Julies Blog

How to care for kickboards

by Julie Finch-Scally

How often do you clean your kickboards? And if you are not sure where and what a kickboard is, they are the boards set back under the bottom of kitchen cupboards and vanity units. The boards are set back so when you stand at the sink or workbench your toes fit underneath the cupboard.

Because these boards are set back they are rarely seen. Well that is not quite true because you can see them as you walk into a kitchen, but because they are near the floor one’s eyes are not automatically drawn to them. As the boards are down on the floor there is more effort required to reach under the cupboard doors to wipe over and clean them. Yes, they can be cleaned as part of the regular regime of cleaning kitchen cupboards, but that is rarely done.

Out of sight, out of mind! Well as far as kickboards are concerned that seems to be the order of the day. But kickboards do get dirty, especially scuff marked from shoes, so they do need a regular clean.

I find it is easier to make a concerted effort and take extra time, once every couple of months, to clean the kickboards separately from cleaning the cupboards. It doesn’t take too long and gets it all over and done in one go.

When I clean the doors of my kitchen cupboard and vanity units I rub over them with glass cleanser and a micro-fibre cloth. This procedure will also work for the kickboards but those scuff marks need a bit more effort.

I find the trusty cream cleanser and a damp sponge rubbed over the offending marks is the easiest way to lift and remove them. Of course the cleaned area will need to be wiped with a clean damp cloth to remove the cleanser product. If I remove all the black marks at the beginning of the clean, then the wipe over of the kickboards with the glass cleanser, is quick and easy. Unfortunately I usually have to wipe over the kitchen cupboards as well because the clean kickboards make the cupboard doors look dirty.

So if you haven’t cleaned your kickboards for a while, my suggestion is to look and see how dirty they really are. Remove the scuff marks and go around with the glass cleanser and micro-fibre cloth and you will be surprised at the difference.


The dirt under the lip of the toilet

by Julie Finch-Scally

In a small bathroom one never gets to see the dirt that collects under the lip of the toilet: that space where the water enters the toilet from the cistern. In the bathroom in my house and several other homes I have entered, there is one spot where one can look at the inside of the toilet and actually see the top of the bowl and the porcelain just below the toilet lip.

I always taught my cleaners to scrub under and inside the lip of the toilet with the toilet brush and cream cleanser. It loosens any buildup and when the toilet is flushed removes it completely. I do know of some cleaners who squeeze bleach under the lip of the toilet and into the bowl. As I am not a great fan of flushing bleach down into the sewage system I am not in the habit of recommending this procedure.

This all sounds great, but there are times when nothing seems to work. I often see this in my downstairs toilet which has small holes around the rear rim of the lip. Sometimes there is a build up of soft greeny/brown fungus around the inside of the holes.

Yes I rub it thoroughly and roughly with the toilet brush, but the bristles don’t seem to penetrate into the holes or remove the fungus. I’ve tried scrubbing the small holes with an old toothbrush coated in cream cleanser but that is not very successful. The best thing I have found is to scrub under the lip and around and over the small holes with the scourer side of a scourer/sponge and cream cleanser. That of course is OK for a short while but it doesn’t take long for the furry fungus to reappear.

The other day I decided I wanted to understand where all this stuff was coming from so removed the lid of the cistern. There inside was the culprit. The whole of the inside of the cistern under the water line was coated with the soft, furry, greeny/brown fungus. No wonder if kept appearing in the toilet.

Now I am not too good and sorting out cisterns, but hubby is a great handyman and so next weekend we are going to attack the inside and clean it up. Hopefully, once I have removed any left over fungus inside the cistern, the underneath section of the lip of the toilet will be clean again and remain that way.

If you have a problem with a constant build up of fungus under the toilet lip, no matter how often and much you clean it, try lifting the lid of the cistern and see what the buildup of fungus is inside. Clean that out and your problem should be solved.

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