Are you guilty of making these typical mistakes at home? Read on for simple solutions that will ensure your house runs smoothly.
Keeping a house running smoothly involves a whole lot of work. But we want to make sure you're working smart, not hard! These common household mistakes have easy fixes ... check them out and see how these tips can make your life so much simpler!
THINGS YOU'RE USING WRONG
MISTAKE: Not using your spaghetti spoon properly
You may or may not have noticed but your spaghetti spoon has a hole in the middle. Ever wondered what it's for? That handy little hole is to measure a single serving of spaghetti! So instead of haphazardly dumping noodles into boiling water and hoping you've cooked just the right amount for dinner, now you'll know just how much to use. Brilliant!
MISTAKE: Loading cutlery into the dishwasher incorrectly
Do you load your cutlery upside down or right side up in the dishwasher? Bring this topic up with friends and there are sure to be two camps! But what do the experts say? Almost everyone agrees that knives should be placed downwards for safety's sake. As for forks and spoons, both can be loaded downwards with their handles sticking up but mix them up so that the spoons don't, well, spoon each other, making it impossible for them to actually get clean. And don't overload one section of the cutlery basket; make sure utensils are evenly distributed for best cleaning results.
MISTAKE: Using your oven drawer wrong
You know that handy little drawer at the bottom of your oven? It's the perfect spot to store cookies sheets and frying pans, right? Well, maybe that's not all it's good for! On many ovens, that storage drawer is actually a warming drawer, the perfect spot to keep food warm until you're ready to serve it. While this feature isn't universal, many ovens do have warming drawers. If you're not sure if yours does, check the appliance's user manual to find out for sure.
MISTAKE: Not replacing your dish sponge
While the sponge in your kitchen is used to keep things clean, how often do you actually clean your sponge? You might be surprised to learn that your sponge is a hotbed of germs and if it's not cleaned or replaced regularly, it can spread bacteria (like the kind that cause foodborne illnesses) all over your otherwise clean kitchen. Many experts recommend cleaning your sponge every 3-4 days, either in the microwave or dishwasher or using bleach. Alternatively, consider replacing your sponge altogether every month (although some experts suggest weekly!).
MISTAKE: Not cleaning your reusable grocery bags
In an effort to be more environmentally friendly, many of us have opted to take our own reusable fabric bags to the grocery store in favour of using the store's plastic bags. Great! BUT: How often do you wash those bags? Do you just use them and toss them back into the trunk for next week's grocery run? Because they hold the food you eat, they should be kept clean, so if they're machine washable, they should be washed regularly. If they can't be put in the washing machine, turn them inside out, spray with a disinfectant spray and leave them to dry.
MISTAKE: Scrubbing your microwave clean
You know how dirty the microwave can get, with bits of food splattered all over into hardened lumps you have to scrape and scrub at to remove. But you don't need to put so much elbow grease into cleaning your microwave. Instead, fill a microwaveable bowl with water and vinegar and microwave it on high for about two minutes. The microwave will become nice and steamy and all you'll have to do is wipe the softened bits of food away.
AROUND THE HOUSE MAINTENANCE
MISTAKE: Ignoring water damage
A small leak or an almost imperceptible water stain on the ceiling might not seem like anything to worry about but that small problem can become a massive headache in just the blink of an eye. Water damage can create a hazardous and unhealthy living environment (think: mold, mildew, foul smells and even insect infestation) and can lead to extensive property damage and costly repairs. Always act at the first sight of water damage to prevent the problem from becoming unmanageable.
MISTAKE: Not changing filters
Ignoring your air filters defeats the purpose of having them altogether. Air filters are in place to keep the air you're breathing in your home clean, but if the filters aren't changed regularly, dirt, dust and allergens can accumulate in your home's ductwork, making your home's air quality less than optimal. This could especially pose problems for members of your household who suffer from respiratory issues or who have allergies. Likewise, water filters need to be changed regularly to ensure that the water you're drinking is not filled with contaminants.
MISTAKE: Not checking smoke detectors
A working smoke alarm is critical in warning you and your family members of potential danger and providing you with enough time to escape your home. According to the Canada Safety Council is a national, non-profit charitable organization dedicated to safety, smoke alarms should be tested monthly by pushing the test button and to replace the batteries twice a year or when you hear the alarm beep intermittently.