Cleaning Myths: Fact or Fiction

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When it comes to cleaning, what are your goals? For many, their primary goal is to get it done as quickly as possible. 

That’s understandable. After all, who really likes to clean?

But, if you want to do it right, you need to master some of the basics. You need to know what products to use and where to use them. You need to know if what you’ve heard all along about cleaning is fact or fiction.

Let’s tackle a few of the common cleaning myths out there.

  • Bleach cleans anything and everything: First off, bleach is a disinfectant – not a cleaner. While it does an excellent job of killing germs or whitening your clothes, it doesn’t remove dirt. And, if you’ve ever spilled bleach or used it on something where you shouldn’t (i.e., wood floors or granite), you know it can also be quite destructive. Always do a little research before using bleach on a new surface.
  • Wash all of your laundry in cold water: You may have heard that you should always wash your clothes in cold water – and, yes, cold water works MOST of the time. But there are times when hot water is more appropriate. If you need to get rid of germs (i.e., after an illness) or have clothes that are heavily soiled, hot water may be the way to go. Keep in mind that hot water can shrink, fade, or damage your clothes – so always weigh the pros and cons when doing laundry.
  • Vinegar is a great all-purpose cleaner: Vinegar is another product that is often touted as an all-purpose cleaner – especially in homemade cleaning solutions. Yes, it does a good job at cleaning a lot of things, but like bleach – it’s not designed for everything. Consumer Reports shares “9 Things You Should Never Clean With Vinegar.”
  • Your dishwasher cleans itself: Your dishwasher cleans your dishes, but, unfortunately, it does not clean itself. Because you probably give it a good workout, it’s easy for food to become lodged in the bottom of your dishwasher – and that means your drain line can become clogged, your dishwasher can develop an odor, and your plates are probably not being cleaned properly. One Good Thing shares how to clean your dishwasher in three easy steps to avoid having any issues. 
  • A good, old-fashioned feather duster is best for dusting: You may have heard that feather dusters attract dust, and that’s why they’re great for this household chore. But the only feather dusters that actually attract dust are 100% ostrich-down feathers – and these are expensive. Most cleaning experts recommend microfiber cloths nowadays to keep dust at bay.
  • Wood should be polished regularly: When it comes to polishing your wood surfaces, it’s not so much the regularity you need to worry about as it is the products you’re using. Certain products can leave a waxy buildup that damages your furniture or floors. If you have a new product, try testing it on a spot that may not be visible to the eye to make sure it’s the right product for you.
  • Putting your jeans in the freezer will kill bacteria: Have you ever heard that you should put your jeans in the freezer to get one more wear out of them and to kill any germs? As you can guess, that’s not necessarily killing those germs – instead, it’s just making them dormant for a bit. Washing in hot water is the way to kill germs if you’re worried about them – and you can always hang your jeans outside if you need to minimize any odors.

Have you heard any cleaning myths? Did you do some research to figure out if they were fact or fiction? The ones on this list may have a smidge of truth to them, but when you dig deeper, you’ll learn better methods for cleaning things around your home.

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