10 tips for a spring home refresh

A brighter, cleaner and safer home awaits with a few quick care tips

Spring brings the opportunity to start fresh. We may think about tuning up the bike for some rides outdoors, bringing out the grill and getting into the garden. Why not apply the concept of the tune-up to the interior of your home? We suggest some simple ways to breathe easier and perhaps even improve the jolt of your morning Joe. That’s a good start to the day as well as the week!


1. Take a deep breath

Hopefully you don’t sneeze! Dust and particles can gather in the ducts and along the vents of your heating and cooling systems. Call your HVAC technician to schedule a spring cleaning, and you can check the air filters at the same time.


2. More dustbusters

Stand-alone air filtration systems like Molekule use nanotechnology to destroy pollutants smaller than those caught by a standard filter. Plus, many are portable—allowing you to move your filtration system around your home to areas where you may want extra air purification.


3. Improve your caffeine dose

Is your double espresso not packing the same punch? When did you last clean your espresso machine, Chemex® or french press? Hard water minerals can build up in your coffee machine’s inner workings and leave faint residue on glass. White vinegar can come to the rescue, as it breaks down the deposits. We recommending researching online to find the best dilution ratios for your preferred coffee-making device.


4. Care for the workhorse

What’s the hardest working appliance in your home besides the coffee machine? The appliance that cleans your coffee cups! Over time, grease, soap residue and food debris can build up in a dishwasher and reduce cleaning efficiency. There are cleaning pellets you can use for a cleaning cycle, or homemade remedies with white vinegar and baking soda.


5. Clean green

Pantry staples like vinegar, baking soda and lemons do double-duty as green and cost-effective cleaning supplies. The high acid content of vinegar and lemons can help break down fats and grease, and the sodium bicarbonate neutralizes both acids and bases, so it can be effective at removing stains and eliminating odors.


6. Clear the air with plants

Plants like aloe vera, snake plants and chrysanthemums can add green to your space. Plants can also purify the air, removing compounds like formaldehyde and benzene, elements commonly found in varnishes and floor finishes. We’re interested in this article from Country Living, which shares additional information on botanical air boosters.


7. You’re expired!

While you are alphabetizing spices and cleaning out kitchen shelves, be sure to check expiration dates on your products at home. In the kitchen, note the “best by date” on canned, tinned and boxed goods. In the bathroom, check moisturizers, lotions and sunscreens.


8. Schedule a blow-out

Of your dryer! Lint can build-up in the dryer vent on the back of the dryer. The vent is like a large hose that pulls the hot air and the lint out. The fiber residue is highly flammable and can accumulate, increasing the risk of fire—which is why cleaning it out can be an important preventative care step.


9. Prevent the beep

Proactively change the battery of your carbon monoxide and smoke detectors. The United States Fire Administration (USFA) recommends changing the batteries once or twice a year. Spring is a perfect time to check. You can also have your smart device alert you to low battery levels.


10. Get the app

Tired of writing to-do lists and then misplacing them? Or reading top 10 lists and not remembering #4-10? Numerous cleaning apps help breakdown the chores by room. Here are a few choices recommended by CNET.


Katja Zigerlig is Vice President, Art, Wine + Collectibles Advisory at Berkley One (a Berkley Company).

To learn more about Berkley One’s coverage for homes, condos and rental units, visit us here.