Bringing a dog into your home: Chaos or calm?

Bringing a dog into your home: Chaos or calm?

Bringing a pet into your life, particularly a dog, is said to be great for your health and wellbeing. They’re touted to have a positive effect on your cholesterol, and even lower your blood pressure. You may not notice this particular benefit in the early days however; brace yourself for accidents, chewing, and hair EVERYWHERE.

Read on to discover 4 simple and easy tips to smoothly integrate your dog into your home with minimal anxiety.

1: Invest in a comfortable dog bed

The easiest way to keep your house clean and under control, and still enjoy having your dog inside is to limit their access to a certain area. Buy a good sized, comfortable dog bed, and find a permanent spot for it. In the hub of the home where you spend most of your time is recommended; that way your dog will be able to see you, and will be more likely to relax. Start as you mean to go on, so as soon as your let your dog in and you’ve said hi, direct him to his bed and spend some time making a fuss of him in this area. Begin to teach him the command “Bed”. Make sure to reward him with treats while he’s learning. With repetition and practice, your dog will learn that the dog bed is his space, and he will be manageable and relaxed indoors.

2: Handling the hair

Animals shed. There’s no getting away from it: literally. You’ll find it on your furniture, the carpet, your clothes, everywhere your dog has been. This is where tip number 1 can make a positive impact. A calm dog that spends most of its indoor time relaxing on the dog bed will not spread as much hair around as one that races throughout the house, following you everywhere and leaping on furniture. To handle the hair that does begin to gather, invest in rechargeable cordless vacuum. These are very compact, can easily be stored close at hand, and are perfect for zipping around each day collecting the stray hair. You’re more likely to stay on top of the hair situation with one of these compact vacs than having to lug out your heavy duty vacuum each time. Added bonus: Most models come with a detachable hand held section, perfect for giving the couch a quick going over. Regular grooming will also help your pet to shed less, meaning less cleaning up indoors.

3: Accidents happen; react quickly to avoid stains

If your pet has an accident, the sooner you can deal with it, the less likely you are to be stuck with a permanent stain. Remove any solids, and blot fresh stains with a clean cloth. After absorbing as much moisture as possible, mix a teaspoon of dishwashing liquid mixed with a cup of warm water and blot with another clean, dry towel. Rinse by blotting again with warm water and a clean cloth. Repeat until the mark is gone.

4: Don’t let odours take hold

Nose blindness is a real thing; you may not realise that your house is taking on a perfume of eau de canine because you’re quite simply used to it. Incorporate these steps into your regular routine to keep your house smelling clean and fresh:

  • Change cat litter regularly. Sprinkling baking soda underneath the litter will keep it smelling fresher for longer
  • Wash your pets regularly. Dogs particularly are big explorers, and consequently can quickly smell less than fresh
  • Wash the pet bedding every couple of weeks, as well as any plushy toys. The fabric will quickly absorb smells, and can make your house smell distinctly doggy.
The illusion of a tidy house: 5 tips to bring order to your home

The illusion of a tidy house: 5 tips to bring order to your home

Sometimes, life gets on top of us, and even the best intentions get swept away by the tidal wave of work, school, cooking, activities and everything else in between. Cleaning and tidying are often the first things to fall by the wayside. In this article, you’ll find 5 simple tips to help you get a handle on the chaos. Making them part of your daily routine can make a huge difference to the appearance of your house, and help to reduce mental clutter too.


Tip 1: Make your bed

This may seem like such a small thing, but it can make a big difference. Quickly tugging the fitted sheet snug, pulling up and smoothing the quilt, and re-setting the pillows will immediately lift the look of your bedroom. Not only that, your bed will look much more inviting at the end of a busy day than rumpled, messy sheets.


Tip 2: De-clutter efficiently

Even with the best intentions, things don’t always end up back where they belong after use. Shoes, handbags, clothes and other bits and pieces often end up spread throughout the house, making the place look untidy. Rather than picking up one or two items and returning them to their rightful location which is time consuming and inefficient; grab a laundry basket (bear with me!). Starting in the living room, grab everything that doesn’t belong there, and put in the laundry basket. Move to the bedroom, and repeat. While there, if you have anything in the basket belonging in the bedroom, put it back where it belongs. Repeat this process from room to room until your basket is empty. Allocating 10 minutes a day to de-cluttering will make a big difference to the tidiness of your home, and will help you to get into the habit of returning things to their rightful place.


3: Run the dishwasher each night

Dishwashers are so water efficient these days, you actually use less water running the dishwasher every day than you would washing things by hand. At the end of the night, put everything into the dishwasher, and even if it’s not full, run it anyway. A quick cycle will not use much water, but the mental benefit of a clean and tidy kitchen is huge.

Having your dishwasher run inefficiently can affect how well your dishes are cleaned. If your double handling by both washing dishes by and dishwasher, then you need to get that fixed. Go ahead and call the team at Quality Appliance Repairs (our appliance repair partners). Having a properly running dishwasher will help keep your kitchen tidy.


4: Wipe down the kitchen benchtop

It’s easy to get stuck on the couch after dinner and think “I’ll tidy up later”. Before you know it, it’s late and it’s time for bed, but the kitchen is still a mess. First things first: see step 3. After that, put away condiments, bin any rubbish or scraps, and wipe down the benches and stovetop. 10 minutes after dinner, and you’ve got a clean kitchen, and can relax without feeling guilty.


5: De-clutter the bathroom

Usually, we’ve got a few products we use every morning as we get ready for work. Putting these items in a small basket or bag makes it quick and easy to find in the cabinet every morning, saving time, and preventing a collection of products we don’t use regularly accumulating on the bathroom counter. Keep the items on your bathroom countertop limited to soap, and a canister holding your toothbrush and toothpaste, and possibly your hairbrush. Everything else should go in the cabinet, leaving the countertops clear and tidy.
As much as we’d all love a cleaner to tidy up the debris we leave behind every day, barring a lotto win, it’s unlikely to happen. The tips above will make a huge difference to the look and feel of your home if you implement them in your daily routine. A clean kitchen and tidy bathroom are the hot spots for visitors too, so you no longer need to dread the “drop-in” guest.

Steam Cleaning vs Dry Cleaning

Steam Cleaning vs Dry Cleaning

There are two methods of professional carpet cleaning commonly used in the industry; steam cleaning (hot water extraction), and dry cleaning. Continue reading to find out the differences and benefits of steaming cleaning vs dry cleaning.

Winter, the season of leaking roofs and muddy feet leaving stains and dirt on your carpets is upon us. According to the Carpet Institute of Australia (Yes, really), maintaining your carpet properly will help to retain its original appearance as long as possible, and can improve the quality of the air in your home.

In addition to weekly vacuuming and spot cleaning, the Carpet Institute recommends having your carpets cleaned by a professional service every 12 months.


Steam Carpet Cleaning

Also known as hot water extraction, this cleaning methods works by forcing hot water into the carpet using a high-pressure jet spray, and then vacuuming the water out. This is typically performed using either a truck-mounted or a portable machine. Your steam-cleaning technician will first vacuum the carpet to remove any dust or surface dirt, spot-treat any stains and marks with a cleaning agent, and then use a pre-spray to soften the surface tension of the carpet.

This allows the hot water to penetrate the fibres more effectively, allowing for a deeper clean. Drying time following a hot water extraction treatment will vary, but with adequate ventilation, 6 – 8 hours is typical. If your carpet takes longer than 24 hours to dry, your technician has not extracted enough water during the cleaning process.

Dry Carpet Cleaning

Despite the name, this method still uses some water, though less than steam cleaning. As with steam cleaning, your technician will vacuum the carpet to remove any surface dust or dirt. A dry cleaning solution of cleaning solvents and water is then applied to the carpet. This solution is formulated to break down the carpet fibres. Releasing any build-up of residue, which traps dirt in the fibres, allowing the dirt and soiling to be extracted.

This method uses a machine fitted with rotating pads that spin at high speed on the carpet, absorbing dirt. The pads are made from absorbent cotton which are soaked in a mixture of hot water and conditioning solution. Which are changed throughout the cleaning process as they become soiled.

Steam cleaning and dry cleaning have different benefits. Dry cleaning leaves the carpet dry enough to walk on immediately, and will normally be completely dry within 2 hours, which is useful for carpet in a high traffic area. Many carpet manufacturers recommend steam cleaning as the preferred method of maintaining and prolonging the life of your carpet.

So the verdict is in for steam carpet cleaning vs dry carpet cleaning:

For general maintenance, dry cleaning is quick and effective; however it is only a surface clean. For a deep and thorough carpet treatment, professional steam cleaning is the way to go.

Forgotten Spills On Carpets

Forgotten Spills On Carpets

Sometimes stains that have been hidden by soil are revealed after cleaning. These stains, which did not immediately discoloration, are usually from spilled liquid containing colourless sugar that remained on fibres. After long exposure to the air, they changed to insoluble brown stains. The stains may look like brownish discolorations but often remain unnoticed because of the accumulated soil covering them.

Other kinds of stains can be caused by water soaking through and absorbing sizings, browning or fugitive dyes from the backs of the material. Because the fibres act as wicks, moisture will rise to the surface to evaporate, and discoloration will be left. Consumers who try to remove stains by using wrong cleaning compounds and procedures, may only make the stained areas more noticeable.

To lessen the possibility of stain damage, immediate action should be taken: thoroughly absorb all moisture and, when possible, put a ½ inch thickness of clean white absorbent material over the area, weighing it down – then call your professional cleaner to learn how to remove the spot safely before it becomes a permanent stain.

Textile Insects In Your Carpets

Textile Insects In Your Carpets

Carpet beetles and clothes moths have not been eliminated. In the past years, textile-eating insects were common due to the large amount of wool fibers in clothing and home furnishings. The popularity and widespread use of synthetic fibers has led to the incorrect assumption that insect damage is a thing of the past. Clothes moths and carpet beetles can digest protein fibers such as wool, silk and specialty hairs, but these insects will also attack synthetic fibers if they contain protein substances.

This means that carpet, rugs, draperies and upholstery made from nylon, acrylic, polyester, acetate and other synthetics can be damaged if they contain food or beverage stains, blood, urine, perspiration or other sources of nutritional protein. Firebrats and silverfish are also textile pests that attack carbohydrates. They eat the paste on the wall paper and book bindings as well as starched clothing. Termites digest cellulosic materials wood and carpet backings in addition to yarns made of jute, cotton and kraftcord.

The most effective way of to prevent an infestation and inhibit growth is to keep textile furnishings clean. Spills should be removed immediately. Carpet, rugs, draperies, upholstery etc., should be brushed or vacuumed or steam cleaned regularly as insects do no generally attack clean materials. Regular dry/steam cleaning of these articles will also decrease the chances of infestation. Similarly, regular carpet cleaning will remove the nutritional contaminants that attract and support insects. If an infestation has occurred, you should consult a licensed pest control operator who is experienced in treating textile products for insect control.