Cleaning Tools That Absolutely Need to Be Cleaned (but No One Ever Does)

When it comes to cleaning the house, cleaning tools are there for you. That said, they too need a scrub down. From common bathroom items to the one item you’d never think to clean, we share the cleaning tools everyone forgets to clean, up ahead.

1. Squeegee

Squeegee clean window
That squeegee probably gets pretty gross. | maonakub/Getty images

If you’ve never cleaned your squeegee, here’s your chance to redeem yourself. All it takes is a few swipes of rubbing alcohol and your cleaning tool will look good as new. Not to mention: mildew-free.

2. Toilet brush

Toilet brush cleaning
The toilet brush definitely needs some cleaning. | ratmaner/iStock/Getty Images

Toilet brushes may spend most of their time in soapy water, but that doesn’t mean they’re clean. After cleaning your toilet, clean your brush with some hot water and bleach. And please, let it dry before placing it back in its holder.

3. Toilet brush holder

Toilet brush
The holder where you store the brush should also get cleaned occasionally. | AndreyPopov/iStock/Getty Images

Speaking of toilet brush holders, these need to be cleaned, too. Whether you’re notorious for placing your wet toilet brush in it, or not, toilet brush holders can become germ-ridden and gross. Spray it down with bleach and wipe clean.

4. Mop, broom and vacuum handles

Vacuum Cleaner in Living Room
Don’t forget to clean the handle of your vacuum, mop, and broom. |

With different people touching them (while cleaning, no less), handles can get pretty gross. Before putting your cleaning tools back in the closet, give each handle a good clean with a sanitation wipe or surface spray.

5. Hand duster

Feather duster
The duster needs an occasional cleaning. | newnaux/iStock Getty Images

After all that hard work, hand dusters deserve a good cleanse. If you have a rag duster, you can toss it into the washing machine with other rags and towels.

6. Rubber gloves

Female hand in yellow protective rubber glove
Don’t forget to wash those rubber gloves. | AndrewRafalsky/Getty images

Let’s be honest: We’ve never washed our rubber gloves. What’s the point? They’re just going to get dirty again, right? Wrong. Think of all the gross things your rubber gloves have seen. Instead of slipping on the same germ-ridden gloves, wouldn’t it be nice to have a clean pair?

As it turns out, cleaning rubber gloves is easier than you might think. Simply throw them in the dishwasher and you’re good to go!

7. Rags

Man cleaning tile wall
Don’t forget to wash your cleaning rags. | Di_photo/iStock/Getty Images

Rags are another thing that must be cleaned. Throw them in the washing machine on their own — or, with other towels — and rest easy knowing you know be using a dirty rag to “clean” your kitchen.

8. Lint-free rags

cleaning white open empty refrigerator with pink rag
Even lint-free rags need a good cleaning. |

Microfiber and lint-free rags don’t get a hall pass. They need to be washed, too. Toss them in with your other rags.

9. Sponges

Sponges need to get cleaned every once in a while. | iStock/Getty Images

Did you know you can actually make your sponges last longer by cleaning them? Toss them in the dishwasher with your dirty dishes and they’ll be good as new.

10. Trash can

Don’t forget to clean your trash can. | JohnnyH5/iStock/Getty Images

Using a trash bag to line your trash can is great and all, but sometimes those bags leak. Instead of avoiding it, give your trash can a good hose down.

11. Dish towels

Dirty dishes in sink
Clean your dish towel after you take care of all those dirty dishes. | ikrents/iStock/Getty Images

Like rags, dish towels also need to be clean. Because, who wants to dry their dishes with a filthy towel? Toss them in the wash with your rags and microfiber towels.

12. Pet waste scoopers

Puppy on absorbent litter
You need to clean the scoop that you use to pick up your pet’s waste. | TatyanaGl/Getty Images

Cleaning pet waste is easier with scoopers. However, those things get gross fast. Make sure to clean them at least once a week (if not, more).

13. Supply caddy

Assortment of cleaning supplies
Don’t forget to clean the caddy that you use to carry all your cleaning supplies. | Jevtic/iStock/Getty Images

Another cleaning tool that can use a good bath every so often? Your supply caddy. Before you add your Windex and other cleaning supplies back in, give your caddy a good clean with a disinfectant wipe.

14. Bucket

Plastic bucket with cleaning supplies on wood background
Your bucket needs a good cleaning, too. | Logoff/iStock/Getty Images

In addition to supply caddies, buckets also need to be cleaned — especially if you used it to mop. After dumping your dirty mop water, add a little bit of soap to the bucket and rinse with hot water. Let it dry before adding any other cleaning tools for storage.

15. Dust pan

old broom
Don’t forget to clean the dust pan you use with that broom. | FooTToo/iStock/Getty Images

We hate to break it to you, but shaking your dust pan into the trash is not cleaning it. Once a week (or more) run your pan under hot water and clean with soap.

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