Cleaning supplies were available in the Marine Corps Detachment’s Personnel Administrative Office during the coronavirus pandemic, on Goodfellow Air Force Base, Texas, April 22, 2020.  MDC students, faculty and staff utilized the cleaning supplies during daily sanitation sessions throughout the detachment. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Abbey Rieves)

Spring Cleaning

GENERAL SPRING CLEANING TIPS

DO NOT RUSH BECAUSE YOU ARE TIRED OR IN A HURRY

This is the most basic spring cleaning safety tip and all the other ones to a certain degree stem from this one. Spring cleaning can be tiring work. Do not forget safety even if you have worked hard all day and just want to get done. When you are exhausted, stop and take a break, drink a glass of water, and rest instead of making a mistake that can lead to a mishap. 

BE CAREFUL MOVING LARGE PIECES OF FURNITURE OR APPLIANCES
  • Use proper lifting technique, keep you back straight and lift with your legs
  • Wear shoes when moving heavy items so you don't hurt your toes
  • If you feel something is too heavy and you can't find someone else to do help, just don't move it. It won't be the end of the world to just clean around it.
BE SAFE WHILE ON LADDERS AND STEP STOOLS
  • When doing a task, such as washing windows, where you need to be on a ladder use extreme caution. Do not lean too far to either side. A good rule of thumb is that your belly button should not go beyond the sides of the ladder. 
  • Have someone available to hold the ladder steady for you if possible and make sure rungs are not wet before you step on them. Wear non-skid shoes.
BE CAREFUL WHILE WALKING ON WET SURFACES

This spring cleaning safety tip is important every time you clean. Everyone knows how easy it is to slip on a wet floor. 

  • Make sure you take the proper precautions to keep from falling
  • Make sure others in your family, including children, are also warned of the wet floor to keep them safe
  • You may need to block small children's access to wet floors because they just don't understand not to run and slide on them
KEEP STAIRS, LANDINGS AND WALKWAYS CLEAR OF BOXES, BAGS AND OTHER CLUTTER

Spring cleaning is a great time to declutter your home, but you need to make sure all the boxes and bags of stuff you are getting rid of don't cause a safety concern. 

  • Make sure you place items outside walkways and away from steps and stairs where someone may trip on them.
DON'T CARRY TOO MUCH STUFF AT ONCE, ESPECIALLY ON STAIRS

During spring cleaning you may go up and down stairs carrying a lot of things.

  • Make sure you keep a hand free to hold onto the stair railing
  • Whether you have stairs or not, always make sure you can see over the load you are carrying so you do not trip
ALWAYS FOLLOW CLEANING PRODUCT LABEL SAFETY INSTRUCTIONS AND RECOMMENDATIONS
  • Cleaning supplies can create nasty fumes, so make sure you get some fresh air by opening windows, turning on the exhaust fan, or placing a fan in the room. 
  • Do not mix ammonia and bleach together, both of which are common household cleaners, because they create toxic fumes when combined. 
  • When it doubt don't mix, just use one product to get the job done. 
  • You should also wear rubber gloves to keep your hands from getting dry and cracked from the hot water and chemicals.
WEAR A MASK WHEN CLEANING DUSTY AREAS

This may seem like overkill to some, but if you are at all allergic to dust this tip is very important.

DO NOT LEAVE BUCKETS FILLED WITH WATER AROUND YOUR HOME
  • Even if you need to take a quick break, make sure you empty that cleaning bucket, or at least put it in an inaccessible area
  • Even small amounts of water are a drowning hazard for small children
PUT AWAY ALL YOUR CLEANING SUPPLIES WHEN YOU ARE DONE

When you finally finish your spring cleaning tasks for the day it is easy to say to yourself, "I'll put these away later," or "I am just going to use these again tomorrow, so I'm keeping them out." 

  • Cleaning supplies are an attractive nuisance for our children and pets, something inviting that they should definitely not be getting into
  • Put the cleaning products away in a childproof cabinet for your children's safety and well-being as soon as you are done with them