Kellye Fox | 

13 Deep Cleaning Tips for the Germiest Household Items

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Every room needs a deep cleaning sometimes. No judgment here! There are just some little corners that we all forget about. In particular, there are some household items that could use some deep cleaning, like your microwave, oven, mattress, remote controls, and many other germy places.

What I like the most is that you don’t have to resort to traditional cleaning supplies to get the job done. Items around the house like baking soda, vinegar, and lemon juice do wonders for killing germs and sanitizing surfaces. Plus, you can often find these items at Dollar Tree!

Use our ultimate cleaning guide as a one-stop resource for how to save on supplies, clean, and get organized. Be sure to take stock of your cleaning supplies before you get started. Stop by The Krazy Coupon Lady cleaning supply coupon page to see what’s available.

Here are some of the best deep cleaning tips to get your home — and its contents — sparkling again:


1. How to deep clean a microwave with lemon.

someone microwaving lemon and squeezing it into bowl

Lemons aren’t only for making drinks and baking pies; try them as microwave cleaning hacks. This fruit can bring a fresh scent to your appliances as well as give them a deep clean.

In a spray bottle, combine 1 – 2 teaspoons of lemon juice, 1 cup of vinegar, and 1 cup of water. Spray the inside of your microwave and wipe clean with a sponge.

Another microwave cleaning hack is to slice a lemon in half, add it to a microwave-safe bowl with 1-1/2 cups of water, and “cook” it for 5 – 7 minutes to loosen spills and provide a fresh scent. Just wipe the inside clean when it’s done (use pot holders to carry the hot bowl).


2. How to deep clean a vacuum.

someone using seam ripper to get string out of vacuum

Vacuums are powerful household cleaning items that shouldn’t be neglected, given all of the yucky stuff they pick up. You’ll need scissors or a seam ripper for this deep cleaning vacuum tip.

Slide the scissors over the strings, hair, and gunk wrapped around the brush of your vacuum. Then be amazed at your vacuum and how much more debris it picks up! For more frequent deep cleaning, wipe down your vacuum with warm soapy water and rinse out any filters.


3. How to deep clean a knife block.

someone using spray duster on knife block next to bucket of water and clorox

When you think about home deep cleaning, do you include your knife block? You’d be amazed how well dust and bacteria (and sometimes spiderwebs, don’t ask!) creep in. Check out these cleaning tips:

To clean your knife block: turn the knife block over and shake it to remove any crumbs — or use compressed air to remove debris. Then wash the block in warm, soapy water.

To sanitize your knife block: add a tablespoon of bleach to a gallon of water and immerse the block for about 1 minute. Rinse the block with warm water then turn it upside down to dry.


4. How to deep clean an air fryer.

An air fryer with oil and food caked on the bottom of the pan

Everyone seems to be using an air fryer as a replacement for a traditional oven. If yours really needs a deep cleaning and has a lot of caked-on spills, dish soap and water can get the job done quickly. Remove the air fryer basket and dump any loose crumbs.

You’ll find a lot of TikTok cleaning hacks showing people soaking their air fryer basket in warm, soapy water and scrubbing the debris with a soft brush. It really is the best and safest deep cleaning method. You could then mix a small amount of baking soda, vinegar, and dish soap together to wipe inside and outside of the fryer.

If you need a few air fryer recipe ideas, we have you covered.



5. How to deep clean wood cutting boards.

someone scrubbing wood cutting boards with lemon and salt.

For kitchen deep cleaning projects, this one should occur monthly. Pay special attention to your wooden (and plastic) boards used for raw meat, as they could harbor harmful bacteria.

Cut a lemon in half and squeeze its juice over your wooden cutting board. Use the squeezed lemon to spread the juice around and then sprinkle coarse salt over the board, and use the other lemon half to scrub in the salt.

Use a paper towel (slightly damp if needed) to wipe off the salt and lemon juice.


6. How to deep clean reusable grocery bags.

someone putting reusable grocery bags in the washing machines.

Like with your dish towels and pot holders, you should add washing reusable grocery bags to your deep cleaning checklist. These household items can retain the smell of your groceries, so it’s best to wash them sooner rather than later.

Throwing them in the washing machine — or cleaning by hand — after each trip is ideal. Beware that insulated bags can’t be washed, so spraying them with a disinfectant spray like Lysol will help to minimize germs.


7. How to deep clean earbuds.

someone removing dirt and dust from the metal parts of their earbuds with a dry toothbrush.

The fine bristles of toothbrushes are perfect tools for lifting dirt and dust from the metal parts of your earbuds. Gently brush the ear piece and then use a gentle cleaner (like dish soap and warm water) and a soft cloth to clean the outside. Periodic deep cleaning of your earbuds keeps the dust away and lets you listen to your favorite songs clearer!


8. How to deep clean a purse.

someone putting baking soda in their purse and putting the purse in a pillowcase

This cleaning hack is great for purses or bags that need deodorizing or have stains that need treatment. Carefully place an open box of baking soda inside your purse and then pull your purse’s dust cover (or use a pillowcase) over your bag. Let it sit for a couple of hours until the smell is gone. To tackle stains, gently rub baking soda on the stain with a damp cloth and refer to your purse’s manufacturer for more detailed cleaning tips.

Related: Baking soda is one of our favorite shelf staples that never expire.


9. How to deep clean remote controls.

someone wiping remote with wipe

Do remote controls often go overlooked in your deep cleaning checklist? Think of how often they get touched! Simply wipe them down with an antibacterial wipe once a week (or daily if you’ve been sick). You could also cover them with an antibacterial spray.


10. How to deep clean stainless steel.

someone pouring cream of tartar on sponge and scrubbing a pot

Cream of tartar — which has nothing to do with tartar sauce — is a powdery acid that’s abrasive enough to remove stubborn grime and make stainless steel items shiny again.

Who knew that something used for baking could be such a genius house cleaning tip? Just wet a sponge and add a small amount of cream of tartar before you wipe down your stainless steel. Rinse to reveal the shine.

Related: How to Clean Stainless Steel: 7 Brilliant Ways You’ve Never Heard Before.


11. How to deep clean pillows.

someone throwing their pillows in the washing machine.

Don’t let dust mites in your pillow get the best of you. Wash two at a time with bleach and perhaps your favorite dryer sheet. Toss a tennis ball in the dryer with your washed pillows to help fluff them back up.


12. How to deep clean towels.

someone pouring vinegar into measuring cup next to washing machine and baking soda

This will actually take two washes, but I promise it’s worth it. Run your towels through one wash with 1 cup of vinegar and hot water. Then wash them AGAIN with 1/2 cup of baking soda and hot water. They’ll be fluffy and fresh.


13. How to deep clean your mop and broom.

broom in a bucket of warm water and dish soap.

Now that you’ve been working hard crossing off items on your deep cleaning checklist, why not take it a tiny step further? Soak your mop and broom heads in hot water and disinfectant, and make sure to soak your sponges, as well. Ideally, this will be done after every use, but shoot for at least once a week to be realistic.

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