In denial about the crud that’s festering in the nooks and crannies of your home? The maintenance and cleaning pros we talked to say these eight jobs are among the grossest — and among the most important. One job could even save your life.
Deep breath …
#1 Cruddy Undersides of Rugs
Look under your area rugs for a nasty surprise — a sea of grit and dust — despite regular vacuuming.
What to do:
- Move furniture, fold over the rug, and vacuum dirt and dust from its underside. Sweep and mop the floor, too.
- While you’re under the hood, check the rug’s condition. If there’s no staining or discoloration, a good floor cleaning and vacuuming of the rug’s underside is enough.
- If pets, kids, or wine have left their mark, invest in a professional cleaning. A pro will run between $1.50 to $3 per square foot of rug, depending on the type of rug. Delicate natural fibers are usually more costly to clean than synthetics.
#2 Disgusting Disposal
Your kitchen has more germs than even your bathroom. And your garbage disposal and its splash guard flaps just might be the most disgusting place in the house — slimy, smelly, and befouled with old food.
What to do:
- Scrub the underside of the rubber flaps with an old toothbrush and warm, soapy water.
- Pour a 1:1 ratio of white distilled white vinegar and baking soda down the drain. Let it sit overnight and flush with boiling water to sanitize.
- Toss frozen cubes of white vinegar (just freeze it in an ice tray) down the disposal while it’s running. This will sharpen and sanitize the disposal’s grinding blades.
- Freshen up the drain with slices of lemon or other citrus fruit. Peels are OK, but if you have fruit to spare, the citrus acids will help disinfect and freshen.