Getting Rid of Animal Dander in Tucson


Animal dander is a huge source of allergies and asthmatic reactions in the home. What most people don’t know is that the dander isn’t limited to fur. A deep house cleaning for pet owners in Tucson will help them eliminate pet-related allergens, helping them and their guests breathe easily.

The Maids of Tucson use a HEPA filtration, multiple-filtered Back Pack Vacuum that was designed and manufactured through a partnership between ProTeam and the American Lung Association.

We’ve even got a rubber upholstery attachment and powerful retraction action (removing particles up to 1/210th the diameter of a human hair!). We will keep your home healthy and safe for everyone in your home, including your “fur babies”. Ready for a clean home? Call The Maids of Tucson today at 520-795-7977!

How a Dirty Air Filter Can Affect Your Family’s Health

Dirty Air Filter

 

This guest post is brought to you by  MVP Air Conditioning, offering the best AC repair in Tucson.

You may have heard that neglecting to change your AC unit’s air filter can affect your system’s efficiency, but that doesn’t make it easier to remember to change a dirty air filter! Fortunately, new AC technology includes digital thermostats that automatically remind you to change the filter when it’s time. You may be even more motivated to change the filter regularly when you realize just how important it is to health and safety. Here are three ways that a dirty air filter can affect your family’s health.

Respiratory irritation

The contaminants in your air can have a detrimental effect on the respiratory system. Some contaminants your AC filter works hard to filter out include:

Even individuals who don’t have allergies may sneeze when a cloud of dust rises, and these pollutants can cause irritation on a daily basis. Unfortunately, an AC filter’s efficiency decreases as it fills up, which means it’s less able to keep particles out of your AC system. Once pollutants have made their way into the ductwork, they’re free to blow throughout your entire house, exiting at registers and catapulting across the room until someone breathes them in. The irritation caused by these particles can create inflammation of the delicate membranes in the respiratory system, resulting in discomfort and hay-fever-like symptoms such as sneezing and runny nose.

Aggravation and development of respiratory conditions

In addition to irritating sensitive mucous membranes in the respiratory tract, pollutants in the air can also set off or worsen pre-existing conditions. Serious asthma attacks can be caused by pollen, mold spores, or even dust particles, depending on the individual. And these pollutants can do much more than simply trigger pre-existing conditions. For example, studies have shown that small children can be more likely to develop asthma when living in an environment with higher measurements of mold in the air. While it’s impossible to get rid of every airborne mold spore from your home (they can float in when you open the door), taking steps to reduce their number is an important step in protecting your family’s health. Keeping your home free of mold growth and keeping your air filtration system in working order are two main ways to keep mold counts down. And in addition to asthma, pollutants in the air can lead to other health conditions. High levels of exposure to irritants can cause allergies to develop, such as a mold allergy or a dust mite allergy. According to the Mayo Clinic, a mold allergy may cause cold-like symptoms including:

  • Cough
  • Runny nose
  • Sneezing
  • Watery, red eyes
  • Itchiness

These can be similar to the symptoms of respiratory irritation, but even more severe. Even adults who haven’t shown symptoms before can develop an allergy when high levels of a potential allergen are present in the environment.

Vulnerability to heat-related illnesses

Besides allowing contaminants to permeate your AC system, a dirty filter also tends to block the progress of air due to the thick mat of dust that’s built up inside the filter. This means that your AC system has to work harder to draw air, leaving less energy left over for the actual cooling and distribution of this air. An AC system in this situation can’t cool as well or as efficiently as it could with a clean filter. It may not seem like a big deal, but the reduction in effectiveness means that your unit won’t be able to keep the temperatures down in the hot days of summer. In addition to sweatiness and discomfort, this can lead to serious problems for your family if the unit overworks itself in an attempt to keep you cool. An overworked unit can ice over (even in summer heat) or simply fail catastrophically, requiring expensive repairs and leaving your family in the lurch with no way to cool your living space. This is not only uncomfortable but also dangerous. In hot climates such as Tucson’s, heat-related illnesses such as heat stroke and heat exhaustion are a real possibility. Keeping your AC unit and system in good working order is a crucial part of protecting your family from the heat of summer.

 

The Maids of Tucson understand just how important it is to keep every area of your home clean. That’s why we have a 22 point healthy touch system. If you’re concerned about the health and happiness of your home, give us a call today (520) 795-7977

 

How to Keep Your Shower Curtain Clean

Two of the biggest enemies of a bright, clean shower curtain are mildew and soap scum. You can fight these foes by scheduling regular cleanings, but what if they gain ground between cleanings through daily use? Try some of these ideas to attack the potential problems from all sides.

Shower Curtain Cleaning Tips

Shower Curtain Cleaning Tips

These three approaches to preventing residue are very different but achieve similar results, so you can choose whichever one (or more) best suits your situation and inclinations.

  1. Choose easy-rinse products

Scum is formed when soap molecules react with minerals in the water, creating a precipitate that sticks to surfaces and doesn’t rinse off well. Using products that resist scum formation can be a significant factor in fighting buildup. You can try this for yourself by switching from bar soap to a liquid soap or a body wash, which are less scum-forming. This is especially true with products that are technically detergents rather than soaps (such as body wash and shower gel).

  1. Coat the shower curtain or liner

Coating the inside of your shower curtain with car wax, furniture oil, or baby oil can make it less attractive to residue-forming substances. The thin coating repels soap-carrying water so soap can’t get close enough to stick. Lemon oil is said to be great for this application as well, and it even imparts a pleasant scent.

  1. Spray daily with vinegar

If neither of the above solutions appeals to you, you can still keep scum from building up by removing it each day with an easy and eco-friendly cleaner. Keeping a half-vinegar, half-water solution in a spray bottle will allow you to quickly apply it to the inside of the curtain or liner at the end of your daily shower. Then you can simply rinse it off with your removable shower head or give it a rapid sponging down. This method is the only one that takes extra time each day, and it’s still a minimal time commitment.

Preventing mildew growth

Mildew is a type of mold that often causes problems in bathrooms due to its love of warm, humid conditions. Keep it under control with these three ideas.

  1. Use mold retardant treatments

Anytime you buy a new shower curtain or liner, be sure to select products that have been treated with mildew preventatives. If you already have a liner that isn’t treated, you can easily add a do-it-yourself retardant to tide you over until your next replacement. This involves filling your bathtub with a salt solution and submerging the curtain and liner in it, leaving them for several hours, then air-drying thoroughly before use. Salt can’t eradicate an existing mildew problem, but it can help keep one from starting.

  1. Circulate air strategically

Airflow is one of the most crucial factors in preventing mildew. Mildew won’t be attracted to a shower curtain that’s usually dry and gets plenty of air circulation. You can combine several strategies to improve air circulation, such as:

  • Always remember to run the ventilation fan while taking a shower.
  • Close shower curtain after a shower (so it’s spread out instead of bunched up).
  • Open windows to let the humidity out and the fresh air in.
  • Hang curtains and liners on “double” hooks or even separate rods to allow air between the layers.
  • Prop the shower curtain up so air can access the space between curtain and liner.
  1. Encourage light

Mildew can’t thrive in areas that receive high levels of sunlight because the UV rays kill it off. Leaving curtains open and including many reflective or light-colored surfaces in your bathroom can increase light levels and help keep mildew from finding dark niches to grow in. Direct sunlight kills mildew most effectively, but UV rays are still present in indirect light as well. It’s also helpful to use a shower curtain that’s mostly transparent and a curtain liner that’s translucent so that a lot of light will be able to hit each side of both layers.

These tips will help you stop the two biggest enemies of clean shower curtains. Once you’ve found a routine that works for you, you can easily keep your shower curtains looking shiny and new between scheduled cleanings. If you need to set up a cleaning or want more expert cleaning tips, keep reading our blog and contact us today at (520) 795-7977!

What You Need to Know About Hiring a Cleaning Service in Tucson

Cleaning Service in Tucson

Hiring a cleaning service can add a lot of time and energy back into your life, but most people have questions when hiring a service for the first time. The Maids of Tucson are here to answer those questions, so you know exactly how the process works when you work with us.

Do I have to be home when my house is cleaned?

No. Many of our customers prefer to give us a key or leave one in a safe place each visit, so they don’t have to plan around the cleaning schedule.

How do I know my keys are safe?

Our managers are the only ones with access to the locked key storage device that keys are secured in. The team leader receives the key on the day of your clean and returns it at the end of the day.

Who will clean my house?

We have supervised teams of 3-4 people who are trained before they are allowed to clean your home. All employees are thoroughly screened prior to hiring.

Why should I hire The Maids of Tucson?

Our 22 step healthy touch cleaning system and extensive industry experience help us give your home a deeper, healthier clean than any other residential cleaning service in Tucson. We even offer a 100% satisfaction guarantee.  Ready to get started? Give us a call today at (520) 795-7977 or visit us at www.MaidsofTucson.com

Five Simple Cleaning Hacks To De-clutter Your Kitchen

Cleaning Hacks

Whether your kitchen clutter tends to congregate on counter-tops or in cabinets, chances are you’ve wished for more space at one time or another. Here are five cleaning hacks that use untapped vertical space to eliminate clutter and free up working and storage room.

  1. Hang fruits and vegetables

Instead of keeping fruits in cute baskets on the counter, free up that crucial space and create hanging decor by suspending baskets from the ceiling. These can provide easy snacking access and add a cute finishing touch to your kitchen furnishings. Shelf-stable vegetables such as onions and potatoes can receive a similar treatment for a more rustic feel.

  1. Install a pot rack

If you have a high ceiling, a suspended pot rack can be the ideal central piece to set the tone of your kitchen. In addition to showing off the great quality of your pots and turning them into an artistic display, it makes these essential tools instantly accessible and easy to look through.

  1. Use stacking canisters

Whether you store common baking ingredients on the counter or in the cupboard, canisters are a great way to keep them fresh. And choosing containers that stack two layers high will cut the counter or shelf space they require in half. The higher you stack them (within reason), the more space you save! Remember to label your canisters clearly so you don’t have to look through the entire stack to find one ingredient.

kitchen clutter tricks

  1. Add shelves to cabinets

Have you ever noticed how much empty space your cabinets hide? Between the tops of dishes or food items and the underside of the  next shelf up, you may find several inches of unused space. Stacking helps, but after a certain point stacks become unstable and difficult to access. This can be especially problematic with fragile items. Adding extra shelves increases the amount of usable space and helps keep stacks to a reasonable size. If you don’t want to take the time to install wood shelves, simple wire shelves designed to boost cabinet storage can serve just as well.

  1. Hang almost anything on the wall

Once you start thinking creatively, you’ll find nearly limitless ways to use wall-mounted organizers for various kitchen tools. The best ones are both attractive and convenient. They place  often-used tools in an easy-to-reach spot and simultaneously add to the atmosphere of the room. You can try some or all of these ideas in your kitchen, depending on your style of decor.

  • Hanging mail organizer: The working spaces in a kitchen can so easily become layered over with mail, calendars and planners, loose recipes, and other paperwork that’s too important to throw away. Reclaim these work areas by organizing papers in wall pockets, which can not only keep them out of the way but also keep them within reach and ready at a moment’s notice.
  • Hanging spice racks: Spice racks can use wall space quite efficiently while simultaneously eliminating dozens of small bottles from your cupboard. The type that stores spices horizontally like wine bottles can fit the most spice jars on the smallest area of wall.
  • Hanging cookbook racks: If one of your cupboards is taken up by cookbooks, try installing a rack or two around the kitchen to help put them on display. This will also make them easier to grab and use, allowing you to put their information to use even more easily.
  • Hanging measuring spoons: Command hooks or any other type of small, easy-to-install hook can be lined up in a row to form a measuring spoon rack. If you don’t feel like storing your measuring spoons out in the open, you can just as easily place these hooks on the inside door or wall of a kitchen cabinet.
  • Hanging roll and wrap dispensers: For a cheap, easy solution, you can fasten cling wrap, aluminum foil, and waxed paper boxes to the refrigerator by using magnets. Or if you’d like something more elegant, you can buy a purpose-made wrap dispenser that mounts on your wall.

These five tips for using your vertical space can help de-clutter everything from food to cookbooks to pots and pans. If you’d like more help with kitchen cleaning, check out our cleaning services to discover how we can help. Getting a free quote is easy; simply fill out the online form or call us at (520) 795-7977.

How To Remove Odors From Your Home

Remove odor

Many types of undesirable odors can make your home unpleasant for your family and embarrass you when you have guests. Usually, the odors are day-to-day minor problems like food smells and litter box odor. Pet stain odors or spilled perfume may require professional treatment to remove completely. Some of the most common problematic smells are lurking in your kitchen and bathroom and range from sour to just plain nasty. The sources of these odors are usually garbage cans, appliances and garbage disposals.

Here are some tips on how you can remove uncomfortable odors from problem areas in your house:

Garbage Cans

Buying pricey deodorant trash bags won’t get rid of foul trash can and diaper pail odors if you never clean your garbage cans. Plastic easily absorbs odors. Follow these tips to get your garbage cans clean and fresh.
Take your trash cans outside so that you can use your garden hose to spray all that nasty stuff out of the corners of your garbage cans. Work in your driveway to avoid harming grass or plants. Wear heavy rubber gloves that come up past your elbows. Use a long-handled shower cleaning brush. Use your hose and your brush to get rid of the built-up grime. Then use a mixture of about 50% white vinegar and hot (not boiling) water. Don’t use all your cleaning solution at once. Fill the garbage can about one-quarter full, and keep scrubbing and rinsing until the can is clean. Use a plastic sponge to clean around the top of the can and to clean the lid.

Give the cans a final thorough rinse and then let them sit upright in the sun for the rest of the day. Repeat this procedure every couple of months. When you take out your trash, take your garbage can out, turn it upside down on the ground and knock on the bottom to get rid of the stuff that builds up and makes initial cleaning difficult. A layer of baking soda into the bottom of your garbage pans and diaper pails absorbs odors and helps keep that gunky mess from building up again.

Appliances

This is the simplest dishwasher cleaning method. Just place a cup of white vinegar in a container that won’t absorb the vinegar smell and is safe for the dishwasher, and run a high-temp normal wash cycle with a cold-water rinse. Cover the bottom of the dishwasher with a layer of baking soda and let it sit for as long as possible (preferably 24 hours) before running another wash cycle. Use a weak vinegar and water solution to wipe down the outside of the dishwasher. For dried on spills, make a paste of baking soda and water and scrub with a sponge.

Garbage Disposal Odors

A foul order from the sink is probably from the disposal. The odor could be caused by normal food residue, or there could be something stuck in the disposal. Pour a mixture of equal amounts white vinegar and hot water down the drain. Let that sit. Turn the on the disposal and let hot water run down the drain.

Listen for unusual noises.

Pour baking soda down the garbage disposal, and let it sit for a few hours. Turn on the disposal and let the hot water run. If you repeat this process over several days and the odor doesn’t dissipate, call a professional.
Around the Kitchen

Use your vinegar and water solution to clean your refrigerator door seals. Take everything out of the fridge and wipe down the shelves, drawers and walls. Take out the crisper drawers and clean them in the sink. Put an open container of baking soda on each refrigerator shelf, in the drawers and in the freezer.

You can clean everything in your kitchen with water, vinegar and baking soda. Vinegar is a disinfectant. Baking soda is a gentle abrasive. You can even use white vinegar and water to mop most laminate floors.

Bathroom Cleaning

Sprinkle baking soda and vinegar on your toilet brush to clean and disinfect. Clean sinks, tubs and counters with vinegar and baking soda.

The Maids of Tucson

The Maids of Tucson are ready to help you keep your home looking and smelling fresh with our 22- step cleaning process. Call today for a free estimate! (520) 795-7977

Spring Cleaning: Declutter Your Home With These Tips

Spring Cleaning

We’re taking spring cleaning and decluttering and mixing it up for you. We aren’t giving you any tired old lists to follow. We’re going to give you some tips to turn spring cleaning on its head and make it easier and less tedious for you and your family, and yes, we’re getting the whole family into the act.

Start in the Bathroom

Your bathroom and kitchen are the most used and most necessary rooms in your home, yet they get the short end of the stick when it comes to spring cleaning and general decluttering. Choose the main bathroom and find ways for your kids to help. Remove all chemicals, razors and other hazardous items from the bathroom. Now you and your children can dig in and clean and declutter the bathroom.

Ask the children to organize their bathroom belongings, then tell them to pick out things they no longer need. Toss almost-empty shampoo and bubble-bath products. Tell the kids that from now on you won’t buy any new bath products until the old ones have been used. Direct each child to make a shopping list or dictate a shopping list to an older sibling. What makes this spring cleaning method special are your kids. Teach them organization and smart shopping at the same time (although there are some tips here for you, dads and moms.)

If you run into a problem like heavy mildew or what appears to be mold, don’t try to tackle it yourself. That’s why we’re here. You may think that your bathroom is mold and mildew free until you encounter a leak under the sink. Call us. Let us clean up the really nasty messes for you.

Bedrooms

Parents, look around at your kids’ rooms. Then go look at yours. Then sit down and breathe. It’s okay. Let’s declutter your bedrooms.

You used the bathroom to teach your children decluttering. Now you can tell them to do the same thing in their bedrooms. Tell them to pick out things they don’t wear or play with anymore. Set a good example by doing the same thing when you go through your closet. Get rid of things you aren’t wearing but are holding onto because you might lose or gain weight. Keep only what you wear.

Let your children keep their sentimental old toys. Tell the oldest child how to set up a display shelf of his or her favorite old toys. Then instruct the younger children to follow suit, but let them each do their own toy shelves. Throw away broken toys or toys with missing pieces. Any toys that can’t be passed down to younger siblings should go to a thrift store.

The Kitchen and Living Area

Remember that part of the benefit of decluttering is to reveal hidden messes like carpet stains and dirty appliances. Ask the kids to reshelve books, games and DVDs. Neaten your entertainment center. Put all unused devices and cords into a plastic bin. Buy a nice toy box for the living room or den. Donate magazines to a senior center.

Do a quick pantry and fridge scan and toss everything past the expiration date.

Throw away plastic soda cups from restaurants. Take out the drawer full of straws, sporks and condiments and dump it in the trash. Wipe it out with an antibacterial wipe and then use it to organize the new kitchen towels and dish cloths that you’re going to buy. That’s right; it’s time to reward yourself. Don’t forget to reward the kids. Ask each child what one item he or she feels they need for their room. Set a price limit. Items may range from lamps to cork boards to posters. Remember that your children have worked hard with you and everyone needs a treat.

When You’re Through Decluttering

You’ll find messes and you’ll panic. Call us. You’ve made room for us to work on steam-cleaning your carpets, disinfecting all your bathrooms and cleaning your grout. We’ll also clean your appliances inside and out, take down and wash your drapes and get rid of those upholstery stains that have been bugging you for months. Please feel free to ask us about anything else you’d like cleaned. If you follow the instructions in this article, you’ll have your house ready for cleaning by our professional cleaning technicians. Contact us for a free consultation.

How to Keep your Home Clean With These 5 Minute Tricks

Keep your Home Clean

Finding time to keep your home clean can be harder than actually cleaning. Here are some quick things you can do to manage your mess.

Here is the quickest cleaning tip of them all:  Save your time and call us! Maids of Tucson will clean your home with our 22 healthy step process. Call us today at (520) 795-7977!

 

Royal Housekeeping Tips

Housekeeping Tips

 

Royal Housekeeping Tips

Ever wonder what it would take to have your house cleaned like a royal palace? Check out these tips from a former Queen’s housekeeper:

In the bedroom

  • The open end of pillowcases should be inward-facing on the bed.
  • Smooth the duvet, plump the pillows by punching them and carefully fold the bedcover into thirds, concertina-style.
  • In the bathroom

Lay the towels flat, then fold it in three, lengthwise, before hanging on the towel rail.

  • To remove lime scale build-up on chrome taps, apply a paste of 2 tbsp. salt and 1 tsp white distilled vinegar. Use a toothbrush to clean difficult areas, and a bottle brush to clean plugholes.
  • Keep a sponge and rubber gloves dedicated to the loo – and manually clean under the rim of the bowl.
  • Use a lime scale product; bleach takes the shine off porcelain.
  • To remove mildew or mold, mix equal parts lemon juice and baking powder into a paste, leave on for two hours, then rinse off.
  • Toilet paper should roll from the front. Fold the end into a point to show the bathroom has been cleaned.

Even if you don’t live in a palace, The Maids of Tucson will have your home so clean you’ll feel like you could entertain the Queen.

Contact us today about the needs of your castle.

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10 Cleaning Tips With Baking Soda

Baking soda cleaning tips

Baking soda has more uses than deodorizing refrigerators and litter boxes. You can “go green” using baking soda if you’re concerned about using chemicals around young children or pets. We’ve selected our top 10 household uses for baking soda for emergencies and daily cleaning.

Deodorizing

Use baking soda directly or in the box to absorb odors. Place an open box in coolers after use or in the car trunk or SUV hatch to remove sweaty smells after practice or games. Put a box in the hamper, use soda in the washing machine and sprinkle it in kitchen and bathroom wastebaskets.

Apply a light layer of baking soda to mattresses, let it sit all day and then vacuum. Baking soda removes odors, leaving no artificial perfumes or chemical residues that can be harmful to people with asthma or allergies. Use baking soda instead of odor-concealing sprays in the nursery. Be sure to vacuum up all the soda in any place where a baby might be exposed to it.

Common Stain Removal

A red wine stain on light clothing or table linens can spoil a dinner party. Wet the stain with cold water, then dab with a mixture of baking soda and hydrogen peroxide. If the stain isn’t completely removed, the soda pre-treatment will make it easier to clean later. For greasy stains on tablecloths, apply a paste of baking soda and water or peroxide and let it sit until it dries or you launder the tablecloth.

Difficult Stain Removal

Antique quilts, baby clothes and decorative linens often develop yellowed areas or rust-colored spots. After testing the fabric and waiting 24 hours, spot-clean old fabrics with baking soda, water and a cotton swab. Exposing the fabric to direct sunlight may help the stain fade. Don’t use this method on dark fabrics, silks, satins or velvet. They require professional cleaning. Baking soda is usually harmless to white and light-colored cottons and decorative items like tatted doilies that have yellowed with age.

Carpets

Most organic stains respond well to baking soda, although blood on carpet will probably require other cleaning products or professional cleaning. Baking soda typically doesn’t fade light colors. Treating stains while they’re damp is best. Cover the stain with dry baking soda and let sit overnight, then vacuum. If necessary, try a baking soda and water paste and use a stiff cleaning brush to brush up the damp soda after 24 hours. Baking soda removes stains and odors, leaving carpets safe for children and pets.

Bags and Shoes

Scuffs on heels and toes of sneakers, light-colored handbags, laptop cases, book bags and luggage can be removed with baking soda, water and a sponge. Don’t use baking soda on leather, and test it on fabrics before attempting to remove larger stains. Baking soda in a book bag can remove the school locker odor.

Kitchen Cleaning

Lighten grout stains with a baking soda and water paste. Baking soda is a gentle abrasive that can be used on most counter tops, vinyl flooring and stainless steel appliances and cookware. Don’t use baking soda on non-stick cookware. Instead of running smelly vinegar through your coffee maker, use baking soda dissolved in water. Clean the inside of your refrigerator with a damp sponge and baking soda and you won’t have to worry about chemicals near your food.

Produce

Don’t buy expensive washes to remove wax from produce. A gentle scrubbing under warm water with baking soda on a sponge or dishcloth will remove the wax without damaging the produce skin.

Bathroom Cleaning

Regular scrubbing with baking soda removes toilet bowl stains. Baking soda can also be used in most sinks and bathtubs, on faucets and showerheads and to remove mildew stains. Apply a paste of soda and peroxide to stubborn mildew stains. Use baking soda with caution on caulk.

Outdoor Furniture

Chemicals can damage plastic or vinyl patio furniture. Use baking soda instead for stains and general cleaning, especially at the beginning and end of the season.

Crayon Marks and Stickers

Baking soda and hot water will remove sticker residue from appliances and plastic items. Test before using it on walls. Many toys can be cleaned with baking soda and a damp cloth. Use caution on dolls’ faces, action figures and other toys with painted features.

For your other cleaning needs, we have safe, green cleaning products that will make messes and stains disappear without endangering your family and pets. We can also recommend professional cleaners for personal and delicate or antique items. Call us at (520) 795-7977 for more information.





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