Author: Melissa

COVID-19 Employee Relief Fund

Garcia Green Cleaners Employee Relief Fund

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic our work flow has been nearly eradicated. Since the Stay-at-Home ordinances were put in place many of our clients have had to work from home. Their children were also not allowed back to school. To slow the virus from spreading we were asked to stay home. This has made it difficult for us to do our job since almost every member of the family is home. To stay protected we were asked not to do any cleaning of home’s/businesses that weren’t considered essential. We will continue to wait this out but in the midst of it all I have created a fund me account for the employees at Garcia Green Cleaners. They are looking forward to being able to return to work once their kids are out of school for the summer since they too have to proctor their school work. We appreciate your continued support and look forward to seeing everyone soon!

Please visit: the GoFundMe account to place your contribution.

The health and safety of our customers is our highest priority during this time. While we cannot control the severity or unpredictability of this virus, we can take preventive measures to limit the spread and impact of COVID-19. We are currently acting with prudence in our day-to-day operation with basic preventative safety measures following the guidance set forth by the U.S. Federal Government, Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and other health agencies, including:

  • Cleaning hands with soap often, for at least 20 seconds.
  • Using an alcohol-based hand sanitizer when soap and water are not available.
  • Keeping the recommended 6 feet from people.
  • Cleaning frequently touched surfaces.
  • Covering cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throwing tissue in the trash.
  • Staying home when sick.

We encourage our customers to let us know in advance of an appointment if there are any concerns or they would like us to take special precautions. We will continue to closely monitor the situation surrounding the COVID-19 coronavirus and act accordingly.

What we do:

  • In your home, our team uses a sanitizing solution to wipe down light switches, doorknobs, bathroom surfaces, and other commonly touched areas. We clean and sanitize your home using products that include certain Environmental Protection Association (EPA) registered disinfecting products and specific cleaning methods, such as mopping with microfiber mops, which have demonstrated a 99% reduction in bacteria.
  • We are telling our team members to switch out all cleaning cloths and mopheads between homes and thoroughly launder them between usage.
  • We give our teams the opportunity to wash their hands with soap and water and use antibacterial hand sanitizer between homes.
  • We are closely monitoring national, state and local health agencies for the most recent developments and following the guidance of government and public health officials.

When we work together, we can keep your home clean.

What can you do:

Follow these tips from the CDC to help prevent the spread of the seasonal flu and respiratory diseases like Coronavirus (COVID-19): CDC Coronavirus Website

The Best of Heloise’s Cleaning Tips

Heloise is one of the most well-loved and known columnist and TV personality. She has appeared on The View and Late Night with David Letterman among others. She writes an advice column for Better Homes and Gardens. She’s the guru of cleaning tips and tricks and we, at Garcia Green Cleaners, admire her greatly. In this article, we’ll give you some of the best of Heloise’s cleaning tips so you can use them yourself.

  • When it comes to your computer, lay a place mat over it when it’s not in use to prevent dust, dirt and pet hair from getting on or in it.
  • Microfiber cloths can be your best friend. Keep several in your car, preferably under the front seat. You can use them to dust off the dashboard, radio and steering wheel.
  • In the bathroom and kitchen, microfiber cloths, can clean and shine the chrome, they’ll make your mirrors spiffy and are great for wiping down the sinks. When the cloths become dirty, just toss them into the washing machine. They’re reusable!
  • For a good metal window blind cleaner, you should use 16 oz. of tap water, 1 tbsp. clear ammonia (non-sudsing), and 1 drop lavender, mint or other essential oil. Fill a spray bottle and label it. Use old cotton socks to wipe away the grime. If your blinds are super dusty, you should consider vacuuming them first. Spray the sock with the cleaner, not the blind. Wipe horizontally first and then wipe vertically.
  • For your fridge or pantry, go through just one shelf at a time and get rid of all the expired food, food you’ll never use or anything that’s less than a single serving.
  • Make it easier on yourself during the weekday by setting your table for breakfast the night before. Put out cereal boxes, sweeteners and other non-perishables.
  • After your family finishes with their morning routines, use a dry terrycloth hand towel on the mirror and bathroom faucets to wipe away spots of lather so they don’t build up.
  • Go through magazines and catalog piles. Discard outdated issues about three or five at a time. Toss away junk mail daily.
  • Freshen up your throw pillows by tossing them in the dryer, one or two at a time, on the air cycle.

There you have it – some of the best cleaning tips from Heloise, the household cleaning tip queen. We hope you find them helpful and can use them in your daily life. Remember if you need a great cleaning, Garcia Green Cleaners is available. We just opened a new office in Austin. The phone number there is 512-705-2812.

How do I Get Rid of Dust?

Dust is a dirty word. We don’t like having it in our homes. Unfortunately, dust creeps in and never seems to go away. You can get rid of dust, however. In this article we’ll show you how.

80% of the dust in your home comes from outside sources

It walks in through the door on people’s feet. You can help get rid of dust by purchasing a walk-off mat. It’s a professional mat that you sometimes see in the entrances of stores. They’re available at a janitorial supply store. Get one for outside your door and one for directly inside your door. They’re available in a variety of colors and sizes. You can vacuum the mats regularly or shake them outside.  You only need to hose the mats down and scrub with an all-purpose cleaner to get clean. Hang mats so they dry. You don’t want moisture to get trapped under the vinyl backing.

Remove carpeting and drapes from your home – they’re dust magnets

Carpets can contribute to the accumulation of dust in your home. It settles on the carpets and it gets kicked up and spread all around your home. Consider replacing your carpeting with wood flooring. It doesn’t trap dust. Remove heavy drapes from your windows. Instead, put up lightweight blinds. They are easier to clean and you’ll see the dust accumulation sooner so you’ll be more apt to clean it before it gets out of control. You may also want to consider swapping out upholstered furniture for wood, vinyl or leather. Upholstered furniture traps dust much more often than these other types of furniture.

Vacuum frequently – especially if you’re not going to get rid of those carpets

You should use a vacuum with a HEPA-filter to ensure that you’re sucking up as much dust as possible. You can vacuum all the carpeting in your home, but pay special attention to the high traffic areas. You can also vacuum wood and other types of flooring. Vacuuming frequently cuts down on how much dust accumulates under furniture and in corners. Remember to change your vacuum filter frequently and keep your vacuum in good working order.

Dust around the house

Try to dust your home at least twice a week. Dust the tallest items in your home, then, work your way down. Going the opposite way will just track more of it around. Don’t forget to dust the top of your picture frames and your light fixtures. The baseboards also need special attention. You can use a damp rag or a glove. Ostrich feathers are especially good for dusting since their electric charge works on keeping dust on them as opposed to spreading it. Take your time and dust properly. Don’t skimp or go lightly. If you need an extra day to dust, do some on one day and more on another. It’s important.

Sweep your floors regularly

Every few days, you should sweep the floor with a broom and dustpan to get rid of the dust on floors you don’t vacuum. Sweep areas that tend to trap dust like doorways, hallways and the kitchen floor. Toss out the dust in your garbage can to make sure it doesn’t reenter the household.

We’ve given you a pretty comprehensive list of how to get rid of dust in your home. We hope this helps. If not, you can always call use our online form to make an appointment. Garcia Green Cleaners would love to work with you in getting rid of dust in your home.

How to Properly Make a Bed

Your bed. It’s comfortable. It’s cozy. You enjoy sleeping in it. In the morning, you usually leave it mussed and rumpled so you can easily climb back in at the end of the day. Did you know, though, that properly made bed can make your room look neater? In this article, we’ll teach you how to properly make a bed. You won’t have to do all these steps every morning, just when you need to change your sheets.

Gather up your supplies.

Choose bed linens that are comfortable and pleasing to your eye. If you like a bedskirt, use one. If not, don’t. It’s not necessary. Grab the linens you’ll be using to place on your bed including sheets, comforters and pillow cases. Put them to the side for now.

Remove used linens and comforters.

Take off the used linens and put them in the laundry. You can shake out the mattress pads, pillow protectors and comforters that don’t need to be laundered at this time. If they need to be laundered, take them to the laundry room. If you use a bed skirt and it needs to go into the laundry, put it there and replace it.

Put the bottom sheet on.

If you have a fitted bottom sheet, slip the corner pockets onto the ends of the bed and adjust the fitted sheet around the perimeter. You may have to lift the mattress slightly to make sure that the sheet is tucked tightly around the corners of the mattress.

Put the top sheet on.

You should place the top sheet evenly on the bed. Fold under at the end of the bed. You can leave the sides free-flowing so you can more easily get into the bed unless it’s a guest bed or you really like the look of tucked in sheets. Then, tuck in the sides all around. If there’s any sheet showing, remember that the comforter, quilt or duvet will cover it up.

Usually this is where you make hospital corners. “Hospital corners” refer to a specific method of folding the end of the top sheet tightly under the mattress. To make one, tuck the end of the top sheet between the mattress and the box spring at the foot of the bed. Make sure it’s smooth and wrinkle free. You don’t want to just stuff it in there. On one side, grab a piece of the top sheet that is approximately 16 inches away from the foot of the bed. Lift it up and fold this section of sheet over the top of the mattress so it forms a 45 degree angle from the mattress’ corner. Holding the folded sheet in place on top of the mattress, tuck in any sheet that’s hanging below the mattress on that side of the bed. Do this as neatly as you can for the best results. Now, let the folded sheet drop down. If you like looser sheets, you’re done. If not, tuck the hanging edge between the mattress and box springs along the side of the bed.

Add the blanket.

Take your choice of blanket, place it gently on the bed and smooth it over as you go.

Add pillows.

To place pillows under the blanket, fold the top sheet down over the blanket. Place pillows flat on the top sheet at the head of the bed. You can lay pillows upright against the head of the bed. Finish the bed with pillows in whatever manner you like.

That’s it. Now that it’ll be easier to make a bed the more often you do it. Most of the time, you can skip the first two steps because you won’t need to change your sheets out completely every night. If you want Garcia Green Cleaners to give you a freshly-made bed, give us a call in Austin at 512-705-2812.

How do I Clean my Bedroom?

Your bedroom is your sanctuary. How well do you keep it clean? In this article, we’ll teach you how to clean your bedroom. Then, with some maintenance tasks, you can keep the bedroom clean. It’s easier than you think.

 

  • Dust nightstands and other furniture. Wipe down hard to reach places with a long duster. Use your blow dryer to remove dust from lampshades and curtains. You can also wipe these delicate items with a microfiber cloth.  Don’t forget the lightbulb. Clean lightbulbs shine ¼ brighter than unclean ones.
  • Make sure your computer is clean. Unplug the keyboard before cleaning. Then, use Seventh Generation wipes to clean and disinfect the keyboard. A dry or damp microfiber cloth can be used for your screen. Remember, no chemicals on that part of your computer.
  • Clear out your nightstand drawer. Toss out old items like cough drops and magazines. Wipe the drawer clean. Then, restock it with things you need. Inspect your electrical cords. If any are frayed, you need to replace or repair them as needed.
  • When you’re ready to clean deeper, you’ll want to strip the bed and wash the linens, the comforter and bed skirt (if you use it). If your pillows are washable, place them in a separate load.
  • Get ready to clean your mattress. Use the upholstery attachment for your vacuum cleaner and do the top and sides of the mattress. Don’t forget the seam lines and the crevices in between the mattress and the bed frame. With a pillow top mattress, flip it 180 degrees. Other types of mattress will need to be flipped over. If you need help with this, get it.
  • Try and deodorize the mattress with baking soda. Then vacuum the surface again after half an hour.
  • Clean your floors. If you have carpet, vacuum. If you have hardwood, mop. Don’t forget to clean the floor under your bed.
  • Wipe down your doors, window sills and baseboards. Clean plates and door knobs with a microfiber cloth dampened with water mixed with dish detergent. Rinse the cloth if it starts to leave residue behind.
  • Polish your furniture. Don’t forget nightstands and dressers.
  • Take clothes out of your dresser. Clean the drawer. Return the items to your dresser, folded. Make sure you don’t put back clothes you haven’t used in a year. Put those items in a bag and donate them to charity.
  • Clean your mirrors and windows. Use a microfiber cloth made for glass. Dampen the cloth lightly and wipe. It’s really that simple.
  • To clean window sills we suggest you wrap the tip of a flathead screwdriver with cloth. Use it to break up gunk in the track of a window sill. Remove the leftover bits with a damp cloth or a paper towel.

If you do all that, you should be good to go with your bedroom. It’ll be clean and sparkling. It’s not hard to clean a bedroom. It can just be a little time-consuming. If you want us to deep clean your bedroom for you, call and request it. We can be reached in Austin at 512-705-2812. Check our website at www.garciagreencleaners.com

How to Clean Up After a Party

Last week, we went over how to clean up before a party. Now, we’re going to tell you what to do to clean up after a party. If you follow our suggestions, it shouldn’t be too bad. However, know that you can call Garcia Green Cleaners to clean up before and after a party. We’re happy to do both.

 

The first tip that we suggest is that you clean up your kitchen before the party. Make sure the dishwasher, countertops and sink are empty. This way you can fill them up easier when after a party is done.

Go through the party rooms with a garbage bag, a laundry basket and a dish tray. Collect all the items that are out of place. Put the trash in the garbage bag, things that belong in other rooms in the laundry basket and non-paper dishes and silverware in the tray. Of course, if you use plastic and paper for the party, you’ll have an easier cleanup, but that doesn’t mean you’ll have no dishes to wash. Think of all the items you used to cook stuff in and contain stuff.

Put the items you collected where they belong. If the trash is overflowing, take it out. If the sink is overflowing, put some items into the dishwasher and, when that’s full, start it. You may have to do more than one cycle of dishes, but that’s the price you pay for an excellent party. It’s not very steep.  Also, remember to recycle what needs to be recycled.

Clean the floors. When you go through the rooms a second time, bring your broom and a mop if you have laminate or hardwood. Sweep up the dust and debris off the floor and put it into the trash. If you need to mop, do that too. If you’ve got carpets, you might want to vacuum.

Pick up any streamers or balloons or other party items as you go through and toss them in the trash or recycling bin. We suggest you make it easy on yourself and don’t use these items, but, if you must, make them paper products that are easy to take down and clean up.

You may want to spot clean the bathrooms in case people have messed them up. It couldn’t hurt. Just take a quick microfiber cloth and clean all areas. Sweep if you have too as well. Just make sure you don’t have any leftover party ‘debris’ in your bathrooms.

Voila, you’re done and it didn’t take as long as you thought. Remember, if you dread the after-party cleanup so much you want to delay it as long as possible, we suggest you call Garcia Green Cleaners. We’ll take care of your party cleanup for you. We can be reached in Austin at 512-705-2812.

How to Clean Your House for a Party

So, you’re having a party.  You want to know how to clean your house for a party. In this article, we’ll tell you just what to do so your house will be clean in time for you to party down with friends and family.

 

Start by making a list of what exactly needs to be cleaned.  Do you have to clean the entire house or are there some parts that can be off-limits to guests? Try to make the list as detailed as possible so you can check items off the list as you do them and keep track of what else needs to be done.

Plan cleaning items for about a week before your party. It’s going to take a while to get your house in entertaining shape. Before the party cleaning can be the worst part of the party, but it will pay off when people come into your home and feel at home and comfortable. Think of all the compliments you’ll get.

About 5-7 days ahead, you’ll want to do a big cleaning. Included in the cleaning are the following tasks:

  • Wash and clean windows and windowsills.
  • Move furniture so you can mop and vacuum your rugs.
  • Wipe all doorknobs, doorjambs and light switches.
  • Thoroughly dust/clean all surfaces.
  • Vacuum your upholstery and your vents.
  • Shake and bang out the doormat.
  • Replace lightbulbs wherever necessary.
  • Wash your shower curtain.
  • Scrub the sink, stovetop and the refrigerator, inside and out.
  • Clean the exterior of your kitchen cabinets.
  • Clean the top of your stove.
  • Scrub bathrooms including tubs, sinks and toilets.
  • Pick up clutter and recycle items that aren’t being used.

This will take you a few hours so you should enlist all the help you can get. This would be an excellent time to invite Garcia Green Cleaners to come in and do the bulk of this cleaning for you.

When cleaning start with the most important rooms like the bathroom(s), living room and kitchen. You can take shortcuts like not cleaning the kids’ rooms or your bedroom if no one will be going into them. Get paper products for after-party cleanup so you’re not washing a ton of dishes and especially if the party is informal.

During the week of the party, after you’ve done the big clean, you should pick up around the house daily. Spend about half an hour doing this. The day of the party, you should:

  • Mop and vacuum all floors
  • Dust and wipe and surfaces
  • Clean the kitchen
  • Clean the bathroom(s)
  • Be on the lookout for clutter and get rid of it.

Now, you’re ready to party. Next week, we’ll talk about how to clean up after a party. Like we said, if you need help on either end of your party, we, at Garcia Green Cleaners, are happy to be there for you. We can be reached in Austin at 512-705-2812.

10 Cleaning Tips you Must Know!

We love sharing our cleaning tips with you. We love it almost as much as we love to clean your homes. In this article, we’ll share 10 cleaning tips you must know. We hope you enjoy them.

 

  1. Circle your way around when cleaning the kitchen. Start to the right of the stove and move clockwise around the room. Why? Well, the stove is typically the dirtiest part of your kitchen. Saving it for last keeps you from spreading dirt and grease around the room.
  2. Keep your oven extra clean by lining the bottom of it with a nonstick oven liner. It can be wiped down with a paper towel. You can then put it in the dishwasher and reuse it over and over.
  3. Get rid of paper towels. Instead, you should use microfiber cloths. When wet, they sanitize and can clean floors, counters, glass and tiles. They’re reusable. You can just machine wash and hang to dry. They cost about $5 for a 2-pack.
  4. Are mold and mildew attacking your shower curtain liner? You should throw it in the wash with some towels. They’ll help scrub it clean. Then, you can hang it back up to dry.
  5. Sanitize your sponges. Put them in the microwave for a few minutes. Then, you can watch as the microbes sizzle away.
  6. Clean small toys in a laundry bag. Yes, you can put those nasty –looking legos or other small toys by placing them in a laundry bag first. They’ll come out clean and you don’t have to worry about your kids’ playing with bacteria-ridden toys.
  7. Clean fan blades with a pillow case. You probably have some extra pillow cases lying around. Use one to slide onto the blades of your ceiling fans. Then, wipe the blades off inside the pillow case. That way you don’t get dust in your face.
  8. Choose the right broom for the task. When indoors, choose a broom with finer bristles to pick up smaller dirt particles. When outside, use a broom with stronger, stiffer bristles. They work better to clean up porous surfaces.
  9. Use salt to clean your iron. Yep. That’s right –salt. Pour salt on your ironing board. You might want to use a pillow case to make cleanup easier. Iron the salt with the steam option off. The dirt on your iron will stick to the salt, making it easy to clean your iron.
  10. Turn your hydrogen peroxide bottle into a spray bottle. Replace the bottle cap with a spray bottle head. You can use hydrogen peroxide to clean all sorts of things like windows, tubs and even toilets.

We hope these cleaning tips give you some great ideas to make cleaning your home easier. We’ll feature more cleaning tips in the future. If you need help getting your home clean, please call us in Austin at 512-705-2812. We’re always happy to help.

How do I Clean My Refrigerator?

Your refrigerator does a lot of work. It also doesn’t get a lot of cleaning attention if you’re like most people. When the time comes and you just can’t stand it anymore, you know you’ve got to clean your refrigerator. In this article, we’ll teach you how to clean your refrigerator.

 

  • The first step to cleaning your refrigerator is to take out all the food. Having an empty fridge makes the process of cleaning it so much easier. It also prevents possible contamination of your food from cleaning products.
  • Throw out any aged, old or moldy food. Anything that is inedible should be tossed in the garbage can. You can also use this time to throw out any food items that you don’t use. If you haven’t used it since the last time you cleaned your refrigerator, then it’s safe to assume you don’t need it.
  • Take out all the shelves, drawers and other removable surface items from the refrigerator. Place it in the kitchen sink and fill it up with cool water and dish-washing soap so those items can start to soak while you tackle the inside of your fridge.
  • Wipe all surface areas including the doors with commercial wipes or with dish-washing soap, water and a good sponge. You don’t want little particles to break off and get set in the refrigerator. If you find stubborn stains, you can use a small amount of baking soda and water to produce a thick paste. Apply the paste to the stain and leave on for an hour before you wipe with a damp sponge or strong cloth. The baking soda is supposed to loosen the stain thereby making it easy to wipe away.
  • Now, you should wash the shelves and other items that you took out of the fridge. It won’t fit in your dishwasher so just get ready to clean it by hand. Lather up a sponge with some dishwasher soap and use cool, not hot water to clean these items. Hot water can cause cold glass shelves to break due to the temperature change. Clean by hand.  Be careful of stains. You can remove these the same way you did those inside the fridge. Make sure you let everything dry out completely or dry it by hand before you put it back into the refrigerator.
  • Once you put the shelves and other items back in the refrigerator, you can begin to put the food back in. Then, your clean refrigerator is ready to be used again.

Of course, if you’d prefer not to clean your refrigerator, Garcia Green Cleaners can add on this cleaning to one of our service appointments. Just call 512-705-2812 in Austin to set it up.

Tips for Cleaning Pots and Pans

Cleaning pots and pans is difficult. They get grease, dirt and muck attached to them. It can be a nightmare to clean. However, it doesn’t have to be. In this article, we’ll give you some tips for cleaning pots and pans. We hope they help you out.

If your pot or pan is burnt, there’s a great trick using baking soda and vinegar. You’ll need:

  • 1 cup vinegar
  • 2 tbsp. baking soda
  • 1 cup water
  • Scouring pad

You will fill the bottom of the pan with a layer of water. To that, you add the vinegar. Bring the pan to a boil. Remove the pan from the heat and add the baking soda. You should see plenty of fizzing action. Empty the pan and scour as normal. You can add a bit of dry baking soda should it be necessary. If stubborn marks remain, put a paste of baking soda and water on them. Leave the paste on for about an hour and then clean as normal. Your pan will look brand new.

There are other methods out there to clean pots and pans. We’ll delve into some of them here:

  • Alka-Seltzer – This is for ovenproof glass cookware. Fill the container with water, add up to six pellets and let it soak for an hour. The stains should easily scrub away.
  • Aluminum foil – No scrub pad? That’s okay, just wad up some aluminum foil and use it to scrub your pots.
  • Add baking soda to your dish-washing liquid. About 2 tablespoons should do the trick. It cuts through grease easily.
  • Club soda – pour it into the pot while it’s still warm. The bubbly soda will keep the mess from sticking to the bottom of the pan.
  • Cream of tartar – this will make your discolored aluminum pans sparkle again. Put 2 tablespoons of cream of tartar dissolved in 1 quart of water. Bring the mixture to a boil in the pot and let it boil for ten minutes.
  • Denture tabs – do you have enamel cookware? Then, denture tabs can help clean them. Fill the pot or pan with warm water and a tablet or two. Wait until the fizzing has stopped and your cookware should be clean.
  • Fabric softener – soak burned on foods with liquid fabric softener. Fill the pan with water, add a squirt of fabric softener and soak for an hour. Residue should wipe away quickly.
  • Ketchup – when your copper pots and pans are starting to look old, coat the copper surface with it. Let it sit for about thirty minutes. Acids in the ketchup will react with the tarnish to remove it. Rinse the pan and dry immediately.
  • Lemons – rub the cut side of a half of a lemon all over them and buff with a soft cloth.

There are even more remedies for cleaning pots and pans than these. We’ve only told you about the ones we think are the most effective. We encourage you to give us some of your best ideas and send them to us. We’d love to hear from you.