Banishing Dust from Your Home

As ubiquitous as gnats in Georgia, dust is seemingly inescapable, no matter where you are. As a matter of fact, dust occurs wherever humans reside. The term dust is actually just a polite way of describing human skin cells that slough off during the night. But it doesn’t stop there. Cloth fiber, tiny dust mites and their excrement, animal dander, and decomposing bug parts also fall under the umbrella of dust. To reduce the amount of dust in your home, try the following dust-busting tips.

Clean dust with a microfiber dust cloth
A microfiber dust cloth works better than an old t-shirt or feather duster because it attracts dust. Other products stir dust into the air, which gets pushed deeper into unreachable spaces. The microfiber cloth uses an electrostatic charge to pull dust away from surfaces. Microfiber dusters come in a variety of sizes and shapes, so you can clean those hard to reach fan-blades and blinds.

When it comes to banishing dust from your home, the vacuum is your right hand man. A vacuum with a high-efficiency particulate air filter (HEPA) can capture the tiniest dust bunnies. Vacuum heavily-trafficked areas like hallways, doorways, dens, and bedrooms once a week to keep dust at bay. Almost as important as using the vacuum, keeping it in good maintenance can make your dust-busting endeavor less frequent and more successful. Empty the vacuum canister often and keep the brush wheel free of hair and other debris.

Change air filters
Old air filters can be packed with germs and dust-spreading mites. Change the air filters in your home or apartment at least once a month. As an added health benefit, some air filters have pleats and electrostatic charge that attracts pollen, dust, and other allergens. If you suffer from asthma or endure other allergy symptoms, change the air filter frequently to prevent dust and allergens from circulating in the air.

Cut down on textiles
Textiles like carpets, rugs, curtains, and clothes not only trap dust, but they create it, too, as fibers shed and disintegrate. Carpets are huge reservoirs of dust, and should be cleaned regularly. Besides vacuuming weekly, you should beat and shake out area rugs three to four times a year. Upholstery fabric used on furniture and pillow cushions cannot be tossed easily into the washing machine. To rid these of dust, regularly beat them outside with a broom or tennis racket. The only way to totally eliminate dust from textiles and fabric is to install hardwood floors, and have only leather or vinyl furniture.

Rotate bedding
Every time you roll from one side to another in your bed, you’re sending an invisible cloud of dust into the air. Not just a reservoir of dead skin cells, your bed contributes to its own dust content, as sheets, pillows, and mattress fibers disintegrate. To minimize dust fallout from your bed, change all sheets and pillow cases weekly. For bedding that can’t be washed easily, like quilts and comforters, take them outside for a good shaking. Once or twice a year, take pillows and other bedding to the dry cleaners to minimize dust in your bedroom.

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