I was compensated for this post as a Filtrete Healthy Home Ambassador, all thoughts and opinions are my own.
Are you in full spring cleaning mode yet? I sure am. I just spent the past weekend decluttering and donating stuff to Goodwill. I have been collecting stuff from around the house to sell on Craigslist or take to consignment shops but they sat around for about a month so that was my clue to just donate them and be done with it. What a relief! Now I can get down to the nitty gritty and really clean and freshen things up for spring. The house feels stuffy and depressing towards the end of winter and with a few warm days last week I am so OVER cold weather. I am ready to throw the windows open and let spring in with full abandon.
Spring is about renewal and rebirth…a fresh new start. So it is no wonder that we all get that itch to clean, redecorate, and otherwise bring some of that spring magic inside the home. Here are five ways to capture some of that spring freshness…
1. Open Windows and Doors – Let the fresh air in. Did you know that the EPA says that the air inside your home can be 2-5 times worse in quality than what is outdoors? Yikes! Freshening indoor air is such a simple and easy step and so effective. If you are worried about bugs just make sure all your windows and storm doors have functioning screens. Now is a good time to repair any that have holes. Doing this does wonders for the quality of indoor air. If it gets too warm then open them for 5-10 minutes only, a couple times day or do it at night when temperatures dip.
2. Use Natural Air Fresheners – According to the EPA, air fresheners release Volatile Organic Compounds or VOCs into the air so don’t buy those nasty plug in fresheners or the ones you spray. Scented candles and incense may contain particulates, soot and chemicals that end up in the air and in your lungs. These also only provide temporary relief from odors by masking them, not getting rid of them. I suggest using essential oils to scent the home via diffuser or making scented carpet freshener with baking soda and essential oils. Try a Lemon + Lavender blend for a spring time boost!
3. Bring Plants Inside – Now is a great time to bring in some potted bulbs (hyacinth, daffodils, and tulips) or some regular old houseplants that will help freshen air and remove odors. Try English Ivy, Pothos, and Spider plants. Cut flowers in mason jars also make you feel at peace and ready to welcome spring with open arms.
4. Use Fans For Air Circulation – Ceiling fans as well as strategically placed box fans can help move the air around and create cool, cross ventilation.
5. Change Your Air Filter – If you have a central AC/Furnace unit you are supposed to change filters every quarter. So now that winter is behind us it is time to replace our current filter before we have to turn on the A/C. A good one for spring is the Filtrete Odor Reduction Filter (1200 MPR). Don’t mask odors or use fresheners that make the problem worse, get rid of odors. This is the most effective filter for reducing odors from sources such as pets, tobacco, cooking, mildew, etc. it is 65 times more effective than carbon filters. Also important for this time of year is the fact that it helps capture airborne allergens like pollen, mold spores, dust mite debris, pet dander, and smog. It lasts for 3 months, right up until it is time to change it for Summer. Find a location for Filtrete filters at FindMyFiltreteFilter.com.
I decided to change mine just a day or so ago. Ew! I like to change them with the change of each new season but we fell behind schedule when our furnace was replaced mid Fall. It was seriously gross and made me horrified to think we could be breathing that stuff!
If you are looking to freshen up even more this spring you may be interested in the Filtrete Healthy Home Remodel Contest on Facebook. You will need to “Like” the page, go to the giveaway tab and enter your essay (1,000 words or less) about why your home is worthy of a healthy home remodel.You can submit two photos supporting your essay. The grand prize is pretty awesome…Mike Holmes from HGTV will choose a winner and they will receive $30,000 worth of home inspections, repairs, and renovations by a Holmes Group approved contractor. Four other first prize winners will get $500 towards renovations. It ends June 30, 2013.
Wishing you a wonderful spring!!
Monday, April 15th, 2013