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Keeping your home fresh, clean & healthy

The quickest and easiest way of stopping dirt and grime creeping in to your home is by bricking up the doors and windows!

More seriously, the number one tip for keeping your home clean is asking visitors to remove their shoes before coming in.

If you sent some shoes off to a lab for testing, the muck and germs that are walked or blown in to your home through open doors and windows would astonish you.

An average six room home collects enough dirt in a year to fill about 20 two-kilo bags (like you buy your sugar in) and 85% - or 35 kilos - of that comes in on shoes, boots and paws.

Just think for a minute - anything and everything lying on the ground in the streets and gardens around your home is carried on shoes or in the air. That means everything...

    •    Mud, pollen, leaves
    •    Grit, sand and cement
    •    Animal mess and bird droppings
    •    Tar, oil, diesel and petrol
    •    Tobacco, chewing gum, sweets and food

If, like most people, you don’t like asking visitors to take off their shoes, then you need a defence between your home and the filth trying to find a way in from the outside world.

Lots of people have coir, or coconut, matting in the doorways. Take my advice as someone with a few year’s experience of cleaning just about every downright nasty bit of grime you could imagine - and worse - that these mats are next to useless. The bristles catch some of the walked in dirt, but the rest is still spread around your home.

Coir matting is better outside the door as your first line of defence. To really protect your home, I would recommend a 100% cotton trapper mat. These doormats stop 95% of dirt and moisture from coming in to your home. All you need to do to keep them clean is vacuum regularly. When they are grubby, stick them in the washing machine and they will come out as good as new.

I was convinced about how well these mats work when the company that makes them showed me a demonstration of a man wearing working boots walk through a tray of wet mud, wipe his feet twice on the mat and walk on to a white tiled floor leaving no trace of mud! I’m not the only one to recommend these mats, Sir Ranulph Fiennes, the intrepid explorer also recommends these mats, along with several other famous names. I’m certainly not famous, but these mats really work, by removing the moisture and grime from shoes before they ruin your floor .

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