils in them to make them smell nice.

For more cleaning tips or to find out more about our maid service in Vienna, house cleaning in Potomac or cleaning service in Olney then visit our site here.

Image via nothingnewtreasures.com

Get Your Home Shiny with our Spring Cleaning Tips

With spring on its way it’s still traditional at this time of year to give your home a complete clean from top to bottom. Here at Budget Maids we will happily provide you with that service but in the meantime if you’re itching to do a little yourself here’s some cleaning tips to get started:

·         Perk up your painted walls

If they’re not too dirty it’s easy enough to get rid of fingerprints and dirty marks using just a sponge and water. Tougher stains though may require you to add a little dishwater liquid into the water (make sure the liquid is as mild as possible). Failing that, some soap on the sponge can often do the trick. If you have to resort to using a chemical-based cleaner always wipe the wall with water afterwards to dilute the chemicals.

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·         Stop the stains and smells

     To get rid of marks on sofas and other upholstery, wedge a garbage bag between the cushion and the fabric then try blotting the stain. Wash with cold water and repeat. A tablespoon in a little water can help remove odors.

·         Clean those counter tops

Always wipe up stains on counter tops such as granite as soon as they appear. It’s a good idea too to have them sealed if you believe the original seal isn’t as effective as it should be. A sprinkling of ammonia with some hydrogen peroxide in water can be very effective for getting rid of coffee or juice stains while soap and mildrew can be removed using a little ammonia in a lot of water.

·         Rejuvenate your rugs

A rug in everyday use should really be given a good clean every five years or so. Club soda can be very effective for removing stains such as red wine, soda and even pet stains. Just pour it onto the area affected and leave it there to do its work for a while. Salt added to the soda can help neutralize acid stains. Again, the trick here is to blot rather than wipe. If the stain has grease in it use a soap detergent with a lot of water. Milk is good for removing blood stains.

·         Get your stainless steel shiny

The best way to do this is to attend to them regularly by spraying the surfaces twice a week with a wax-based aerosol and wiping clean with a lint-free cloth. It may be tempting to use oil to get a shine but it’s counter-productive as substances can stick to the oil.

For more tips on cleaning or to book a cleaning audit at your home contact our team at Budget Maids and we’ll be happy to assist. We provide house cleaning in Rockville, a cleaning service in Potomac and a maid service in Vienna – as well as lots of other cities in towns in VA.

Image via OnePoll.com