Controlling household dust is a multifaceted challenge that requires both knowledge and skill. To be effective, you need to understand where the dust in your home originates and apply the appropriate prevention and cleaning techniques. But that doesn't mean it should be a labor-intensive project. With the right adjustments, much of the dust control will take care of itself.
Get a Doormat
Dust and dirt from outside are frequently carried in the home by way of your shoes. Place a heavy duty welcome mat outside your door and encourage guests to use it before coming in. You may also want to ask guests to remove their shoes before coming inside. Place a small rug or runner inside the door, as well, to capture any dust the welcome mat misses.
Dust loves clutter, so get rid of it. Dispose of or donate items you don't need and keep knick-knacks and tchotchkes to a minimum. Box items stored on closet shelves to keep dust out of them and keep the floor clear so it is easier to vacuum. Clothes constantly shed small dust as their fibers deteriorate, so store clothes you rarely wear in <atarget="_blank" href="http://www.bobvila.com/door-mats/47177-15-remarkably-easy-ways-to-create-a-dust-free-home/slideshows"> </atarget="_blank">garment bags so they don't cause dust in your closet.
Change Your Bed Sheets
Because it collects dead skin cells while you sleep and fibers from sheets and blankets, your bed is a major source of dust in your home. To reduce dust, change your bed sheets <atarget="_blank" href="http://www.rd.com/slideshows/dust-allergy-rid-dust-your-house/"> </atarget="_blank">once a week. When removing the old sheets, roll them up and handle them gently to avoid shaking dust out of them on the way to the washing machine. Take pillows and dry-clean only blankets outside for a good shake rather than running them to the cleaners once a week.
Keep Your Pets in Check
As much fun as furry companions are, their shedding and pet dander create dust. Minimize this by brushing dogs and cats regularly and bathing them periodically. Your vet can tell you how often to bath your pet and what shampoo to use based on his or her breed and skin traits. Covered cat litter boxes also reduce dust.
Close Those Windows
Pollen, dirt and dust from outside enter homes through open windows. The holes in most screens are large enough to let the dust particles in, so keeping your windows closed will help prevent dust. If you crave fresh air, consider purchasing the special filtering screens which can help remove dust in the air.
Static electricity helps dust cling to the surfaces in your home, so dry air draws dust towards your furniture and helps it stay there. Use a humidifier to fix this problem. A relative humidity of <atarget="_blank" href="http://www.bobvila.com/door-mats/47177-15-remarkably-easy-ways-to-create-a-dust-free-home/slideshows"> </atarget="_blank">40 to 50 percent is best for eliminating dust. You can achieve this by using a humidifier. Place the humidifier in the dustiest room of your home or purchase and install a whole-house model.
Ditch the Carpet
It might feel good on your bare feet, but carpet is a dust magnet. Even with a high-quality vacuum cleaner, it is difficult to get all of the dust that settles into a carpet back out. Removing carpeting from your home will reduce the amount of dust it collects.
Each of these changes contribute to a low-effort, low-dust lifestyle, but they won't solve your dust problem altogether. The first step to really eliminating dust is figuring out where all that dust is coming from.
Home is where the heart is, and Michelle frequently pens articles about ways to keep yours looking great and feeling cozy. Whether you want help organizing your closet, picking a paint color or finishing drywall, Michelle has you covered. If she's not puttering in the house, you'll find her in the garden playing in the dirt. Her garden articles provide tips and insight that anyone can use to turn a brown thumb green. You'll find her work on Modern Mom, The Nest and eHow as well as sprinkled throughout your other online home decor and improvement favorites.