If you want to clean off your grungy wooden deck, step away from the Swiffer. “The Wet Jet is not suitable for wooden deck cleaning, because its pads are almost as thin as paper towels,” says Davies. “Wood deck surfaces are often harsh and will most certainly strip apart the Swiffer pads.” Instead, Davies says, use a regular mop and Citra Clean Concentrate Cleaner, “as it will be gentle to the wood and won’t leave any marks.”
The plastic surfaces in your bathroom just won’t get very clean with a Swiffer. And you may not realize that your plastic mats—and shower curtain liners—can be tossed in the washing machine to remove spills and grime, says Jennifer Gregory, brand manager of Molly Maid. “Wash them with a towel, which will generate scrubbing action on the plastic items,” she says. “Washing machines can also disinfect: Add a half cup of vinegar and run it on a sanitizing cycle. Don’t worry—the smell does not linger!” Just don’t toss them into the dryer, where the high heat could damage the plastic, warns Gregory. But steer clear of these 10 common laundry mistakes.
Carpets and rugs
Your home’s carpet may be harboring harmful bacteria, germs and allergens without you realizing it, says Gregory. A Swiffer won’t properly clean it; instead, keep carpets clean by instilling a strict “no shoes” policy indoors, she advises. “Also, vacuum carpets and area rugs several times a week,” she says. “If you have an infant or a toddler, daily vacuuming is recommended; the vacuum can remove surface debris easily.” You should also get a professional steam clean at least once a year to give it a deeper clean, Gregory suggests.