Vacuum large area rugs at least once a week. But also take them outside three or four times a year for a more thorough cleaning.
Drape them over a fence or clothesline and beat them with a broom or tennis racket. A good beating removes much more dust than vacuuming. Take smaller rugs outside for a vigorous shaking every week.
An effective air cleaner removes large and small particles from the air in a single room. Within that space, it can relieve allergy or asthma symptoms and even reduce smoke and cooking odors. But don’t expect it to relieve you of dusting duty.
Air cleaners are sized to filter a small area, so only a small portion of the airborne dust in your home will ever reach the unit. For air cleaners to have a real effect on overall dust levels, you would need one unit in every room.
Blankets, pillows, slipcovers, drapes and other textiles not only trap household dust, but they create it as they shed and disintegrate. Curtains and drapes in particular get very dusty because they absorb moisture and dirt from the outside and act as a landing pad for dust from ceiling fans and air vents.
The best idea is to buy machine-washable items and launder them twice a year (OK, at least once). For non-machine-washable textiles, throw them in the dryer on the air-fluff setting (no heat) for 20 minutes with a damp towel.
The damp towel will attract pet hair, and the tumbling movement and airflow will remove the smaller particles for you.
Your cozy bed is a major dust distributor. The bedding collects skin flakes, sheds its own fibers and sends out a puff of dust every time you roll over. To minimize the fallout, wash sheets and pillowcases weekly.
Items that aren’t machine washable don’t need weekly trips to the dry cleaners? just take blankets and bedspreads outside and shake them. You can spank some of the dust out of pillows, but for a thorough cleaning, wash or dry-clean them.
When you change bedding, don’t whip up a dust storm. Gently roll up the old sheets and spread out the new ones; even clean bedding sheds fibers.
In terms of chemistry, some soaps aren’t really true soap. Any soap in a liquid or gel form and some bar soaps, such as Zest and Ivory, are synthetic soap. These non-soap soaps are much less likely to form that dreaded layer of tough scum on your sink or tub.
Clean off shoe scuff marks from vinyl flooring with a clean, dry tennis ball. A light rub and heel marks are ‘erased.’