Eco-Conscious Deep Cleaning Checklist

6 minute read

If there’s one place you can be your messiest self, it’s your home. We’re talking late-night cupcake masterpieces, bathroom hair dye experiments, and post-snowball-fight hot chocolate sipped by the stove (and the floor, and the couch)

Despite our best efforts to keep our spaces sparkling, sometimes life has other plans. That’s why an occasional deep cleaning session can be a major help in keeping your home fresh and clean. And when that deep clean also helps the environment? Now that’s a feel-good clean.

Wondering where to start? This deep dive into deep cleaning is for you. We’re going to break down the essential deep-cleaning checklist—where you should clean, commonly overlooked nooks and crannies, and the eco-conscious cleaners that can help you get the job done. 

Places to Deep Clean

Before we dig into the perfect products for bringing the sparkle back to your home, let’s start our deep cleaning checklist with some essential spaces to spruce—including a few oft-forgotten, dust-collecting nooks and crannies.

The Kitchen

The kitchen is probably the space in your home that you actively clean most often. Even if you’re a champ at doing your dishes, wiping your counters and stovetop, and cleaning up basic spills or sticky spots at least semi-regularly, a deep clean can often reveal some surprises in the kitchen. 

To return your kitchen to tip-top shape, let’s explore a few deep cleaning must-dos in the kitchen that you might skip in your day-to-day to-do list:

  • The sink drain and garbage disposal – Left to their own devices, your sink drain, and garbage disposal can develop odors and build up bacteria. Now, when it comes to how to clean a sink, there are many different methods. Use eco-consious cleaners, a drain snake, or even an old toothbrush to clear out clogs, kill germs, and eliminate not-so-pleasant smells.
  • The refrigerator – It’s a tedious job, but someone has to do it. Removing all of the food from your fridge to wipe down the shelves, drawers, and walls of your refrigerator will eliminate odors and remind you to chuck those month-old leftovers. 
  • Hood fan vents – Perhaps you accidentally burned the butter or love getting a good sear on those sauteed veggies. In either case, having a hood fan over your stove is a prime way to get rid of smoke and unwanted odors, but the vent can also suck up tiny food particles, grease, and dust. All of which can accumulate on the surface. Scrub it down with a damp sponge and a plant-powered dish soap designed to fight grease. Ours features a readily biodegradable formula, too.
  • The garbage can – The inside and outside of your garbage can are bound to take some splashes or get sticky over time—not to mention the floor and wall space around it. Wipe them down with ECOS All-Purpose Cleaner to eliminate odors and accumulated bacteria.
  • Kitchen cabinets – It’s easy to remember to clean your kitchen appliances, but don’t forget about the dust and crumbs that can accumulate in your kitchen cabinets. Take out the items in your cabinets and give the shelves and walls a good scrub with soapy water or cleaning spray.

And, as always, don’t forget the essential house cleaning steps—sweeping, mopping, dusting, and wiping surfaces. 

The Bathroom

Just like your kitchen, any bathroom in your house can build up grime over time. In addition to the usual dust and dirt buildup that plagues the rest of your home, studies show that toilet flushing can potentially spread waste-related germs throughout your bathroom.

Aside from sweeping, mopping, dusting, and wiping surfaces, make sure your bathroom cleaning checklist includes the following areas:

  • The toilet (front, back, seat, and bowl)
  • Sink and shower hardware
  • Drains
  • Grout in floor tile, backsplashes, and countertops
  • Handles and hinges on closet doors, shower enclosures, and cabinets
  • The insides of drawers (especially where you store makeup)
  • Toothbrush holders
  • Medicine cabinets
  • Shower curtain and tub walls and floors
  • Fan vents

If you decide to integrate more deep cleaning into your regular maintenance routine, the bathroom should be at the top of your list. Learning how to clean a shower, floor, cabinets, and other areas of the bathroom regularly can be beneficial for your regular cleaning routine. Even if you only add a few items from the above list into your weekly cleaning schedule, you’ll make a huge impact on your family’s health and safety. 

Kids’ Rooms

If you have children, you know that all the fun and joy they bring also ups the mess factor. Hello, Play-Doh baked into the carpet. Deep cleaning your child’s room is an excellent opportunity to get them involved in the action and teach them about the joys of house cleaning. 

Consider the following clean-up tasks in your kiddo’s room:

  • Wiping down toys and the inside of the toy box
  • Clean windows, mirrors, and window sills
  • Dusting inside of the closet (and creating a donation pile of outgrown items)
  • Wiping or replacing drawer liners
  • Cleaning underneath and behind the bed
  • Vacuum and deodorize the mattress and box spring
  • Dusting and wiping bookshelves
  • Organizing jewelry and accessories

Deep cleaning your childrens’ rooms semi-regularly will help them maintain baseline cleanliness, teach them about the importance of keeping a space hygienic and safe, and give you peace of mind about their health.

Children cleaning a messy room

Common Living Spaces

While you can hide messes and dust in some rooms by simply closing the door, it’s much harder to conceal dust, dirt, and clutter in common living spaces like the living room, family room, den, or dining room. 

While sweeping, mopping, dusting, and wiping surfaces should certainly be on your deep cleaning list, consider putting your shining skills to good use with the following tactics:

  • Vacuum the couch cushions (and underneath them)
  • Dusting lampshades and light fixtures
  • Recycling old magazines (or adding them to your children’s arts and crafts bin)
  • Sweeping up dust underneath rugs
  • Cleaning underneath and behind furniture
  • Wiping photo or artwork frames
  • Cleaning the TV and the wall behind it
  • Decluttering bookshelves and entertainment center cabinets
  • Washing the dishes inside china cabinets
  • Wiping down mini-bars or beverage stations
  • Dusting air vents and fan blades
  • Polishing your furniture

Your Bedroom

To ensure your sleep is as refreshing as it is restful, don’t skimp on the bedroom during your deep cleaning session. Multiple studies show that maintaining a clean space correlates to improved physical health, decreased cortisol (the “stress hormone”), and better sleep. 

Your bedroom deep-cleaning checklist should include sweeping, mopping, dusting, wiping surfaces, and washing your linens. But don’t forget to clear the clutter, dirt, dust, and grime from other important spaces, like:

  • Dresser and nightstand drawers and cabinets
  • Under and behind furniture
  • Underneath rugs
  • Your mattress and box spring
  • Your door handles and hinges
  • The mirror, windows, and window sills
  • The front and back of doors
  • Your headboard and bed frame
  • The back and top shelves of your closet

When cleaning, always make sure that your personal space gets the same attention as the rest of your home. 

Couple cleaning their home

Supplies for Deep Cleaning

To ensure your deep clean is as friendly to the earth as it is to your home, stocking up on sustainable cleaning supplies and eco-conscious cleaners before you begin your quest for a dust- and dirt-free home is a must. 

While there are other cleaning supplies you might want for special areas (toilet bowl cleaner, we’re looking at you), the following make our list of deep-clean essentials:

  • Dusting – All you really need to get rid of dust is a damp cloth, but if you find any sticky spots, you can spritz them with a bit of all-purpose cleaner.
  • Degreasing – Wondering how the olive oil made its way to the stair banister? You’ll have to solve that mystery for yourself, but you can easily remove spots of oil and grease with warm water, a sponge, and a squeeze of ECOS dish soap.
  • Disinfecting – To keep your deep clean from causing damage, avoid disinfectants with harsh chemicals like bleach. Instead, look for a bacteria-fighting solution formulated with hydrogen peroxide, like ECOS One-Step Disinfectant Cleaner.
  • Stain removal – If your close inspection of the couch revealed that that suspicious dark spot is definitely not a shadow, there’s an eco-conscious stain remover solution for that, too—like this stain and odor remover from ECOS.
  • To add some shine – Save spit-shining for your shoes and embrace the power of ECOS’ furniture cleaner and polish.
  • To fight tough odors Skip the baking soda and vinegar solutions (which could damage your mattresses, furniture fabrics, and rugs) and opt for an odor remover made with safer ingredients that eliminate odors instead of covering them up.
  • For everything else – For surface wiping in all other areas, having a safer and sustainable all-purpose cleaner on hand is essential.

Products to Avoid While Deep Cleaning

Finally, finding time for a deep clean can be a huge relief. As you say your goodbyes to the mud from last season’s soccer practice and those three-year-old cobwebs in the corner, it’s important to ensure that any cleaning products you’re bringing into your home aren’t worse than any grime. 

Common household cleaners like bleach, ammonia, and many more can give grief to our bodies and our homes, and many are linked to health issues and disorders. Plus, given that so much of our cleaning goes down the drain, we also risk introducing toxins to vulnerable environments and aquatic ecosystems.

Want an easy way to spot safer products? Look for the Safer Choice label—a sign that the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has certified them as using only good-for-you (and good-for-Mother-Nature) ingredients.

Embrace Eco-conscious Cleaning With ECOS

What’s even more satisfying than unveiling your home’s pristine potential? The answer is doing it with products that are safer for people and pets and free of harsh substances. Both your furniture and your planet will thank you.

We believe that having access to safer cleaning products is paramount. Our plant-powered, sustainable approach to cleaning is helping families around the world embrace a clean life without introducing harsh, potentially harmful substances into their homes.

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Lifting the lid on toilet plume aerosol: a literature review with suggestions for future research. 
Psychology Today. The Powerful Psychology Behind Cleanliness.