Time for Spring Cleaning

The first sign of spring is not the melting snow, the return of robins, the budding trees and bulbs, or even the light jackets replacing heavy winter coats.

The first sign that spring has sprung is the relentless desire to clean with all of that newfound energy.

Storm windows must come down, gutters must be inspected, the house must be power-washed, carpets must be steam-cleaned, the soil must be prepared for gardens and the inside of the house must be refreshed.

Amid this flurry of activity, it’s easy to get overwhelmed. Here are a few tips to stay safe and sane as you clean.

Set realistic expectations and schedules. Remember that you don’t have to do it all in one day. A good rule is not to tear apart what you can’t put back together before nightfall.

Take care to prevent falls. Falling is the leading cause of home injuries. If you need to use a ladder, choose one that allows you to reach what you need without standing on the top rung or support step, or reaching beyond the side rails. Keep the ladder stable, upright and straight by placing it on even ground. And keep stairs and walking areas free of clutter to prevent tripping hazards. If you’re carrying a load, make sure you can see over it. Ask for help if it’s too heavy to carry alone.

Use cleaning solutions cautiously. When using cleaning solutions, wear gloves and don’t stand downwind of the spray. A caustic cleaner can cause permanent vision damage if it comes in contact with your eyes.

Keep your kids and pets away from steam cleaners, power washers and attractive-smelling solvents.

Don’t let your pets drink out of cleaning buckets, and store empty cleaning buckets upside down.

Give your kids age-appropriate tasks. Let your kids help, but give them chores they can do. Dropping a storm window or five-gallon bucket of brick-cleaning acid can cause a permanent injury.

Keep your work area clean. Just as you keep your work area clean and free of hazards at work, keep your work area clean at home. This prevents hazards and helps you work more efficiently. If your tools are well-organized, you can find them more easily.

These are just a few suggestions to make your spring cleaning go more smoothly. But in general, think about what can go wrong before you act. Then, take precautions to protect yourself and your family.

For more information

If you have questions about other ways to protect your belongings, reach out to our Personal Insurance team.

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