9 Spots in the Kitchen You’re Forgetting to Clean (and How to Take Them On)

updated Jun 6, 2019
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(Image credit: Sandra Rojo)

You clean your kitchen regularly, making sure the dishes are done, the counters are wiped down, and the fridge isn’t harboring anything gross, but even the cleanest people can overlook the little things without realizing it.

If some spots (think: light switches, appliance handles, and window screens) are missing from your cleaning routine, here’s a little reminder to thoroughly clean your kitchen — and some help on how to tackle them properly.

1. Light switches

Light switches and wall plates are some of the dirtiest spots in your home — you’re always touching them and getting bacteria on them, but they’re often overlooked in the cleaning process. You can use disinfecting wipes or a paper towel with rubbing alcohol (or your preferred household cleaner) to rid your light switches and plates of germs and grime.

2. Window screens

Love letting fresh air into your home? If you never clean your window screens, it won’t be quite so fresh. Take on dusty, dirty window screens by soaking them in warm soapy water, gently scrubbing with a brush to get off stubborn debris, rinsing them off, and then cleaning the tracks with a paper towel.

3. Trash cans

Okay, so you take out the trash regularly, but do you ever deep clean your trash cans? Not doing so can leave bacteria behind and stink up your home. To get your trash cans clean and odor-free, either take it outside where you have access to a hose, or clean it in your bathtub — you’ll need a nylon-bristled scrub brush and a disinfectant spray, too.

(Image credit: Samara Vise)

4. Under your appliances

If you’ve never cleaned under or behind your refrigerator or stove, it’s probably time to take them on.

5. The dishwasher

You might not realize that you actually need to clean your dishwasher from time to time — after all, it’s the thing that’s supposed to clean other things, right? You do have to clean it, though.

(Image credit: Andrea Sparacio)

6. The coffee maker

If you want to ensure that your morning cup of coffee is grime-free, it’s time to clean your coffee pot. How you clean your coffee maker depends on what type of coffee maker you use — for example, cleaning a Keurig is a different process than cleaning out a French press or a basic drip coffee maker.

We’ve got you covered: How To Clean Any Coffee Maker

7. Cabinet hardware and appliance handles

Germs, dirt, and grease build up on your cabinet hardware and appliance handles. Wipe them down like you would your light switches and other miscellaneous surfaces.

8. Baseboards and door frames

You make sure the floors are clean, but do you spend time on the baseboards? What about your door frames and any other molding in your cookspace? Magic Erasers, microfiber cloths, and dryer sheets can help you get these things in tip-top shape.

9. The curtains

Curtains can collect dust just as easily as the rest of your home, so you shouldn’t just hang them up and forget about them. How you clean them depends on the material they are, so make sure you know what you’re working with before you throw them in the washing machine or take them to a dry cleaner.

This post originally ran on Apartment Therapy. See it there: 15 Spots You’re Forgetting to Clean (and How to Take Them On)