There are some places in our homes that are so highly infested with germs that we barely notice. Funny enough, toilets and trashcans do not make the list
1. Kitchen sink
Even though it is exposed to hot water and soap multiple times daily, your kitchen sink is probably crawling with bacteria. A recent study by NSF International, a nonprofit organization that develops public health standards, found that because of the frequent contact they have with food, kitchen sinks are 100,000 times more contaminated than bathroom sinks.
Scrub the entire surface of yours down once or twice a week with hot water and soap, making sure to remove every trace of coffee grinds, scrambled eggs or whatever else you see.
The controls that adjust your range’s heat are some of the filthiest places in your home, since you often touch them when your hands are contaminated with food, and they are harder than the fridge door handle or microwave buttons to wipe clean, according to the NSF study. Check your stove’s owner’s manual for cleaning instructions
3. Toothbrush holder
This benign-seeming bathroom cup is one of the germiest spots in the house: the average holder is crawling with more than 2 million cells of bacteria. Bamboo and wood may look attractive, but they are difficult to clean. Go for something made of brushed stainless steel, or plastic, and clean it once or twice a week.
The average vacuum cleaner’s suction and rotating-beater brush do not usually reach the bottom of the carpet, and that area is a haven for bacteria—about 200,000 per square inch. Most carpet manufacturers say the best way to deep clean is to use steam, aka hot-water extraction, every 18 months.
5. Kitchen counter
This is one of the most high-traffic surfaces in people’s homes, say the experts at NSF, with everything from purses to bags of groceries to packages of raw chicken leaving behind all types of germs. After cooking or preparing food, and at the end of every day, wash the surface with hot, soapy water, then rinse.
6. Pet food dish
Although most dogs eat twice a day, you do not have to wash the container after every meal—once a day is sufficient. Scrub it by hand with hot water and soap.
7. Kitchen sponge
This can be a breeding ground for bacteria. A two-minute turn in the microwave can kill most of the viruses, parasites and spores that grow on sponges. Scientists recommend you change your sponge every two weeks or less.
8. Bath tub and shower
National Science Foundation (NSF) found that 26 percent of bathtubs and showers harbored the bacteria known as staphylococci, which can cause problems from superficial skin lesions to urinary tract infections. You can keep these germs at bay by using a mild shower spray daily (just avoid abrasive cleaners).