It’s that time of the year again and I am so happy for it! I love when spring cleaning comes rolling around because that means that I get to tornado through my house and give it a good once over. And I don’t just focus on the main rooms in my home. Oh no! I’m talking about the full scope of my abode. When I spring clean, I bring in the garage and the car as well. There’s no stone unturned during this time of the year and thank goodness for it. There is something so rewarding about the process once it is all said and done.
If you are looking for Spring Cleaning tips, I have a few to get you started.
Spring Cleaning Tips To Help Get You Ready For The New Season: The Car
Let’s work our way from the outside -in. As a mom of three, I can tell you that my car needs MAJOR attention right now. M-A-J-O-R. Here’s a few things you can do to spruce up your ride.
“Hydrate” Your Car for Spring
You aren’t the only one who needs to refuel to prepare for spring – your car does, too! Be sure to check the levels of all vital fluids, including motor oil, coolant, transmission fluid and windshield wiper fluid, and top-off, or change fluids, as needed. Be sure to visit your local Jiffy Lube to care for your car’s every need.
Unload the Junk in Your Truck
During the winter, the trunk of your car can serve as a catch-all for winter gear and other random items that never quite make it in the house. All that extra weight can affect how well your vehicle performs on the road and could be costing you more money at the gas pump!
Give Your Tires a Little TLC
After a long winter of harsh driving conditions, be sure to check the pressure of each of your tires to ensure they’re filled to the proper level. Check your vehicle owner’s manual or the decal found in the doorjamb or glove compartment of your car to find out what level is right for your vehicle. And don’t forget tire tread! An easy way to see if the tread is worn out is the penny trick. Insert a penny into the tread groove with Abe Lincoln’s face showing, but with his head upside down. If you can see all of Abe Lincoln’s head, it’s probably time to replace your tires.
Restock Your Car Emergency Kit
Make sure you and your car are prepared for all your warm weather driving adventures – large and small. Your warmer weather car emergency kit should include a flashlight, jumper cables, batteries, electrical tape, a rain poncho, a reflective safety vest, an emergency blanket and a first-aid medical kit.
Organize The Kid Section:
How many DVDs and travel activities do you have in the car? I had enough footage to get us to Wyoming if we left tonight. Why do we need so many options when 9 times out of 10 you are just driving up the street to the mall? Edit their options down. Odds are the two front seats have big pockets behind them for storage. Use them. Whatever doesn’t fit does not belong in the car. There’s no need to have anything on the floor or in your trunk. Your glove box shouldn’t be filled with every Harry Potter movie available to date. They are all great to watch, but one is enough to have on hand.
Detail, Detail, Detail!
The winter months can wreak havoc on the cleanliness of your car interior. The change of season is the perfect time to give your car a proper detail, from top to bottom! Whip out the glass cleaner and get your windshield and other windows sparkling again. Use a soft cloth and tiny “tools” (e.g., a toothbrush or cotton swabs) to tackle the steering wheel, dashboard and hard to reach areas, like cup holders and air vents. Remove floor mats for a scrub and give the car floor a thorough vacuum job before replacing them.
Spring Cleaning Tips To Help Get You Ready For The New Season: The Garage
This is without a doubt the least organized space in my world. The garage is the bane of my existence. It is where everything that we don’t want finds a home. You know, like the old refrigerator that doesn’t work but my husband won’t get rid of it. What? Just me? Anyway, there are plenty of ways to tackle this space. Let’s get right down to it.
Purge the Clutter
Garages are often a neglected area of the home. This spring, make a promise to purge. Trash the junk and host a yard sale or donate those garden tools and sports equipment that haven’t seen the light of day in years. Spring cleaning is also a good time to get rid of hazardous materials such as old paint, car batteries, and tires. Recycling laws vary considerably based on where you live. For the most accurate information on proper disposal procedures, contact your local department of public works.
Scrub The Deck
Be honest – when was the last time you gave your garage floor a good cleaning? It’s time! After the purge, remove the car and other extraneous items and rent a pressure washer from your local home improvement store. Looking for a DIY alternative? Use concentrated concrete degreaser, a heavy-duty deck brush, your garden hose and some good old-fashioned elbow grease to scrub the lingering winter mess away.
Zone It Out
The garage can be one of the least organized areas of a home. Instead of allowing things to fall where they may, create zones throughout your garage for different storage needs – automotive accessories, yard tools, sporting equipment and other outdoor gear. In order to fit your vehicles comfortably in your garage, consider vertical storage options to optimize space. Hanging bicycles, winter sports equipment, and tools that aren’t frequently used on the wall or ceiling of your garage can free up valuable floor space.
Just Because It Fits, Doesn’t Mean You Should Keep It
This is more of a mental state for you to have moving forward.
Listen, I have three children. I understand that they like to keep everything – even if they never play with them. But your space shouldn’t feel like Twister every time you walk into it. You should be able to walk freely through it all. You don’t win a prize for packing in the most junk into your garage. I know your husband thinks there’s a medal ceremony in his future, but he’s wrong. Stop going to garage/estate sales, stop taking hand me downs from your sister Sally and call it a day. Families own too much “stuff” these days. When I was a kid, I used to play with a rock and a stick. Ok, that’s not true… but you know what I mean. One bike and one scooter is enough. Why do each of my children have 3 then?!
Spring Cleaning Tips To Help Get You Ready For The New Season: The Home
Replace Bath Sponges, Loofahs, and Toothbrushes
There are certain items in your bathroom that need to be replaced on a regular basis… and perhaps they don’t because we all forget. It’s easy to forget. Life gets in the way. Every season, I like to give the bathroom a good once over and replace all items that I use for self-care. Everyone in the family gets a new toothbrush, bath sponge and I get a new loofah. A fresh new start with each upcoming season gives my family the new clean slate they are looking for. Spring is especially a critical time for this switch because we are just coming out of cold and flu season.
Clean Your Beauty Brushes
Such a simple process! All you have to do is rinse out the bristles of your beauty brushes with warm water and a mild soap. Lather until the water rinses clean. Then allow brushes to dry overnight until all signs of dampness are gone. A great trick to help dry your brushes is to wrap them around your towel rack with a hair tie and suspend the bristles in the air. This gives them 360 degrees of air dry capability as opposed to laying them flat on your sink.
Wipe Down Walls, Pull Out Furniture And Shine Doorknobs
When you clean your house on a weekly basis, there are certain areas that I am sure you focus on – the surfaces. We all have our favorites: the kitchen island, the dining room table, the floors in general. But with Spring Cleaning, you need to dig in a little deeper and get into and behind the corners – the areas you typically don’t think about. It’s time to clean the unseen and the forgotten. Wipe down all your walls, fluff your pillows, pull out your furniture and get into the corners behind those large pieces that never see the light of day, and get UNDER the rugs. Pull up those sleeves, my friends. Even the doorknobs could use a bit of shining. It only happens twice a year – go at it!
Organize All Drawers – Junk Drawers / Sock Drawers / Beauty Drawers / Office
My least favorite things to do but probably the most important task for the rest of season: organize the unseen regions of your house. I always say that my house is like a Jack in the Box. Everything is all fine and dandy until you try to get something from my pantry. Then that’s when everything hits the fan and my world starts to unravel. You want to take a peek behind my curtain? Look in my junk drawer. Complete chaos. It doesn’t help that I’m married to a hoarder. He refuses to throw anything away because “we might need that paper to write a note on one day.” What? Who thinks like that?! My husband does! That’s WHO!
Match your socks, rearrange your bras, throw away all the pens that don’t write anymore, get rid of the pennies from Greece when you visited 20 years ago on that trip from High School. Do it. You know what I’m talking about. The everything. All the stuff that you are keeping that you shouldn’t be keeping. Toss it. Cleanse yourself. RELEASE THE DEMON. Free your soul! That lipstick is 11 years old. Let her go. Let. Her. Go.
There you have it! Quick tips to help you tackle the house, the garage, and your car. It’s so funny because I am the person that is constantly on top of the mess in my house and my husband is the one that is on top of the mess in the car… and that makes complete sense!! According to a recent study done by Jiffy Lube, men and women appear to tackle house cleaning at the same rate, but the same can’t be said for their vehicles. Nearly sixty (59%) percent of men say they clean their vehicle’s exterior daily or weekly, compared to only 30 percent of women who say the same. As for a vehicle’s interior, 58 percent of men say they clean it at least weekly, compared to just 34 percent of women. This is not a surprise to me at ALLLLL. I personally have gone through a car wash about 7 times in my life… and I’ve owned my own car ever since I was 16. That’s what rain is for, right? LOL!!!
It’s also not surprising that men are 50 percent more likely than women to say they get embarrassed when people see the inside of their vehicle because of the trash and other messes. Men are also 60 percent more likely to hide trash and clutter in their trunk or glovebox in a pinch to avoid judgment from passengers. Forty-seven percent of men have done this compared to just 29 percent of women. Um… I would NEVER hide junk in my glovebox. Ever. These stats are spot on!
So, what do you think is the number one culprit behind America’s messy vehicles? It’s FOOD. Half of owners admit to leaving empty food and drink containers in their vehicles overnight. 35 percent of men leave actual food items in their cars overnight compared to 28 percent of women. And for those parents out there… women appear to do a better job cleaning up after babies and pets. Only 13 percent of women have left soiled diapers or used pet waste bags in the car overnight, compared to 30 percent of men.
All this talk is making me want to scrub my car AGAIN.
The statistics have spoken! We clean our homes a lot more frequently than our vehicles. Nearly nine-in-10 car owners say they clean their homes at least weekly, if not daily, but only half can say the same about how often they clean their vehicles. Nearly a third admits they clean their vehicles a few times a year or less! (Raises hand slowly but not all the way because she doesn’t want to be seen).
Fess up! How often do you clean your car or worry about car maintenance as a whole? Now that spring cleaning is right around the corner, I think we need to make this a priority again!! I hope these quick tips will inspire you to take a look at your house, your garage, and your car and work on a fresh start for the new season and beyond.
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