Fed up of spending so much time doing household chores? By embracing a few housework hacks, you may be able to speed up tasks around the house. Below are just a few ways to speed up various household chores around the home.
Washing up dishes
Washing up dishes is a daily chore for many of us. The most obvious way to save time washing up is to invest in a dishwasher. However, even with a dishwasher, you’ll still need to do some manual scrubbing from time to time.
Leaving pots and pans to soak in hot water after using them can often help to reduce the need for vigorous scrubbing. When it comes to those times when you need to scrub, make sure that you’ve got more than a sponge to hand – brushes and wire wool can help to shift stubborn grime. Make sure that water is also soapy and hot.
There are a few secret ingredients that you may be able to use when cleaning certain items. Vinegar can often help to get rid of water spots. Salt can meanwhile be used to get rid of grease and even small burn marks on pots.
When it comes to drying dishes and crockery, consider upgrading your washing rack to give you more room. Buying an extra collapsible rack to put over the stove can allow you to leave more items dry rather than having to manually dry items because your rack is full.
All types of flooring have to be regularly cleaned to keep them presentable and hygienic. If you have kids or pets, it’s likely you’ll have to clean your floors even more frequently.
Carpets tend to be the most high-maintenance type of flooring. On top of vacuuming them regularly, you may need to use a carpet cleaning machine on them occasionally to lift stains and dirt. Short-pile carpet is easier to keep clean than deep-pile carpet and may be a better choice for those with kids or pets. Alternatively, you may prefer to switch to lower maintenance forms of flooring such as laminate or vinyl that can be easily swept and mopped.
You may also be able to keep certain sections of flooring clean by placing rugs in these areas. This could include putting a rug near an entrance where people are likely to walk in with muddy feet, or putting a rug under a table to catch food debris. Cleaning the rug could be a lot easier than cleaning the floor (you may be able to shake off crumbs outside). There are even machine-washable splash mats and rugs that you can buy.
Robot-vacuums have started to become more common and could also be worth looking into. They can save you having to vacuum or sweep your floor manually, although you may want to thoroughly check your floor first before using them to prevent any valuable items getting sucked up.
Laundry is often one of the most detested household chores – especially in homes with large families. For many of us, it’s not so much washing the clothes that’s the hard part, but drying them and putting them away.
To save time drying clothes, the best thing you can do is to invest in a tumble dryer. Hanging up clothes on a washing line or clothes rack may be more economical, but it can be time-consuming. If you haven’t got a tumble dryer already, consider getting one (not got the space? A washer-dryer could be the solution).
When it comes to saving time putting away clothes, there are a few hacks that could be worth embracing. The first solution is to use separate wash baskets for different people. This allows you to do separate loads for each person and reduces time sorting out clothes. When it comes to sorting out socks, some people find it easier to stick to all black socks – this allows socks to be easily paired with each other rather than having to sort through lots of different patterns. If you’ve got older kids, another solution is simply to get kids to do their own laundry (or at the very least putting away their own clothes).
Ironing clothes is practically redundant nowadays. Less of us regularly dress up in clothes that need to be ironed due to the rise of smart-casual workplaces. Many clothes also contain materials like rayon, viscose and spandex, which prevent wrinkling to a large degree. By hanging up clothes immediately after washing (or putting them in a tumble dryer on an anti-wrinkled setting), you can also stop most wrinkles forming.
In other words, if you spend hours ironing, you may want to ask yourself the question: ‘do i actually need to iron my clothes?’.
For most of us, it’s usually only the occasional smart shirt that needs ironing – and there are often much easier alternatives to ironing that you can use to remove wrinkles from these clothes. One easier alternative option is to use wrinkle release spray for clothes. This prevents the need to use heat, making it easier and safer. Another option is to get rid of wrinkles using steam. Using a handheld steam wand, you can get rid of wrinkles from clothes while they are hanging up, preventing the need to fuss around with an ironing board.
Cleaning the bathroom
Cleaning the bathroom can be a big chore. On top of being time-consuming, it can also be one of the more physically intensive cleaning jobs due to the amount of scrubbing needed. Fortunately, there are ways to reduce the time and elbow grease needed by investing in certain equipment.
For example, if you have lots of tiles to clean in your bathroom, it could be worth getting a steam cleaner. These devices can help to get rid of dirt more easily without having to scrub hard. You can also buy steam mop extensions for cleaning tiled floors.
You could also try looking into some of the various miracle chemical products that exist on the market. Nowadays, there are sprays you can buy to easily shift mold and limescale – using these sprays is often much more effective than scrubbing with a sponge. When it comes to cleaning the toilet, there are also descaler tablets that you can buy to prevent the need to scrub.
A bathroom renovation may be necessary in some cases. Measures such as installing extractor fans can help to prevent mold growth. Some people also find it easier to switch out tiles for synthetic panels – these can be easily wiped clean and you don’t have to worry about dirt getting stuck in grout.
Mowing the lawn
Some people take great pride in maintaining their lawn. For others, lawn care can be time-consuming and tedious.
A drastic solution to this is to get rid of your lawn. You could replace it with artificial grass – which doesn’t have to be cut at all. Alternatively, you could pave it over entirely.
If you’d prefer to still have some vegetation in your yard, another option could be to try alternatives to grass. This could include a chamomile lawn or a wildflower meadow that only has to be trimmed back rarely.
For those that would prefer to stick with grass, the next best solution is to upgrade your lawnmower. Many modern lawn mowers are lighter and self-propelled – this can take the hard work out of pushing them, which may make mowing the lawn speedier. You could even look into robotic lawnmowers, which do all the mowing for you.