Dusting 101: What You Need to Know

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Dusting is one of those must-do chores that’s essential for keeping your home clean and allergen-free. However, many of us lack a systematic way of dealing with it and wind up either putting it off or approaching it haphazardly. If you fall into one of these categories and want a few tips for “brushing up” on your own dusting skills, take a look at some secrets the pros use.  

1. Get Your Tools Together 

Since it’s gentle and won’t scratch surfaces, most experts agree that a microfiber cloth is a must. You’ll also need a feather duster or dusting wand, dusting spray and a vacuum with hose attachments.  

Not comfortable using commercial cleaning products? Make your own wood dusting spray by using ¼ cup water, two tablespoons each of vinegar and olive oil, plus a tablespoon of lemon juice. Want something a bit more aromatic? A drop or two of essential oils (like lemon or lavender) added to the spray will naturally freshen and sanitize the air. 

2. Open the Windows  

Weather permitting, get fresh air flowing before you dust. Circulating air carries dust away from the surfaces you’re cleaning instead of just moving it around. It also reduces the odor of any cleaning products you might be using.  

3. Work From Top to Bottom 

Take a tip from Issac Newton: Gravity matters. Dust ceiling fans, lighting fixtures, door frames, and baseboards before moving on to surfaces below. Use the hose or brush attachment on your vacuum for ceiling corners and cobwebs. This way dust falls from higher surfaces onto lower ones you haven’t dusted yet.  

Gently wipe or brush in light, circular motions. A can of compressed can also be useful for hard-to-reach areas and computer components like air filters and keyboards. Finish with the floor; sweep, vacuum or mop as needed. Otherwise, you’ll wind up stirring up all that dust again and re-wiping what you already removed! Dusting before cleaning also prevents grime buildup on your dusting tools.  

4. Group Similar Items Together  

If you have them, dust all your ceiling fans at the same time, followed by lighting fixtures, electronics, wood furniture and shelving. This will save you time and effort by minimizing the need to reposition a ladder or step stool. 

5. Dust in One Direction  

Wipe horizontally along shelves, mantels, and tabletops. Move vertically for door jambs and windowsills. Work in smooth, even strokes. Avoid harsh scrubbing motions that can damage delicate items and furniture finishes. 

6. Don’t Forget Baseboards 

Since it’s a top-down scenario, dust tends to accumulate on floors in corners and on baseboard trim. A soft brush is great for dusting cracks and crevices. Swiffer dusters and microfiber mitts also work well for tight spots. 

7. How Often is Enough? 

Why does dust come back so quickly? Several factors contribute to dust buildup: indoor air circulation, open windows, clutter, number of occupants, pet dander, proximity to an attic or garage and even the change of seasons. For most homes, dusting once a week or every other week is a good rule of thumb. High-traffic or cluttered areas may need dusting more frequently.  

For pet owners, dusting more often is key. Use lint rollers, rubber gloves or dampened rubber gloves to wipe up pet hair. Reduce dust traps, ventilate and dust regularly to minimize buildup. An air purifier can also help. 

We hope your journey to Finding Home is smooth and successful. And remember, no matter where you happen to be in the moving process, you can count on Mayflower to be with you Every Step of the Way®.  

Moving or about to move? Get a no-obligation quote from Mayflower.  

Want more tips and advice? Check out our state and city guides, decorating ideas and a wealth of other helpful, time-saving information.   

Oh, and did you know Mayflower has a channel on Spotify? Move and groove to tunes that get you to your new place — and settled in — in style.  

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