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Paint Makes the Difference Part 6

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Some Painting Safety Tips

It is obvious that paint is fairly user-friendly; however, there is nothing wrong with exercising caution when working with it. Following are some basic guidelines for painting your house safely:

Always consider working in a well-ventilated area. If possible, open doors and windows and use exhaust fans. Also, keep your pets, if you have, out of freshly painted rooms.

If you cannot ventilate the area well enough to get rid of dangerous fumes, you can wear a respirator approved for such use.

When sanding, wear a dust mask and safety goggles to keep yourself from breathing in dust particles. This will also protect your eyes.

Wear safety goggles, gloves and a respirator when you are using chemical strippers, strong solvents, or caustic cleaning compounds.

Use canvas drop cloths on the floor. Remember that cloth stays in place and isn’t as slippery as plastic.

Avoid using or storing paint product near a flame or heat source. In relation to this, do not smoke while painting or using thinner.

Check ladders for sturdiness. Just makes sure that all fours legs rest squarely on the floor and that both cross brakes are locked in place. Never stand on the top step or the utility shelf. And, never lean away from a ladder. Get off and move it if you cannot reach a spot easily.

After painting, clean up promptly and properly dispose of soiled rags. Experts also suggest that to eliminate any chance of spontaneous combustion, spread rags that are soaked with alkyd paint or thinner outdoors and let these dry all day before disposing of them at a toxic-waste dump. Never leave those rags to dry in areas that are accessible to children or pets.


After saying all these, are you still with me? If so, congratulations!


Paint Makes the Difference Part 5

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Basic Painting Steps

Are you now ready to paint? If so, then follow these basic steps to paint your house beautiful. The directions will basically take you from repairing the damaged surfaces, priming the walls and using the roller to covering hard to reach potions with a wall brush and painting the woodwork. After you have followed these steps and completed the task, I am sure that the result will be impressive.

Step 1: Do Some Repairs

The first thing you need to do is to repair and replace any damaged surfaces, whether stucco, wood, masonry or metal. Then, wash off all surfaces. Use a high-pressure water sprayer, which is usually available for rent, to reduce labor. After that, make sure that the surfaces dry thoroughly. You can use sandpaper or a paint scraper to remove any loose, cracked, chipping or blistered paint. You can apply this even down to the raw surfaces if necessary. Also, use a small drop of cloth as you go to catch loose bits of paint and debris. Patch all nail or screw holes, gouges and cracks. You can caulk such spots as seams and corners, above door and window trim, as well as where trim meets siding.
If you find some serious problems in woodwork, use epoxy filler to repair those surfaces. Then, cover dark stains with a stain blocking primer. The same goes for mildewed areas.

Step 2: Prime Time

Unless the existing finish is flat, you will need to apply a prime coat to make a new paint adhere. Experts often suggest that on the flat-painted walls with minor repairs, you may simply choose to spot prime. However, for walls with larger areas of patching plaster, it is best to employ a sealer or primer. Note that priming doesn’t require as much care as painting, but it is done the same way.

Step 3: Ceiling Brushwork

Before painting, consider first the ceiling. What you can do with it is to cover the perimeter and unpainted areas around the fixtures.

Step 4: Consider Rolling

So you’ll want to start with the ceiling. Okay! In sections about six feet square, use a series of overlapping “W” strokes from right to left, then back from left to right. However, if you are using any other finish than flat, go over the entire ceiling once again with one directional, overlapping and non diagonal strokes to blend the paint. Repeat the same steps with the walls, now covering to within 1 ½ inches of all edges. Note that the final non-diagonal strokes here should be from top to bottom.

Step 5: Wall Brushwork

It is important to note that unless you are very skillful or you’ve got an edging painting tool, you should mask the perimeter of the ceiling with painting tape, and then paint the upper perimeter of the walls, including the spots that cannot be covered with the roller.

Step 6: Back to Seconds?

If you find that the ceiling and walls need a second coat, wait for the first coat to dry. To simply put it, you can do the second coating after the first coat dries. It is perhaps necessary to check the label for the manufacturer’s coating guidelines.

Step 7: Windows, Doors, Trims, and Baseboards

Protect the newly painted wall surfaces with the use of a painting tape or paint edger while you paint the woodwork. As commonly suggested, the doors can be wedged open with a rolled-up newspaper. However, be sure to place a drop of cloth underneath them. A roller also saves time on a flat door, and a door with panels needs a brush. In terms of double-hung windows, all you need to do is to pull the top sash down and paint the bottom part of its first. Then, put it back up and paint the top part of it, followed by the bottom sash, then the jabs and frame.

Just a warning: If you are using anything other than water-based latex, never put paint-soaked or cleaner-soaked tools or rags in an enclosed area of any kind, even a trash can with a lid. Note that this is considered as a recipe for spontaneous combustion.

Paint Makes the Difference Part 4

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Knowing Which Room

When considering painting for home improvement, it is always important to have an idea of how a particular room will be utilized. This is also very critical for choosing the right paint. In functional rooms like kitchen, baths and bedrooms, for example, you might want durability and easy maintenance first. In more decorative rooms, such as living rooms, master bedrooms or dining rooms, note that appearance is often the key factor. And, in a child’s room, safety is very critical. So, choose the right paint that suits best on every room.

Be Brand Conscious and Meticulous

So you’ve made a clear decision regarding the type of paint. The next thing to do now is to go with reputable brands. Of course, you need to tailor your choices to the project, but avoid wasting your time, effort and money on low-quality paint. There are a lot of significant differences between cheap and quality paints, and these differences are often seen in characteristics such as washability and hiding. There is also a possibility that you’ll find a more extensive color palette in the quality lines.

Lastly, always remember to check the warrantee on the label, which is a benchmarking device that typically provides you a fair measure of the differences between quality levels of different paints.


Estimating House Paint Quantity

So, you’ve learned a lot of about the types of paint, the quality, and some factors to consider when choosing the right paint. Now, let us figure out how much paint you will need for your home improvement project.

The first thing to do to identify the needed quantity of paint is to know the square footage of the area to be painted, as well as the spread rate of the paint. Note that the spread rate is typically about 400 square feet to the gallon. But, still check the can to be sure.

Now, how to determine the square footage?

Here are steps that you should follow:

Start by measuring the width of each wall.
If done, add the figures together and multiply the total by the height of the surface.
Estimate how much of this area will not be painted. To do this, take into account the fireplaces, wallpapers, windows, and some sections that you will paint separately, like the trim.
If the surfaces account for 10 percent or more of the room, deduct the square footage from the total.
Divide the total square footage by the spread rate of the paint.
Calculate the amount of trim paint separately, or expect that you will utilize about a quarter as much trim paint as wall paint.

That’s simply it!

Paint Makes the Difference Part 3

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“One-Coat Hiding” on the Label

When choosing the right paint, also look at the coverage, sometimes called “hiding”. For many experts, the “hiding” is another distinguishing property of a good paint. So, when a label says “one-coat hiding”, read the fine print. Be aware that an interior or exterior finish that is guaranteed one coat should cover in one coat when properly applied, without any exceptions. I guess it is quite obvious that one-coat hiding is a major label saver and well worth paying a premium to obtain.

There is one particular determining factor for good hiding – the level of titanium dioxide in the mixture. As often said, the more the paint contains titanium dioxide, the better the hiding. Today, most of flat paints use cheap fillers to attain high levels of hiding. The downside is that, the rest of their characteristics, such as scrubbability fall short.

The Scrubbability Rating

Interior paints have a scrubbability rating, which is formed through standardized testing. Basically, this is a good indicator of the toughness of the paint’s film, as well as its ability to withstand physical abuse. However, there are some instances that this rating may not be posted on the can. So if this is the case, a paint retailer should have information on the rating. What you can do is to compare the ratings and you will obtain a good idea of the quality of the paint.

If you are using a flat paint on the interior walls of your house, just note that there is a tendency that it can be washed, but it doesn’t take kindly to scrubbing. If you scrub it with a damp cloth, you will only remove the dirt or smudge but exposed pigments particles actually become burnished or polished, which in turn damages the finish. So, how to avoid this? Simply choose a high performance eggshell paint rather than flat paint.

The Paint’s Sheen

Paint may have any of the several lustres. From dull to shiny, the paint could be flat, eggshell, pearl, satin, semi-gloss, or gloss. Essentially, the paint’s lustre depends upon its mixture of pigment, resin and inert ingredients. It is often considered that the paint with less pigment and more resin is glossier than the reverse. Enamel is also a term that usually denotes an extra-smooth, hard surface coating, which is typically the result of using a lot of resin in the paint formula.

As a homeowner who wants to apply paint for home improvement, it is important for you to know that the glossier a finish, the more durable and washable it tends to be. Perhaps what is important for both exterior and interior walls is the use of flat paint, which is deemed great at hiding irregularities and surface imperfections. The pearl and eggshell paints are a compromise. As commonly noticed, they hide imperfections partially and are more washable than flat paints.

For painting the interior, many experts often recommend flat paint for ceilings, eggshell for walls and semi-gloss or gloss on doors and trim. On the other hand, the exterior calls for flat or satin wall paints and semi-gloss on trim.

Paint Makes the Difference Part 2

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The Paint Basics

Essentially, paint is a mixture of pigment, resin and a carrier. The main, white pigment is said to be the titanium dioxide, and relatively small amounts of other pigments are added by the paint dealer to tint the color. Resin, on the other hand, is what makes paint adhere to a surface. And, the carrier is the evaporative liquid that is usually added to thin the mixture so you can brush or roll it on water for latex paints or a solvent for oil or alkyd paints.

Paint also contains clay or other inert ingredients which are added to adjust the paint’s sheen. It may also contain small amounts of secondary solvents that help gloss, drying characteristics and the like.

Further worth noting is the fact that the amount of quality of every ingredient is what determines the performance and price of paint. Paint with plenty of titanium dioxide, for example, has strong hiding characteristics, and since this pigment is the most expensive ingredient, the paint no doubt costs more. On the other hand, those oil or alkyd paints that use odorless mineral spirits as a carrier are pricier than those with regular solvents. Given this fact, it can be concluded then that price is a good indicator of quality.

Latex Paint of Oil/Alkyd?

The most perplexing question for homeowners when it comes to house painting is “Should we use latex or oil/alkyd?” Well, according to some experts this common confusion is rooted in history. It was noted that for years, solvent paints were favored for trim, woodwork, most exterior and some interior surfaces for the reason that they flow uniformly. Also, many have noticed that these solvent paints have superb leveling characteristics, and adhere well particularly to poorly-prepared or chalky surfaces. They even give a tough, hard-shell finish, and most of the exterior alkyds can be utilized in sub-freezing conditions.

However, such conception has been changed nowadays. The change is in the wind, so to say. The fact is, today both state and federal air-quality laws are clamping down on the use of solvents in oil/alkyd paints. Well, the problem is, a gallon of solvent-based paint contains about two quarts of mineral spirits. It is these solvents actually that evaporate into the air as volatile organic compounds, resulting to air pollution.

In the near future, it is commonly heard that the federal Environment Protection Agency (EPA) is expected to issue certain guidelines to all states, setting minimum standards for the paint formulas. As you may know, there are a number of state regulations these days that align-with or exceed-these standards. And, some of the experts say that solvent paints that comply with these standards don’t really have advantages over the water-based paints. The fact is, they dry slower and are more difficult to apply. They even cost more.

After saying all of these, I think the bottom line is this: the technology has changed so dramatically that the considered best paint option in most situations will be the latex. It may eventually become your only option.

Alkyd-Modified, Vinyl-Acrylic, or Acrylic?

So it is given that the most favored type of paint these days is the latex. Now, latex paints are not all the same. Note that although the first known latex paints were named after their synthetic “latex” rubber base, the synthetic rubber is not used anymore. So, now when you say “latex”, it refers to all water-borne paint. However, within that category, you have three choices: vinyl-acrylic, 100 percent acrylic, and alkyd-modified latex.

So, what is best option?

In the first place, the vinyl-acrylic latex is by far the least costly latex paint. But, this is considered appropriate for most interior walls as well as for shorter-durability exterior walls.

The well-known high performance interior paints on the other hand are 100 percent acrylic. Many have claimed that this kind of latex paint has better color retention, better adhesion, and in better gloss than vinyl-acrylic in the case of the enamels.

Finally, most of the high-quality exterior paints are either 100 percent acrylic or alkyd-modified latex. Both of these types are excellent though. However, if the siding was previously painted with an alkyd or is chalking, considering alkyd-modified latex is a nice move to take. It has been said that the alkyd-modified latex does an excellent job of penetrating and anchoring the coating on a chalky surface. But, many of the manufacturers these days consider the 100 percent acrylic as their best products.

Paint Makes the Difference Part 1

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When it comes to improving one’s home, perhaps one of the easiest, quickest and least expensive ways to create a stunning, significant impact to a home is to consider painting. I guess nothing revives perks-up tired walls, weatherworn siding, or adds a touch of style and some sorts of uniqueness better than a new coat of paint. When you say painting, it can be like an instant renovation.

Painting is actually cheap, not to suggest. The truth is, there is something more than just it’s being cheap. Painting in fact involves a serious commitment of time, money and of course, effort. Note that this is a requirement, whether you do it yourself or hire a professional. You want to get it right the first time, so you won’t be back on ladders in a couple of years, right?

Choosing the Right Paint

As you may realize, one of the most important decisions you will encounter when planning a home improvement through painting is choosing the right paint. To tell you honestly, this is so critical to whether or not your paint job will look good and last for a number of years. However, there are instances that choosing the right paint can be tricky. The paints today have gone through such dramatic changes in the past few years that it is now becoming hard for us to know what to purchase. But, don’t despair. There is still a hope for that.

The following information will give you a closer look on how to choose the right paint so you can make clear, informed decisions. Just read on.

Kitchen Care Hints for Cleaning That Flawless Brand New Look (Part 5 of 5 Parts)

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Installing a Bathtub Enclosure

Bathtub enclosures in the first place are a necessary finishing touch to a drop-in tub or a whirlpool tub. So, if you are considering any of those kinds of tub, then consider installing an enclosure.

Installing a bathtub enclosure is actually not as difficult as it looks. You can build it even with a little skill and of course with the right materials. Consider the following:

Types and Sizes

One of the most important considerations when it comes to building a bathtub enclosure is the type of the tub. In particular, the drop-in bathtubs that are made specifically for bathtub enclosures are said to be the best to build around. But, the whirlpool bathtubs are also great for building enclosures around.

An enclosure is basically necessary to hide the water pipes on both the drop-in and whirlpool tubs. So, it is important that when you consider building one, make sure to work around the plumbing as well as the draining systems to avoid interfering with pipes.

Here are the most recommended steps on how to build a bathtub enclosure:

Step 1: Building a Tub Frame

You can start building a tub enclosure by framing your tub. Construct a frame out of 2 x 4 lumber for every side of the tub not connected to the wall. Every side of the frame should compose of 2 pieces of wood the length of the side it is adjacent to. The two long pieces are supported by 2 x 4 studs placed every 16 inches. Then, the frame should be about 3/4-inch below the rim of the tub, just enough for the plywood and the tile to fit under the rim. Proceed by nailing the frames together and then attach each frame to the wall and floor with nails and construction adhesive of your choice.

Step 2: Attaching the Frame to the Wall and Floor

As often recommended, you can make the ledge of your enclosure as wide as you want. To extend your ledge on both sides, construct a second frame a few inches longer than the first and then install it parallel to the first frame. If in case you want your ledge to be wider than 16 inches, then build a third frame. Proceed by anchoring these additional extensions to the wall and floor parallel to the previously installed frames.

Step 3: Covering and Sealing the Frame

How to cover the frame? Simply attach ½ inch CDX plywood to the sides and tops of the frame with nails. There is also an alternative for that. Just use a moisture resistant wallboard. Also, use a caulk to seal all of the joints between the bathtub and the covered frame. Coat the wallboard or plywood with moisture resistant primer in order to seal it. And, let the primer dry completely.

Step 4: Tiling of the Tub Enclosure

You can cover the plywood or wallboard with a tile, wood or any finishing material once it is dry. Then, seal the finishing material well with tile grout, and proceed by caulking all the joints to prevent water damage.

Step 5: Caulking of the Joints

Once the tile or finishing material has been caulked and dried, you can apply a layer of caulk around the bathtub. Simply line all the edges of the tub with masking tape to make a straight line with the caulk. Then, apply the caulk to the edges of the tub and smooth it with your finger. Let it dry thoroughly and remove the tape.

That’s simply it! So, good luck with your bathroom installation project.

Keep reading this blog to learn more TIPS

Kitchen Care Hints for Cleaning That Flawless Brand New Look (Part 4 of 5 Parts)

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Installing a Bathtub Surround

As you may know, a bathtub surround (commonly known as wall kit) is an easy way to provide a handsome, watertight and easy-to-maintain barrier around a tub or shower alcove. These surrounds can be put up over plaster, tile, drywall or any solid and flat wall. Well, there some surround kits in the market these days. Most kits contain either three or five pieces that overlap to account for different dimensions. Also, these kits include instructions, which you should consider reading before you leave the store. When installing a bathtub surround, you may require an adhesive as well as color-matched caulk, so consider buying these from the store.

Now, you want to know the basics for installing a tub surround in your home? Here are the steps:

Step 1: Prepare Walls

Before anything else, it is important for you to save carton to use as a template. Then, start preparing the walls of the alcove by first removing the faucet spout and handles. You can remove these by trimming with screwdrivers, adjustable wrench or Allen wrench, as needed. Proceed to removing any soap dish or other obstacles. Then make any needed repairs to ensure that the existing surface is solid and secure. However, if the surface is slick, such as ceramic tile, consider sanding it with coarse sandpaper. Clean and re-caulk the tub joint.

One particular tip for this step is to consider installing support handrails to make your tub safer, especially if the framing is exposed. Also the rails must be anchored into framing or to wood blocking between studs about 21 inches above.

Step 2: Consider Measuring

Many experts suggest measuring the spout and faucet locations and transfer measurements onto a cardboard template that you cut from the shipping carton. Also, position the template on the wall and make any necessary modifications before tracing the openings onto the end wall panel.

The main tip here is to write “wall” on one side just to remind you which way the template must be positioned, especially when tracing cutouts onto the end panel.

Step 3: Create Cuts

As traced in the second step, you should cut the appropriate size holes in the panel by using a hole saw bit in an electric drill. How to do this? Okay! Place the panel face up on a scrap of plywood or other surface employed for drilling.

The tip here is to employ a jigsaw with fine-tooth blade to cut the large hole for a single valve control. Also, you can consider boring 3/8-inch starter hole for the saw blade anywhere inside the cutout area.

Step 4: Consider Trial-Fitting

Before considering trial-fitting, you should mark centerlines and level top lines on the walls and panels. If done, trial fit the sections of the wall in the order directed by the manufacturer. Also consider examining the tops and centerlines if aligned, or if the tops are leveled. Then, secure them with masking tape and trace the top edges on the wall with a pencil before removing the panels.

The tip for this fourth step is, if you need to cut a penal, employ the tool recommended by the manufacturer of the kit. Several of them can be cut with a number passes of a utility knife guided by a straightedge. Note that such toll produces the cleanest cut. And, a jigsaw with a fine-tooth blade may also be used.

Step 5: Fix Panels

You can fix panels by applying adhesive in beads with a caulking gun or spread with notched trowel, as recommended by the kit manufacturer. Also note that some of the panels may have peel-and-stick tape. You can also press the panels into place on your pencil lines. Some makers however suggest that you brace the walls with lumber until the adhesive has cured.

Step 6: Finishing Touches

After applying adhesives, allow it to cure for up to 24 hours before you apply a finish bead of caulk to all joints. This must be done in accordance to what is directed by the manufacturer. Then, replace the faucet spout and handles. Also allow caulk to cure as directed by the manufacturer before using the tub.

The idea here is to cut the tip of the caulk tube at a 45-degree angle and start with a small hole. Also, you can make it larger but not smaller.

Materials You Will Need

Based on the given steps for installing a bathroom surround, here is a list of the materials you will need:

• Tape measure
• Level ( 2-ft. min.)
• Hole saw bits
• Utility knife
• Adhesive
• Allen wrench
• Bathtub surround kit
• V-notched trowel or caulking gun
• Pencil
• Electric drill
• Jigsaw
• Roofing cement
• Adjustable wrench
• Caulk
• Lumber to brace walls
• Standard and Phillips screwdrivers

Kitchen Care Hints for Cleaning That Flawless Brand New Look (Part 3 of 5 Parts)

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How to Install Shower and Bathtub

When thinking for installing a shower or bathtub, it is very important to note that the pipes required include the hot as well as cold supply lines, other than a pipe leading to a shower head. Also, many experts often suggest a blending valve and shower head for the installation, including air chambers.

Usually, the bath or shower fixtures rate low in fixture units. So they are often placed on the branch drains and wet or back vented as are the sinks. Accordingly, both the shower stalls and tubs enter the stack at floor level or below due to the angle of which the floor drain trap is positioned.

When it comes to faucet and shower head assembly, one should note that it requires an open wall for installation. Also worthy of consideration is that, bathtubs and shower stalls may need support framing. One of the common ideas here is that a bathtub filled with water is extremely heavy; therefore, it is important to examine first the building codes, including the framing support prior to the bathtub installation. There is also a required floor area for a shower stall. According to some experts, a minimum area required is 1,024 square inches, but you should also allow 24 inches from the stall itself to any other fixture or wall.


Here are the basic guidelines:


1. All piping should be installed before installing the tub itself.

2. Lower the tub into place. This will allow a continuous flange to fit against the wall studs and rests on 1 x 4 or 2 x 4 supports. In relation to this, don’t forget to anchor the tub to the enclosure with nails or screws ensconced through the flanges into the studs.

3. Put together the drain connections. This can be done by way of attaching the tub overflow with the tub drain above the trap, and not beyond it. Note that the trap will have a compression fitting that screw over the arm of the overflow assembly.

4. Run the hot and cold water lines to the tub or shower mixing valve where they are attached. You can do this by sweating these directly into the hot and cold ports of the mixing valve.

5. Run a pipe up the wall for the shower head. Note however that on the top of this pipe, you should sweat on a brass female threaded winged fitting that is nailed or screwed into a framing support.

6. A piece of 1/2” pipe should be extended, but this must be in accordance to the instructions provided by the manufacturer, for the tub spout. Also sweat on a male threaded fitting at the end of the pipe or employ a brass nipple of the proper length as well as a 1/2” cap.

7. At this time, you will need to have your rough plumbing checked.

8. Restore water pressure and inspect the drain connection, including the supply pipes for any leaks.

9. Replace the wall with moisture resistant drywall as a base for your wall covering. Also important to note is to seal joints between the wall and your new tub perhaps with silicone caulk. This caulk will serve as protection against water seepage.

10. It is now time to install the handles, shower head and Spout. Note that the shower head screws onto the shower arm stub out. And, whether you are installing a new shower head or replacing an old one, always clean the pipe threads and apply a new pipe joint compound. You can also consider a Teflon tape or both to prevent leaks.

TIL NEXT POST...

Kitchen Care Hints for Cleaning That Flawless Brand New Look (Part 2 of 5 Parts)

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Other Kitchen Cleaning Tips

When it comes to cleaning up some mess on a particular area or item in the kitchen, there is one particular warning that you must remember: Be cautious when using orange-based cleaners to clean a kitchen. The reason behind this is that some of them contain petroleum distillates, which break down the rubber in the rubber gaskets around refrigerators and dishwashers. • For Standard Surfaces, you can use a mixture of ivory as it cleans most kitchen surfaces and appliances.

Marble – Avoid using anything other than Ivory liquid dish soap on marble. If you consider harsher cleansers before, stop using them as they will ruin the surface. Then, always dry marble to prevent water spots from leaving their signature mark. As commonly noted, marble stains easily so wipe spills immediately. Also, do not use vinegar or orange based cleaners to clean the marble as the acid in them will damage the surface. You can remove stains and leave the surface safe with peroxide.

Tile – The tile grout poses its own difficulties. That’s what you should note. It is often said that the porous nature of grout means cleaning solutions pass through without a thought of taking the stain with them. When that dreaded spill happens, clean immediately as the longer a spill sets the better chance of it staining. Now, what to use? You can blend a 50/50 solution of hydrogen peroxide to water in a spray bottle. Then, spray the stain and allow it to set for 30 minutes. Retreat if needed. However, never use peroxide on colored grout as it is bleach and will possibly take the color out of the grout.

Stainless Steel – To take away burned on food from the surface of a stainless steel stove, consider boiling some water and pour directly onto the spill. Then, let it set for a few minutes. Experts said that this approach will help loosen the food making removal easier. However, in microwaves, wipe them down with boiling water then scrub with Cameo perhaps. Cover the food to prevent the splatters.

Corion – Only mild cleansers like Ivory must be used for Coroin. Note that harsh detergents will damage the surface. Start removing tough stains with Cameo or baking soda or you can use 50/50 solution of hydrogen peroxide and water. Also, Corion can be sanded lightly by using number 800 sandpaper, which is co
mmonly distinguished as gray in color. This sandpaper is also commonly called as wet or dry sandpaper. Rub this very gently keeping the paper wet.

Refrigerators –
Note that in refrigerators, the odors are caused by hidden food particles. So make sure to clean under the rubber gasket, but first, use the foaming bath cleaner on the walls. You can wipe them down with a baking soda, vinegar and water combination. You can in fact use about a quarter cup of vinegar and one or two tablespoons of baking soda for every q
uart of water, though you don’t have to be too precise.

Dishwashers – Remove the drawers and spindles. Clean under them and under the gaskets to get rid of odors. Then, fill one dispenser with Tang instant drink mix and the other with automatic dish soap and run the dishwasher empty through just the wash cycle. According to some experts, this combination deodorizes and cleans the inside.

Small Appliances – Simply sprinkle a little baking soda on a damp towel to clean without scratching.

Excellent Window and
Window Cleaner – Here’s what you can do: In a 32 oz. spray bottle, add 1/3 cup of vinegar and ¼ cup of rubbing alcohol. If you however must have another cleaner, add a tablespoon of automatic dishwashing detergent.

Disposals – To get rid the disposal of lingering odors, dampen a round toilet bowl brush then sprinkle some baking soda on it.. Then, scrub the inside of the disposal to freshen it. Now, pour a cup of Bac Out, as stain and odor eliminator, into both kitchen drains. Since Bac Out is an enzyme product, its enzyme will “eat” away at any food particles, removing the offending odors from your drains. Also, it will keep your entire drain clear except for tree roots.


Microwaves – I have here a real simple way to clean those spills and splatters and deodorize at the same time. You can do this maybe once a month to avoid buildup: Fill a coffee mug with water and a few slices of lemon. Then, put it in the middle of the microwave’s tray. Cook on high for about 3 minutes, and then turn off the microwave. Leave the mug inside for another few minutes. Notethat steam will soften the food spills, and the lemon will get rid of odors. If done, open the door and take out the mug. Wipe down the walls with warm, soapy water to remove excess residue and food. And, rinse and dry with a clean dish cloth.

Kitchen Cabinets – Just because it’s behind closed doors doesn’t mean that you don’t have to clean it. Remember that cabinets are the exact places where we usually keep our kitchen utensils, and unfortuna
tely, those doors don’t keep dirt and dust out, thus they must be deep cleaned and conditioned twice a year in order to prevent cooking oils, dust and dirt from penetrating the wood. Note that cooking oils, for instance, will dry and crack the wood, so they must be eliminated.

To start, empty your cabinets of all pots, pans, utensils and cooking products. Then, wipe down the cabinet interiors with a microfiber cloth. Press it into corners, under ridges as well as along the door edges.
Then, dampen a sponge with a solution of dish soap and warm water, and proceed by cleaning the tops, bottoms and walls. Rinse the sponger in clean water as you go.
Dry with a clean towel or rag as you work.
If you find some stains of cooking oil, you can use some wood cleaner and conditioner to clean the cabinets, just to keep them in top shape if used regularly.


Here is a real simple tip: Try to consider storing muffin tins, woks as well as other rarely used things in plastic bags, so you won’t have to rinse off the dust the next time you use them. Most experts further suggest doing this once a season. After all, it’s the perfect time to look at what’s stale and should be thrown out. You can do the same steps with your fridge. Just pick a specific date when you get rid of all those dirt and dust on your cabinets.

Countertops – When the dishes are cleared after the evening meal, grab a towel and perhaps a bottle of a natural cleaner and clean the countertop. You can also use the same cleaner in cleaning your stove or a refrigerator shelf at night. After which, wipe the counter tops with a clean rag. Never use dish rags, as thee sometimes contain dirt and grease that leave smears on counter tops. Also, many experts have noted that the many stains on countertops can be removed with whitening toothpaste. This is also considered safe for the Corian, marble or granite.

Stove Hood – Found some grease under the hood of your stove that has gotten to the point of no return? If so, try to spray on some foaming tub and tile cleaner. Then, cover your stove top to keep it protected. However, when it starts to drip, wipe it with a clean but old rag.


Fine China – I guess many of you have fine chinas in your kitchen. Well, simply rinse them in a sink of water adding one half cup of borax, and then a second rinse in plain water. This will actually shine your china for those special dinners. So, those are the most recommended tips for cleaning your beloved kitchen. What basically is important here is to cook up a perfect “recipe” for a clean kitchen, and what I have mentioned above are some of the best steps to consider.

Photo Source: Kitchens.com


WATCH OUT FOR THE NEXT POST FOR MORE TIPS!

Kitchen Care Hints for Cleaning That Flawless Brand New Look (Part 1 of 5 Parts)

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Of the many parts of the home, the kitchen deserves a close attention. Although it is just one room, it is where at any given time you can find a family eating, working on homework, talking on the phone, or simply hanging out with buddies. So it’s no big surprise that the kitchen, as the centerpiece of the home, is also one of the dirtiest and toughest rooms to clean. Many experts have even said that not the bathroom bowl but the average kitchen sink contains the most concentrated combination of harmful microorganisms in the house. Now, isn’t it yucky?

Well, getting a spotless kitchen can seem like an overwhelming task in the first place, but it doesn’t have to be. As what the former director of engineering for the Good Housekeeping Institute, Mark Kalinowski, once said, a clean kitchen can be attained if routine and streamlined tasks are performed in the kitchen on a regular basis. Every home owner or housekeeper can particularly achieve this by using time saving tactics, coupled with proper cleaning tools. These can no doubt significantly lessen the time spent completing the dreaded kitchen responsibilities.

Now below is some of the most recommended time saving tips to ensure that the hub of your home will remain spotless. Just sit back, relax, and read on.


Tips Before You Clean





Make a Clean-Up Checklist

Most experts often recommend forming a clean-up checklist before you consider actual cleaning. According to them, this will help your kitchen shine. Well, one particular reason behind this idea is that taking stock of your cleaning needs and supplies before you start the task will make sure that you will have everything on hand and ready to go. So, consider mapping out the chores you want to accomplish as this will further help in keeping you organized, so nothing is overlooked.

Teamwork is a Great Idea

Why don’t you think teamwork? Yes, that’s it! Teamwork is also vital when considering kitchen or home cleaning in general. So you don’t have to do everything yourself, it is best to enlist the help of your family, including your children. It is worthy to note after all that a good work ethic can be easily learned at an early age. Moreover, it’s a great opportunity for you and your family to spend time together and get some work accomplished.

Be Organized

Also, set aside a certain day every week to take care of the household chores that needs to be done. Having an organized system in fact will allow you more energy to sit back, relax and enjoy the time with your family and friends.



Tips During Cleaning



Get Motivated

One particular great idea here is to get motivated. I know that most of the time, you should restrict the limit of the number of distractions as you clean, but note that it is also necessary to use certain motivators that could pump up your cleaning routine. Speaking of motivators, why don’t you consider a bit of music? It’s great to work while music is on the air, right? Many experts in fact agree with me when it comes to setting up “music” as a cleaning motivator, as it can transform the drudgery of kitchen cleaning into an almost enjoyable experience. As you may know, one of the fastest and perhaps easiest ways to make the tedious duty of spring cleaning less taxing is to pop in a CD while doing your chores. You can even sing or dance with the beat of the music, and that’s enjoyable. Now, I’m motivated!

De-Clutter the Kitchen

Tossing away every mess in place before you begin the heavy duty scrubbing is the first step to cleaning a room. This is most applicable to the kitchen where papers and mail can pile up quickly on countertops. Note that by de-cluttering the kitchen, you will have less mess to sort through while cleaning. It will even be much easier and quicker to wipe down surfaces. So, simply tackle every clutter first.

Consider Cleaning Vacuums

Another time saving tip commonly suggested by home experts is to throw away that old straw broom and dustpan. There are a lot of cleaning vacuums in the market these days that could help you finish the task easily and quickly. To mention, the new Dirt Devil Sweeper Vac with Swiffer is what most of the experts commonly suggest as this combined two innovative technologies into one easy to use and convenient cleaning tool. As noted, the Swiffer allows you to sweep and dust your floor free of dust and allergens. And, if you encounter some large debris, like cereal pieces or cookies crumbs, you can just press a switch on the handle and suck up the mess with its rechargeable vacuum. Great, isn’t it?

Top to Bottom, One Side to the Other

Probably you’ve heard someone telling you to always clean from top to bottom and from one side of the room to the other. Well, my Mom often told me to do this when I was younger and I know that this is worth noting. What I’ve personally learned from this approach is that if taken, there won’t be any time wasted in criss-crossing the room or wiping down the same counter twice. When you’re finished, you’re finished. But still, look critically to see what you may have missed.

Watch What You Are Doing

Perhaps another best tip to save time when cleaning is to be aware of what you are doing. The main idea here is not to waste time cleaning something that isn’t dirty. As commonly noted, the vertical surfaces like walls are almost never as dirty as the horizontal surfaces, like the cupboards and countertops. The upper shelves as well as molding have less dust then lower ones. So, if you find that the entire area doesn’t truly need it, then why spend some time cleaning it?

Tip After Cleaning

When you’re done with all the cleaning tasks, it is best that you take all the kitchen items that you don’t use. You can donate them to a local charity of your choice, or you can open a garage sale for them. Always note that permanently cutting down on any kitchen mess will make it much easier for you to keep this known centerpiece of the home clean and neat.