The weather is starting to cool off and our brains are programmed to think about all the apples and pumpkins and comfort foods but before we start on that, we must embark on Fall cleaning tasks and what better way to do that than with a free printable Fall Cleaning Checklist.
I don’t know about you but a checklist helps keep me on track, not necessarily organized but getting things done.
When’s the last time you went to Pinterest, ok, I know it was probably about 5 minutes ago but seriously, you go to Pinterest to find a checklist to get you started and every image that pops up is like ‘the ultimate checklist’. 762 items to get your home ready for Fall.
Um, what? Who’s got time for that!?! Not anyone I know.
So this will be the ultimate checklist BUT it is a manageable ultimate checklist, I’m talking tasks that can be done in 15 minutes a day. 31 items and 5 bonus items for you overachievers, in a calendar format so you can just check those boxes right off.
When Should Fall Cleaning Start
Do you start at the end of summer? Or maybe when the weather cools off? The first day of Fall is September 22nd and the first day of Winter is December 21st, so you do your Fall cleaning anytime between then.
If you’re anything like me, you can be totally overwhelmed by ‘Fall Cleaning’ because it sounds like such a daunting task. This is why we need a Fall cleaning schedule.
I can’t sustain the cleaning effort unless I really get into a good groove so breaking it down into smaller, more manageable tasks makes them all seem doable. Plus, I know I can commit to cleaning/organizing for 15 minutes a day. That’s why this is the manageable ultimate checklist.
What Does Fall Clean Up Include
I made this one very similar to my Spring Cleaning Checklist. I love to mark things off that list and bonus, you can do it without using up every last drop of ink in your printer.
Hang it on the fridge and do these things in any order you prefer. I grouped them together by room because it made more sense but that doesn’t mean I do them in that order. I’d suggest getting your kids to help. Then you can get through it in much less time.
Fall Cleaning Essentials
The first thing I’m going to tell you is it’s not a requirement to have Norwex cleaning products in order to get your Fall cleaning done.
Do I think using Norwex cleaning products will help you get many of these tasks done more quickly and more effectively? Most definitely I do but you can 100% use the products you have.
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Fall Cleaning Checklist
Bathroom Cabinets & Drawers – pull everything out, get rid of what you don’t need and give the inside and outside a good wipe down.
Shower Head & Curtains/Doors – put equal parts vinegar and water in a bag, put that around the shower head, secure with a rubber band and let sit 20 minutes. Then flush water through. Machine wash the shower curtain, I’ll let you decide what to do with the liner, if it’s torn or too moldy, I’d suggest tossing it. I haven’t found any product that cleans my shower doors like the Norwex Descaler. Spray it on, let it sit for about 10 minutes and wipe all that soap scum away.
Bedding – throw it all in the machine, unless the care instructions say otherwise. If you’re fancier than I am and have seasonal comforters, time for your Fall one. I realize this takes more than 15 minutes but your active work time is about 3 minutes.
Flip & Rotate Mattresses – if you can flip the mattress, definitely do that, many these days can’t be flipped. I spray our mattresses and upholstered furniture with Norwex Mattress Cleaner to help remove contaminants like pet dander, oils, dust mites, etc.
Air Vents & Filters – dust and vacuum the air vents and replace the air filters. Before you turn your furnace/heat on for the year, it’s important to have the filter changed. Your HVAC person will probably replace the air filter when they come out.
Bed Pillows – wash pillows in the machine, make sure to do 2 at a time to balance the load. For down or fiber filled pillows, the gentle cycle with warm water is what you need with a small amount of detergent. Then dry on low or in the sun. I realize this takes more than 15 minutes but your active work time is about 3 minutes.
Wipe All Baseboards – give the kids a damp cloth to wipe down the baseboards.
Pet Bedding, Toys, Dishes, etc. – throw the pet bedding (and the plush toys) in the washing machine with a mild detergent, run the dishes, hard toys and ropes through the dishwasher (top rack) with vinegar.
Change Smoke Detector Batteries – this has been engrained in our brains since we were little. Batteries get changed when the clocks change right!?!
Dishwasher Inside & Out – clean the inside according to the manufacturer’s instructions and wipe down the outside.
Kitchen Utensil Drawers & Holder – pull out all the utensils from the drawers and the holder (like where you keep the spatulas, ladles, potato masher, etc). Wipe out the drawer(s), wash the holder and put it all back together.
Microwave Inside & Out – I find that microwaving a bowl of water with either lemon juice or vinegar (whichever scent you prefer) for 5 minutes, then letting sit for 2 minutes, and then wiping out the inside makes the job much easier. Be careful when you remove the bowl of water because it’s going to be HOT!
Check Fire Extinguisher – this is beyond my scope of expertise. Click here to learn more.
Oven Inside & Out – I’m not a fan of the self-cleaning option on the oven so I stick to my Norwex Cleaning Paste and Norwex SpiriSponge. I just remove the racks, wipe the oven with a damp Norwex EnviroCloth to pick up crumbs and anything that’s not stuck on. Clean with the SpiriSponge and Cleaning Paste, wipe again with the EnviroCloth and voila, done.
Fridge Inside & Out – this one might take a while so save it for a day when you have some extra time. I suggest doing it before you do a big grocery shopping trip. Pull everything out and get rid of all the expired food, then wipe down the shelves, drawers and inside with mild soapy water.
Kitchen Sink & Faucet – yes, it’s true, you do have to clean your sink, even though soap is always washing through it. While you’re at it, wipe down the faucet as well.
Bathroom & Kitchen Trashcans – I like to take mine outside and hose them out, then clean with a mild dish soap, hose off, let sit to dry in the sun and then bring back in the house.
Kitchen Cabinet Doors – Have your kids wipe down the cabinet doors (provided they can reach) with mild soapy water. For that darn greasy cabinet door above the stove, the Norwex Degreaser (diluted) and a Norwex EnviroScrub are amazing. I spray the Degreaser on the cabinet door and let it sit a minute or so and then scrub away the built up grease.
Stovetops, Range Hood & Vents – most days, the stovetop gets a wipe down after dinner but every so often, you need to pull off the grates and drip pans and really clean in there. I let those suckers sit in the sink with a pinch of Norwex Laundry Detergent and HOT water. Then I scrub them with a scrubber. If you’ve got glass top stove, you can skip this step. I also use a pinch of Norwex Laundry Detergent diluted in HOT water and the SpiriSponge to clean my range hood and vents.
Refrigerator Coils/Behind Refrigerator – at least once a year you need to pull the fridge out and clean behind it. Cleaning the coils will help keep the refrigerator running properly and efficiently.
Wall Mirrors – our large mirror that sits on the fireplace mantle doesn’t get dusted and cleaned as frequently as it should so at least once a year I do pull out a chair to stand on so I can give it some attention.
Windows and Screens – when the weather cools off, I’m ready to throw the windows open and get some fresh air in. Before I do that though, I use my Norwex Dusting Mitt (wet) to wipe down the screens and get the dirt that’s been sitting in there off. Don’t want it coming in the house. I use my Norwex EnviroCloth (damp) to clean the windows and my Norwex Window Cloth (dry) to dry them – no streaks or paper towel lint.
Ceiling Fans & Fixtures – these are the most neglected places in our home. I use a Norwex EnviroWand to get my ceiling fans and send my kids around with a Norwex Dusting Mitt to get the light fixtures.
Couch Cushions – remove the cushions and vacuum anything that’s lurking under them. I spray mine with Norwex Mattress Cleaner but you could also sprinkle baking soda on them, let sit 10 minutes and then vacuum up. The baking soda helps absorb odors.
Under Area Rugs & Mats – if you have area rugs and mats, somehow dirt and pet hair gets trapped underneath. I know, I’m just as surprised as you! Pull the rugs/mats back and clean underneath. I pull mine back a few times a year and clean underneath.
All Light Switches & Door Handles – I send my kids around the house with the EnviroCloth to wipe these. It’s a weekly chore through the winter months to keep sickness at bay.
Dust All Furniture & Underneath – this one is pretty self explanatory, eh? Just make sure to get underneath the furniture with either a mop or a vacuum. You’ll probably find a few things you didn’t even know you lost. Winning lottery ticket maybe?
Blinds/Shades & Window Sills – if you have small kiddos, you’re likely to find more than just dust on those blinds. You’ll probably find dried up applesauce, rice, mashed banana, etc. Don’t worry, you’re not alone. Let’s face it, kids can hurl mashed up food everywhere. You’ll probably have to dust and then wipe down with some mild soapy water. Don’t forget the window sills, while you’re already cleaning and all.
Make HVAC Appt. – this one is so easy, just make the call to get your HVAC check up scheduled. You’ll even knock out changing the air filter with this one.
Office Desk – remove everything from the desk and throw away/recycle what you no longer need. Dust and wipe down and then put everything back, in an organized manner.
Backup Computer & Organize Files/Photos – it’s always good to backup your computer files, that’s my hubby’s job. He’s my IT guy. You can definitely spend more than 15 minutes backing up and organizing pictures because if you’re anything like me, you’ll get lost in the memories and 3 hours will pass before you even look up. Save this one for the weekend!
BONUS – Clean Out Purse – we throw everything in our purses, at some point, you’ve got to clean that sucker out.
BONUS – Clean Out Wallet – get rid of all the business cards you don’t need, receipts, etc.
BONUS – Clean Out Car – if you’ve got a minivan, this could take a week but get your kids to help because most likely, they made the mess anyway. Clean out the cupholders, the console, the seat pockets, etc. If you’ve got kids in carseats, you know how they like to stash things in the carseat pockets.
BONUS – Clean Out Dressers – if you have some extra time, you could do this after cleaning out the closets.
BONUS – Clean Out Phone – delete files and/or apps you no longer need/use. This is an easy one to do while you’re waiting on kids at activities or sitting in a waiting room somewhere.
NonToxic Cleaning Product Suggestions
If you’re not ready to make the switch to Norwex products, you’ve got options. Before switching to Norwex I used products from Seventh Generation, Ecos, and of course white vinegar and baking soda.
You may have to dole out a few bucks to your kids but hey, they need to buy their Roblox bucks or VBucks or whatever they spend their money on these days. It’s surely not bubble gum like I spent my hard earned money on.
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Now that your house is spotless, why not bake up a yummy Fall treat?