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How to Get Rid of Fruit Flies in the House

how-to-get-rid-of-fruit-flies-in-the-house
How To Get Rid Of Fruit FliesHow To Get Rid Of Fruit Flies

Have you noticed tiny flies buzzing around your home? The dreaded fruit flies have arrived and they won’t go away, despite your efforts to keep things tidy.

Let’s make one thing clear: Fruit flies are not a cleanliness issue. They can invade your home no matter how clean it is—and because they can lay eggs on almost any surface, they can quickly get out of hand. These tiny nuisances breed quickly, which is why you might notice a single fruit fly one day, and then a swarm only a day or two later.

Fruit flies are active all year, but they’re more common at the end of the summer and into the fall, when fruits and vegetables are especially ripe or fermented. Fruit flies can come in on the produce you buy at the farmers market or the pumpkin patch down the road. However they arrived, never fear: Learning how to get rid of fruit flies is simple and easy.

How to Prevent Fruit Fly Infestations

Knowing how to kill fruit flies is an important housekeeping skill. But the best guard against these annoying pests is to make your home less attractive for snacking and laying eggs. Here’s how to keep fruit flies at bay:

Rinse Your Produce

When you bring home fresh produce from the grocery store or market, wash it off before putting it away. This gets rid of any lingering residues that could attract fruit flies…and as a bonus, it removes germs. Two parts water and one part vinegar cleans produce and kills some bacteria that could prolong ripening. Wash your produce with a cloth and your vinegar solution and rinse thoroughly to get rid of the vinegar odor.

Empty the Trash Regularly

Taking the trash out every day not only helps prevent fruit flies, it keeps your home looking and smelling fresh. Use fresh trash bags each time and if one has leaked, rinse out the trash can and dry it before replacing the bag.

Empty and Clean Your Recycling Bin Often

Your recycling bin can contain everything from empty soda bottles to discarded milk jugs—the perfect attractants for fruit flies. Empty your recycling bin often, and rinse and dry it before replacing the liner or bag.

Sweep and Mop Up Food Crumbs Daily

All those little crumbs from sandwiches, bagels, and pastries may be hard for you to see, but fruit flies will pick up the scent right away. Sweep and mop daily and pay extra attention to hard-to-reach places, like the space between your refrigerator and counters.

Don’t Keep Produce on the Kitchen Counter

As produce ripens and ferments, fruit flies seem to appear like magic. Put ripening produce in the refrigerator or in paper bags on the counter. The cold slows down the ripening and the paper bags keep the fruit flies from reaching your fruits and veggies.

Don’t Leave Dirty Dishes in the Sink

All that gunk on dirty dishes is just too much to resist for fruit flies looking for a snack or a spot to lay their eggs. Washing dirty dishes right away reduces breeding grounds and minimizes food sources.

Keep Sink Drains Clean

Cleaning the drain in your kitchen sink with vinegar can help reduce the aromas of food debris in the drain. If you have a garbage disposal, clean the baffle and the top of the disposal, then pour in vinegar and baking soda. Turn on the disposal and run hot water for 30 seconds to flush all the food particles.

How to Kill Fruit Flies

Create a Fruit Fly Trap

Fruit flies like sweet, fermenting things, so you can use ripened fruit, old wine, stale soda, or apple cider vinegar to lure them. Fill a jar partially full with your lure of choice, cover the top with plastic wrap, and poke small holes in the top. The fruit flies will enter the jar through the holes to get to the attractant, but they won’t be able to get back out. Place a few of these jars around the house near sinks, food cabinets, and trash cans.

Use a Dish Trap to Kill Fruit Flies

Another way to kill fruit flies is by drowning them. Pour a small amount of cider vinegar, wine, or other liquid bait into a dish and add three drops of dish detergent. The fruit flies will be attracted to your lure, and when they land on the surface, the detergent breaks the surface tension and the fruit flies drown.

Get Rid of Fruit Flies Using Safe Commercial Traps

From sticky fly paper to plastic fruit fly traps, there are plenty of effective and safe ways to get rid of fruit flies. You can also find eco-friendly fruit fly sprays for non-food surfaces like mop heads, under sinks, around drain covers, garbage cans, and other areas.

Let a Carnivorous Sundew Plant Get Rid of Fruit Flies

Popular with gardeners and fruit fly haters alike, these plants trap fruit flies on their sticky leaves and then digest them. Killing fruit flies couldn’t be more natural, and you’ll have an ongoing solution for future infestations.

Use these tips to keep fruit flies out of your home and to get rid of them if they get in. And if you need help getting your kitchen, or any other room, fresh and clean, why not let The Maids do it? We’ll sweep and mop, wipe down counters, and even take out the trash to keep those pesky fruit flies out of your home.

 

The post How to Get Rid of Fruit Flies in the House appeared first on The Maids Blog.

and ToolsCleaning TipsTricks

How to Clean Laminate Floors

how-to-clean-laminate-floors
laminate floorshow to clean laminate floors

Wondering how to clean laminate wood floors without causing damage or losing that brilliant shine? While your laminate floors may look as good as hardwood floors, there are some important differences in how you maintain and clean them.

Laminate floors need special care because the surface can’t be refinished or easily repaired. To avoid shelling out for costly replacements, it’s critical to maintain your laminate floors the right way. The good news is we’re here to show you how.

Whether you have new laminate floors or your existing floor finish has become dull, you can learn how to clean them like a pro!

The Best Way to Clean Laminate Floors

Ready to get your laminate floor sparkling clean? Follow these guidelines for cleaning laminate flooring and you’ll protect your investment for many years.

Read the Cleaning Instructions

Before you do anything, read the manufacturer’s instructions for your floors. The manufacturer may have specific recommendations based on the materials used and the particular finish. Most companies that make laminate flooring have detailed guides and instructions for how to clean laminate floors on their websites.

Don’t Use Abrasive Cleaning Tools and Supplies

Steel wool and harsh cleaners can easily scratch laminate floors, so use a soft-bristle broom or dust mop to sweep up dust and dirt. If you’re vacuuming, turn off the beater bar or rotating brush to prevent scratches.

Make the Best Laminate Floor Cleaner Right in Your Kitchen

Combine a teaspoon of dish soap with a gallon of hot water. This cleaning solution is perfect for regular use and keeps your floors looking new. If your floor has residue on it, combine a gallon of hot water with a cup of white vinegar. Vinegar is a natural cleaner that will break down the film without damaging the laminate wood surface.

Mop Laminate Floors Every Two Months

Knowing how to mop laminate floors correctly will keep your floors looking great without risking moisture damage. Damp mops like microfiber floor mops are gentle enough to use on laminate floors. If you use a regular mop, wring it out until it’s nearly dry. You can use a steam mop occasionally for deep cleaning. Be aware that steam can cause laminate flooring to buckle, so dry your floors after steam cleaning.

Don’t Use Too Much Water or Cleaner

If you remember only one thing about how to clean laminate floors, this is it. Traditional mopping can ruin laminate floors because water can seep into the seams and cause swelling and warping. Pools of water can also cause staining or fading, and using excessive amounts of cleaning solutions can break down the composition of some synthetic materials.

Don’t Use Products That Aren’t Designed for Laminate Floors

Avoid commercial floor cleaning products formulated with harsh chemicals because they can ruin laminate flooring. It may be tempting, but don’t use wax or polish to shine your laminate floors. Oil-based products can leave streaks and residue and even damage the protective sealant.

Use These Tips for Removing Stains From Laminate Floors

Because stains remain on the surface, how to clean laminate wood floors with stains is easy using mild cleaners and light scraping. Rubbing alcohol will remove paint, nail polish, crayon, and ink; soap, water, and vinegar should take care of most other stains. For dried stains, use a plastic scraper to get up as much as you can and then use your laminate floor cleaner.

Buff Your Laminate Floors for a Brilliant Shine

If you want to make your floor pop after you clean it, buff it dry. A soft cleaning cloth attached to a dust mop works well, as does a microfiber mop head. If you don’t mind getting on your hands and knees, you can use microfiber cloths and put a little more muscle behind your buffing. Work in circles with your buffing tool of choice and buff each section of the floor for a nice shine.

How to Keep Your Laminate Floors Looking Newer Longer

Even the best laminate floor cleaner will have to work hard to get those floors shining again if they aren’t properly maintained. A dull, streaky laminate floor is usually caused by built-up dirt, improper cleaning products, and cleaners residue. Now that you know the best way to clean laminate wood floors and how often, follow these tips to keep your laminate flooring shining like new.

Sweep or Vacuum Often

Keeping your laminate floors free of debris and dirt will help prevent scratches from regular foot traffic. A nylon broom can get up most of the pet hair, dust, and dirt that collects on your floors. For hard-to-reach dust in the corners, use the soft-brush attachment on your vacuum and make sure the vacuum cleaner wheels are clean so they don’t scratch the floor.

Don’t Let Stains or Spills Sit

Tackle spills as they happen. The best way to avoid stains is to wipe up spills immediately. Liquids can damage laminate floors, so it’s critical to minimize exposure to them.

Protect the Surface of Laminate Floors

To avoid scratches, put furniture pads under the legs of furniture, especially if they are moved frequently. Use welcome mats to minimize dirt that can scratch laminate floors. The brushy mats designed to get mud out of boot and shoe soles are perfect for keeping dirt a minimum.

Trim Your Pet’s Nails

Your cat or dog’s nails can cause tiny scratches on your laminate floor that you might not notice until it’s too late. Keep your pet’s nails trimmed and use mats under their food and water bowls.

Clean and maintain your laminate floors correctly, and you’ll enjoy a beautiful finish for years to come. If you have carpet or rugs, be sure to check out our carpet cleaning guide to keep the rest of your floors looking great. Pinched for time? Why not let The Maids take care of those floors?

The post How to Clean Laminate Floors appeared first on The Maids Blog.

and ToolsCarpet StainsCleaning TipsHealthy and Green CleaningNatural Stain RemovalStain RemovalTricks

Natural Solutions for Removing Stains from Carpet

natural-solutions-for-removing-stains-from-carpet

For those of us who find joy in perfectly plush, line-vacuumed carpet, stains are the bane of our existence. However troublesome and tedious, it’s also inevitable that a substance other than water will find its way onto your floors.

There are plenty of commercial cleaners on the market designed for this purpose; but, many stains can be eliminated with products you probably already own. Here’s how to naturally eliminate those hard-hitting stains and return your carpet to picture-perfect.

For most stains- including marinara sauce and soft drinks- follow these steps:

  1. Start with two bowls. Fill one with cold water, and in the other one, combine ¼ teaspoon mild dishwashing detergent, and 1 cup of warm water.

  2. Soak some of the soapy solution into an absorbent cloth. Dab it onto the stain. As it begins to dissolve, dab intermittently with a clean, dry section of the cloth, and then follow by dabbing with the clean, cold water. Continue this process until the stain is no longer visible.

  3. Cover the area with a stack of paper towels and apply something heavy- like a pot or bowl- to the stack. The item’s weight will help the paper towels absorb any lingering moisture.

For trickier stains, such as wine, employ the following:

  1. Create a cleaning solution by mixing two cups of warm water with a tablespoon of dishwashing soap and a tablespoon of distilled white vinegar.

  2. Use a cloth to apply a small amount into the stain, and blot frequently until the stain lifts. Make sure to use a white cloth so that the pigment doesn’t bleed into your carpet.

For dark stains- like coffee- try this:

  1. As such with all stains, it’s important to begin by blotting up as much as you possibly can. Combine white vinegar, dish soap (one tablespoon of each) with two cups of warm water.

  2. Follow the above instructions of blotting with the solution, then with a clean cloth with water, and again with the solution until the stain disappears.

  3. Sponge with cold water to remove any lingering soap, and then blot dry.

After your successful stain-removal, you may be looking to refresh the entire carpet, or even your home. Contact The Maids, and we’ll get your home fresh and fabulous.

The post Natural Solutions for Removing Stains from Carpet appeared first on The Maids Blog.

and ToolsCleaning TipsTricks

How to Get Rid of Fruit Flies in the House

how-to-get-rid-of-fruit-flies-in-the-house
How To Get Rid Of Fruit FliesHow To Get Rid Of Fruit Flies

Have you noticed tiny flies buzzing around your home? The dreaded fruit flies have arrived and they won’t go away, despite your efforts to keep things tidy.

Let’s make one thing clear: Fruit flies are not a cleanliness issue. They can invade your home no matter how clean it is—and because they can lay eggs on almost any surface, they can quickly get out of hand. These tiny nuisances breed quickly, which is why you might notice a single fruit fly one day, and then a swarm only a day or two later.

Fruit flies are active all year, but they’re more common at the end of the summer and into the fall, when fruits and vegetables are especially ripe or fermented. Fruit flies can come in on the produce you buy at the farmers market or the pumpkin patch down the road. However they arrived, never fear: Learning how to get rid of fruit flies is simple and easy.

How to Prevent Fruit Fly Infestations

Knowing how to kill fruit flies is an important housekeeping skill. But the best guard against these annoying pests is to make your home less attractive for snacking and laying eggs. Here’s how to keep fruit flies at bay:

Rinse Your Produce

When you bring home fresh produce from the grocery store or market, wash it off before putting it away. This gets rid of any lingering residues that could attract fruit flies…and as a bonus, it removes germs. Two parts water and one part vinegar cleans produce and kills some bacteria that could prolong ripening. Wash your produce with a cloth and your vinegar solution and rinse thoroughly to get rid of the vinegar odor.

Empty the Trash Regularly

Taking the trash out every day not only helps prevent fruit flies, it keeps your home looking and smelling fresh. Use fresh trash bags each time and if one has leaked, rinse out the trash can and dry it before replacing the bag.

Empty and Clean Your Recycling Bin Often

Your recycling bin can contain everything from empty soda bottles to discarded milk jugs—the perfect attractants for fruit flies. Empty your recycling bin often, and rinse and dry it before replacing the liner or bag.

Sweep and Mop Up Food Crumbs Daily

All those little crumbs from sandwiches, bagels, and pastries may be hard for you to see, but fruit flies will pick up the scent right away. Sweep and mop daily and pay extra attention to hard-to-reach places, like the space between your refrigerator and counters.

Don’t Keep Produce on the Kitchen Counter

As produce ripens and ferments, fruit flies seem to appear like magic. Put ripening produce in the refrigerator or in paper bags on the counter. The cold slows down the ripening and the paper bags keep the fruit flies from reaching your fruits and veggies.

Don’t Leave Dirty Dishes in the Sink

All that gunk on dirty dishes is just too much to resist for fruit flies looking for a snack or a spot to lay their eggs. Washing dirty dishes right away reduces breeding grounds and minimizes food sources.

Keep Sink Drains Clean

Cleaning the drain in your kitchen sink with vinegar can help reduce the aromas of food debris in the drain. If you have a garbage disposal, clean the baffle and the top of the disposal, then pour in vinegar and baking soda. Turn on the disposal and run hot water for 30 seconds to flush all the food particles.

How to Kill Fruit Flies

Create a Fruit Fly Trap

Fruit flies like sweet, fermenting things, so you can use ripened fruit, old wine, stale soda, or apple cider vinegar to lure them. Fill a jar partially full with your lure of choice, cover the top with plastic wrap, and poke small holes in the top. The fruit flies will enter the jar through the holes to get to the attractant, but they won’t be able to get back out. Place a few of these jars around the house near sinks, food cabinets, and trash cans.

Use a Dish Trap to Kill Fruit Flies

Another way to kill fruit flies is by drowning them. Pour a small amount of cider vinegar, wine, or other liquid bait into a dish and add three drops of dish detergent. The fruit flies will be attracted to your lure, and when they land on the surface, the detergent breaks the surface tension and the fruit flies drown.

Get Rid of Fruit Flies Using Safe Commercial Traps

From sticky fly paper to plastic fruit fly traps, there are plenty of effective and safe ways to get rid of fruit flies. You can also find eco-friendly fruit fly sprays for non-food surfaces like mop heads, under sinks, around drain covers, garbage cans, and other areas.

Let a Carnivorous Sundew Plant Get Rid of Fruit Flies

Popular with gardeners and fruit fly haters alike, these plants trap fruit flies on their sticky leaves and then digest them. Killing fruit flies couldn’t be more natural, and you’ll have an ongoing solution for future infestations.

Use these tips to keep fruit flies out of your home and to get rid of them if they get in. And if you need help getting your kitchen, or any other room, fresh and clean, why not let The Maids do it? We’ll sweep and mop, wipe down counters, and even take out the trash to keep those pesky fruit flies out of your home.

 

The post How to Get Rid of Fruit Flies in the House appeared first on The Maids Blog.

and ToolsCleaning TipsTricks

How to Clean Laminate Floors

how-to-clean-laminate-floors
laminate floorshow to clean laminate floors

Wondering how to clean laminate wood floors without causing damage or losing that brilliant shine? While your laminate floors may look as good as hardwood floors, there are some important differences in how you maintain and clean them.

Laminate floors need special care because the surface can’t be refinished or easily repaired. To avoid shelling out for costly replacements, it’s critical to maintain your laminate floors the right way. The good news is we’re here to show you how.

Whether you have new laminate floors or your existing floor finish has become dull, you can learn how to clean them like a pro!

The Best Way to Clean Laminate Floors

Ready to get your laminate floor sparkling clean? Follow these guidelines for cleaning laminate flooring and you’ll protect your investment for many years.

Read the Cleaning Instructions

Before you do anything, read the manufacturer’s instructions for your floors. The manufacturer may have specific recommendations based on the materials used and the particular finish. Most companies that make laminate flooring have detailed guides and instructions for how to clean laminate floors on their websites.

Don’t Use Abrasive Cleaning Tools and Supplies

Steel wool and harsh cleaners can easily scratch laminate floors, so use a soft-bristle broom or dust mop to sweep up dust and dirt. If you’re vacuuming, turn off the beater bar or rotating brush to prevent scratches.

Make the Best Laminate Floor Cleaner Right in Your Kitchen

Combine a teaspoon of dish soap with a gallon of hot water. This cleaning solution is perfect for regular use and keeps your floors looking new. If your floor has residue on it, combine a gallon of hot water with a cup of white vinegar. Vinegar is a natural cleaner that will break down the film without damaging the laminate wood surface.

Mop Laminate Floors Every Two Months

Knowing how to mop laminate floors correctly will keep your floors looking great without risking moisture damage. Damp mops like microfiber floor mops are gentle enough to use on laminate floors. If you use a regular mop, wring it out until it’s nearly dry. You can use a steam mop occasionally for deep cleaning. Be aware that steam can cause laminate flooring to buckle, so dry your floors after steam cleaning.

Don’t Use Too Much Water or Cleaner

If you remember only one thing about how to clean laminate floors, this is it. Traditional mopping can ruin laminate floors because water can seep into the seams and cause swelling and warping. Pools of water can also cause staining or fading, and using excessive amounts of cleaning solutions can break down the composition of some synthetic materials.

Don’t Use Products That Aren’t Designed for Laminate Floors

Avoid commercial floor cleaning products formulated with harsh chemicals because they can ruin laminate flooring. It may be tempting, but don’t use wax or polish to shine your laminate floors. Oil-based products can leave streaks and residue and even damage the protective sealant.

Use These Tips for Removing Stains From Laminate Floors

Because stains remain on the surface, how to clean laminate wood floors with stains is easy using mild cleaners and light scraping. Rubbing alcohol will remove paint, nail polish, crayon, and ink; soap, water, and vinegar should take care of most other stains. For dried stains, use a plastic scraper to get up as much as you can and then use your laminate floor cleaner.

Buff Your Laminate Floors for a Brilliant Shine

If you want to make your floor pop after you clean it, buff it dry. A soft cleaning cloth attached to a dust mop works well, as does a microfiber mop head. If you don’t mind getting on your hands and knees, you can use microfiber cloths and put a little more muscle behind your buffing. Work in circles with your buffing tool of choice and buff each section of the floor for a nice shine.

How to Keep Your Laminate Floors Looking Newer Longer

Even the best laminate floor cleaner will have to work hard to get those floors shining again if they aren’t properly maintained. A dull, streaky laminate floor is usually caused by built-up dirt, improper cleaning products, and cleaners residue. Now that you know the best way to clean laminate wood floors and how often, follow these tips to keep your laminate flooring shining like new.

Sweep or Vacuum Often

Keeping your laminate floors free of debris and dirt will help prevent scratches from regular foot traffic. A nylon broom can get up most of the pet hair, dust, and dirt that collects on your floors. For hard-to-reach dust in the corners, use the soft-brush attachment on your vacuum and make sure the vacuum cleaner wheels are clean so they don’t scratch the floor.

Don’t Let Stains or Spills Sit

Tackle spills as they happen. The best way to avoid stains is to wipe up spills immediately. Liquids can damage laminate floors, so it’s critical to minimize exposure to them.

Protect the Surface of Laminate Floors

To avoid scratches, put furniture pads under the legs of furniture, especially if they are moved frequently. Use welcome mats to minimize dirt that can scratch laminate floors. The brushy mats designed to get mud out of boot and shoe soles are perfect for keeping dirt a minimum.

Trim Your Pet’s Nails

Your cat or dog’s nails can cause tiny scratches on your laminate floor that you might not notice until it’s too late. Keep your pet’s nails trimmed and use mats under their food and water bowls.

Clean and maintain your laminate floors correctly, and you’ll enjoy a beautiful finish for years to come. If you have carpet or rugs, be sure to check out our carpet cleaning guide to keep the rest of your floors looking great. Pinched for time? Why not let The Maids take care of those floors?

The post How to Clean Laminate Floors appeared first on The Maids Blog.

and ToolsCarpet StainsCleaning TipsHealthy and Green CleaningNatural Stain RemovalStain RemovalTricks

Natural Solutions for Removing Stains from Carpet

natural-solutions-for-removing-stains-from-carpet

For those of us who find joy in perfectly plush, line-vacuumed carpet, stains are the bane of our existence. However troublesome and tedious, it’s also inevitable that a substance other than water will find its way onto your floors.

There are plenty of commercial cleaners on the market designed for this purpose; but, many stains can be eliminated with products you probably already own. Here’s how to naturally eliminate those hard-hitting stains and return your carpet to picture-perfect.

For most stains- including marinara sauce and soft drinks- follow these steps:

  1. Start with two bowls. Fill one with cold water, and in the other one, combine ¼ teaspoon mild dishwashing detergent, and 1 cup of warm water.

  2. Soak some of the soapy solution into an absorbent cloth. Dab it onto the stain. As it begins to dissolve, dab intermittently with a clean, dry section of the cloth, and then follow by dabbing with the clean, cold water. Continue this process until the stain is no longer visible.

  3. Cover the area with a stack of paper towels and apply something heavy- like a pot or bowl- to the stack. The item’s weight will help the paper towels absorb any lingering moisture.

For trickier stains, such as wine, employ the following:

  1. Create a cleaning solution by mixing two cups of warm water with a tablespoon of dishwashing soap and a tablespoon of distilled white vinegar.

  2. Use a cloth to apply a small amount into the stain, and blot frequently until the stain lifts. Make sure to use a white cloth so that the pigment doesn’t bleed into your carpet.

For dark stains- like coffee- try this:

  1. As such with all stains, it’s important to begin by blotting up as much as you possibly can. Combine white vinegar, dish soap (one tablespoon of each) with two cups of warm water.

  2. Follow the above instructions of blotting with the solution, then with a clean cloth with water, and again with the solution until the stain disappears.

  3. Sponge with cold water to remove any lingering soap, and then blot dry.

After your successful stain-removal, you may be looking to refresh the entire carpet, or even your home. Contact The Maids, and we’ll get your home fresh and fabulous.

The post Natural Solutions for Removing Stains from Carpet appeared first on The Maids Blog.

and ToolsCleaning TipsPetsTricks

How to Get Cat Urine Smell Out of Carpet, Wood, and Upholstery

how-to-get-cat-urine-smell-out-of-carpet,-wood,-and-upholstery
how to get rid of cat pee smellhow to get rid of cat pee smell

When your cat urinates outside the litter box, the odor can be difficult to get rid of and nearly impossible to cover up. Whether your cat pees on the carpet, a piece of furniture, bed linens, or clothing, it’s crucial to promptly neutralize the odor and remove the stain. Cats will often return to a spot where they have urinated if they can still detect the odor, so taking care of it quickly can help prevent them from becoming repeat offenders.

If you have a cat, it’s important to know how to get rid of a cat urine smell. But once that’s done, it’s equally to determine the cause of this behavior. If your cat suddenly starts urinating in areas they haven’t before, something’s going on. From medical problems to unappealing litter boxes, if your cat pees on your floors and furniture, you have to pinpoint the problem or the behavior will continue.

So, how to get rid of cat pee smell? First, check your cat’s litter box. An unappealing litter box is a common culprit for why cats start urinating in places they shouldn’t. Don’t give your cat a reason to pee anywhere else—make sure the litter box is uncovered, large enough for your cat, and cleaned regularly.

If the litter box is in good shape but your cat is still using other areas as its bathroom, fear not. Here’s how to get rid of cat urine odor in the house.

How to Get Cat Urine Smell Out of a Couch

Cat pee can be hard to clean out of upholstery, and if it has soaked through to the cushioning, it can cause lingering odors, mold, and mildew. Fortunately, learning how to remove cat urine smells on your couch isn’t too difficult with the right tools and know-how.

Your best bet to get rid of the cat pee smell is to use an upholstery cleaning machine. These cleaners have scrubbing attachments that will make it easier to get stains and odors out of your couch. You can soak the pee area without worrying about overdoing it, because you can just suck up the water, urine, and cleaner when you’re done.

Use the carpet cleaner attachment to soak the stain with a natural cleaning solution designed for pet odors. Then vacuum up the urine and cleaner. Be warned, you may need to soak and vacuum the cat urine several times to get rid of the stain and odor.

If you don’t have access to an upholstery cleaning machine, enzyme cleaners can get the job done. Enzymatic cleaners are cleaning products that use enzymes to help break down stains and eliminate odors. Making your own enzyme cleaner with natural ingredients is easy. Mix three parts white vinegar with one part water in a spray bottle—that’s it!

Once you have the mixture, here’s what you’ll do:

Blot up as much of the cat urine as possible with dry towels. Soak the urine stain thoroughly with the enzymatic cleaner, ensuring the solution soaks into everything.

Allow the solution to sit overnight. There’s no need to rinse, but you may have to repeat the process to get out all the urine odor and stains.

How to Get Cat Urine Smell Out of Carpet

If you have pets, you know the messes they can make. Your carpet is the perfect landing ground for your cat to relieve itself, whether by accident or intentionally! Using a carpet cleaning machine to get the urine odor out of carpet is ideal because it forces cleaning solutions deep into the carpet and it sucks up all the water, cleaner, and urine.

If you don’t have an upholstery cleaner, you can use the same enzyme cleaner we recommend for couches. Here’s how to get cat pee out of carpet using your enzyme cleaner:

Blot any wet urine spots immediately with dry towels and continue blotting with new towels until they come away clean. Spray the urine spot thoroughly with your homemade enzyme cleaner and cover it with a clean, damp cloth. You may need to cover the cloth with something heavy to help the cleaning solution soak into the carpet.

Let the enzyme solution dry overnight. If the carpet isn’t dry, use towels to blot up excess moisture. You may have to repeat the process to get rid of the stain and cat urine odor.

How to Get Cat Urine Out of Wood

Figuring out how to get cat pee out of wood can be a challenge. If the urine has soaked into the wood for a while, you must use a urine cleaner with a little more muscle. Hydrogen peroxide is safe and is a natural odor and stain remover. But before you get to work, check an inconspicuous area of the wood to make sure the hydrogen peroxide doesn’t damage the finish.

Pour the hydrogen peroxide over the stain and then cover it with a cloth soaked in hydrogen peroxide. Cover the cloth with plastic wrap. Place something heavy atop it to hold it all down and let it sit overnight. The hydrogen peroxide will remove stains and eliminate the cat urine odor.

You can also give baking soda and white vinegar a try. These ingredients won’t damage most wood, but spot-test an out-of-the way area first to make sure your finish is safe. The acid in the vinegar neutralizes the odor in fresh and dried urine stains, and the baking soda gives you some mild abrasives to work with.

Now that you know how to get rid of cat urine odors around your home, check out this post to learn how to handle other unpleasant pet messes. If your pets, kids, and busy schedule make housekeeping a full-time job, why not let The Maids lend a hand? Our healthy approach to cleaning is more important than ever, and we’re probably just around the corner.

The post How to Get Cat Urine Smell Out of Carpet, Wood, and Upholstery appeared first on The Maids Blog.

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How to Clean House Fast While Learning & Working From Home

how-to-clean-house-fast-while-learning-&-working-from-home
how to clean house fasthow to clean house fast

If you work from home or are learning online, finding a healthy balance between your home job and housework can be a challenge. But what if you could get more done in less time?

When you learn how to clean your house fast, you’ll save time and energy better spent on your job, learning, or spending quality time with friends and family.

Keep in mind the fastest way to clean a house may not give you the white glove results of a professional maid service, but sometimes good is good enough! Here are three things you need to know if you want to learn how to clean your house fast and easy:

Understand Speed Cleaning

Speed cleaning isn’t a substitute for deep cleaning or even regular house cleaning. Instead, it’s more like cleaning maintenance that keeps your home clean enough until you have more time. You can speed clean anytime—when you’re taking a break, first thing in the morning, or just when you have a few minutes. A little scrubbing here and some wiping there adds up if you make speed cleaning a daily habit!

Store Cleaning Supplies for Easy Access

Speed cleaning requires your cleaning supplies to be at the ready with quick access. You’re less likely to tackle even the quickest cleaning tasks if it takes you longer to find your cleaning supplies than it does to get the job done. If you want to get more cleaning done faster, store your cleaning supplies in totes.

Keep one cleaning tote in the kitchen, another in the bathroom, and a third cleaning tote in a hall closet. You can customize your cleaning tote to fit your home’s specific cleaning needs, but you’ll want these go-to cleaning supplies:

  • Window cleaner
  • Magic eraser
  • All-purpose cleaner
  • Microfiber cloths
  • Paper towels

Declutter to Cut Down on Cleaning Time

The more stuff you have around your home, the easier it is for dust, grime, and dirt to accumulate in more places. Not only will you have more things to clean, you’ll need to clean more often. Get rid of clutter like old magazines, broken items, and things you no longer use. Your home will be easier to clean, you won’t have to clean as often, and you’ll feel better about your home and work environment.

How to Clean Your House in Two Hours

Can you really clean an average size house in two hours? If you use the speed cleaning approach, have your supplies ready, and start with an organized home—of course you can! You already have a head start because you’ve been knocking out small cleaning chores each day.

So grab your cleaning gear, head to the laundry room, and set your timer for the two-hour house cleaning session. Yes, we really want you to use a timer! A timer works wonders for helping you stay focused and work quickly. And if you want to really get the cleaning juices flowing, turn on some upbeat cleaning music and turn it up. Who knows—you may even find that you enjoy speed cleaning your home!

:05 Start a load of laundry.

:15 Clean the glass on storm doors and on windows that face the street.

:20 Put the contents of the laundry basket where each item belongs and throw out the trash.

:35 Head to the kitchen, load the dishwasher, and wipe down the exterior of your appliances.

:40 Take the clean laundry from the washer and put it in the dryer.

:50 Sweep or vacuum your kitchen floor, wipe down your countertops, and take out the trash.

1:10 Go to the bathrooms and wipe down the toilet, sink, floor, bathtub, and shower. Change out towels and restock toilet paper. Clean the mirror, sink, and vanity.

1:30 Take a microfiber cloth and dust the busiest rooms of your home like the living room, den, and dining room.

1:50 Vacuum high-traffic carpet areas and sweep hard surface floors.

2:00 Remove your clean laundry from the dryer, fold, and put away.

How to Clean a Room in Five Minutes

Do you want to learn how to clean your home really fast? How does getting a room clean in five minutes sound? It’s entirely possible. While it may differ sharply from your regular cleaning routine, it’s handy when unexpected guests are on the way or you just want one clean room to yourself. You’ve got to stay organized and keep moving to pull this off, but once you make it a housekeeping habit, you’ll be amazed at how much time you save.

  • Grab a laundry basket.
  • Throw everything that doesn’t belong in that room in the basket.
  • Hide the basket somewhere out of sight until later.
  • Fold blankets, fluff pillows, and wipe visible surfaces with a microfiber cloth.
  • Vacuum or sweep.

The five-minute room cleaning is speed cleaning at its best. You will not win any sparkling clean home awards, but when you live and work in the same place, quick and easy is its own reward.

If you’ve been cleaning throughout the week, knocking out a single room in five minutes or the entire house in two hours isn’t that hard. Your cleaning maintenance has prevented the buildup of grime, dust, and dirt, and your decluttering leaves you with less to clean.

But we know that even field-tested, proven cleaning hacks don’t work if you can’t find the time. If you’re homebound and need a hand with the housework, The Maids is probably right around the corner. Our experienced cleaning teams can clean even large homes quickly and thoroughly. And the best part is you don’t even have to leave your home. We’ll be in and out in no time without disrupting your work or online learning. Give us a call today—we can’t wait to show you a sparkling clean home!

 

The post How to Clean House Fast While Learning & Working From Home appeared first on The Maids Blog.

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How to Balance Household Chores While Working From Home

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how to balance chores and workhow to balance chores and work

When work and home are in the same place, it’s challenging to keep your roles separate. Eying piles of dirty dishes while you try to concentrate on work is distracting and frustrating. Sometimes it can be hard to get anything done at all!

You may feel overwhelmed and think keeping your home clean and getting your job done is an “either-or” situation, but we promise it doesn’t have to be that way. One of the best ways to balance household chores and working from home is to maintain a schedule that allows time for both.

Check out these innovative ways to balance household chores while working from home. Once they’re done, you’ll be freed from unnecessary distractions and you’ll have a cleaner home!

Daily House Chores and How to Fit Them In

Repurpose your old commute time.

The average American drives 16 miles for a one-way commute to work, resulting in an average trip of one hour. Why not use the time you would have spent in traffic to get the house in order? You won’t interrupt your work schedule, and you’ll minimize those distractions that come with a dirty house.

Set a timer for 30 minutes and start decluttering, organizing, and cleaning. Pick one room or one specific housekeeping task to complete each day; you’ll be surprised how much you get done by the end of each week. So what do you do with those other 30 minutes? At the end of the day, organize and clean your workspace and pick up where you left off in the morning.

Decide how often you should do each chore.

Depending on how many kids and pets you have and where they spend their time, you probably don’t have to clean every room of the house every week. Vacuuming, dusting, and other daily chores may be a necessity, but most other cleaning chores can wait a day or two without things getting out of control.

If you want to buy yourself more time between cleanings, get everyone in your home on board with a “clean as you go” mindset. Help your kids learn to pick up and put their things back where they belong. Set some rules about where they can eat, play, and do their homework, and let them know it’s up to them to wipe their feet, clean up a spill, or keep things organized.

Set reasonable expectations.

Just because you’re working from home doesn’t mean you have to set unreasonable expectations for cleanliness. That’s a recipe for failure that affects your home and work life. Your house doesn’t have to be spotless all the time—you’ve got to make a living and not neglect the important things in your life.

Sometimes good is good enough. If your goal is to have a perfectly clean house and work a full-time job, you will often be disappointed with yourself. Set reasonable expectations and you’ll find a better balance between housework and your job.

Determine what chores are easier to complete in an empty house.

Working while your kids and spouse are home can be tough enough, much less trying to do your job and clean house. How you arrange your work and cleaning schedule will depend a lot on your kids’ age and the type of work you do at home. Finding tasks you can complete while they’re going through their daily routine helps, but there’s nothing like having the place all to yourself to really get things done.

Take blended breaks.

Chances are if you work from home, there’s no one telling you when to take a break.
Getting up and stretching your legs, walking outside for some fresh air, and other breaks make you more productive. But these breaks can also be a good time to get a couple of chores done around the house.

Instead of just walking around the house, pick up the kitchen, straighten up the bathroom, or take care of those lingering cobwebs. Keep in mind that you’re not tackling major chores; instead, you’re choosing tasks you can complete in a few minutes.

Make a housekeeping plan.

Take a few minutes to sketch out a rough cleaning schedule that makes the most of your time. If the kids are in school during the day, schedule a couple of rooms to be cleaned while they’re away. Note which chores take the least time and work those into your breaks. Working from home typically means more flexibility than a traditional job, so make the best of it!

Don’t Think You Have to Do Everything Yourself

If you’re sharing a home with kids (or spouses!) who are old enough to help, the household chores should be shared fairly. Some tasks, like cooking and cleaning up after a meal, are easier and more fun with some teamwork. You can divide up other chores for other family members to tackle on their own time. If you face some resistance, use food, screen time, and other rewards to motivate everyone to chip in. Getting kids to help with chores not only makes your life less stressful, it teaches them some good life lessons like accountability, responsibility, and teamwork.

There are plenty of reasons you may want to consider hiring a cleaning service. Whether it’s because you’re just too busy or you realize your time is worth more than what you invest in a maid service, help is just around the corner. So the next time you find your work-at-home schedule and your household chores list at odds, contact The Maids and we’ll get to work.

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How to Get Cat Urine Smell Out of Carpet, Wood, and Upholstery

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how to get rid of cat pee smellhow to get rid of cat pee smell

When your cat urinates outside the litter box, the odor can be difficult to get rid of and nearly impossible to cover up. Whether your cat pees on the carpet, a piece of furniture, bed linens, or clothing, it’s crucial to promptly neutralize the odor and remove the stain. Cats will often return to a spot where they have urinated if they can still detect the odor, so taking care of it quickly can help prevent them from becoming repeat offenders.

If you have a cat, it’s important to know how to get rid of a cat urine smell. But once that’s done, it’s equally to determine the cause of this behavior. If your cat suddenly starts urinating in areas they haven’t before, something’s going on. From medical problems to unappealing litter boxes, if your cat pees on your floors and furniture, you have to pinpoint the problem or the behavior will continue.

So, how to get rid of cat pee smell? First, check your cat’s litter box. An unappealing litter box is a common culprit for why cats start urinating in places they shouldn’t. Don’t give your cat a reason to pee anywhere else—make sure the litter box is uncovered, large enough for your cat, and cleaned regularly.

If the litter box is in good shape but your cat is still using other areas as its bathroom, fear not. Here’s how to get rid of cat urine odor in the house.

How to Get Cat Urine Smell Out of a Couch

Cat pee can be hard to clean out of upholstery, and if it has soaked through to the cushioning, it can cause lingering odors, mold, and mildew. Fortunately, learning how to remove cat urine smells on your couch isn’t too difficult with the right tools and know-how.

Your best bet to get rid of the cat pee smell is to use an upholstery cleaning machine. These cleaners have scrubbing attachments that will make it easier to get stains and odors out of your couch. You can soak the pee area without worrying about overdoing it, because you can just suck up the water, urine, and cleaner when you’re done.

Use the carpet cleaner attachment to soak the stain with a natural cleaning solution designed for pet odors. Then vacuum up the urine and cleaner. Be warned, you may need to soak and vacuum the cat urine several times to get rid of the stain and odor.

If you don’t have access to an upholstery cleaning machine, enzyme cleaners can get the job done. Enzymatic cleaners are cleaning products that use enzymes to help break down stains and eliminate odors. Making your own enzyme cleaner with natural ingredients is easy. Mix three parts white vinegar with one part water in a spray bottle—that’s it!

Once you have the mixture, here’s what you’ll do:

Blot up as much of the cat urine as possible with dry towels. Soak the urine stain thoroughly with the enzymatic cleaner, ensuring the solution soaks into everything.

Allow the solution to sit overnight. There’s no need to rinse, but you may have to repeat the process to get out all the urine odor and stains.

How to Get Cat Urine Smell Out of Carpet

If you have pets, you know the messes they can make. Your carpet is the perfect landing ground for your cat to relieve itself, whether by accident or intentionally! Using a carpet cleaning machine to get the urine odor out of carpet is ideal because it forces cleaning solutions deep into the carpet and it sucks up all the water, cleaner, and urine.

If you don’t have an upholstery cleaner, you can use the same enzyme cleaner we recommend for couches. Here’s how to get cat pee out of carpet using your enzyme cleaner:

Blot any wet urine spots immediately with dry towels and continue blotting with new towels until they come away clean. Spray the urine spot thoroughly with your homemade enzyme cleaner and cover it with a clean, damp cloth. You may need to cover the cloth with something heavy to help the cleaning solution soak into the carpet.

Let the enzyme solution dry overnight. If the carpet isn’t dry, use towels to blot up excess moisture. You may have to repeat the process to get rid of the stain and cat urine odor.

How to Get Cat Urine Out of Wood

Figuring out how to get cat pee out of wood can be a challenge. If the urine has soaked into the wood for a while, you must use a urine cleaner with a little more muscle. Hydrogen peroxide is safe and is a natural odor and stain remover. But before you get to work, check an inconspicuous area of the wood to make sure the hydrogen peroxide doesn’t damage the finish.

Pour the hydrogen peroxide over the stain and then cover it with a cloth soaked in hydrogen peroxide. Cover the cloth with plastic wrap. Place something heavy atop it to hold it all down and let it sit overnight. The hydrogen peroxide will remove stains and eliminate the cat urine odor.

You can also give baking soda and white vinegar a try. These ingredients won’t damage most wood, but spot-test an out-of-the way area first to make sure your finish is safe. The acid in the vinegar neutralizes the odor in fresh and dried urine stains, and the baking soda gives you some mild abrasives to work with.

Now that you know how to get rid of cat urine odors around your home, check out this post to learn how to handle other unpleasant pet messes. If your pets, kids, and busy schedule make housekeeping a full-time job, why not let The Maids lend a hand? Our healthy approach to cleaning is more important than ever, and we’re probably just around the corner.

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