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Spring cleaning compared to everyday cleaning

Spring cleaning has a long history – some researchers have dated the concept to practices from over two thousand years ago.

Others point out that it became a craze in the US because before vacuum cleaners were invented, March was the perfect time to air out carpets and rugs as it was warm enough to have all the windows open, and wet enough that dust clouds didn’t get out of control! Whever its origins, it’s an immensely satisfying way to welcome in the milder weather and start looking forward to summer – but what really is the difference between a spring clean and your normal everyday clean?

Cleaning the nooks and crannies

Spring cleaning is all about nooks and crannies. An everyday clean will focuses primarily on surfaces, wiping down the doors of cabinets and dusting over knick knacks on shelves. A spring clean means taking everything out of the cabinet, scrubbing the inside, then cleaning each item before putting it back in. Shelves are cleared and scoured, furniture pulled out cleaned behind, all those mystery leftovers evicted from the very back of the fridge. It’s about the dust on rarely used dishes, stains lurking at the back of cupboards, and debris hiding in seldom-seen corners.

Prevention or maintenance?

Another way to look at is is maintenance vs preventive. Everyday cleans are about keeping things ticking over and just clean and tidy enough to manage a few more days until your next clean. A spring clean is about tackling jobs that on the surface might even seem unnecessary, but will prevent problems or frustrations down the line. It’s a good opportunity to clear any build up of grime or limescale from the dishwasher and washing machine before they become a problem, and tackling that hallway cupboard often results in coming across things you hadn’t even realised you’d lost!

Time to make a change

Spring cleans are a great opportunity to institute new systems to streamline your life and make everyday tasks more efficient. While day-to-day life can sometimes feel like an exercise in keeping your head above water, a spring clean gives you the chance to consider whether moving some furniture around might open up a room, or if setting up a new key hook by the front door or a shoe rack to cut down on shoes strewn around the hall might just make life easier.

Above all, a spring clean is a chance to take stock. Decluttering those dry goods quietly going years out of date at the back of the pantry gives you a better sense of what you need to stock up on. Taking all the books down to give the shelves a good polish will often result in a satisfying few boxes for the local charity shop and a new sense of space in your living room.