9 Smart Things to Clean on the Longest Day of the Year, Using the Extra Sun to Your Advantage

updated Jun 19, 2019
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(Image credit: Jordana Longo)

On Friday, June 21 this year—aka the summer solstice—the sun travels the longest path through the sky, giving us the most daylight of any day of the year. Let’s celebrate this day of maximum sunshine by using the sun’s gift of light to clean.

Here are some things to clean using the sun’s light and heat to your advantage:

(Image credit: Diana Liang)

1. The windows

Start with these early in the day so that the hot midday sun doesn’t leave water marks on the windows as they dry. Getting them clean will let the beautiful golden light stream in all day.

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2. Window screens, sills, and tracks

If you’re spending the time to wash your windows, take the opportunity to get every part of your windows clean. Here are some helpful tips.

3. Garbage cans

Wash out garbage cans and recycling bins with a hose, erase scuff marks with a magic eraser, scrub nooks and crannies, and then leave them out to dry in the sun, which will help disinfect them naturally.

4. Your white laundry

If you have some dingy white laundry that you’d love to whiten, toss it in the wash, and set up a line to dry outside. Think white undershirts, towels, bed sheets. Not only will you take them down from the line whiter than before, but they’ll have that heavenly sun-soaked smell.

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(Image credit: Jacqueline Marque)

5. Your front porch

Take advantage of all that the sun reveals by looking at your front porch with sharp eyes. Grab a ladder and a broom and brush away corner cobwebs, wash pillars with a solution of mild soap and water, beat your doormat out, and sweep and wash your front porch floor. Finish by giving your planters and front door a wipe-down with a damp rag.

6. Your outdoor furniture

If you haven’t already done it, refresh your outdoor furniture with a hose or power washer. Scrub outdoor cushions and set everything out to dry in the sun.

Credit: Lana Kenney

7. Pet items

When was the last time you completely cleaned your litter box? Dump out the litter, wash it out, and then leave it to dry and disinfect in the sun’s rays. Take pet beds that can’t be washed (especially those not-great-smelling doggie beds) out for a sun-bathe as well. It will freshen them right up.

8. Ceiling fan blades

If you have ceiling fans, then you probably live in a place where you’ve already started using them. Take the opportunity today to give the blades a sweep with a microfiber duster. While you’re at it, make sure your fans are spinning in the correct direction.

9. Vacuum filters

If your vacuum cleaner has washable filters, wash them. We know it’s hard to think of going without your cordless Dyson even for a day, so make use of the extra sunlight hours to dry them before tomorrow.

What’s your favorite way to clean with the sun?