Spring-cleaning season is upon us! This time of the year is associated with cleaning everything around our houses that we usually tend to avoid, but some things need more regular cleaning than only once a year. Here are some tips to clean large kitchen appliances:
Microwave - Monthly
When you regularly heat items that splatter easily (like soup or butter), you should clean your microwave even more frequently, but generally, once a month is enough. Take a microwave safe bowl or cup, place about a cup of water in it with some lemon slices or a few spoons of distilled white vinegar. Microwave the mixture on the highest setting until you see the microwave's door is covered in steam. Take out the cup and wipe down the inside of the microwave with a paper towel.
Dishwasher - Monthly
Dishwashers accumulate germs which can build up over time. Not cleaning your dishwasher can hinder the efficacy of the dishwasher and also cause you to get sick. To clean the dishwasher, place distilled white vinegar in a dishwasher-safe cup or bowl. Place it on the top shelf of the dishwasher and run a full cycle on a hot setting. Then you can get rid of the vinegar smell by running half a cycle with hot water after you sprinkled a cup of baking soda in the bottom of the tub. When it is finished, leave the dishwasher's door open for an hour or two to air out.
Refrigerator - Quarterly
Empty your refrigerator so that you can clean the inside properly. Dissolve a tablespoon of baking soda in a cup of warm water, and use it to wipe down the inside of the refrigerator with a clean cloth or paper towel. This should also neutralise any smells. Check the expiration date of each item as you put it back, and toss anything that has expired or that you suspect is past its edible stage. Take care not to overfill your refrigerator, as there needs to be room for cold air to move around. On the other hand, do keep a few items of food in it, as it will be able to retain its cold temperature much more easily than when it's empty.
Coffee Maker - Monthly
Cleaning a coffee machine will clear out any hard-water minerals built up inside the machine, causing your coffee to taste different and slowing down the machine's efficacy. Place distilled white vinegar and equal parts water in the machine's water tank. Place a clean paper filter in the basket and brew the solution halfway. Let the machine rest for half an hour. Finish the brew and run two brews with clean water and a new filter before making your cup of coffee to avoid the vinegar taste.
Washing Machine - Monthly
Harmful bacteria can breed in your washing machine if it is not cleaned properly. You should be washing underwear and towels on hotter settings to kill bacteria, but even though hotter settings clean your machine as well, you still need to run an empty cycle with hot water and a cup of distilled white vinegar to sanitise the basin and get rid of any germs still present. You can leave a front-loading machine's door open between washes to let the machine's interior dry.
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