I don’t know about you but I spend most of my time trying to keep my kitchen clean and clutter free. I’m doing things like; putting things in the dishwasher, picking up papers on the counters and constantly vacuuming up dog hair.  Deep cleaning?  It’s not on my radar. Let’s look at some of the places in the kitchen that probably haven’t been cleaned in a long while.

Cleaning the Refrigerator, Freezer, & Sink Disposal

Refrigerator ice/water dispenser – Drip trays are a breeding ground for bacteria.  It’s actually be called the “dirtiest place in the kitchen.” To clean this area, wipe out the drip tray with a dry, clean microfiber cloth. Then remove any buildup in the drip tray by filling it with distilled white vinegar and allow it to soak for 10 minutes. Mix 1 tbsp. of baking soda with 1 cup of warm water and place the mixture inside the dispenser tray. Rinse the dispenser and wipe it with a dry microfiber cloth.

The freezer – Even if you have a self-defrosting freezer, you occasionally need to turn off the power and clean the entire area.  Crumbs and droppings along with dust and dirt need to be removed. By turning up the temperature, you’ll be able to wash the freezer walls without the moisture freezing on your cleaning cloth. Use warm soapy water to wash the floor and walls of the freezer, then rinse completely. Let it air dry before turning down the temperature.

Disposal – Food particles and gunk build up on the blades of the garbage disposal. A simple way to clean the blades are to freeze some lemon peels and place them, with some salt, into the disposal.  Run the disposal until they are gone.  Your disposal will be clean and smell wonderful.

Cleaning Your Cook Top & Microwave

Stove – Clean the stove from the inside out. If you have a self-cleaning oven, follow the directions and let it do the dirty work. If you don’t have a self-cleaning oven, you can use a paste of baking soda and water, and spread it on the walls and floor of the oven. Then spray it with distilled white vinegar. Let it sit overnight and wipe clean.

The top of the stove – The best way to clean the top of the stove is to remove all the pieces of the stove top and start scrubbing. Try not to use anything aggressive as you can scratch the finish. Once it’s completely clean, use a clean damp microfiber cloth to leave it sparkling clean.

The bottom drawer of your stove – This is one place that hardly gets cleaned. Remove all the items of the drawer then use your vacuum to remove crumbs and dirt. Wipe the drawer with soapy warm water and a microfiber cloth. Let the drawer air dry.

Microwave – A quick way to clean the inside of your microwave is to put a bowl of hot water with lemon juice in the microwave and turn on the power until it starts to boil. This can be from 2 to 4 minutes. Let the bowl sit in the microwave for 5 more minutes. Open the microwave and wipe the walls and the base clean with a microfiber cloth.

Cleaning Other Areas Around the Kitchen

Cabinet Knobs – Kitchen knobs hardly get cleaned even if you wipe the cabinets frequently. Use some hydrogen peroxide on a microfiber cloth to remove buildup and germs.

Floors – Cleaning your floor with a sponge mop actually leaves buildup on the perimeter of your floor.  For a deep cleaning, get a bucket of hot water with a few drops of dish detergent and get down on your hands and knees. Give your floor a good scrubbing.  Use a microfiber cloth and a scrubbing sponge for tough spots. You can also use a steam machine to deep clean the floor.

Chairs and table – Wiping down your table after dinner is probably part of your routine, but when was the last time you “deep cleaned” your kitchen chairs? And how about the base of the table?  When you are ready to deep clean your table and chairs, start with a bucket of hot water and a microfiber cloth and wipe off dust, grime and grease. Don’t bother with a cleaning product. Using the hot water and microfiber will leave the table and chairs clean without a film from a cleaner.

Light fixtures – A quick tip to deep cleaning your kitchen light fixtures is to pop the glass shades into the dishwasher. The hot water and agitation will remove built up dirt and grease. They will come out of the dishwasher sparkling clean.

For more information from DIY green cleaning expert Leslie Reichert, visit greencleaningcoach.com