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The Complete House Cleaning Supplies Checklist

The Complete House Cleaning Supplies Checklist

Disclosure: This post may contain affiliate links.

If you’re a cleaning professional or enthusiast, you likely have a few go-to cleaning supplies. These are the products you always have on you any time you clean your or your customers’ home.

It’s also likely that you have a ton of supplies that you don’t use or you’re not happy with. Whether it’s a flimsy mop, a linty cloth, or a cleaning solution that just doesn’t get the job done, these are the things you wish you hadn’t wasted your money on.

I’ve gone and done the research on the top cleaning supplies professionals swear by, so you can build a cleaning kit that actually works.

Why The Cleaning Supplies You Use Are Important

So many people try to save as much money as they can when buying cleaning supplies, which is totally understandable. Life is expensive these days.

But, like that age-old saying goes, “You get what you pay for.” Anc cleaning products are no different.

If you buy the $10 mop versus the $40 mop, that’s exactly what you’ll get; a mop that does a poor job of cleaning, takes longer to clean, and will need replacing frequently. Because of these things, you’ll also hate using it.

If you had just spent the extra $30, you’d have a mop that cleans effectively, helps you work quickly and efficiently, won’t need replacing for years, and is satisfying to use.

Which ends up costing you less than the $10 in the end.

Also, when it comes to health and hygiene, it’s important to have products that actually clean a surface, rather than spread germs around (I’m looking at you, Swiffer). Products like high-quality microfiber do the heavy lifting when you clean, so you don’t need to use excessive cleaning agents, like surface sprays and detergents. It works with just water.

marble countertop and stainless sink

Supplies You Need in Your Cleaning Kit

Below are the cleaning supplies professionals swear by. I’ve broken it down into each room and surface in a home to help you build the ultimate cleaning kit.

Dusting

You don’t typically need to use a cleaning solution on surfaces for dusting. A dry or damp microfiber cloth or duster will work perfectly. Microfiber attracts and traps dust, unlike other fabrics.

For Hard-to-Reach Places

Always work safely when dusting high-up shelves, window ledges, and other hard-to-reach surfaces. The best way to do this is to use a microfiber duster wand with an extension handle.

For Delicate Furnishings

Furnishings like chandeliers, wine bottles, and delicate decor need to be handled with care. Having a fluffy microfiber duster in your kit collects and traps dust without damaging or disturbing items.

For All Other Surfaces

One of the most important items you’ll need is a good quality cloth that can tackle dust and dirt on flat surfaces around a home. A microfiber cloth is an absolute must-have for this purpose.

If you'd like to use a cleaning solution with your cloth, choose a multi surface spray. Choose a concentrate that can be diluted to save money.

Glass and Mirrors

A common misconception is that you need a cleaning agent, like Windex, to clean glass and mirrors. But oftentimes using these products leaves surfaces streakier than when you started.

The secret to cleaning even the filthiest glass and mirrors is microfiber. Just get a towel very damp and wipe the glass or mirror to remove visible soils. While the surface is still wet, polish it with a flat-weave microfiber cloth.

Countertops and Splashbacks

For frequently-used surfaces, like kitchen and bathroom countertops and splashbacks, opt for a multi surface spray for daily cleaning. For food splatters, leave the spray on for several minutes before wiping off.

You’ll also want to disinfect countertops frequently with a hospital-grade disinfectant solution. Always follow dwell-time recommendations to ensure the disinfectant has time to work.

Pair both cleaning agents with a high-quality microfiber towel for thorough cleaning every time.

scrubbing tiles with a brush

Furniture

Different types of furniture usually call for different cleaning solutions. Using the wrong product on a surface can cause damage or do a poor job of cleaning it. So here are common furniture surfaces and what is recommended on each one.

Solid Wood and Veneer

How you clean wood and veneer will sometimes depend on the type of wood and the finish (stained or varnished, etc.). But the general advice is to wipe away the dust first with a dry microfiber towel, followed by a damp one to remove loose debris.

Then follow with a cleaning agent to deep clean the wood. You can also use a furniture oil on occasion, but furniture polish is not really recommended as it can build up, creating a film and dulling the finish.

Particle Board

Because of its affordability, a lot of furniture these days is made from particle board rather than wood. So when cleaning it, use the right products to prevent damaging it.

As always, use a high-quality microfiber towel, and pair it with a multi surface cleaner. Avoid anything abrasive.

Fabric and Upholstery

For sofas, fabric chairs, and curtains, it’s best to follow the manufacturer's cleaning instructions on the tag. If that isn’t available, you may be able to toss it into the washing machine on a delicate cycle.

To spot clean, use a damp microfiber cloth and laundry detergent for stains. For bodily fluids and food stains, follow up with a disinfectant. Always blot a stain, never rub.

Steam cleaning is also a great non-toxic option for most fabric furniture like polyester and cotton. Just avoid using steam on:

            • Velvet
            • Dralon
            • Leather
            • Suede
            • Silk
            • Down-Filled Cushions

Screens

Screens like TVs and iPads can get slimy and smudged from regular use. But it’s best to avoid using any cleaning agents as these can damage the touchscreen abilities. Instead, you can use a suede lens cloth dry for dusting, or wet to lift off fingerprints and soils.

Large Appliances

Dishwasher

You might not know this, but dishwashers need to be cleaned from time-to-time to keep them working properly. For the filter, you can wash any removable parts in warm soapy water and rinse well.

For the inside of the dishwasher, use a microfiber scrubbing sponge and a dishwashing cleaner.

Washing Machine and Dryer

Just as a dishwasher needs cleaning to maintain it, so do washing machines and dryers. For front loader washing machines, the rubber seal in the door is prone to mold and mildew. So you’ll need to clean the seal with a microfiber towel and a multi purpose cleaner.

You’ll also need to clean inside your washing machine by running a cycle with a washer tablet. Always dry the door seal of your front loader and leave the door ajar.

Use a multi purpose cleaner and microfiber towel for the outside of both appliances.

Oven

The oven is an appliance that often gets neglected because it can be hard to clean. But the longer you leave it, the harder it is to clean.

Refer to the instruction manual for the oven before cleaning it, and determine whether it is Self-Cleaning, Manual-Cleaning, or Steam Cleaning.

  1. For Self and Manual-Clean use a fume-free oven cleaner. After removing the stuck-on messes with the oven cleaner and a plastic scraper, go over it with a multi surface spray and a scrubbing sponge.

  2. Steam-Clean, use water only and follow only the manufacturer’s instructions.

Microwave

A microwave can be cleaned very easily by microwaving a bowl of water to create steam. You can add a little lemon to the water, and use a multi surface spray with a microfiber towel to remove any debris.

cleaning a surface with a microfiber towel and spray

Stainless Steel

Stainless steel looks great when it’s clean, but looks terrible when it’s streaky and dirty. Stainless steel surfaces can be hard to clean, particularly if they have hard water stains or stuck-on food messes.

To clean stainless steel, you’ll need a damp microfiber towel. For stubborn stuck-on messes, spray some multi surface spray and allow it to soften the debris before wiping over with the towel.

Use distilled vinegar to dissolve hard water stains. When you’ve removed all soils, wipe over a still damp surface with a flat weave microfiber towel to polish it.

Showers and Bathtubs

To clean shower glass, you need an acid-based cleaning solution that tackles hard water, mold, and mildew. Mix your own vinegar and detergent with water at a 1:1:2 ratio, spray it on the glass for several minutes, and use a scrubbing sponge to remove the soils.

Toss shower curtains in the washing machine with Borax and washing soda.

Clean bathtubs and shower walls with a contour scrubber mop and a tile and grout cleaner.

Toilets

For toilets, you’ll need a disinfectant toilet bowl cleaner and a toilet brush.

For the rest of the toilet, many people use paper towels because they are disposable, but these aren’t great for preventing cross contamination or picking up lint and hair.

Opt for disposable microfiber cloths with a cleaning spray around the seat and outside of the toilet, followed by a hospital-grade disinfectant.

Always allow dwell time when disinfecting toilets, as this will allow ample time to work.

Walls

To clean walls, you’ll need a flat mop and a dedicated wall cleaning solution. Wet your flat mop pad, wring it out, and spray your cleaner on the wall and then work up and down, left to right with your mop.

Don’t forget the baseboards. Use a damp microfiber baseboard mop to clean baseboards without bending or crawling around.

Carpet and Rugs

For deep cleaning carpet and rugs, you need a reliable vacuum cleaner, but that is also easy to use and maneuver. Also choosing a bagless vacuum means you don't need to buy replacement bags.

For smelly carpet and rugs, use an odor elimator or deodorizer.

Hard Floors

The best way to remove dust and debris from hard floors is to first use a microfiber dust mop. While vacuum cleaners are popular, for hard floors they can often send dust flying.

To deep clean ith a microfiber flat mop and floor cleaner. Choose a cleaner specifically for hardwood floors, or one for stone, tile, laminate, and vinyl flooring.

To mop with a flat mop, start in the far corner and use an S or figure-8 motion working backwards to the entrypoint.

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