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Trouble bending over?

Laundry on Legs could help.

This laundry basket with push buttons releases legs that pop out, setting the basket at the right height for hanging washing; legs retract for storage. £18.99 from Lakeland.co.uk.

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Follow these rules for a great night’s sleep

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Sheets and pillowcases ought to be washed once a week. It’s a good idea to do it on a specific day; that way it becomes part of your routine.

A 60C cycle is best for cottons, particularly if you have an asthma-related condition (anything below this temperature probably won’t kill dust mites).

Duvets should be washed once a year. A single size can usually go in the washing machine but anything bigger will have to be taken to the launderette. Make sure it’s completely dried before using again, if particularly down- or feather-filled. And dry quickly because if not the feathers can go mouldy, which will give a nasty smell you’ll never get rid of. Avoid dry-cleaning duvets because the solvent will leave a residue on the feathers.

Pillows will be filled with either feather, down or synthetic material. See the label for wash instructions, but normally you’ll be able to wash two at a time. Once or twice a year will be enough. Again, dry thoroughly and as quickly as possible to avoid mould. You may notice a difference in the weight post-wash! Pillow protectors are well worth using between washes.

Headboards can take on marks where a greasy head has been in contact. If it’s fabric, spot clean with an upholstery cleaner, but don’t overwet or you could end up with watermarks. If veneer or vinyl, wipe with warm soapy water and dry with a clean cotton cloth.

The space under the bed will get very dusty so pull out everything about once a month, and move the bed to one side to vacuum thoroughly. This will keep moths and carpet beetles away, and the dustmites under control.

Mattresses can end up looking pretty nasty. Unless the label says ‘Do not turn’, turn it over every three months to extend its life (and your comfort). Vacuuming it will make a huge difference to reducing the dustmite population. If you don’t have one already, use a mattress protector (waterproof for young children or anyone with incontinence problems). To remove stains, use a foamy mix of hand-wash detergent. Don’t overwet. Make sure it is completely dry before making up the bed again (use a hairdryer to speed things up). If there are any nasty smells there, sprinkle with bicarbonate of soda, leave a few hours then vacuum off.

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A few clever time saving tips

Sweep your front path or porch as part of your regular cleaning routine – trailing in leaves and mud on shoes will only create extra work.

When you apply a cleaning spray, leave it a few minutes while you clean something else – during that time the spray will have started to work and marks will wipe off more easily.

Do a little each day – even 10 minutes extra every morning or evening means you’ll have more chance to keep on top of things and will free up more time at the weekends.

When washing walls, start at the bottom and work upwards so that any dirty trickles will get absorbed by the already wet surface.

If you have a household tip that you would like to share with Aggie’s followers – send it to us for publication – go to https://aggiestips.com/do-you-have-a-tip-to-share-with-aggie/

How to treat carpet beetle grubs

Commonly known as woolly bears, they’re quite common in spring. They look like maggots with brown hairs (hence the name). As they hatch they munch through their surroundings, leaving holes in the way clothes moths do.

Check for damage to clothes in wardrobes and chests of drawers, carpets and rugs. Wash or dry clean affected items and vacuum carpets thoroughly (empty the bag straight away).

Buy Rentokil Insectrol Dust for Carpet Beetle from hardware shops. Once you’re rid of them, make sure you clean well, removing fluff and dust from under and behind furniture, and vacuum carpets thoroughly.

If you have a household tip that you would like to share with Aggie’s followers – send it to us for publication – go to https://aggiestips.com/do-you-have-a-tip-to-share-with-aggie/

Ivory

Ivory needs to be exposed to daylight so it can bleach naturally and stay creamy, so best to use daily.

Hand-wash in soapy water and dry immediately as water can seep into the joints and soften the glue that attaches the handles.