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Try these tips when cleaning garage, basement

October 05, 2005 - Your workshop, basement or garage may be a great place for fun and creativity — but they can be tough to keep clean.

Your wet/dry vacuum is your best de-fense for basement cleanup. Here are a few hints that may help:

Use your vacuum nozzle hose to quickly collect dust from the hard-to-reach tops of cabinets. Clean them thoroughly several times a year with a good grease cutter.

Vacuum dust and dirt from behind and beneath the major appliances and heavy furniture.

Sanitize the garbage can every now and then by cleaning with a stiff brush and bit of ammonia. Put a fabric softener sheet in as an air freshener.

To dust in narrow spots between cabinets or appliances and walls, dampen an old sock, slip over a yardstick and secure with a rubber band.

Keep small tools, supplies, and any other items left around the workshop in a designated chest or closet to avoid the appearance of clutter.

Dust electronic equipment with an anti-static dryer sheet to prevent dust buildup.

Clean and disinfect the biggest germ collectors in the home — light switches, doorknobs and telephones.

Clean from top to bottom. Finish off with a vacuum cleaner that retains dust and you're done. If you use a wet/dry vacuum you can save yourself time and trouble if it has a washable high-efficiency vacuum cleaner filter.

If your vacuum cleaner uses paper cartridge and bag filters, change them regularly. A cartridge or bag that's too full can interfere with your vacuum cleaner's performance. Most are disposable and must be replaced every six to 12 months.

If you have the reusable filter, however, you can just remove the filter, tap — or rinse — off the dust collected on the surface, insert it back into the vacuum and it should work like new. Over the life of the vacuum cleaner, you may save hundreds of dollars by not having to purchase replacement filters.

The reusable filter picks up either wet or dry so there's no need to remove it when it cleans up water leaks, a wet basement, plumbing emergencies or spills. It also works on drywall, cement dust and ash.

  • Pitch It & Forget It
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