Make sure to clean commonly shared surfaces

Make sure to clean commonly shared surfaces

Many commonly shared surfaces are ideal breeding locations for bacteria and viruses that are often spread between people during cold and flu season.

The Mayo Clinic reports that germs can be spread through sneezing, coughing or touching surfaces and can survive between a few minutes and 48 hours. Cold and flu germs have the best chance of survival on hard surfaces, such as stainless steel and plastic, compared to softer surfaces like plastic.

Because thorough house cleanings take time out of our busy schedules, commonly touched and shared surfaces might be overlooked during regular cleaning routines. Here’s where a professional house cleaning service could help.

On a regular basis, a professional could make sure to pay special attention to areas that are prone to spread bacteria and viruses. Ben Saren uses highly rated Fab's Cleaning Services, of Stoneham, Mass., to clean his house bi-weekly.

"I tend to be very picky about these services. I look for mistakes and areas they may overlook. I found none,” he says, noting he and his wife are “very happy” with the Boston area house cleaning company.

Whether you choose to hire a professional or choose to clean yourself, don’t overlook these often germ-infested surfaces:

Stair railings: Probably one of the most frequently forgotten surfaces, railings certainly are among the overlays touched most often.

Doorknobs: This is another of the surfaces we don’t typically think about cleaning as frequently as other parts of our home. This is a project you easily can delegate to the kids as you disinfect other parts of the home.

Handles on appliances: Even if not everyone in your family uses the stove, many hands might be touching the handles of the microwave, toaster, blender and other devices in your kitchen. To reduce spreading germs and contaminating your food, be sure to regularly sanitize handles, buttons and any other touchable surface on kitchen goods.

Phones: With the proliferation of cell phones, this may be less of an issue at home, unless you borrow phones frequently. But in workplaces, stationary phones are shared and it may not be a bad idea to drag a cleaning wipe over the receiver.

Computer equipment: Many households and workplaces share computers, and the keyboard and mouse are the perfect breeding ground for germs. It's a good idea to use a wipe specially formulated to work on electronic equipment.

Remotes and controllers: Because many TVs and game consoles only have one or two remotes or controllers, many hands will share these devices. Be sure to regularly wipe these down, especially if someone with a cold has last used them.

If you think hiring a professional would be best at helping keep germs at bay, let Angie’s List help. Angie’s List helped connect Amy Adams with highly rated Best Home Services of New York after she encountered "several bad experiences" in trying to schedule an appointment with other local companies.

"I had never used a cleaning service before but was extremely pleased with the woman [the service] sent to us," Adams says of the New York City house cleaning company. "She was great and kept telling me to give her feedback so she could do the best job possible."

Want the best cleaning job possible at your house? Join Angie’s List today.

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