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Cleaning tips and recommendations for cleaning products

Discussion in 'Home adaptations, mobility and personal care' started by Arnie Pye, Feb 20, 2020.

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  1. Arnie Pye

    Arnie Pye Senior Member (Voting Rights)

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    5,332
    Location:
    UK
    Because I'm permanently unwell (I'm not bedridden, but I am frequently housebound) I struggle with cleaning my house. I'm not, and never have been, a neat freak or cleaning obsessive - and it shows.

    I wondered if people could pass on their tips on how to make the job of cleaning anything a bit easier, quicker and less exhausting.

    One thing I've discovered that I find hugely helpful in cleaning the kitchen are de-greasers.

    I have found these two products very helpful :

    Code:
    https://www.amazon.co.uk/HG-Grease-Away-500-Cleaning/dp/B000IU3VWQ


    I've also used a Cillit Bang degreasing product as well which worked well. Unfortunately they keep changing the name of the product. This one looks like it might be useful :

    Code:
    https://www.amazon.co.uk/Cillit-Bang-Degreaser-750ml/dp/B0177IR7Y4/ref=sr_1_4


    What I would really like to know are products that take the elbow grease out of removing limescale on tiles and bathroom fittings. For the tiles in particular, limescale removers are often too expensive to cover large areas, and usually they are too thin to stay where they are sprayed and just run down the walls achieving nothing.

    Good tips for any kind of cleaning could be useful for all of us who are well enough to clean occasionally.
     
    MEMarge, Kitty, DokaGirl and 4 others like this.
  2. Invisible Woman

    Invisible Woman Senior Member (Voting Rights)

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    10,284
    It probably won't work on the vertical walls but.....

    On the fairly rare occasions I have a go at a job like this I find that if the limescale remover runs off the area especially round taps and the like I soak a j-cloth or kitchen towel and place that over the area.

    Also rather than just spraying the walls, I wet a j-cloth with the product and wipe the walls with that. That way I get all of it and there's not enough to run straight off.
     
    Kitty, alktipping, DokaGirl and 2 others like this.
  3. Trish

    Trish Moderator Staff Member

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    44,485
    Location:
    UK
    At the behest of one cleaner I used to buy a rather expensive spray on product for cleaning limescale from taps and tiles. My current cleaner uses vinegar. Much cheaper, and avoids the nasty strong chemical smell.

    If you can afford it, I recommend employing a cleaner. I do realise many of us can't afford it, but if you can, it is well worth it. When my ME was moderate, I found just doing a single job like cleaning the bath or the loo would wipe me out for the day. And wielding a vacuum cleaner was beyond me even when my ME was mild - getting rid of carpets helped.

    For those who can't afford a cleaner, lowering your standards has to be the first step, I found. Most of the house doesn't need weekly cleaning - just the surfaces on which you handle food.
     
    FicaR94, MEMarge, ahimsa and 15 others like this.
  4. erin

    erin Senior Member (Voting Rights)

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    551
    I agree with @Trish. I tried not having the cleaning lady for a year and I declined badly. Every penny worth. She comes fortnightly to clean the house.
    I only cook daily and put a wash sometimes. I simply can not do the cleaning. Hubby is very busy with the large garden, shopping, feeding the cats, hanging the washing, loading dishwasher etc. he's getting old too.
    It is not luxury to have a cleaner. No luxury clothing, no expensive gadgets, phones, etc. no other luxury goods. I save every penny but when it comes to cleaning can't do it.
    I also find the strong cleaning products harsh to breathe and my skin is very itchy with even vinegar nowadays.
     
    Louie41, rainy, ladycatlover and 11 others like this.
  5. Invisible Woman

    Invisible Woman Senior Member (Voting Rights)

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    10,284
    I just find it incredibly difficult to find someone reliable. I've tried.a couple of times. They want to keep swapping their days.....one didn't want to come when the dog was there, even though he is kept with me and well out from under their feet the whole time they were in the house.

    I found one very keen lady, sounded great but she doesn't drive and the bus route round here isn't great. She was all set to pop up for a chat and see the place when I found out she didn't drive - would I mind dropping her back to collect her daughter after.... She seemed like a lovely young woman, but I know I'd end up driving her home in the rain etc. I'm just not able for that.

    The place isn't filthy. It just isn't sparkling. I like sparkling but I have had to adjust my expectations.
     
  6. erin

    erin Senior Member (Voting Rights)

    Messages:
    551
    @Invisible Woman you are absolutely right, so difficult to find and KEEP a reliable cleaning lady that you like and trust and she likes you too. I had to let go my previous cleaning lady after 3 years because she was a bully and didn't like me. I was so nervous a day before she comes, I had cramps in my tummy and after she left I was so angry and sometimes in tears. She liked endless chatting and gossiping that I couldn't handle. One day she said she could not come for a looong period of time as she was going to be a grandma and busy with other things etc. I thought she dropped me. What a reief! But she must have been checking whether I had a new cleaner; she just turned up one day just to say "Hi". I said I'm good to clean myself since she left no longer needed her. I tried to do it myself with huge help from the hubby. But we started to get lazier and just delaying the cleaning, the house was up side down. This affected my health worse; can't handle dust, and fur from the cats even they are mainly outdoor cats. Luckily I found this other lady through a friend and she is a gem. We get on really well. She is very easy going and understanding.
     
    ladycatlover, MEMarge, Hutan and 8 others like this.
  7. Snowdrop

    Snowdrop Senior Member (Voting Rights)

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    2,134
    Location:
    Canada
    Also for bathroom tiles after they are clean (I second the vinegar use along with some baking soda if needed) I would suggest a squeegee. It takes a minute to use is easy and will prevent having to clean mineral build-up.

    The squeegee along with an old towel to just sop up pools of moisture in corners if energy permits is a good preventative strategy.
     
  8. Invisible Woman

    Invisible Woman Senior Member (Voting Rights)

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    10,284
    Oh that's awful! In your own home too....:hug:
     
  9. Kitty

    Kitty Senior Member (Voting Rights)

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    3,470
    Location:
    UK
    Limescale: dry surfaces after use, including the shower head – I unscrew it, wipe it with a cloth, and leave it to dry. I keep a dry cloth next to sinks for wiping splashes whenever I've got the energy, and tiled bathroom walls or shower panels can be dried in seconds with a cheap microfibre mop designed for wooden floors:

    https://tinyurl.com/sghccxp

    I almost never need limescale remover now, except for around the sink & shower drains. (I can't use white vinegar because the smell makes me throw up, but my Mum always swore by it.)

    If you have tiled or vinyl floors, a steam mop is really easy to push around and cleans incredibly well. With the exception of my bedroom, I've done the entire house in industrial porcelain tiles so my powered wheelchairs don't make a mess, and I can steam mop the whole floor area in less than 10 minutes. The tiles actually look surprisingly stylish, too.

    Probably the most important one: declutter. Three quarters of cleaning time is often spent just moving stuff out of the way so you can start! I try to keep everything in the bathroom in the cupboard so that it's easy to wipe the surfaces dry, and ditto in the kitchen.

    When I want to do the floors, I move the chairs, wastebasket, rugs, and other bits into my carpeted bedroom before I go to bed, so I can do the floors the following day without overexerting. The stuff gets put back gradually as and when I'm on my feet anyway.
     
  10. Leila

    Leila Senior Member (Voting Rights)

    Messages:
    1,122
    What I find to be really good for grease as well as limescale is "Dr Becksteins Putzstein".
    I rediscovered the true colour of some pots and counter tops using it :)

    For material/surfaces that can tolerate it I often also use a mix of citric acid and washing soda (very cheap and no aggressive scents).
     
  11. RuthT

    RuthT Senior Member (Voting Rights)

    Messages:
    204
    It was expensive, but I saved up & Christmas and Birthday presents meant I could buy a robot hoover: I found the floors the worst in terms of energy & also I seem to be v sensitive to dust.

    I’ve found it very effective on wood & carpet & quite companionable as it wanders erratically around a room as I rest next door. It’s quite nice knowing it’s working away.

    If you are very sensitive to noise it’s trundling might be a bit much. It generally doesn’t munch cables or fall down stairs, and will ‘call out’ if it gets stuck. It’s not too heavy to move around or take upstairs. Not got a huge dust bag, but now I set it going more frequently & it’s much easier to empty. Seems to get as much if not more fine dust than my old & v heavy vacuum.

    other makes are available, but I had an earlier version of one of these & found it quite reliable so far.
    https://www.myrobotcenter.co.uk/en_gb/irobot-roomba-960
     
  12. RuthT

    RuthT Senior Member (Voting Rights)

    Messages:
    204
    At the risk of the stating the obvious, it doesn’t do stairs ... fortunately a light brush is fine for ours.
     
  13. NelliePledge

    NelliePledge Moderator Staff Member

    Messages:
    10,984
    Location:
    UK West Midlands
    My cleaning tips are

    Fortnightly cleaners

    I wipe over the work top when I’ve been cooking so it doesn’t get too gruesome

    Raise tolerance levels for dusting, hoovering, windows - done by other people these won’t be done to your mum’s standards. These are too high energy to be tackling.

    Stick to essentials for hygiene - kitchen sink, bathroom sink and loo - but when really needed only.
     
    ladycatlover, MEMarge, erin and 11 others like this.
  14. Leila

    Leila Senior Member (Voting Rights)

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    1,122
    I agree, lowering standards/perception of "cleanliness" is the most important cleaning advice.

    One of the few perks living with the blinds half down most of the time is I barely see dust or dirty windows anymore :)

    Decluttering for me is essential, too. Less stuff, less to take care of.
     
  15. Wits_End

    Wits_End Senior Member (Voting Rights)

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    1,196
    Location:
    UK London
    My sister has some cloth things with strips of copper interwoven for cleaning scale - she's quite impressed with them, but maybe they might require too much rubbing effort to be useful here? They came from some mail order company or other.
     
  16. Hell..hath..no..fury...

    Hell..hath..no..fury... Senior Member (Voting Rights)

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    1,720
    Having to lower expectations is the biggest thing for me.

    I don’t think I could tolerate a cleaner. The interaction would be way too much for me. After seeing a few truly awful and untrustworthy people in my grandmas house when she was alive has put me off for life. I think I’d only hire them if I had a camera set up so they know that even when I’m comatosed they can’t take the pis* thinking I won’t notice. People sometimes need an incentive to be honest.

    I think time is a big factor, allowing lots of time. After 5 or so weeks staring at the ceiling, I’m improved enough to shuffle to the bathroom 1.5 meters from my bed which has a storage cupboard containing my bedding.

    Starting last Wednesday: went to cupboard and emptied my bags of bedding. I keep each bedding set inside one of its matching pillowcases used like a bag, with matching sheet and curtains inside. So I don’t have to look for matching bits and bobs each time. I just pick whatever colour I want and it’s all there in one bag.

    Went back to bed for 23 hours.

    Thursday: chose a bedding bag off the pile on the floor, and put the rest back in cupboard, then bed for 23 hours.

    Friday: emptied contents of bedding bag onto bed. Removed pillow cases and put new ones on, threw old ones on floor. Removed duvet cover and threw on floor.

    Saturday: pulled sheet off bed and added to pile on floor.

    Sunday: I put new sheet on bed

    Monday: I stared at new duvet cover on floor waiting to be put on

    Tuesday: stared at it some more

    Today: just peeked over edge of bed at the floor... yep it’s still there, mocking me :ill:
     
  17. Kitty

    Kitty Senior Member (Voting Rights)

    Messages:
    3,470
    Location:
    UK
    Tee hee!

    I struggle with the duvet cover sometimes, and I'm not severely affected – I've recently found myself flirting with the idea of going back to blankets. I even looked up whether you could find secondhand some of the fabulous Tetem patterned blankets we had as kids in the 1960s.

    Oh, dear. Not only do people still sell them as vintage items, but the Germans have an entire museum dedicated to them!

    That's a disaster waiting to happen for an autistic person who can't resist collecting stuff. I've had to ban myself from eBay, because I found myself putting some of the nicest examples into my watch list...if I'm not careful, I'll be able to open my own ruddy blanket museum within a few weeks! :rofl:
     
  18. Wits_End

    Wits_End Senior Member (Voting Rights)

    Messages:
    1,196
    Location:
    UK London
    Re duvet covers, have you discovered the trick:

    1. Have cover inside-out.
    2. Stick both arms into cover and grab each of the far corners with one hand.
    3. While still holding those corners, grab hold of the corresponding corners of your duvet as well.
    4. Then "shake" the cover off your arms and down over the duvet, while still holding on to the corners.
    5. It should then be fairly easy to get the cover to fall down over the whole of the duvet so that you can do it up.

    (Does that make sense? I may need to edit it).

    Duvets may be tough, but they're probably still better than all the bedmaking required with sheets and blankets, I guess.
     
  19. Hell..hath..no..fury...

    Hell..hath..no..fury... Senior Member (Voting Rights)

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    1,720
    This has always been my method too. It’s the first time I’ve ever heard it described as easy lol.

    I find it almost impossible :ill: Literally taken me 4 or 5 days to psyche up the energy to do that and will take me a couple of days to recover. So on average it takes a week to change my bed :banghead:

    Holding the duvet corners and shaking the duvet down feels like absolute torture sometimes.

    I usually manage one shake, then collapse on the floor with the duvet and shimmy the cover down the rest of the way while on the floor and put a couple of clothes pegs on the top corners to keep the duvet in place. Which nearly always results in me getting a peg in my back when I collapse periodically :ill:

    My bed only gets changed once every month or two. It’s not physically possible to do it more often.

    i used to sometimes sleep in a sleeping bag on top of my made bed as it was easier to take off, wash and put back but it’s easy to get trapped inside those things when really ill :laugh: :whistle: I used to call it the tube of torment.
     
  20. Hell..hath..no..fury...

    Hell..hath..no..fury... Senior Member (Voting Rights)

    Messages:
    1,720
    My phone just pinged this quote at me...

    3D42E1C9-5886-4D23-A841-66843ED91280.jpeg

    .... and duvet covers :laugh: :rofl:
     

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