HOUSE CLEANING THE VICTORIAN WAY? NO THANK YOU
Imagine if you would, house cleaning in the Victorian era. We all look aghast at the laundry basket but a quick sort and some soap powder and at the press of a button the problem is solved. We can go off and read a book whilst a machine does all the hard work.
150 years ago it was very different process cleaning a house. Before breakfast, work would start on re-lighting the kitchen stove where the only source of hot water could be drawn, then shutters needed to be opened, grates cleaned, ashes disposed of, new fires re-laid, entrance floors swept and the front step cleaned. This was all before breakfast. Wicks on lamps had to be trimmed and cleaned, floors were mopped and chamber pots emptied. Remember the vacuum cleaner wasn’t invented until 1901 and refrigeration was some way off, most things were done by hand and cooking and shopping were also massive undertakings.
The interesting thing is we have more help these days than ever before but seem to have less time to do housework and everyone is under intense pressure from all kinds of other distractions. It appears we have not gained any time at all. Granted, we no longer have a long walk to wash clothes in the river but sometimes when I see the pile of ironing virtually touching the ceiling I know I have lost control.
Wherever we look we are encouraged to make our houses as clean as show homes. TV programmes attempt to shame us into making our houses germ free. This is an impossible aspiration. Let’s face it, just how often do you muck out the fridge? Thought so. The Victorians had some great tips which we can use today, when we do roll up our sleeves and get down to it.
Half a lemon left in the fridge will help absorb smells, did you know half a cut onion in a cupboard that has been freshly painted will eliminate odours. A bowl of vinegar left overnight in a smoky room will also kill off odours. Bicarbonate of soda is a great cleaner which won’t leave a residual smell and therefore is brilliant for fridges. Vinegar and newspaper are the ultimate glass cleaners. Treating a scratch with a freshly cut Brazil nut will darken exposed wood.
So you see we can learn from the past ,but if that sounds like just too much effort then give pigsty a call and let your house shine through someone else’s efforts and you can read about the tips instead. Remember, if you need your house cleaned thoroughly in Cork or Dublin there’s no one better to do it. Call pigsty today and find something more exciting to do with your time.
April 20th, 2012
HOUSE CLEANING THE VICTORIAN WAY? NO THANK YOU
April 12th, 2012
DOMESTIC CLEANING OR DOMESTIC BLISS? YOU CHOOSE.
Domestic cleaners are unsung heroes and heroines and without them many of us would be living in homes that looked like domestic hoarders had moved in.
With life’s pace having been ramped up considerably as a consequence of technology we seem to be working harder than ever. We live in an age where we are saturated with images of immaculate homes but isn’t it just ironic that we seem to have less available time (and inclination it must be said) to do housework.
OK, I do acknowledge I no longer have to walk to the river to wash the clothes but at this moment I don’t even have time to sort the laundry, let alone put it in the machine and press ‘start’.Just think of the chain of events that would begin; I would have to start ironing! Save me!
My study needs a good sort, computers create heat and attract dust, papers seem to breed when my back is turned and the whole house is crying out for the loving attention of a domestic cleaner. Help Me! But I have copy to write, deadlines to meet and no time so feelings of inadequacy will prevail unless I engage a cleaner in easy and affordable solution.
Pigsty.ie have developed a fabulous network of trusted, hard-working domestic cleaners within its cleaning company and they are just itching to get their hands on your tooth-paste-smeared basin, or crumb-encrusted work surface. They like nothing better than the challenge of working their cleaning magic on a dirty home.
If anyone has ever watched ‘How Clean Is Your House?’ and winced, reaching simultaneously for the remote, then pigsty can help you.
Whether your ruin is in Dublin or Cork they can source just the perfect domestic cleaner for you. Whether you need a one off blitz, annual spring clean or a more genteel weekly ‘do’, they can sort that for you very quickly.
Imagine the feeling of coming home from a hard day’s work to a sweet-smelling sitting room, a sparkling kitchen, a neat pile of ironing and a shiny set of bathroom tiles. All that’s left for you to do is pour a glass of wine, light a few candles and lie in a hot scented bath listening to your favourite music.
Surely that beats coming home to a pigsty at the end of a tiring week and hauling the hoover out of the cupboard? You know it makes sense!
Pigsty is the cleaning company that only employs conscientious domestic cleaners, hire one today and start the transformation of your home right now.
April 6th, 2012
DO YOU WANT YOUR MOUSE CLEANED BY ITS NAMESAKE?
We spend such a lot of our working day in offices and never really notice they need cleaning. How many times have you eaten lunch at your desk? Do you ever actually clear up afterwards or do you simply flick the odd crumb onto the floor? Have you ever really looked closely at the keyboard you use every day? If you had a microscope would you actually put your fingers back on the keys?
Apparently rodents are extremely good at running along the keyboard at night and pressing down the keys to get to your crisp crumbs and we all know what mice are always doing apart from eating! Research suggests your office desk is home to around 200,000 microbes, just to rub it in that’s more germs than can be found on the average toilet seat and they love colonising your computer mouse (sic) telephone and keyboard especially.
Research suggests we all work in very unhygienic, dirty offices and the days of regular office cleaning seem to be a thing of the past. Of course we can all do a lot to help ourselves by using anti-bacterial wipes and so forth but that never really gets to the heart of the problem. A professional company who will actually get into all the corners will make a significant difference to the general working atmosphere and the overall hygiene of the office environment.
Look around your office, do the bins get empties regularly? Do people remove their tea and coffee dregs every day? Does anyone ever look in the fridge apart from to remove their sandwich box? Office cleaning is an important aspect of public health and general etiquette. A healthy workforce is a productive workforce, so working in a clean office has economic, social as well as all-important health benefits.
Of course using a professional office cleaning service will ensure the appropriate cleaning solutions and equipment will make a thorough job of cleaning your office and they will tackle the jobs no one has time for. A specific rota can ensure all areas are covered not just the obvious ones. So if you need bins emptied or cleaned, a thorough vacuum or desks polished then pigsty.ie can solve your problems.
Whether your office is in Cork or Dublin our office cleaning solutions will ensure your work spaces smell fresh as a daisy and germs are shown the door. It’s in everyone’s interest to make the place they spend most time in pleasant, fresh and hygienic and an office cleaner can make that difference to your company. Call us now and spring clean your office and
March 30th, 2012
THE DANGERS OF NOT CLEANING MY ROOF
When I get home the last thing I look at, if I am honest is my roof.I focus on watching the key turn in the lock, then manage a quick sprint to the kitchen, run fresh water in the kettle and then I know I’m home. What’s above my eye line doesn’t normally concern me, so I was quite surprised to read how bad excessive moss or algae can be if it is allowed to develop unchecked on a roof and that really my roof needed cleaning.
I always thought moss and algae growth meant the air was relatively clean and saw it as quite a good indicator but unfortunately it also has the ability to absorb water. OK, you might be thinking, and your point is? Well my point is the additional water stored on your roof can add one tonne per metre cubed. If you are living in an old house with less than perfect structural support this could make a massive impact and cause significant damage to your roof. It may buckle and warp or it might collapse totally.
Not only was water a problem but during the cold winter months water can freeze and this expansion and contraction can dislodge tiles and end up causing expensive damp patches on ceiling and internal walls. So, a dirty roof not only looks unsightly but can actually lead to expensive water damage. So, what’s the solution? Getting up a ladder with a high pressure hose? It’s an answer I guess but working at height can be very dangerous and also a high pressure washer can cause even more damage to tiles which are already loose or broken and cracked mortar too. Bearing in mind you would probably want to clean your gutters when you get up there this sounds like a job for the professionals.
Many household accidents happen through the use of ladders, new health and safety regulations regarding professional working at height have been implemented for a reason, so it pays to employ someone who has experience of roof cleaning to take the stress out of this unpleasant and risky job.
You can arrange to have your roof cleaned with carefully selected tools which will remove algae and moss without damaging tiles or mortar and even have a treatment added which will prevent regrowth in the future. In addition you can have your gutters spring cleaned, which is a great idea especially if you live near trees. Blocked gutters can cause water overflow and begin the cycle of damp so they should be kept clear.
Instead of waiting for a calm, dry day you can book your roof a professional clean and have it completed quickly and efficiently. So whether you live in Dublin or Cork, take a look outside and assess the debris on your roof, then contact pigsty.ie and we’ll send someone round to clean and you can sit inside with your feet up and a have well-earned cuppa. Contact us now!
March 23rd, 2012
It was some years back that I bought a new oven cleaning product and having done this job for years I didn’t bother to read the label. This was my first mistake. What I didn’t realise was this new product needed to be used in a cold oven whereas I had heated mine up deliberately! Well, I switched off, shook the can, opened the door and started to spray. Did I use goggles? No. Did I use a mask? No. Did I use rubber gloves? Er no. As a consequence the toxic chemical mix in hot air was now so volatile I suddenly realised my eye was hurting and within five minutes there was a blob in it which demanded I shut the oven and run a constant stream of cold water over the affected area.
After half an hour there was a white mark on my eye and it was decided I needed to go to the hospital. Bathing the spot all the way I was then sent to a specialist eye clinic and some hours later, having seen a specialist I was deemed to be very lucky and sent home.
I admit it was sheer stupidity and carelessness which could have ended up with a profound eye injury. I read the instructions when I arrived home and sure enough the instructions said ‘cold oven’ You have been warned.
However, there is a far better solution to the little matter of getting an oven looking like new: hire a professional. Pigsty.ie have plenty to choose from so if your oven needs cleaning in Cork or in Dublin we can send someone around with the right protective clothing, who knows exactly what they are doing and is capable of cleaning your oven to show room standard. That sounds better doesn’t it?
Sometimes, it really is worth asking someone with the right kit; it will save dirt, mess, hours of elbow grease and the potential to breathe in toxic fumes. As I write I am looking at a sparkling oven that smells wonderful and is now the colour it was when I bought it, thanks to my man who can and did!
Stay safe and hire an oven cleaner now, you won’t regret it, but make sure you do that final roast before you call!
March 16th, 2012
‘Clean My house!’ is a cry I often want to shout out when I look around and see the mountain of housekeeping jobs which come around with tedious regularity. As I am half way through the mountain of ironing, no matter how prim and proper the neat pile may look, I know that in another seven days I will be back in front of a soap opera cursing at the number of shirts that have mysteriously turned up in the ironing basket. It is tedious in the extreme and seemingly never-ending.
Added to that, whenever I switch on the hoover it’s coughing and spluttering with the suck of a near death asthmatic poodle, not that I’ve ever come across one, but you get the gist. Suffice to say I really am not a fun of domestic cleaning. If I had a choice I might be lying out on a sun lounger instead, gently toasting both sides whilst a handsome waiter tops up a bottomless Pina Colada. …big sigh. It’s funny where your imagination takes you when there’s domestic cleaning to be done. Where was I? Oh yes, cleaning my house, how could I forget?
How often does one have to clean, not to be considered slovenly, now there’s a question? It was different when people stayed at home and domestic cleaning was the raison d’etre for many. Somehow the idea of coming home from work, changing into my jog pants and old t shirt and washing floors or cleaning windows is too much to bear; just the mere thought makes me book a manicure.
Still, if I have to do the housework I’ll choose something vaguely appealing and that’s usually switching on the washing machine. A quick way of brightening up the house is to give the nets a wash using a proprietary net whitener. Blinds can be a little more frustrating but regular vacuuming with a soft brush on low suction you can make a real difference to their shine and general appearance. Venetian, vertical and roller blinds with wipe able surfaces can be dusted and wiped over with a clean, damp cloth soaked in a detergent solution. You may well be reading this and thinking, ‘why would I, can’t I hire a cleaner instead?’
I made the crazy decision in a fit of misplaced enthusiasm of washing all the antique lace cushion covers I had bought in a boot fair to find they looked white but had collapsed into a limp, sad condition ( a bit like me after a round of house cleaning) but with a little research discovered 25g of gum Arabic dissolved in 250ml of boiling water and then left to cool did the trick. It was just a matter of dipping the lace in, leaving it to dry then ironing through a cloth, although I prefer a gin and tonic myself!
Next time I’m going to hire a cleaner as I’m obviously not cut out for domestic cleaning. Peel me a grape, someone! But if like me, you live in Cork or Dublin and need to hire a cleaner then contact pigsty.ie and save yourself the bother, oh yes, skip on the antique lace too whilst you’re at it, there are better things to do in life, trust me!
TOP DOWN, BOTTOM UP, CHIMNEY CLEANING COULD BECOME THE NEW FETISH ACTIVITY UNLESS THE FIRE BRIGADE DO IT ‘THE DIRTY WAY’!
March 9th, 2012
TOP DOWN, BOTTOM UP, CHIMNEY CLEANING COULD BECOME THE NEW FETISH ACTIVITY UNLESS THE FIRE BRIGADE DO IT ‘THE DIRTY WAY’!
As tidy as I am, cleaning my chimney has never been on my list of priorities on my house cleaning routine and I guess that’s half the problem; no one thinks about dealing with this neglected area of our properties and potentially we could be storing up big problems for ourselves.
We don’t live in an old fashioned ‘chimney culture’ where everyone had an open fire and Americans with fake cockney accents swung over the rooftops singing cheery chimney cleaning songs!
I clean out my wood burner, give the glass a polish, relegate the basket of logs to the garage and that, dear readers, officially spells the end of winter in my household. I never give any thought to the chimney, but this year as we’ve had plenty of fires I thought I would. That was probably my first mistake; it looks like you need a degree just to contemplate which way you want to attack the chimney, seriously. It’s either, rod method, top down, rod method bottom up, weight method or dual line.
That was just for starters. Rod method, top down necessitated a trip on the roof to re-enact my own ‘chim chim-in-ay’ moment. Er, no thank you, as outgoing as I am this is never going to happen! In addition the list of equipment and safety concerns was making this little housekeeping excursion look less than likely.
The rod method, bottom up, when I stopped blushing, seemed eminently preferable but not only did I have to source rods and brushes but had to ensure everywhere was sheeted up to prevent masses of soot coating the whole sitting room. ‘Tarps and drop cloths’ are the key words here, in case you want to impress anyone at a cocktail party!
The other methods involved a partner, a line, weights and pulleys and I’m afraid at this point I had a lie down with a bar of chocolate, much more sensible.
If you check the internet there are endless interesting articles on tackling the job of cleaning a chimney but by the time you’ve bought all the safety equipment, scared yourself silly at the thought of working at height, ‘tarped and drop clothed’ yourself and the house into oblivion (apparently it’s not great news to skimp on tarps and drop cloths tee hee) I had lost the will to live.
I am not a lazy person and I am not in the habit of outsourcing my cleaning responsibilities, although saying that, the idea is extremely appealing, however, chimney cleaning is not for the feint-hearted and I think it’s time to call in a professional and hire a chimney cleaner.
In all seriousness a build-up of tar and soot is a fire hazard plain and simple and can cause an intense chimney fire, should it spread to the roof you can be in big trouble and is a definite fire brigade call out. Ideally chimneys should be swept professionally every year and unless you happen to have the odd ’tarp’ hanging around I’d leave it to those who do.
Pigsty.ie has all the technology to sort you out, just shout, ‘Clean my chimney!’ and they’ll send someone to deal with it, either bottom up or top down.
Whether you need your chimney cleaning in Dublin or Cork Pigstye.ie can save the day! So what are you waiting for? Get your chimney cleaned right now before the fire brigade do it the dirty way!
March 2nd, 2012
‘DOMESTIC CLEANING THE DOWNSIDE OF SPRING’
Watch out! The sun’s shining and suddenly winter cosiness, fire on, slumped on sofa, shows up the lack of domestic cleaning that’s actually been going on!
As you glance around, a thick layer of dust generated by the wood burner or coal fire appears to have silently coated just about everything. In fact the motes of dust are dancing right in front of your eyes as a shaft of light lands on the carpet which never used to be that dull colour did it? Really?
Does that sound familiar? Well, dear readers it’s time for some house cleaning, aren’t you just so glad to be alive?
Sometimes it’s too difficult even knowing where to start. So, first things first, no slacking now! De-clutter, be ruthless. Stacks of newspapers and magazines can go off to be recycled, trust me, you never will need those tips for 101 uses of old socks!
Throughout the winter, light levels, a perfectly placed low wattage lamp, will have given the illusion your house was perfectly clean. Mind you, if you check carefully, bet you’ll find stray pine needles from Christmas and the odd screwed up chocolate wrapper that missed the waste paper bin whilst being engrossed in the boxed set of Sex In The City!
So, once you’ve de-cluttered , empty the room as far as possible, wash the ornaments , strip the shelves, a mild solution of vinegar or bicarb of soda and water will get things sparkling again, a carpet shampoo wouldn’t go amiss and have you looked at the state of the sofa recently? Er, lifted the cushions? Moved it back from the wall? Ah, thought not.
Still if you do, you may notice the indents left in the carpet. Did you know that an ice cube placed in one of these carpet dents will make the fibres swell? If you then vacuum the wet fibres they will stand upright again. Think of it as Rug Viagra! You see, I told you domestic cleaning could be exciting!
That’s just one room, how many more to go? Think of it as a challenge: just how bored can I be in one day! Still, if you are that way inclined, domestic cleaning can give off a tantalising whiff of smug satisfaction when you finally collapse in the chair with a cup of tea and a choccy biscuit knowing the house is spotless. Unfortunately the feeling can be fleeting as you watch the dog trail mucky paw prints from the kitchen door right through, bless!
If this vision of domestic bliss doesn’t float your boat then you might want to consider the alternative: a domestic cleaning service. Imagine handing the keys to a band of willing house gnomes, or just the one domestic goddess, who will transform your home from pig sty pretender to sparkling show home. Tantalising thought isn’t it, saying, ‘Please clean my house’?
PigSty.ie are ready to arrange someone to complete your domestic cleaning burden right now! If you need to hire a cleaner anywhere in Ireland, we can send someone in your direction. Give us a try and find something better to do with your time! After all, it plays havoc with the nail varnish! So what are you waiting for? Next spring?
February 24th, 2012
CLEAN WINDOWS FOR A CASCADE OF EXTRA LIGHT….. Window cleaning, let’s face it not exactly the job we leap out of bed to attack. Yet cleaning your windows can make more than a difference to the glass itself; it can impact on your state of mind, I’m serious!
Over the winter months a build of grease, dust and general grime can leave your windows extremely dull and crucially, less effective than when they sparkle and gleam. Grime acts to trap light and less and less of it penetrates your home. Lots of people really suffer with Sad Syndrome and it’s extraordinary just what a difference clean glass can make to winter light levels inside a home.
This layer of dirt occurs gradually without anyone noticing. The world fades before your very eyes without you even realising. So, as part of your general spring clean arm yourself with lint-free material (old t-shirts or vests will do nicely) and set to it. You can either use a spray cleaner, supermarkets’ own do just as well or you can be very traditional and go down the newspaper with vinegar route. Vinegar is a fantastic cleaning agent and cuts through grime in a flash! Newspaper leaves your glass smear free; so have a go today! Your houseplants will also thank you for an additional ray or two, especially when daylight hours are still shorter and light levels seasonally low.
So you see, there’s every reason to leap out of bed and get on with it! If you do need an excuse of course; an experienced window cleaner can make a far quicker and more professional job than you probably can, especially in tricky, difficult to reach areas. Remember, more accidents happen in the home when people try to work at height, so it’s best left to those in the know who also have the right equipment.
PigSty.ie are ready to arrange someone to bring your view back into sharp focus. Whether your windows need cleaning in Dublin or Cork, we can send someone in your direction. Give us a try and let some light back in your life! HIre a cleaner now!
July 4th, 2011
TIPS FOR CLEANING THE KITCHEN SINK…..
Tools You’ll Use
- Eraser-type sponge
- All-purpose cleaner with bleach
- Chlorine bleach and regular sponge
Stains — and who knows what else — in the kitchen sink.
Get rid of the gunk: Just about everything that happens in the kitchen — cooking, cleanup, kids’ craft projects, and more — involves the sink, so of course it gets stained easily. Splotches show up most obviously on light porcelain or solid resin surfaces, though even stainless steel is susceptible. The speediest way to remove marks from these surfaces: Use an eraser-type sponge like Mr. Clean Magic Eraser. (Extra-stubborn spots may need a spritz of an all-purpose cleaner with bleach, and more “erasing.”) Then rinse. To sanitize any sink after cleaning, plug the drain and fill the sink with a gallon of warm water. Swish in a tablespoon of bleach. Dip in a sponge; wipe down the faucet and handles. Let sit at least five minutes. Rinse, and air-dry.
Make It Easier Next Time
- Stash Arm & Hammer’s Baking Soda Shaker ($1.26) under the sink. Sprinkle it on stains before they set in, then just wipe and rinse. Bonus: Baking soda fights drain odors.
- To keep a stainless steel sink looking its spiffiest, take a few minutes to smooth away scratches, which harbor stains and bacteria, with a powdered stainless steel cleanser, like Cameo, and a regular sponge. While you’re at it, help repel grime by applying a light coating of mineral oil with a rag.