Tuesday, 7 August 2012

How to clean the bathroom in 10 minutes

I've seen a lot of pins on pinterest recently on 'Cleaning your bathroom like a pro' so I thought I'd add my tuppence worth. Now I'm not a professional (I don't believe cleaning swimming pool toilets as a teenager really counts as real experience of cleaning in a professional capacity), but I do like a clean bathroom. I get all yukked out when I'm staying with someone and their toilet is dirty, or their shower is so bad that I feel dirtier when I get out than when I went in. I've also been known to clean someones bathroom for them, but I'm pretty sure that breaks all sorts of etiquette rules.

So I have a system. Luckily for me, with just Mr PTC and myself I can get away with doing this twice a week (Mr PTC is well trained), but when we have guests I do it daily. But at 10 minutes, I hardly complain. The exception to the rule is the sink. My lovely little kitty Lavender likes to drink from the bathroom sink tap (we tried to break the habit but failed), and so I have to wipe down the sink several times a day to get rid of the paw prints. But we just keep a sponge under the sink and it takes just a moment.

I might have to get a less blurry picture of my bathroom!

So here are my steps to keeping that bathroom sparkling! If this is done often enough you can even get this routine down to 5 minutes, but you do need to keep on top of it.

Clean your bathroom in 10 minutes

1. Tie back your hair and get out the rubber gloves. (And yes maybe I'm being sexist, but I do know plenty of men who have long hair). The gloves are optional, but it stops my hands getting dried out from the chemicals (even vinegar - yes our favourite cleaner - will damage your skin, albeit slightly, because it is at a different pH, hence why it cleans so well).

2. Get a spray bottle of your favourite cleaner (I use Cif multi-purpose for bad days, and a vinegar solution for not so bad days), three absorbent lint-free rags (I use rags from an old T-shirt) and a mop that can have the mop part removed and popped in the washing machine. You can use disposable towels if you want, but I'm trying to be green!

3. Start with the toilet. Spray the inside of the toilet and all around the lid, rim, seat, button/handle flushing device. Basically the whole thing. You don't want to soak it, but you want decent coverage. Then wipe around the toilet with rag one starting at the top and working down towards the seat, round the seat and lid, and finally the outside rim of the toilet. I do it this way as I figure the top is the cleanest part so there I'm avoiding passing nasties from the toilet bowl to the top. Do not do the inside of the toilet with the rag! That is what the brush is for! Discard rag one.

4. Swish the toilet bowl with your loo brush, flush the toilet and trap the toilet brush between the seat and the bowl so it sits out of the water, dripping into the bowl. By the time you have cleaned the rest of the room the brush should be basically dry.

5. Spray the rest of the room. Again, you don't want it soaking, just enough to give you some lubrication and cleaning power with your rags. I spray downwards, starting with the mirror, to the sink, the bath/shower screen and walls and finally the bath/shower tray.

6. Wipe all surfaces you have just sprayed with rag two. If you haven't soaked everything this is where you should find that everything ends up nearly dry and not too smeary.

7. Wipe down with your final rag (rag three) to get everything shiny. This is where your choice of rag becomes important. You want a cloth that won't leave streaks or debris on your mirror, but I promise you can find an old piece of clothing that will do the job nearly as well as all the expensive cleaning cloths out there. Once you have done the mirror, sink, shower and bath, if the toilet is still a little damp on the lid you can use rag three over the toilet as the very last thing it does, again working down from the top to the seat and toilet bowl. Finish up by removing the toilet brush and placing back in its holder (it should be basically dry, so no nastiness in the holder). Flush the toilet one last time and shut the lid.

8. To finish, spray the floor with your chosen cleaner and mop the floor. Finish up by the door, mopping behind you so you don't leave footprints.

9. Exit the bathroom and switch on the fan as you leave so it finishes drying the room out.

10. Wash your rags. Pop your removable mop head and the dirty cleaning rags into the washing machine (I have four sets of everything so I just do one 'cleaning' wash cycle every fortnight).

Once every six weeks or so I do a 'deep clean' of the bathroom, sometimes more often if it is just bad! This involves bleach and all sorts, including wiping down all the walls. However, the more frequently I do my 5-10 minute clean the less often this needs doing. It really makes a difference. I also keep a stash of my cleaning cloths under the sink and the mop lives in the cupboard handily located next to the bathroom. Rubber gloves and hair bands are also stored in the bathroom so I can be ready to go before you say 'clean'. Oh dear, yes I really did just say that.

I've had this routine for about a year now, and it makes 'cleaning the bathroom' far less daunting. Before I used to do a deep clean every 10 days and just wipe things down every few days. I dreaded my deep clean because it took ages, I got soaked (don't ask), and the flat smelt of bleach for days. Not nice. This new method skips all that, and if I'm on top form it can actually take as little as 5 minutes.

Most of this is common sense… but it helps to have a list. If you have other ideas I'd love to hear them!

Thanks for stopping by,
Let me know what you think... leave a comment or send an email to passthecaffeine {at} gmail {dot} com


  1. It's party time over at Debt Free Mommy Blog and you're invited! Please come by and link up any post(s) related to making your home a better space. I hope you'll join us for Making Space Mondays. Hope to see you there! -Tabitha

    1. Hi Debt Free Mommy! Yes I will definitely have a look at your link party! Unfortunately I totally missed out on 'Making Space Mondays' by not looking at my blog all day. But thank you for the invitation.