How to Clean a Living Room
How to clean your living room checklist
1. Declutter your living room
- Pick up any trash
- Gather and return items that belong elsewhere
- Neatly store items that belong in the room
2. Clean the soft furnishings
- Gather all soft furnishings and wash what you can at home
- Vacuum sofa and chairs with upholstery attachment
- Vacuum lamp shades and throw rugs with dusting attachment
- Take items that require a deep clean to a dry cleaner
3. Dust from high to low
- Clean tops of door frames and ceiling lights
- Clean cobwebs in corners
- Dust shelves, removing each item and cleaning thoroughly
- Clean table/chair legs and skirting boards
4. Remove pet hair
- Use a rubber glove to lift hair from carpet and rugs
- Use a lint roller to remove hair from upholstery
5. Clean controls and light switches
- Wipe down surfaces with a wet cloth
6. Clean windows and glass surfaces
- Remove any dust from the frame, track or sills
- Spray with glass cleaner and wipe from top to bottom
- Repeat process on the outside surface
7. Clean the floors
- Use a mop, water bucket and floor cleaner for hardwood floors
- Use a vacuum for carpets and rugs
Equipment you will need
- A vacuum with dusting and upholstery attachments
- Feather duster
- Cleaning cloths
- Lint roller (for pet hair)
- Microfibre cloths
- Glass cleaner
- Mop, water bucket and floor cleaning product (for hardwood floors)
Step 1: Declutter your living room
Begin by decluttering your living room. Not only will this make the cleaning process much easier, but it can also almost instantly make a chaotic room look better. Pick up any trash that has been left lying around. Gather any items that belong elsewhere and return them to their rightful places. Neatly store away all remaining items that belong in the room (e.g., DVDs, toys, games). If you can, make decluttering a part of your regular cleaning routine. This will help to keep the room in good shape and speed up the cleaning process next time.
Step 2: Clean the soft furnishing
If you are wondering how to deep clean your living room, then you will need to tackle cleaning the soft furnishing. It is important to clean upholstery and soft fabric, as they can trap and collect dust and other allergens.1,2
To being, gather all soft furnishings and wash what you can at home. Always follow the laundry recommendations on the care label. Some items may need to be taken to the dry cleaners for a deep clean. Use the upholstery attachment on your vacuum cleaner to clean your sofa and chairs. If your furniture has removable cushion and seat covers, wash them too2. The dusting attachment on the vacuum cleaner is also useful for cleaning lampshades and throw rugs.
Step 3: Dust from high to low
Always dust from high to low – this way, gravity will be your friend and you won’t constantly find dust settling on places you have already cleaned. Begin by cleaning over the tops of door frames, around ceiling lights and any cobwebs in the corners. A feather duster can be useful for reaching these high places. Slowly make your way down. When dusting shelves, be sure to remove each item, whether it’s an ornament, book or candle, and give it a thorough clean as well. As you clean the lower areas, don’t forget to concentrate on table/chair legs and skirting boards as dust tends to gather in these places and will need to be removed.
Step 4: Remove pet hair
If you don’t have a pet, you can skip this section. If you do have a furry friend at home, you have probably noticed the build-up of pet hair on carpets, sofas and blankets. It is likely your pet has found a favourite spot in the living room.
For carpets and rugs, use a rubber glove to lift pet hair. For leather and faux leather sofas, a vacuum cleaner should suffice to gather up all the hair. If you have a fabric sofa, a lint roller will be your best friend when it comes to keeping your sofa pet hair free.
Step 5: Clean controls and light switches
Commonly touched items like the TV remote and light switches can be a source of germs in the living room, so it’s important to keep them clean and disinfected to avoid spreading germs from person to person3. To clean these areas, wet a cleaning cloth in a diluted, warm disinfectant solution, and wring it out thoroughly. Wipe around the light switches and the buttons on the remote. Be sure to rinse regularly to keep the cloth clean. Since these items tend to have small surface areas, try using Dettol Antibacterial Disinfectant Surface Cleaning Wipes – they are convenient to use and are a hospital grade disinfectant4.
Step 6: Clean windows and glass surfaces
The first step for cleaning windows is to remove any dust from the frame, tracks and sill to prevent the dirt from turning into a muddy mess when mixed with the cleaner. Spray the window with a generous amount of glass cleaner and wipe it from top to bottom with a microfiber cloth. If there are any streaks, give it another wipe until the glass is clear. One helpful tip for preventing streaks is to change to a dry cloth when the cloth gets damp from glass cleaner. Repeat the process on the outside surface of your window (if possible).
Step 7: Clean the floors
If your living room has hardwood, tile or vinyl flooring, use a mop, water and appropriate floor cleaning product to remove dust, dirt and any visible mould growth.1,2,5 Don’t feel the need to wait until your floor is visibly dirty to clean it – you should be dusting wood floors regularly, around once a week.1,2,5 If you have young kids or pets at home and would like antibacterial protection,3,5 try using disposable dust wipes, such as Dettol Antibacterial Floor Cleaning Wipes. Regardless of what method you use, leave floors to dry completely before allowing children to walk on them.5
If your living room is carpeted or has rugs, vacuuming is the most effective way to remove dust and other debris.1,2,5 Just like hard floors, you should aim to vacuum and clean rugs weekly.1,2 Wash any rugs and dry them outside in full sunshine.2
Always read the label and follow the directions for use.
- Better Health Channel. Asthma-friendly home [Internet]. Melbourne VIC: Victoria State Government Department of Health & Human Services [updated April 2019, cited August 2020]. Available from: https://www.betterhealth.vic.gov.au/health/ConditionsAndTreatments/asthma-friendly-home
- Better Health Channel. House dust mite [Internet]. Melbourne VIC: Victoria State Government Department of Health & Human Services [updated April 2017, cited August 2020]. Available from: https://www.betterhealth.vic.gov.au/health/ConditionsAndTreatments/house-dust-mite
- Beumer R, et al. Guidelines for prevention of infection and cross infection in the domestic environment. Milan (IT): International Scientific Forum on Home Hygiene; 2002 Mar. 44p. Available from: https://www.ifh-homehygiene.org/sites/default/files/publications/IFH-Guidelines%202002_last.pdf
- Dettol Disinfectant Wipes Product Label
- Beumer R, et al. Recommendations for selection of suitable hygiene procedures for use in the domestic environment. Milan (IT): International Scientific Forum on Home Hygiene; 2001 Apr. 36p. Available from: https://www.ifh-homehygiene.org/sites/default/files/publications/IFHrecomends.pdf