While cleaning our home, how often do we think about cleaning things that don’t look dirty? But if we ignore certain places on a regular basis, harmful bacteria can live and grow there, and they will affect our health.

At Enlighten, we made up a list of certain mistakes we make during cleaning which can completely undermine all of your effort.

1. We don’t clean our washing machine.

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A dirty washing machine is dangerous because it causes the spread of bacteria and mold spores on your clothes. It is harmful for both healthy people and people who suffer from allergies and asthma.

The particles of dirt can stay inside the drum, and inside the detergent and softener compartments. Experts recommend cleaning your washing machine once every 2 weeks. Run a wash cycle without any clothes in your washing machine at the highest temperature possible with bleach or citric acid. Another way to disinfect it is to wash your kitchen cotton towels with 100 ml of bleach.

Wash the compartments of the washing machine with the same regularity and don’t forget to dry the drum between the cycles. It’s very difficult to remove mold spots after they’ve already affected the door seal.

2. We keep a toilet brush in a sealed container.

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A toilet brush is one of the dirtiest objects in your home. You can significantly reduce the number of bacteria on it if you just dry it before storing it and disinfect it regularly. A sealed container is the perfect environment for bacteria growth, which spreads all over your bathroom when you use the brush.

You can buy a brush in a special holder which lets the brush get dry between uses, or place the brush for 10 minutes after use as shown in the picture above.

3. We rarely disinfect our sinks.

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When cleaning the sink, we often forget to clean the drain, and we do it only when a bad smells start coming from it. Particles of food and dirt remain in the drain, bacteria start growing there, and when water is poured into the drain under pressure, these things return to the sink. To clean the drain properly, put one tablespoon of baking soda into the drain, pour a bit of vinegar on top of it, and leave it for the night. In the morning, flush the drain with boiling water or just very hot water.

This procedure is especially effective after cutting meat, fish, or a large amount of vegetables.

4. One of the dirtiest objects in the house is a toothbrush holder.

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The shocking fact is that your toothbrush is home to more than 100 million harmful bacteria. Apart from the bacteria from your mouth, your toothbrush can be infected by bacteria from the sink and the toilet because every time you flush, bacteria are released into the air up to 6 feet around the toilet. They can lead to diseases like cystitis, disorders of large intestine, and dysbacteriosis.

To reduce the harmful effects, store your toothbrush not on the sink but on the shelf above it. Using a toothbrush cap is a bad idea because bacteria grow faster in a closed environment. If you have an opportunity to store your toothbrush in a closed compartment, do it.

Regularly clean your toothbrush holder. One of the easiest ways to disinfect your toothbrush is keeping it in mouthwash for 30 seconds or in boiling water for 2 minutes.

5. We clean with cold water.

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If you use lukewarm or cold water for cleaning, cleaning products won’t be that effective. The perfect temperature for water is 10 degrees higher than the room temperature, or it should be hot water which is comfortable enough for your hands.

In this case, alkaline cleaners will be twice as effective, while more bacteria and fungus will be destroyed.

6. We load the dishwasher incorrectly and don’t dry it after using it.

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You don’t need to wash the dishwasher very often because it actually disinfects itself. However, you need to dry it every day, otherwise mold can grow inside of it.

As for washing dishes, it turns out that how you put your plates into the dishwasher is important. Experts recommend that carb-covered (potatoes, rice, pasta) dishes should be placed in a circle in the middle of the dishwasher. While protein-covered (meat, cheese, eggs) dishes should be placed around the edges of the dishwasher. The dishes will be washed better this way.

7. We forget to clean the shower curtain and the shower head.

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We clean the shower curtain rarely because we think it gets clean while we take shower. But this isn’t true. It is the curtain and the space between the bathtub and the wall where black mold grows more often. It is better to replace polyethylene curtains with vinyl or fabric curtains and wash those in a washing machine once a month. The other method is to soak them in a salt solution or citric acid. After that, wipe the curtains dry.

Rub the space between the bathtub and the wall with baking soda and then spray vinegar on top to get rid of the black mold.

Though we use shower every day, bacteria can still grow inside the shower head during night when no one uses it. As a result it can become a home for black mold and staphylococcus bacteria which cause sinus infections, tonsillitis, and otitis. That is why, before taking shower, you should let water run for at least one minute. It is also worth soaking the shower head in soda or vinegar solution every 1-2 weeks.

8. We don’t clean exhaust fans.

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An exhaust fan is one of the most dangerous places in terms of bacteria because it is connected with air shaft where the feces of rodents or birds can get inside your house.

You need to clean the exhaust fan every 2 weeks. Remove the grate, wash it with vinegar and cleaner, and then wipe it dry. After that remove as much dust as possible from the fan assembly using a vacuum wand attachment.

Do you have any other tips that can make your home perfectly clean?