The Cleaning Book Clean til' it gleams

The Attic

The attic

Is it time to tackle that attic? It can be one of the most cluttered areas, but at least the good news is that you will not have to clean too much! In the attic, you will be organizing, pitching stuff, and stacking stuff so you can get through and walk through the attic. Letís get started on organizing.

First, you have your holidays. Holiday stuff should be labeled and stacked all in one area.  This is so you can find it all fast. Using plastic containers with lids (those huge boxes you can buy for about five dollars and you could sit in them in you wanted type) work great for holiday items.

If you want your holiday goodies to be along the side or in the back that is up to you but putting it all in one location is what you really need to do.  Then you can get on with it and tackle all that other stuff! While you are going through holiday stuff, you might want to consider throwing out what you do not need any more. Too much is too much, and cleaning out your holiday stuff is part of cleaning out the attic as well.

You have gotten all the holiday trees, trains, wreaths and decorations, the Easter baskets, the lights and all that out of the way you can move on to seasonal stuff. Seasonal clothing seems like a good place to start. Getting all the summer clothes in one container, or a number of containers that you mark as such, will get you started. Stack these things all together. Keep the containers even if it is summer and your clothes are all down in your dressers right now.

All the winter clothes need to be in another container. The hats, gloves, boots and snow suits are all going to be put in the attic and put away all summer so you have more room in the closets and in the basement.

Now you should have two piles, one for winter, one for summer stuff. Moving on, you can sort through sleeping bags, tents, stuff that is used for summer and stuff that is used for winter. Add these to the piles that you already have going on.

Everything else in the attic is there for some type of reason. Maybe you were afraid to throw something away, maybe you inherited some things from your parents, or a relative. What you need to do is bring everything down from the attic and start sorting it out.

Ask yourself about everything that you are going through while you are bringing it down. Do you need that wedding dress? Why are you keeping that ten year old set of dishes with all the broken cups? Do you need that pair of ice skates? Everything that you are bringing down and moving around in the attic should be under scrutiny. Having many containers on hand to pack things away properly is important as well. Either cardboard or plastic is good, and you will need to label all the boxes as well.

Labeling what you are going to keep you can stack it back in the attic. I hope that you are going to put less back in the attic than what you brought down. It would also be a good idea while you are packing everything away to mark a written listing of what you have in the attic. When you need an air mattress, you can say oh, I have one! If you need an antenna, you know you have one up there somewhere instead of going out and buying one.

Cleaning, oh yeah, we are supposed to be cleaning in the attic. Well cleaning out all that junk is important but while you are up there, sweeping the dead lady bugs, flies and bees from in from of the windows is a good idea. Washing those gross windows with all the spiders web is to be done as well. I do not like using mothballs in the attic, but I do put a few sticky mousetraps in the attic to catch as many little critters as I can.  The sticky mousetraps are great for catching all types of critters like bees, flies, and ants.

I do not have mice in the attic that I know of. If you do, you might want to use the sticky mousetraps so you can just throw them away them. Putting poison in the attic only leads to having a mouse die in your walls somewhere and really start to stink you out later.

I usually use the broom to make my way through the rafters of the attic, you know, where no one ever walks until they really have to fix something.  While you are in the attic, it is a good time to check and make sure you do not have any water stains over the roof, so you do not come up with larger problems later on.

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Last update 23rd May 2006