Battling Tobacco Product Odors
For those who use tobacco products, they may not notice the lingering odors that hang around in the air and stubbornly invade porous materials such as carpet, upholstery, fabrics and more.
But for non-smokers, those lingering odors are a nuisance, and many valuable hours have fruitlessly been spent on attempting to remove them. Smoke odors from cigarettes, cigars, and pipes are tough to remove because microscopic smoke odor particulates embed onto and into everything. Over time, these carcinogenic residues release odors.
These steps will help eliminate, and may totally eliminate, odors from tobacco products, depending on how much time and effort is spent on restoring surfaces back to pre-smoke condition.
Fresh air brought into a home or building naturally helps remove foul odors from the air. Keeping the furnace and A/C filter clean is important.
Thorough cleaning and washing of surfaces is an important process. If you can launder items, that will flush out residues. Using detergent helps the water you use for cleaning to penetrate surfaces, which means better cleaning.
Open containers of baking soda or charcoal are known to absorb malodors, so having them in your home will help. Be sure to refresh them by mixing or replacing every few days. There are professional grade absorption products you might obtain from a cleaning and restoration supply house.
After cleaning, applying a smoke-odor deodorizer will help destroy more odor-causing residues that you might have missed.
For surfaces that you can paint or seal, this will lock in odors from tobacco products. Painted walls will hold residues that cleaning may not penetrate deep enough to remove.
One complete and proven method for removing smoke odors from any source (once cleaned) is by using ozone. Ozone machines remove odors by chemically changing the structure of odor-causing molecules, oxidizing them and destroying them so no more odors are released.
Ozone can be dangerous if used in occupied spaces, so be sure to do your research and be completely safe if you choose to use this option to remove smoke odors.
Most ozone treatments are handled by professional restoration companies, although you can buy or rent small units.
While smoke odors from residues is tough to remove, your favorite cleaning and restoration company has professional solutions that really work. Ask them what they can do for you. After all, it pays to call a pro!
The Smelly Mattress
Mattress cleaning, due simply to the bulk of what needs cleaned, is not an easy task. Yet it is one that must be done occasionally. There is nothing worse than putting your sleepy head into the mattress and be woken up.
Besides the typical use of a mattress, which to everyone who loves to sleep is very important, you still want to keep things healthy.
There are all types of issues with mattresses, from pet accidents, food and drink spills, dust mites, and more.
So here is what you want to do.
Strip the bed
It makes sense to strip the bed of linens and blankets. If you have a mattress pad, even better. Do this on a weekly basis, at minimum. Keeping a mattress pad on at all times is smart.
You must also consider the bulk of the material and do your cleaning accordingly. Sad to say, this may not be possible to do yourself, without much effort. One thing you can do is take the mattress outside and, on a nice day, allow the air to help refresh your mattress.
A natural disinfectant that not only make things healthier but that removes stains, peroxide is a great solution. It adds oxygen to the surface and removes not only stains but also odors.
Some say and claim that baking soda is a solution. The benefit of baking soda is it absorbs odors, much like what you experience with putting an open box of baking soda in your refrigerator.
Enzymes are great options that can help with stubborn stains, such as blood, urine, and more. They attack substances and remove not only spots and stains but also odors.
When in doubt, do the right thing. Call your professional cleaning company. After all, it pays to call a pro!
The Battle Against Refrigerator Odors
It’s no surprise when you notice a nasty odor from your garbage can, especially when it’s full.
But it might be a surprise when you get a whiff of a nasty smell emanating from your refrigerator, which should normally be a haven of delicious foods and enticing aromas.
Your refrigerator naturally fights off offending odors because of the cold temperature, which limits bacteria growth. Most bacteria growth is pretty slow and not as offensive as others. But depending on the source (meat, milk, proteins are quick to become offensive), the resulting odors can be powerful and require immediate action.
Simple and easy
A complete cleaning of the fridge with hot detergent and water naturally removes some odors. Get into those crevices where liquids from food might have invaded. You might have to wet those areas with hot water and detergent and let it dwell for several minutes. Many nasty odors can come from small amounts of contaminants.
For lingering odors, leaving a container, small cup or bowl, of white vinegar in the fridge will continue to neutralize bad odors. For this to continue to work replenish the vinegar every few days. Eventually, you can stop using the vinegar treatment. Some recommend wiping down all surfaces with vinegar as well.
And, of course, there is the proven method of leaving a box of baking soda open in the fridge, which absorbs odors. It does this due to the ability of sodium bicarbonate to attract odor causing molecules and holding onto them. Stirring the baking soda around occasionally or replacing the box is necessary.
You must also realize is that removing odors from a fridge in use is much different from one that has been sitting unused for a period of time. If odors are severe, such as from an unused refrigerator being put back in action, you might have to resort to ozone generation. You can buy or sometimes rent the equipment. Using them is simple. Put them inside the fridge, keep the door shut as much as possible, and let it run for the recommended period of time for that generator. The odor will most likely be magically gone!
Of course, the best thing to do for all your cleaning needs is call your favorite cleaning company. After all, it pays to call a pro!
Removing Blood and Biological Spots and Stains
It’s not a pleasant task, but it’s one that must be handled, and quickly.
Removing blood, vomit, urine, feces, and other biological spots and stains is a fairly easy chore if the issue is caught quickly. But allow the substance to dry, and your job becomes much more difficult.
What impacts the success of removal of blood and biological substance is what it is on. If on carpet or upholstery, the removal is much more challenging as flushing out the contaminant can actually cause irreversible damage to the fabric. But if on clothing or other washable material, the job can be handled easily.
Here are some tips to remove biological contaminants from clothing and other washable fabrics.
Once you discover there is a biological substance on the fabric, scrap away any excess you can and get it into the washing machine.
Remember, something fresh is probably just a “spot” — which is on the outside of the fiber. Give it time, or don’t remove all the substance when cleaning, and that spot becomes a “stain” — which is insidethe fiber, and very challenging to remove.
Pretreat the area
You do this all the time. Pretreating spots means easier removal during washing. For biological substances, this is important. A quality preconditioning product worked into the fabric, and allowed to dwell for several minutes, means the washing cycle will be more effective.
Control the temperature
You might have heard that hot water can “set the stain.” Not always true. The problem is using hot water opens up the fibers and allows staining substances to penetrate. Incomplete cleaning does this as well. To be safe, keep the temperature warm or cold when washing fabrics with biological spots or stains.
After washing, you may notice the spot or stain is gone. Don’t assume that is 100% true. When wet, the fabric may be hiding the spot or stain. Allow it to air dry. Do not put it into the drier. Hot air during the drying process can set any remaining spots or stains. Once dry, inspect carefully. If you see any remaining spots or stains, launder the item again.
As with all cleaning chores, there comes a time when it is time to throw in the towel and call the pros. Do the right thing and let your favorite cleaning company do the work for you. After all, it pays to call a pro!
Be a Dust Handler
Dust. It’s everywhere. Want proof? Reach over to a cabinet top, a window sill… just about any surface. Rub your finger on them and see what you get.
While dust occurs naturally in homes and buildings, there are some practical steps you can take to minimize how much dust affects the cleanliness of your home but also how much it negatively affects health of your loved ones.
Talk about something you might never inspect, unless you think about it. Give it some thought now. In your bathrooms, look up at your exhaust fans — assuming you have them. Look closely. They are probably covered with dust and hair and other debris, and perhaps the circulation openings are completely clogged up. Use a vacuum to remove as much as you can, and when there is air flow into the fan, use some compressed air to finish the job. Loosening up the dust means the fan will move it on out.
While you vacuum your floors and area rugs on a scheduled basis, you never get as much dust out of area rugs than taking them outside and giving them a good “beating.” Of course, the area rug has to be of a size and weight you can handle. But if you get them outside, drape over a fence or patio chair, and go at them with a broom or tennis racket, you will get much more dust out of them than if you vacuumed alone.
Like your exhaust fans, other areas you might not inspect can be dust collectors. Think about your ceiling fans, trim around doors and windows, pictures and ornaments, any area above typical eyesight. Your favorite department store or online store will have a variety of dusting devices you can use. They also have products meant to, while you clean, attract dust, dander, and debris so you aren’t just moving it around. The main thing is to buy them and use them on a regular basis.
As with any task, performing what needs done on a schedule is important. Keeping a house clean and tidy is a task that never ends. From dusting to carpet cleaning, to hard floor care, and more, the best way to keep it all in perfect shape is to use a quality and professional cleaning service. After all, it pays to call a pro!
Vacuum Cleaner Maintenance
The job of the vacuum cleaner, whether in a home or office, is to pick up dirt, debris, particulate soil, hair, dander, virtually anything that lands on the carpet and must be removed. In the process, your vacuum cleaner eventually ends up needing a little cleaning attention itself.
When you empty the vacuum collection chamber or replace the vacuum bag, all of that dust, dirt, debris, and hair went into the port that contains the beater bar, and then through a hose, and most likely also through a filter or two.
Keep your vacuum cleaner in great working condition with these simple maintenance tips. Keep it safe and anytime you are working on your vacuum, make sure it is unplugged.
The bag or bin
Some vacuums have a chamber or bin that collects the dirt. If you have that type of vacuum, remove it and empty it frequently, even after each use. Wipe it out if you can and if the type warrants it, rinse it out with water and detergent. If you have a vacuum with a bag, keep an eye on how much dirt it is accumulating. It’s best to replace it when about half full, never more than 2/3 full. If your vacuum bag gets too full, the efficiency of the machine is drastically reduced.
The beater bar
Turn the vacuum over and inspect the beater bar and vacuum inlet assembly. This is where things might get a little gross as you have to physically pull and remove all the hair that has rolled up on the beater bar. Wear gloves. Pull the hair off and keep turning the beater bar until it is completely clean. Use scissors or a small, sharp knife if the hair is difficult to remove with just your bare fingers.
You may need to refer to your owner’s manual for this. Find the filters and inspect according to manufacturer recommendations. Some filters need to be replaced; others can be cleaned. Air must pass through the filters so keep them in good condition. High-efficiency particulate air filters (HEPA) might need more attention than typical filters.
One great way to ensure vacuum cleaner efficiency is to have your favorite cleaning company inspect it the next time they work in your home. Call them today. After all, it pays to call a pro!
Organizing & Cleaning the Bathrooms
Besides the kitchen, your bathroom is one of the most popular and trafficked rooms in your home.
Keeping your bathroom organized, clean, and tidy can be a daunting chore. And your work increases tremendously if you have more than one. Many homes have several bathrooms. That’s a lot of cleaning and organizing to tackle, especially if you let too much time pass without giving them some attention. It’s easy to see several days, a week, even more pass without a close scrutiny of the condition of a bathroom—and then all of a sudden you are amazed how all the nastiness snuck up on you.
The way to tackle all of this is with a plan—a cleaning plan, which includes organizing all bathroom content as well.
And that’s just to keep everything clean. What about organizing the contents? Open up the drawers, cabinets, check the inventory of what is in your bathroom. You will be amazed at the number of toiletries, medications, cosmetics, lotions and potions you have amassed over the years. Many of them are no doubt expired, some by many years unless you have kept up with what you stock your bathroom with.
Take the time to look at expiration dates and start throwing out what has expired. Some products will last for years. Others just a few months. Even cosmetics have an expiration suggestion.
Also consider better organizing, using shelving or organizing products such as bins that can be stacked, to help you keep it all in its proper place.
And, of course, when you need some professional cleaning done in your home, whether routine cleaning or deep cleaning such as for your carpet, do the right thing. Call your favorite cleaning company. After all, it pays to call a pro!