Kathy’s Home & Garden Tips – A Few Fall Cleaning Hints

Fall is right around the corner. Even though I’m sure there are still hot temps in the picture, cooler temps are coming. Take advantage of the cool temperatures before winter to throw open the windows and do some fall cleaning.


In the summer, I take them outside, spray liberally with 409 or Fantastic, and hose them off. If it’s too cold for that, wrap a damp cloth around a ruler and secure with rubber bands. Vacuum well first. For metal or plastic blinds use 409, with wood blinds use a weak solution of flax soap and water- about one tablespoon soap in two quarts water. Wet the cloth lightly and run across each blind.

Walls and Woodwork

First, dust the walls and woodwork using a damp microfiber cloth.  Flax soap (sometimes sold      as Murphy’s) is a great gentle cleaner; especially on wood. It also works well on walls. Always start from the floor and work your way up. This will prevent streaks from forming; they’re impossible to get rid of. Use a large porous sponge and change water frequently.


Between major cleanings, a spot cleaning can do wonders. Spray each spot or high-traffic area with a good carpet cleaner. Scrub each spot with a stiff brush dampened with clean water. Try to find a good carpet brush with a long handle; it fluffs up the nap. Let dry and vacuum. You’ll be surprised at how good it looks!


Vinegar is a great class cleaner! Try two or three tablespoons of vinegar in a gallon of cool water. Use a squeegee to eliminate streaks. Wipe the squeegee after every pass. Windex is the next best option- make sure to use a lot of paper towels. Always clean the outside twice to really remove grime.

Ceramic Tile, Bath Fixtures, Kitchen Counters, Refrigerators

Baking soda is a gentle scouring agent and it’s also environmentally friendly. Mix with water to form a paste and use to clean virtually any surface in your kitchen and bath. It also de-odorizes. To really tackle soap scum, mix one part vinegar with four parts water.

It will be nice to have a clean, fresh-smelling house before the cold winter sets in.

Hope this gets you started on some fall cleaning!