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Sweeping up after you track in dirt

Sweeping up after you track in dirt
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In many countries, it’s customary to take off your shoes as soon as you come inside. Adopting a no-shoes policy is an easy way to keep your house cleaner and your family healthier. About 85 percent of all the dirt in our homes is tracked in on shoes, say the experts at Family Handyman. And that’s not the worst of it. According to a study at the University of Houston, more than 26 percent of shoes carry Clostridioides difficile bacteria, responsible for many cases of stomach distress, into the house. Another small study at the University of Arizona showed that 96 percent of shoes track in fecal matter. A simple solution is to keep a mat or shoe rack just inside your front door.

Enjoy these 35 nearly forgotten house cleaning tips from the past. 

Carrying a heavy key chain

Carrying a heavy key chain
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Take any extra keys and doodads off your key chain. The weight can wear on your ignition (assuming you still have a car with a key ignition) and cause it to stall. In fact, millions of General Motors cars were recalled for this problem, and that was the first advice owners received.

Find out the items you shouldn’t be keeping in your wallet.

Filing all your bills …

Filing all your bills …
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Sure, you’d like to skip the bills altogether, but getting statements electronically instead of on paper means you’ll have less clutter and therefore will spend less time sorting, filing and shredding. Some companies will even give you a financial bonus or discount for going paperless. Ask your bank, utilities, and credit card issuers whether they’ll pay you to sign up for e-statements and automatic payments, which save you even more time.

Stocking up on light bulbs …

Stocking up on light bulbs …
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Compared with incandescent bulbs, LED bulbs last far longer and use about 75 percent less energy, which translates directly into smaller electric bills. The latest generation of energy-saving bulbs give off excellent light and fire up quickly.

Discover the zero-waste tricks your grandmother has been using for years. 

…And batteries

…And batteries
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According to Wirecutter, it takes more than 15 disposable batteries to equal the power you’ll get from one rechargeable battery. Yes, rechargeables cost more (the best, according to Wirecutter’s tests, is the Energizer Recharge Universal, which costs $2.25), but they will pay for themselves after about five charges. And be sure to recycle used batteries. It’s safer, as “dead” batteries might still carry enough charge to create a spark (and a fire hazard).

Thawing overfrozen food

Thawing overfrozen food
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According to the FDA, your refrigerator temperature should be set at 4°C and your freezer 
temperature should be −18°C. Setting the temps any lower won’t make your food last longer and will push up your electric bill. If your appliance doesn’t have a built-in thermometer, buy one at a hardware store. Also, to keep things cool, spread the food around in the fridge and freezer so air can flow properly. And stop standing there with the door open – you’re letting warm air in!

Discover 10 foods you had no idea you could freeze. 

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Throwing away leftovers

Throwing away leftovers
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Speaking of the freezer, anything fresh or cooked can be frozen, according to the food pros at Taste of Home. That includes fresh vegetables as well as cooked eggs and pasta. Given that Australians typically toss about one in five grocery bags that we buy, you should see a payoff quickly. Don’t throw away those peels and scraps, either. They can go right into a compost bin or pile instead. Make one at home, or find out whether your city or town has a central drop-off location.

Watch out for these leftovers that can make you sick, though.

Plugging into power strips

Plugging into power strips
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Many are simply extension cords with multiple sockets. What you want is a surge protector, which looks like a power strip but is designed to shut off if it’s overloaded or if the current exceeds a certain level. Look for the label UL 1449 to make sure you are buying a model certified safe by Under­writers Laboratories. Or an electrician can install a whole-house surge protector device in your electrical panel.

If you want your house to be clean but can’t find any motivation, check out these secrets of people who always have a clean house.

Mowing your lawn every week

Mowing your lawn every week
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You’ll save time – and your garden will benefit – if you cut the grass every other week instead. That’s because bees feed on the wildflowers that flourish in a less manicured lawn and then buzz off to pollinate the flowers and other plants in your garden. Another good reason to mow less often: too-short grass tends to dry out and turn brown, which can lead to extra watering. Also, grass grows fastest in late spring and early summer, says Family Handyman turf pro Joe Churchill, so skip fertilising then.

You may want to use some of this extra time you’ve freed up to work on the list of what professional housecleaners do every day to keep their homes clean.

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Source: RD.com

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