Here’s how often you really need to clean your house

From the bathroom to the fridge and the carpets to the dishwasher, here's how often these household items really need to be scrubbed.

Updated

yellow rubber gloves and wooden board on the kitchen countertop

It’s hard to know how often you should clean your house. Every other day? Weekly? On long bank holiday weekends? Everyone has a different idea of what “cleaning” entails – for some, a big weekly clean is a core part of their routine. Others prefer to do bits and bobs over several days, while we all have chores that need to be tackled daily.

Having a good house cleaning schedule will make sure you cover the basics and don’t forget the likes of mirrors and windows as the days and weeks fly by. Things like dishes and countertops should be done daily, and squeezing in a quick vacuum every other evening will save you having to spend ages doing it on the weekend.

We’ve rounded up five common household items and explain how often they really need to be cleaned. Depending on your cleaning style and habits, our list will leave you either reaching for a cloth, or propping your feet up and enjoying a rewarding cup of tea…

How often should you clean your oven?

Believe it or not, every three to six months is plenty. Of course, you should wipe it down at least once a week, particularly if you use it regularly, but most experts agree that you can go a few months between full deep cleans. (When you are ready to get stuck in though, our guide on how to clean an oven in 10 easy steps will have you covered.)

blue dishware inside the oven

How often should you clean your fridge?

This is another instance of a little work getting you a long way. If you make sure to be vigilant about food storage and organisation and wipe down any spills or crud daily, then you only need to do a deep clean (where you empty it completely) seasonally, around every three to four months.

How often should you clean your dishwasher?

A vinegar wash once a month will remove grease, odours and keep your dishes sparkling. Start by removing and cleaning the racks and cutlery caddy in warm, soapy water. Once they’re back in, place a cupful of white vinegar in the top rack and run the dishwasher empty on its hottest cycle.

red and blue plastic cups in the dishwasher

How often should you clean your bathroom?

There are some interesting answers to this question. Many people might be surprised to discover that cleaning experts recommend washing down your shower walls and glass shower doors daily to prevent the build-up of soap scum.

You should ideally also be wiping down and sanitising bathroom surfaces once a day as well, but might be happy to learn that the toilet bowl just needs to be cleaned once a week.

How often should you clean your carpets?

Carpets can not only harbour all kinds of germs, but they can even affect the quality of the air if not cleaned properly. You should be vacuuming at least twice a week, though parents and pet owners will often find high traffic areas need daily attention. You should aim for a proper deep clean every 6-12 months – steam cleaning is an effective and eco-friendly way of giving carpets the thorough cleaning they need.

female feet on the carpet

And don’t forget…

There are two things most of us use every single day that tend to need far more regular cleaning than we give them: your computer keyboard and your phone.

Thanks to daily use and al desko lunches, keyboards often contain more germs than the average toilet, which is why most experts recommend cleaning yours at least once a week. Remove grease and grime build-up by wiping it down with a damp cloth (making sure it’s turned off beforehand). To remove crumbs and dust, you can either turn it upside down and shake it or go at it with a can of compressed air.

Mobile phones need even more TLC – they should ideally be rubbed down daily with a microfibre cloth and diluted alcohol solution.

Originally published