Germ magnets: how to protect your home from bacteria hotspots


Keeping your home clean and tidy is something we can all be a little lax with from time to time we've all been known to let the dishes pile up, ignore that sofa stain or let the dust collect for a couple of weeks. But, did you know that neglecting certain areas of your home can actually leave a few places scattered with germs?

We conducted a survey to find out the places around the home that the people of the UK neglect to clean the most, and the results have shown that 10% of us have never cleaned the door knobs, 15% never clean the walls and 9% always forget about the tops of cupboards. In light of this, we've created a handy guide to ridding your home of nasties, along with a few tricks on how to make sure those tricky to clean places aren't forgotten!

Keep a handle on things

Door handles, kitchen cupboard handles, light switches and toilet flushes are all things around our homes that we touch every day, but do we ever clean them?

According to research, your bathroom light switch could have as much as 217 bacteria per square inch, while your toilet flush handle could have 83 bacteria per square inch.

To clean the various handles around your home, simply give them a once over with an anti-bacterial cleaner, but for electrical items such as light switches, it's a good idea to take a little more precaution.

Turn off the power before you meddle with a light switch, and use a cloth with a small amount of anti-bacterial solution to gently buff away any marks. Make sure you don't spray the switch with any cleaning solutions!

Wipe around the switch too, and if you have any screws or difficult places to reach in the switch, try using either a cotton bud or a dry toothbrush to brush away any debris.

A mobile home for germs

We use our phones all the time, but do we ever really clean them? It might be tempting to use an anti-bacterial wipe on your devices, but for touch screens, this can actually cause more damage than good.

Try using a microfiber cloth and some glasses cleaner to gently buff away any fingerprints or smudges on your phone. If you don't have any of this, you can also use distilled water. Distilled water has had the chemicals and other ingredients that are contained in tap water taken out, so it won't leave any annoying water marks on your screen.

Don't forget the sink

While the kitchen sink might be one of the main areas in our homes that we use to keep things clean, the sink itself can often get overlooked. Whether it's the bits of food that get left behind after washing up, or splashes around the sink that get overlooked, if you don't keep on top of it, your sink can end up being a bit of a hotbed for bacteria.

For getting rid of kitchen germs in your sink, bleach is the solution. Fill your sink with warm water and only use a small amount to create the solution to wipe around with - not forgetting your taps.

Once you've given it a good scrub, thoroughly rinse your sink and let it dry. Letting the bleach solution run down your drain can also help to keep your sink from smelling.

Top tips for a cleaner home

The best way to ensure your home is free from bad bacteria is to keep on top of the cleaning, but when that's not possible, here are some handy tips for cleaning in a hurry:

  • Baking soda is your friend - use it to help lift stains on surfaces such as your kitchen sink and your carpet
  • Get in the nooks and crannies with a dry toothbrush - they can be ideal for brushing remote control buttons, keyboards, and screws
  • Make use of the vacuum - use the brush attachment to clean skirting boards, tops of cupboards and carpet corners
  • Use white vinegar and water in equal measure to clean glass
  • Shower tile squeegees are excellent for gathering hair from carpets, the rubber seal collects them quickly and easily

For handy help and advice on choosing the right lighting products for your home - from wattage to safety, take a look at our Help and Advice section.

About the survey

All survey figures are from The Leadership Factor. Total sample size was 1,025 adults. Fieldwork was undertaken 13-15 March 2017. The survey was carried out online.

 

Sources

http://www.abc-oriental-rug.com/germ-magnets.html

http://www.prevention.com/health/health-concerns/top-10-places-germs-can-make-you-sick

http://www.webmd.com/a-to-z-guides/news/20070625/top-spots-for-bacteria-at-home#1

https://theorganisedhousewife.com.au/cleaning-2/how-to-clean-a-light-switch/

https://www.howtogeek.com/66827/how-to-clean-your-smartphone/

http://www.webmd.com/women/home-health-and-safety-9/places-germs-hide

http://www.goodhousekeeping.com/home/cleaning/tips/a18464/kitchen-sink-cleaning-tips/

http://www.lifehack.org/articles/lifestyle/50-cleaning-hacks-for-your-home-that-will-make-your-life-easier.html

http://www.bhg.com/homekeeping/house-cleaning/tips/cleaning-hacks/

http://www.idealhome.co.uk/project-advice/six-easy-spring-cleaning-hacks-you-need-to-try-33191