Cleaning equipment has come a long way in recent years: From robot vacuums to microfiber cloths, modern housekeepers have a stunning array of options to choose from. Though this is a great thing in many ways, it also makes selecting the right tools for your needs more complicated and confusing. If you’re still learning how to clean, it’s easy to get taken in by expensive gimmicks or miss buying equipment you actually need.
In the guide below, we’ll cover the most cost-effective and useful cleaning tools of 2020 so you can make educated purchasing decisions. Alternately, if you’d rather hire professional cleaners, our team of maids in Milwaukee can keep your home spotless for you.
10 Essential Cleaning Products Every Housekeeper Should Own
- Multiple sponges.
There’s no such thing as a “one size fits all” cleaning sponge, so it’s important to arm yourself with a collection of different sponges for different jobs. Classic cellulose sponges are ideal for cleaning hard surfaces (like counter tops and tile), while sponges with an abrasive side and spaghetti sponges are recommended for washing dishes. Spaghetti sponges contain natural abrasives like corn or peach pits, so they can be used in place of steel wool to tackle stuck-on dish grime without leaving scratches. Their pliable shape also makes them a good choice for washing hard-to-clean items (whisks, for example) and tight spaces.
Finally, if you want to cut down on waste, you should stock up on sponge cloths. These reusable cloths can be used in place of paper towels for mopping up spills and polishing surfaces.
- White dish towels.
Hanging decorative towels can make your kitchen feel cozy, but you’ll still want to have plenty of plain white dish towels on hand. We recommend white towels for cleaning because it’s easy to see when they’re dirty and you can safely bleach them during washing. Bleaching will preserve their bright, fresh appearance and kill any dangerous bacteria they’ve come into contact with.
- Microfiber cloths.
Microfiber cloths should be in everyone’s cleaning kit: These gentle, versatile cloths can be used for everything from dusting to washing, polishing, and even cleaning glass. The soft material they’re made out of won’t scratch delicate surfaces or leave streaks behind.
- A squeegee.
Do you think squeegees are just for cleaning car windshields? Think again! Using a squeegee to remove excess moisture after you use (or clean) your shower is one of the best ways to prevent mold and mildew growth. You can also use a squeegee to clean your windows: After you’re done scrubbing the glass, move the squeegee in even, horizontal strips across the window, working from top to bottom. (Wipe the squeegee off in between strokes to remove excess dirt, soap, and water.)
- A vacuum cleaner (or two).
The dependable, powerful upright vacuum cleaner remains the best choice for most people, especially pet owners and those with large or carpeted homes. With that being said, purchasing a second lightweight vacuum cleaner – like a stick, handheld, or robot vacuum – can add more convenience and flexibility to your life. Lightweight vacuums can be used in place of a broom and dustpan to quickly pick up spills and remove surface dirt from floors and also allow you to move quickly around the house and keep fit while cleaning.
- A steam mop.
If your image of mopping involves slopping water around with a yarn mop and bucket, we have good news for you: Mops have evolved. Today’s steam mops automatically mist floors with hot water as you work, eliminating the need to wring out your mop and keeping moisture to a minimum. Or, if you need more scrubbing power, you can opt for a spin mop floor scrubber instead. Floor scrubbers use two rotating pads to safely clean and buff multiple flooring types, including marble and bamboo floors. They’re great for removing stubborn stains and giving old, worn floors their sheen back.
- A power scrubber.
Self-cleaning grout has yet to be invented, but a power scrubber is the next best thing: These handy battery-operated tools have a rotating brush head that essentially does the work of scrubbing for you. They’re perfect for brightening stained grout and cleaning in hard-to-reach places (e.g., around faucets and under toilet seats). For best results, pair your power scrubber with a telescoping scrubbing pad that lets you wipe down your shower tiles without stretching.
- A bucket.
Even if you have a steam mop, you should invest in a solid cleaning bucket. You’ll need to carry a bucket of warm, soapy water with you when you wash your windows, your vehicle, and your shower, to name a few areas.
- A magic eraser.
Magic erasers are popular abrasive cleaning pads that can remove tough stains and grime, like rust, soap scum, adhesives, and grease. However, it’s important to avoid using a magic eraser for virtually every cleaning job (a common rookie cleaning mistake). Magic erasers are made from melamine, which works similarly to a very fine sandpaper. As such, they can damage delicate surfaces, like coated non-stick cookware, stainless steel, glass (including cell phone and computer screens), and paint. Before you use a magic eraser, make sure it’s safe for the surface you want to clean.
- A spray bottle.
With green, homemade cleaners becoming a staple in many households, it would be remiss not to mention the humble spray bottle. Purchasing an empty spray bottle (or three!) will give you the freedom to create your own cleaning sprays with white vinegar, lemon juice, essential oils, and other organic ingredients. These cleaners are better for your health, your budget, and the environment, so we encourage everyone to try making DIY cleaning solutions.
Investing in essential housecleaning equipment isn’t cheap, so it’s important to consider how often you’ll actually use your cleaning supplies before you stock up. If cleaning isn’t your thing, setting aside funds for house cleaning services may be a more practical option. To find out if our Milwaukee maid service is right for you, contact the team at BetterCleans online or by phone at: (414) 215-9698.