10 Things to Clean That You’ve Never Thought Of

10 Things to Clean That You’ve Never Thought Of

It's easy to let certain things in your household go without a good cleaning every once in a while. But taking the time to clean these often-forgotten items will not only make you feel great about your home but also make sure the items are all well taken care of and last as long as possible. Luckily, they're quick to accomplish, so aim to tackle at least one item each week and you'll be through the list before you know it.


Add these often-forgotten items to your cleaning checklist to ensure a tidy home.


1. Washing Machine Agitator

You might be asking: "What even is an agitator?" A washing machine agitator is a large spindle in the center of many top-loading washing machines. Agitators have fins or blades that help move clothes around the machine to better clean them. The downfall of these agitators is that they get filled with gunk (softener, detergent, lint, hair, etc.) and can start to smell after a while.

To give this part of the washing machine a good clean, start by removing the fabric softener tray that's on the top of the agitator (if you have one). Soak this piece in hot water or bleach while you fill your washing machine with water by running a normal cycle. Then use a long-handled brush or sponge to clean the inside of the agitator with warm water a cleaning agent of your choice. Resume the washing machine's cycle and let it drain away all of the debris that was left from scrubbing.


2. Washing Machine Filter

You may clean your dryer lint trap often, but you probably didn't realize that there's a similar filter for your washing machine. Locate the filter by checking the washing machine's manual. It's likely either in the center agitator, in the drum's top lip, behind a trap door on the front of the machine, or near the water pump or drainage hose.

Once located, remove the filter and wipe around the filter's housing. Soak the filter in a bowl with soapy hot water for 10 minutes, then gently scrub it with a soft-bristled brush. Return the filter back to its housing and run a short wash cycle.


3. Baseboards

We clean our floors often, but what about the baseboards? Baseboards can get just as dirty as floorboards (especially with dust) but are often skipped during cleaning day. There are many ways to clean baseboards, from using a telescoping dusting tool to microfiber brushes and dryer sheets. Use something dry to wipe them down if you're just trying to remove dust, and something damp with a cleaning agent or water if you want to give them a deeper clean.


4. Walls

Walls get dirty too, and cleaning might be even more necessary if there are visible scuffs and stains. Check the type of paint that your walls are painted with to ensure you clean them correctly. For example, flat or matte paint is less durable and should only be wiped down with warm water. Other paints, like glossy or semigloss paint, are more durable and can be wiped down with soapy water. No matter what you clean your walls with, make sure to dry them with a microfiber cloth.


5. Curtains and Blinds

Window treatments gather lots of dust and allergens over time. If your curtains or drapes are labeled as washable, remove any hooks and hardware and machine-wash them on a short, gentle cycle using cool water. Tumble dry on low or let them dry on a line outside. If you have blinds, dust them with a microfiber cloth and use a soapy cloth for a deep clean. A vacuum dust brush attachment also works well for routine blind dustings.


6. Keyboards

Computer and laptop keyboards collect a lot of dust, crumbs, and bacteria from everyday use. To clean a keyboard, unplug it before brushing away any debris with a soft-bristled brush. You can also use a vacuum attachment or compressed air to help remove any remaining dust or crumbs. Dampen a lint-free cloth with rubbing alcohol and carefully wipe down the larger areas of the keyboard. Use an alcohol-dipped cotton swab to reach the small crevices, like the keys.


7. Light Switches

This tiny item is often overlooked when it comes to cleaning but it's one of the most-touched places in your house. Dirt and grime quickly build up on light switches. To clean them, gently wipe them down with a cloth dampened with a cleaning solution. Be sure to never spray directly on the light switch to avoid liquid reaching any electrical components.


8. Door Handles

Door handles are also used daily but not cleaned often enough. This is especially true for any handles in the bathroom, which can carry lots of bacteria. To help keep you and your family healthy, wipe down handles and hardware with a soapy rag or a disinfectant wipe.


9. Trash Cans

Many don't think about trash cans needing to be cleaned, but they do! With all of the dirty things that get put in garbage bins, it makes sense that the trash can itself gets dirty (and smelly) too. To clean your trash can, empty it and remove any trash bags. Rinse it out (outdoors if possible) and spray with a disinfectant or all-purpose cleaner. Scrub it with a brush or sponge to remove any grime, then rinse and let it dry before using.


10. Couch Cushions

We spend a lot of time on our sofas, so consider cleaning your couch cushions as often as you clean your bed sheets. For routine cleans, a vacuum, a crevice tool attachment, and an upholstery brush attachment are all you need to remove dust and other debris. For a deeper clean, you can either remove the cushions (if possible) to hand wash them or use an upholstery cleaning machine for non-removable cushions.




  • All photos used in this blogpost are sourced from the internet, and the rights belong to their respective owners
  • Miller, H. (2024, February 23). 10 Things to Clean That You’ve Never Thought Of. Better Homes & Gardens. https://www.bhg.com/forgotten-items-to-clean-8598889
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