Use this list of what to clean in September as your simple guide to what jobs need to be tackled this month around the house.
I just love September. It still feels like such a fresh start to me, even though I obviously don’t go back to school anymore. 🙂 This is the perfect time of year to turn over a new leaf and start on a new cleaning routine. The air is a bit cooler now and I always feel a bit of a burst of energy at this time of year. Honestly though, even with that extra energy, when I see super long and complicated lists of cleaning tasks, I still get a bit overwhelmed and feel like there’s just no way I’ll get through everything. So I thought we should keep this simple. I’ve put together a little list of what to clean in September and it’s only ten items long. These are the things that are perfect to tackle at this time of year as we transition from summer into fall. You know I hate to waste precious time on unnecessary cleaning tasks so this list is streamlined and exactly perfect for September, in my opinion of course. 🙂
When you’re all done with this one, you can move on to What to Clean in October!
What to Clean in September
Read through this explanation of which items to clean this month and why, then scroll to the bottom for a printable version of the list to add to your homekeeping binder or to stick on the fridge!
After all of your summer adventures, your car is probably full of little bits of trash as well as some “treasures” that you’ve picked up throughout the season. Now’s the time for a good deep clean in your car. Vacuum, wipe everything down, polish the windows and clear out every last little bit of clutter. You might be less inclined to keep up with deep cleaning your car when it’s cold outside, so now’s the time to give yourself a good jump-start.
For clever ideas for how to maintain a clean and tidy car, read this: How to Always Have a Clean Car
Outdoor Furniture and Toys
You might still be using these at this time of year, but now’s a great time to give these items a good cleaning before putting them away for the winter. If you wait until later in the fall when it’s cooler out, you might not feel like cleaning them and might just put them away as they are, making your life more difficult next spring. Clean them now while you’re still looking for an excuse to spend more time outside!
I just gave these white chairs a good cleaning before moving them to the new porch. They looked like they were still clean, but upon closer inspection, they were getting pretty dusty and dirty from sitting outside all season!
Now’s the time to go through the doors of your fridge, or whatever of your fridge that you store your condiments in, and get rid of anything old leftover from summer. Take a moment to consider if you’ll be using all of the different sauces and dressings in the fall and winter, now that grilling season is coming to an end for a lot of people, or if they’ll still be sitting in your fridge in January. Anything that you don’t like, haven’t used, or won’t use needs to be cleared out to make room for everything you’ll need for fall, winter, and holiday cooking!
Notice if anything has spilled and take a few moments to wipe things down or run any removable fridge components through the dishwasher.
After a busy summer, your pantry might be full of half-used boxes of this and that, crumbs from snacks that were grabbed quickly, and stuff that you really only need to keep on hand during the summer months. You won’t need that open pack of stale ice cream cones in a few months, so you might as well get rid of it now, wipe things down, and make room for new pantry items.
As summer flowers start to die back and we bring in fall mums and pumpkins, we usually need fewer planters and flower pots out on our porches and decks. As you empty your planters and get ready to put them away, take a few moments to clean them (here’s an explanation for how to clean flower pots) so they’ll be ready to go for next spring.
Porches and Decks
Sometimes it’s hard to tell when these areas are filled with summer flowers, but quite a bit of debris can build up around our porches and decks in the late summer and early fall. These areas made my list of what to clean in September after noticing how many little crumbly bits of leaves and flowers had fallen off of my planters and were hiding under the canopy of leaves they created. I thought my porch was pretty tidy, but when I took the planters away, it was actually a mess. 🙂 September is a great time to take absolutely everything off of your porch, sweep it, mop it, and declutter it a little bit too. Then take that broom and brush down all the spider webs, then wipe down any siding as well as your front door.
If you have smooth boards like I do on your porches, this e-cloth Deep Clean Mop is my favourite. This is what I use to clean my porch every time before we take photos of it, which is a lot because it’s pretty. 🙂
Right now (September 19-29, 2019) e-cloth is having their friends and family event and everything is on sale! Get 15% off of your entire order with this code: FAF2019
Carpets and Rugs
If you’ve had dirty little feet running in and out of the house all spring and summer, now’s a great time to steam clean your rugs and carpets. They’ll smell fresher when the temperatures get chilly and you need to close all your windows up, and they’ll look better for any company that you might have over for fall and holiday gatherings.
Your Couch (and other upholstered furniture)
Basically the same concept here as with the carpets and rugs. Now’s the time to get this job done! If your upholstery isn’t in terrible shape, you can probably get away with a good spot-cleaning session. Here’s how to do it: The Right Way to Spot Clean Furniture.
Your Cleaning Pantry
Since we’re focussing on fresh starts and better cleaning habits, it’s a good idea to get the area where you store all of your cleaning supplies in order. Get rid of any empty bottles or anything that you don’t actually use. Make sure you have a good supply of microfibre cloths, that your broom is in good shape, and that your vacuum is in working order. Wipe out all the shelves and get everything organized and ready to go so you can make all of your cleaning tasks easier for the rest of the year.
The Outsides of Your Windows
Everyone deals with different cleaning challenges on the exterior of their home, depending on where they live, but I find that our windows can be really in need of a good cleaning by the end of summer. We typically have some spider webs that have built up and have little pieces of leaves caught in them and some dusty water spots from summer storms. Depending on how accessible your windows are, now might be a great time to think about hiring someone to come clean your windows for you, if necessary. Clean windows will definitely improve your view of all those fall colours that will be developing over the next few weeks!
Here’s your printable list for what to clean in September!
Click here to go to the checklist and print it out!
Looking for more guidance and detail on what to clean around the house and how to get it done in the most efficient way possible? Check out my book The Cleaning Ninja!
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- How to Dry Corn Stalks for Fall
- How to Deep Clean Your Home in 6 Minutes a Day
- Three Things I do to Make Myself Feel Like the World’s Best Homemaker
- Super Simple Things I do Every Day so That my Home Always Stays Clean
- Natural Oven Cleaner Recipe
- The Creek Line House Cleaning Archives
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Courtenay Hartford is the author of creeklinehouse.com, a blog based on her adventures renovating a 120-year-old farmhouse in rural Ontario, Canada. On her blog, Courtenay shares interior design tips based on her own farmhouse and her work as founder and stylist of the interior photography firm Art & Spaces. She also writes about her farmhouse garden, plant-based recipes, family travel, and homekeeping best practices. Courtenay is the author of the book The Cleaning Ninja and has been featured in numerous magazines including Country Sampler Farmhouse Style, Better Homes and Gardens, Parents Magazine, Real Simple, and Our Homes.