Consumer Reports’ top products to help you with spring cleaning

The dark days of winter are winding down, and as things brighten up you may be noticing more dust, cobwebs, and other messes. The experts at Consumer Reports share cleaning tips, tricks, and tools to get you ready for spring cleaning.

A writer for Consumer Reports has tested glass cleaners, DIY cleaning hacks, steam cleaners, and more, and says you don’t need a ton of products to get your house clean. Just some basic things like a multipurpose cleaner, a glass cleaner, a bathroom cleaner, and a disinfectant.

Vinegar can be a great option if you don’t want to spend money on a dedicated glass cleaner, but CR’s tests found Sprayway Glass cleaner earned top marks and is also an economical choice because it also cleans chrome, tile, and porcelain. Vinegar or dish detergent can also help remove mild mold and mildew buildup.

Of course, there are tools you can buy to make some jobs easier and maybe even more fun—if that’s your thing. CR recently tried the Bissell Steam Shot and found it satisfying to use to clean bathroom grout really well. Another place it cleaned really well was buildup from fabric softener use in a washing machine.

If you don’t need to deep clean, but you have lots of areas to cover, consider a power scrubber to keep things moving, like the battery-powered Leebein Electric Spin Scrubber for $56.

To tackle the dust and cobwebs in all those hard-to-reach places, CR says turn to your vacuum’s attachments for help: the crevice tool for tight spaces and the upholstery tool to deep clean your couch.

But the key is having a vacuum with adequate airflow. Consumer Reports tests for that and says the Kenmore Pet Friendly 31140, starting at $250, delivers.

Or consider a powerful hand vac like the Black+Decker Max+ DustBuster AdvancedClean+ HHVK515J00, for $90, which comes with different attachment tools for cleaning edges like stair steps and tight spaces.

And one last cleaning tip: It’s much easier if you take it room by room. For example, you can clean the bathroom today, bedrooms tomorrow, and closets the day after that.

To cut down on paper towel waste and save some money, CR recommends microfiber cloths you can wash and reuse. And if you get them in different colors, you can assign each color to a specific room so you can keep bathroom germs away from kitchen germs.

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