You haven’t seen these unique cleaning hacks for lazy people on other sites, I promise! These tips have been shared by real people so you know they work. And they will save you time and effort and help get your house cleaner than you dreamed possible.
“I choose a lazy person to do a hard job. Because a lazy person will find an easy way to do it.” Bill Gates
According to Goodreads, this is an accurate quote. I’m not quite sure I believe that, but I do believe in the truth behind this quote. If there’s an unpleasant job you don’t like doing, you should definitely find a way to do it as quickly and easily as possible.
And where better to get tips from lazy people than Reddit, home of all the best procrastinators? Sure, it’s a great site to find cute animal photos and inspirational quotes, but with so many people and so many specialized subreddits, I can usually find helpful tips for any project I’m planning. What I like best about the tips I find, too, is that the tips come from real people so they’re tried and true and you know they work. Plus, they aren’t the same recycled tips you’ll find all over the web. Because real people are sharing what’s worked for them, you get a huge variety of responses.
Right now, that project I need tips for is cleaning. I’m moving out of the apartment that I’ve been living in for the last few months soon and moving into a new home and I’m going to need to do a deep clean of both places so I’m gathering all the cleaning tips I can. I also really hate to clean so I want all my tips to be the best cleaning hacks for lazy people so I can get the most done with the least effort.
I’ve compiled the best tips from a variety of threads I found, but here are two useful ones if you would like to do some reading on your own:
- What is the best cleaning tip you’ve ever received?
- Professional house cleaners of reddit, what do most people need to clean in their home, but don’t?
If, however, you’re looking for just the best tips, organized by topic, then read on!
Some tips have been edited for length and clarity.
Cleaning Hacks for Lazy People
Hacks for Dealing with Clutter
Someone pointed out that clutter usually accumulates in the same places just out of laziness. So instead of changing my habits I just accommodate for them:
My junk mail always ended up on a particular end table. So I threw a decorative basket under the table as a recycling bin.
I have a bar in the dining room but no trash can, so bottle tops ended up laying around. Bought a cute little bucket that sits on the bar with the bottle openers. Now even during parties the bartop stays clean because it’s so convenient.
Mama taught me the OHIO principle — Only Handle It Once. So when you pick something up, put it back where it belongs instead of shuffling it around from one pile to the next. Seems simple but really cuts down on the clutter.
Put all of the clutter in a big pile so the rest of the room looks how you want it to. Then put things in that pile away in groups. It is shocking how much faster you can declutter a house this way.
Cleaning Hacks for the Kitchen
When soaking a pan that’s got baked on good stuck to it, put a fabric softener sheet in it. After 5 min or so, everything will wipe right off.
Use WD-40 to clean and remove fingerprints painlessly from stainless steel appliances.
Katy’s Note: All you need is a drop or two on a paper towel or you can get a big smeary mess. I heard about that from a friend. It definitely wasn’t me who made a huge mess trying this out.
The top of the stove pops up like the hood of a car. Clean under it from time to time
Throw ice cubes down your garbage disposal occasionally (with it running) to help clear any gunk from the blades; ALSO throw some citrus peels down there (again with it running) when it starts to get a little funky smelling. Learned this from the person who leased me my first apartment.
Cleaning Hacks for the Bathroom
Grout cleaner: Hot vinegar and blue Dawn. Spray on to tile shower walls. It will go on like a gel. Leave it for an hour or so. Come back and scour it off with a brush. Do this every so often and you won’t have to get a toothbrush and Comet after the grout.
Katy’s Note: Here’s the recipe to make this. Put equal parts white vinegar and Dawn detergent in a spray bottle. For really tough stains you can heat the vinegar in the microwave for 30 seconds before mixing.
To keep your bathroom mirror from fogging up put a little bit of shaving cream on the mirror and rub until you’ve coated the whole mirror. For a few weeks that’ll keep your mirror from fogging, and in my experience the mirror was cleaner in general. Windex and shaving cream once a month and my bathroom mirror is always spotless.
If your bathtub is really nasty 2 cups of bleach, 3 pods of laundry detergent (a scoop of Surf is best though), a giant squirt of Dawn (roughly 2 tbps). Fill bathtub with hot water. Walk away for an hour. When the water is cool to touch take a brillo pad and scrub it. Then detail it with a magic eraser. This is how I got most of the rust stains and the very weird nastiness off my bathtub when we first moved in. I was told the bathtub was clean. The fact that I was able to take my thumbnail and scrape chunks of crud off of the bottom of the tub determined that was a lie.
Wash your shower curtain periodically
When I did housekeeping during college, I noticed that many people neglect to take down their shower curtains periodically for washing.
That’s the accumulation of body oils, fluids, etc that has splashed off your body. You can disinfect and make a bathroom sparkle, however, the stench off the ripe curtain…ick.
Put them in the washing machine with a few towels and a cup of white vinegar. No soap. Pull the shower curtain out before the spin cycle.
Use a drying cloth after wiping down surfaces, the faucets, the sinks, etc. I learned this when I was cleaning houses with my friend. It’s amazing how much cleaner everything looks when you wipe off the soapy residue. Makes the, “professional,” difference.
Coca cola left in the toilet for a good 20-30 minutes will clean it 1,000,000 times better than the powdered soap.
Cleaning Hacks for Floors
Ah carpet cleaning. For stains I first spot clean with a mix of Dawn Dish soap and Oxyclean in water, really scrub the fibers using a rag. Then carpet cleaner machine but instead of hot water from the tap, heat the water on the stove to almost boiling. This has gotten rid of black scuff marks, most pet stains, oil stains, food stains, weird pink stuff, and general ground in tracking.
Latex gloves get pet hair off stuff. Just slap on a pair of latex gloves and brush all the pet hair off your couch, pillows, carpet, whatever. Works for like dried up cat puke and numerous other dried textures stains. I do some cleaning and lawn work part time for this lady in my city and she told me that and it’s been a life changer.
Cleaning Products You Need
Vinegar+Dawn dish soap. Yo… this is a miracle combo. I use this for my tub, sink, toilet, and floors. Careful with the floors, though. The dish soap makes the floors super slippery. But let anything soak in this mixture and all grime and dirt will be lifted.
Dryer sheets remove oil (also a great way to remove excess oils from skin/beard). Conversely, using dryer sheets in a dryer with towels or micro-cloth diminishes their cleaning potential (it basically adds a wax to their fibers, very noticeable when trying to clean glass with micro-cloth).
Scrubbing bubbles + magic eraser f*k up bathtub scum like you wouldn’t believe.
There’s this stuff made from coconut oil and kelp called Pink Solution. They sell it at costco. It got two year old curry stains out of an expensive dress, blood stains out of the mattress and wine stains off the couch. Amazing.
CLR is magic.
– Removes water stains
– Removes burned food stains (such as on cooking trays)
– Unclogs limescale buildup
– Removes rust from iron/steel (with soaking)
– Removes brass/copper oxidation
Combine CLR with a brillo pad, and you can clean anything almost instantly. Plus, you can get no-name brand CLR at dollar stores that works as well as the real stuff.
Another tip: 50/50 vinegar/water mix makes a great general purpose cleaner. The vinegar smell goes away within an hour of cleaning. Great for people with chemical sensitivities. Just don’t use it regularly on glass surfaces; vinegar will slowly fog/etch glass.
MVP Cleaning Products
Misc and Useful Cleaning Hacks
Astroturf doormats. Keeps dirt out. No kidding. You can get big ones,too. Grassworx is the company
– Use rubber gloves with a bit of water to remove pet hair from furniture.
– Avon bubble bath is a good stain remover and has SO many other uses. Here’s the link for more. http://frugalforeveryone.ca/avon-bubble-bath-a-multi-tasker/
– Clean your fruits and veggies by filling your kitchen sink and adding 1 cup of vinegar and let them sit for 10 min. Gets the pesticides off and helps preserve them.
– Put pieces of chalk in with clothes/blankets when storing them in bins. Keeps that stale/gross smell away.
– Use old newspapers to clean your windows.
– Soak your shower head in Pepsi/Coke. It will remove mineral deposits and rust.
I’m late to the party, but here goes- if you have an old pillowcase, you can clean ceiling fans very easily.
Buy one cheap, go to the second hand store, whatever.
Put the blade in the case and rub the blade to get the dust off. It will fall in the pillow case. Finish clean as desired.
To remove white rings from water stains on a wood table with a polyurethane finish, heat up a clothes iron (dry–no steam), put a thin cloth over the stain, run the iron over the cloth. The white haze was water trapped in the finish. The heat makes it evaporate out.
If you spill red wine on your carpet, you can pour a container of salt over it and it will absorb all the liquid. Also, if left to dry, it will turn hard so you can sweep it up into a dustpan. It actually works with any type of colored liquid!
The Stuff You’re Probably Forgetting to Clean
Clean your dishwasher drain right now. Not just the little catch around the base of the bottom sprayer. Pull the sprayer head off, and all the parts underneath and clean the black slime off. Make your kids do it. They will never put food covered plates in the dishwasher again.
Not a professional cleaner, but my mom used to be so I grew up helping her out. My top tips
– Regularly wipe under the black flap in your sink above the garbage disposal.
– Clean the garbage disposal itself (baking soda, vinegar and ice will do. Add lemon if you’re feeling fancy). – – – – – Seriously, if your home smells like trash and you don’t know why, check here.
– Clean your freezer. I do this whenever I move into a new place. Usually, there’s some sort of melted gunk under the bottom panel. Unscrew it, and wipe it clean with warm soapy water.
– Open your toilet bowl, get down on your knees, and peak under the rim. Is it pink/red (urine) or brown? Clean that with an old toothbrush.
– Disinfect your trashcan, especially the ones in the kitchen and bathroom. I use hot water and an all-purpose cleaner like Pinesol.
– If you have an electric stove, lift up the range and wipe underneath it. Then pull the stove out, and sweep around it.
– Pull your fridge out from the wall, sweep the floor around it, and use a vacuum to dust the coils. Dusty coils can impact its performance.
– Door knobs, and the wood around them. Doesn’t matter how clean you are, these areas can get grimy. I recommend a magic eraser.
– Vacuum under your bed. An ex of mine never did and he had a cat. There was so much fur under that thing he had a whole ‘nother cat.
– Clean your washing machine. It can get moldy. Fill it with hot water and a few cups of vinegar, run it, then leave the lid open to dry.
– Clean your dishwasher. Empty out that little catcher in the bottom that collects food particles, then run an empty cycle with a cleaner designed to remove calcium and limescale. Your dishes will come out cleaner.
– Dust your light bulbs from time to time.
– Clean your vacuum rollers. There’s probably thread wrapped around them. Use a seam ripper or tiny scissors to cut them loose.
– and last, but not least….clean your phone bitch! You don’t need fancy wipes…just a mixture of rubbing alcohol and water. Spray a cloth (preferably microfiber), and wipe that shit down at least once a week. Your skin will thank you.
Cleaning Hacks to Get the Job Done
When cleaning a room, start at the top. Dust/clean the ceiling first, then the walls, then the furniture, then the floor. Let gravity haul all the loose dirt and dust down to the areas you haven’t cleaned yet.
If you clean a little bit, even just fifteen minutes, every day, you won’t have to do a huge weekend-consuming clean nearly as often (if ever). When you come home from work, pick a room and set a timer. Clean that room for fifteen minutes. Good for you, your house is cleaner! The next day, pick a different room and the same amount of time. After doing this for a month or two, you’ll start to realize that you don’t have as much Big Stuff to clean, and you’re basically just removing the dirt and clutter that landed there between now and the last time you cleaned that room.
A lot of people don’t clean because they think they have to take their house from ‘train wreck’ to ‘spotless’ in one cleaning session. That’s ridiculous; you can’t undo months or years of neglect in one clean. Do a little every day, and you’ll get caught up slowly, you won’t burn out or get frustrated, and you’ll feel a lot better about how your place looks.
Source: cleaned houses for a living for years, both with professional companies and on my own.
Use the 2-5 minutes of a commercial break, while the microwave is going, or while your tea is steeping, to speed clean. If you use short, otherwise wasted periods of time to clean, it’s a much smaller chore.
I found doing one set chore every morning when I wake up keeps the day going. It’s usually unloading the dishwasher, that way I have an empty dishwasher to load dishes in throughout the day instead of doing a huge pile of dishes. Then at night, I run the dishwasher before I go to bed. Rinse and repeat.
Everything else I make a to do list for the day and do “power hour” cleanup: literally set my alarm for one hour & try to get as much of my to do list done as I can in that hour. I’m more motivated by a deadline, so this works wonders.