This is a guest post by Erin Vaughn from Modernize which can help you remodel your home to be more energy efficient. Erin takes us through a few top tips for how to keep your kitchen perfectly sparkling.
When the sponge is away, the germs will play! And where germs frolic, sickness is never far behind. Here at Modernize, we believe that a healthy home is a beautiful home. And nowhere is this more true than in the kitchen, where handling raw meat and other foods can release dangerous pathogens.
Fortunately, with proper cleaning processes, you can reduce your risk enormously. But being vigilant about sanitation means more than just wiping down your counters and doing your dishes. Here are a few overlooked areas of the kitchen that could use a little TLC to keep your home germ-free and your dinners fresh and healthy.
Clean Up Your Cutting Board
Germs just love to take up residence in your cutting board. While those little nicks and grooves in the board may seem like a badge of your culinary skills, they also make the perfect breeding ground for bacteria and other yuckies. To solve this problem, keep a spray bottle on hand filled with a solution of one teaspoon of bleach to 16 ounces of water (and label the bottle clearly, for obvious reasons!). When you’re finished with your chopping, spray the surface of the cutting board down and run it under hot water, then pop it into the dishwasher for maximum cleanliness.
Scrub Your Sink
You’re probably already wiping down your sink’s surfaces when you do the dishes. However, what you may be overlooking are those little crevices between the sink and the counter and around the drain. Cleaning these areas regularly with a magic eraser gets deep into those joining surfaces and scours what an ordinary sponge may miss.
Flush Out Your Filter
Faucet filters are convenient places for germs to hang out, especially after you’ve bumped the faucet head a couple times with a dirty dish rag. And if you’ve got hard water, lime residue can build up, rendering your filter virtually ineffective. Screw off those filters and let them soak overnight in a vinegar solution. Your kitchen will be cleaner and your water purer!
Freshen Your Fridge
It sounds weird, but cleaning out your refrigerator’s coils can actually help keep your food fresher and safer. Coils can get pretty dirty when left to their own devices, and dusty or gritty coils have to work harder to keep the temperature at food safety levels. If they get too overworked, your food temperature could be altogether compromised. Give your fridge’s coils a regular scrubbing every few weeks. As a bonus, you’ll get better refrigerator efficiency, which means lower energy bills and a greener home!
Via Kitchen Daily
Sanitize Your Sponges
Wiping your counters and sinks won’t do you any good if you’re using a sordid sponge. You’re just spreading the germs around! Of course, you should change your sponges frequently, but what about the time in between? You can give your sponges a little zap of cleanliness by sticking them in the microwave for two minutes (just be careful handling them afterwards—the sponge will be hot!). Or, if your sponge has a metal scouring side, stick it in the dishwasher along with the night’s dishes for a wipe-up that’s squeaky clean.
Purify Your Pet’s Bowls
Your furry friends need some cleaning love, too! If you’re just refilling the water dish every day, you’re risking a germ uprising. Over time, a scummy bacterial film develops on the bottom of the bowl, and any unchecked grime in your kitchen can lead to compromised cooking. And if you’re leaving wet food out to crust over and dry, you’re risking your pet’s digestive health as well. Make sure to wash your pet’s dishes with soap every day, just like you would you own.
It may take a little extra cleaning and attention, but this is one case where a little elbow grease can net you a lot of health and happiness. Now, get out and fight the good fight against germs!