This week in the March MAIDness series, I have been talking deep cleaning. Today is the day…dun, dun, dun…bathrooms!
Let’s just talk bathrooms for a minute. How in the world can a child less than three feet in height create such havoc in such a small space? WoW. I am truly looking forward to the days when I do not have to do this deep cleaning routine every single week or bi-weekly!
As always, I try to offer an upbeat perspective on the problems of life. So, don’t worry. I am not defeated or defeatist regarding bathrooms and their cleaning. I have a simple, quick deep cleaning routine which works to clean a bathroom in less than 20 minutes.
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The Details of My Deep Cleaning Routine
I don’t let the fact that I have four bathrooms to deep clean each week get me down. In fact, I am thankful for each of our bathrooms. My favorite space in our house is our remodeled master bathroom! And my husband and I are relatively clean. So, I only have to spend about an hour cleaning bathrooms each week – not bad right?
As with the two previous rooms – the kitchen and the living room – my game plan for deep cleaning is to work top to bottom and clockwise through the room. However, I do have a starting point, as always.
Deep Cleaning Bathrooms – the Starting Place
Where else to start in the bathroom but the toilet? First, I give the toilet a flush. And once the water is finished refilling the toilet, I add toilet cleaner. The directions on the package say to let this sit for 10 minutes or so.
This serves as – you guessed it – my timer for my deep cleaning routine in the bathroom. While I am waiting for the toilet to refill and before I add the toilet cleaner, I mix up a special homemade bathroom cleaner in a bucket.
Then I am off to the usual top to bottom, center to perimeter, and clockwise routine I use in all the rooms of my house.
A Deep Cleaning Bathroom Solution
To make this simple Bathroom cleaning solution, I add:
- a quarter cup of Borax
- a quarter cup of vinegar
- a squirt of dish soap
to about 2 gallons of hot water.
I use this solution because we have white tile in our bathrooms which requires some special attention. I have noticed this helps better than a bleach solution.
Note: I do not use this to clean my floors in my bathrooms.
At this point I also remove all the washable bathroom linens from the room. I wash all bathroom towels one day a week – Saturdays. But I also take down shower curtains and toss them in the wash while I am deep cleaning the bathrooms. I only wash the shower curtains a couple of times a year. Putting things like this on a schedule with reminders helps me to keep track of it.
A quick note about washing our towels. I run the washing machine on the hottest setting when I wash my towels. My washing machine has a sanitize option, so I choose that. I also throw in a laundry booster to my white towels (this one or this one). Generally I do not use fabric softener on my towels. Instead I use a quarter to half a cup of vinegar. If there is a hint of a smell to the towels (or any of my laundry) I add half of the vinegar directly to the powder detergent. This starts a chemical reaction before it hits the water which I think helps clean the towels better. I could be wrong about the science, but my nose lets me know the vinegar has done its work – no mildew smell!
Deep Cleaning Bathroom Vents, Fans, & Light Fixtures
The fans in our bathrooms can get super dusty. To clean them I use a vacuum with an attachment to get the major dust removed. Then, I use a damp microfiber clothe to wipe down the fan, getting in the cracks and crevices as I can.
I wipe down the vents, too.
For our light fixtures in our bathrooms, I typically use a Swiffer to remove dust. But deep cleaning requires a bit more attention. I wipe down the light fixtures with a damp cloth. If there is extra grime on them, I can take them down and soak them in the sink while I clean. This does not happen very often – maybe once a year or every two years.
Deep Cleaning Bathroom Walls & Tile
Depending on the type of wall in our bathrooms, I use two deep cleaning methods.
For the drywalled walls, I simply scrub the walls with a damp microfiber cloth. I use the basic soapy water solution to clean the walls and baseboard in the bathroom.
For the tiled walls, I use the Simple Deep Cleaning Bathroom Solution I mentioned above. I apply it with a separate microfiber cloth and scrub with a cleaning brush where appropriate. After the tile has been sufficiently scrubbed, I rinse it with clear, clean water. It is a bit more complicated to do this where there is tile outside of a shower stall, but it can be accomplished with a fresh microfiber cloth. Where the tile is inside the shower, I can simply use the handheld to rinse the tile.
In two of our bathrooms, we have a feature wall of stacked stone veneer. For this I have to get a bit creative for deep cleaning. I use my vacuum with a brush attachment to go over the entire surface. This is the most thorough way to clean it I can think of. However, I only do this a couple of times a year. For regular maintenance I go over the stone with a tire brush (yes!) to remove settled dust. A Swiffer does not work on this type of surface.
Deep Cleaning Bathroom Tubs & Showers
I scrub the showers and tubs in our bathrooms with the Simple Deep Cleaning Solution I make up at the beginning of my cleaning session. As I mentioned when I talked about cleaning the tile walls in our bathrooms, I simply use the handheld to rinse them after a good, intense scrubbing.
All of our showers and tubs have a handheld option. I highly recommend them! We even have one in our stand alone tub in our master bathroom. If you are looking to add convenience to your deep cleaning and daily cleaning in your bathrooms, this is it!
To clean the faucets and fixtures in my bathroom, I use a little paste of Bon Ami and some elbow grease. An old toothbrush helps to get a little more into the grit, too.
Deep Cleaning Bathroom Toilets
Surely by this time, the toilet cleaner timer has expired. Thus, I head back over to the toilet and give it a good scrubbing inside. I have mentioned my love for this toilet brush before. It’s good – really good.
When I told you my homemaking essentials, I mentioned my enjoyment of Grove Co. as a supplier for my cleaning supplies. If you are interested in checking them out, they give you a free cleaning set with your first order! I got my toilet brush from them.
Back to the toilet…Once the inside is clean, I set it up for a little between-cleaning refreshment. I love this toilet refresher because it works for about two weeks to keep the toilet fresh each time it is flushed.
The outside of the toilet is cleaned with the same Simple Deep Cleaning Solution I used on all the other white surfaces in my bathroom. Wiping it clean with a clean damp cloth at the end makes the toilet sparkle! We all need sparkly toilets, right?
When I am done with the toilets, I can pour out the rest of the cleaning solution. I usually pour it into the shower drain, so I can make sure to scrub the shower floor as it drains.
Deep Cleaning Countertops & Cabinets
Because we have granite in two of our bathrooms and marble in another, I use my usual simple soapy water solution to clean the counters. I also wipe down the cabinet fronts with this solution. This is the time I address the door handles and light switches, too.
As I go, I also make sure to wipe down all the faucets, handles, etc. If I need to clean grime here, I use an old toothbrush and a little bit of Bon Ami. A good wipe down of the containers which live on the counter is also good here.
I take this time to recharge my toothbrush, too.
Deep Cleaning Bathroom Mirrors & Shower Glass
Deep cleaning mirrors and shower glass is actually a matter of maintenance. I do not spend a bunch of time with my mirrors – just a simple spritz of window and glass cleaner and a wipe down.
A few times a year, I work to clean our shower glass. I have written two tutorials on how to clean shower glass and how to maintain clean shower glass. Because those cleaning solutions are so effective, I only need to wipe down the shower glass with a glass cleaner on the outside of the glass. I don’t do it on the inside of the shower glass because I don’t want to ruin the power of the treatments.
As I mentioned I keep track of when I need to perform these deeper cleaning routines on my shower glass (or my mirrors). So, if it is time to do them, I follow my instructions. These routines obviously add a little bit of time to the entire deep cleaning routine for my bathrooms. But it is oh so worth it!
Deep Cleaning Bathroom Floors
We have tile floors in all our bathrooms. So I just do what I have do for all my deep cleaning routines – sweep and mop. Sometimes – rarely – I will go over the tile with my steam cleaner.
I make sure to address the baseboards, too.
The look of a clean bathroom makes my heart flutter! Seriously! It is simply so refreshing. After following this routine, you may want to run over to a friend’s house just to do it again. (One can hope, right?)
A Deep Cleaning Checklist
After years of doing this deep clean in my living room on a monthly basis, I have the steps in my mind. But even I can use some reminders. A checklist has a way of making me feel even more accomplished. So I came up with a checklist for deep cleaning my living room.
I posted the printable deep cleaning versions of my checklists into the Facebook group I started – Simple Homeschooling Blessings. Please request to join for all sorts of encouragement in a small community of like-minded mamas.
Might I suggest that you print it out and laminate it (for real or cheap-o style) and add it to your bathroom cleaning bin. That way you can check it off with a dry erase marker, erase, and repeat each week, month, or season.
Please stay with me through the week, as I will be bringing you more deep cleaning routines and printables for other areas of your home.