Ceiling Fans: Spray the inside of an old pillowcase with cleaning solution, then slip the bag over each blade and wipe clean.
TIP: Before you go up a ladder to clean your ceiling fan, check to see if the fan is turning in the right direction to keep your home cool. If you feel a breeze underneath the blades when turned on, your fan is set for summer. If you don’t feel a breeze, change the direction.
Carpeting & Rugs:Target needy areas—high-traffic zones and stains that have been bugging you forever. Give the rest a quick (but still substantial) once-over.
TIP: Take a vacuum to the problem areas, going back and forth for about 30 seconds in bad spots. For area rugs, do the top of each rug, then lift and fold back the corners where you can to vacuum the underside.
Vacuum and flip your mattresses – Once you are finished with your floors, it’s time to carry your vacuum into the bedrooms and power clean those mattresses.
Unless you have a new no-flip mattress, this is also an ideal time to flip and turn your mattress. Do it twice a year, with the clock change, so you don’t have to ponder when you last did it.
Windows: Focus on the exterior, where the most dirt builds up, and don’t sweat the detail work. For best results, choose a wind-free, overcast day. (Gusts will cause you to get sprayed; sunlight can leave streaks.)
TIP: Use a microfiber cloth soaked in a solution of ¼ cup vinegar, ¼ to ½ teaspoon dish soap, and 2 cups water. Don’t be tempted to use more vinegar. Too much can make windows appear cloudy.