It’s very important that home appliances be cleaned as often as necessary. Doing so is part of properly maintaining them and prolongs their useful lives. After all, some of these appliances can be very expensive for you not to take good care of them.
Admittedly though, it can be a pain to clean home appliances especially when you want to just relax in front of your TV. However, someone has to do the job and that someone is you unless you’re willing to hire other people to do it for you. The second option may be okay to those who can afford to spend some extra cash, but for many, it’s just not practical.
Interestingly, some people seem to favour some appliances over the others. According to Appliances Direct, the dirtiest and least cleaned (once a year) appliance is the washing machine. The other four home appliances that topped the list are the oven (cleaned twice a year), dishwasher (thrice a year), fridge (eight times a year), and microwave (21 times annually).
Why clean your household appliances?
Of the 1,015 adult Brits that were surveyed, 34% have said that they are hiring professionals to do the dirty work for them. 23% have also confirmed that their appliances are replaced more often due to lack of cleaning.
One of the reasons why these appliances don’t get as much cleaning attention as others is because they are quite a challenge to deal with. Unfortunately, this is not how things are supposed to be. The following benefits of cleaning your appliances at home should be more than enough to make you get up and do some cleaning.
Keeps germs at bay
One of the most commonly used household appliance is the fridge. You use it to store and preserve raw meat, fish, vegetables, dairy produce, etc. which makes it the perfect breeding ground for germs. That said, it’s imperative that you keep it clean or else, your fridge can make you and your family sick.
Saves you from high utility bills
What you have to understand is that dirty appliances work harder than those that are not. And when an appliance works harder, it consumes more power which translates to skyrocketing utility bills. Spills on your oven, for instance, will make it harder to generate heat so be sure to wipe them away as soon as possible.
Prolongs the lifespan of your appliances
Going back to the survey earlier, people have confirmed that dirty appliances are replaced more often. Always remember that a well-maintained and clean appliance not only works better but lasts longer as well. Besides, your appliances are pricey investments, so it’s only natural that you protect them.
Less work for you
One of the most common mistakes people do is not cleaning their appliances immediately. What they don’t realise is that the longer they let dirt and grime accumulate, the harder it is to get rid of them. So even if you’re not a fan of cleaning, tackle the tasks as early as possible, or you’ll have to work harder later on.
It’s critical that you read the cleaning instructions before you even proceed to clean any household appliance. This will give you information as to which cleaning materials are allowed to be used and which are not. Failure to do so may result in damages and worse, void its warranty.
Depending on what type of oven you have, there might be a different way to clean it (again, check the manual). In general, wiping the interior of the oven with a damp cloth will go a long way to keeping it clean. You would want to do this after every use but make sure that the oven has already cooled down, so you don’t hurt yourself.
Learning how to clean an oven is easy to do but cleaning it properly is a different issue altogether. The exterior of the oven can be dealt with more efficiently by using a non-abrasive liquid cleaner. If there’s any baked grease buildup, an oven cleaner should help you with the job. As for the racks, a dishwashing liquid plus hot water combo should do the trick.
But if you’re not a fan of cleaning the oven, you might as well consider buying a model with a pyrolytic cleaning function. An oven with this feature will reduce any baked-on cooking grime to ash so you can quickly wipe any residue away. These ovens are quite expensive though, so keep that in mind.
#2. Washing machine
The simplest way to keep your washing machine clean is by running a regular service wash at least once a month. This is done by running a hot wash with nothing inside the machine. Typically, people wash their clothes at a lower temperature to save energy; however, this makes your machine prone to bacteria and mould build up.
Running a hot wash will not only deal with mould and bacteria but also prevent smells. Check and clean the rubber seals regularly as well, especially the one around the door hole as this is also one potential source of odours. Leave the washing machine door and drawer open (even when you already wiped it with a dry cloth) to let air in.
Similar to a washing machine, your dishwasher also needs a regular service wash at least once a month. The only difference here is that you use a cup of white vinegar poured into the bottom of an empty dishwasher. Run it in a regular cycle, and it will be able to clean out old food particles while keeping your dishwasher smelling fresh.
However, the key to making your life easier when it comes to cleaning your dishwasher is by using it correctly. Before loading up your dishwasher, make sure that you scrape food bits off so that there is less chance of them getting stuck inside. The dishwasher seals also need a once-over every after few months to keep the grime down.
You should clean your fridge on a daily and weekly basis, or before you do the grocery shopping. Do a clean sweep and throw out the old. This should help you get rid of leftovers especially if you think that you won’t be able to eat them before they go bad. Doing this will also reduce the time needed for a deep clean which is a big bonus.
As with everything else, prevention is better than cure. You don’t have to deal with spills and stains as long as you’re able to prevent them in the first place. A straightforward yet effective way to do this is by covering each shelf with a plastic wrap or placemats. Should a spill happen, you can quickly remove and replace the wrap.
When it comes to cleaning your fridge, using a vacuum with the brush attachment works wonders in taking care of little food bits that are hard to remove from the drawers. This method also works well in cleaning the coils to help your fridge use less energy while running efficiently. An open bottle of activated carbon will do the trick of absorbing bad odours in your fridge.
The most effective way to reduce cleanup time in microwaves is by preventing messes from happening. This can be done by using paper towels or wax paper to cover your dishes while heating them. Regularly cleaning your microwave is the best and easiest thing that you can do to extend its longevity and save energy.
The good news is that most foods and liquids inside the microwave can be removed with just warm soap and water or a microwave cleaner. In case of hard-to-remove stains, heat a cup of water in the microwave for about a minute or two. This should significantly help loosen the grime, so you wipe it off with ease.
Home appliances make everyone’s life so much more comfortable and without them, things will never be the same. They are not living, but if you take care of them, they’ll take care of you.