Broom Closet

A broom closet is a place to store cleaning tools (like vacuum cleaner, mops, and brooms), cleaning solutions (floor, glass, countertop etc.), trash bags and other items like a step stool or a small ladder, flash light and small tools (hammer, screwdriver etc.). An organized broom closet will not only make cleaning easier because you can easily find and access cleaning supplies, it will also save time and money (you can clean up a spill quickly before the stains set in).

Take everything out of the broom closet and group the items into categories like vacuum cleaner and its attachments, mops and brooms, buckets, mop pads, cleaning products, rags, microfiber cloths, and sponges, cleaning gloves and so on. You can further sub divide cleaning products into groups by function (floor, glass/mirror, counter top, furniture etc.) or by room (kitchen, bathroom, dining room etc.) Combine half bottles of the same product into one bottle to save space.

Place the vacuum cleaner in the center of the broom closet. Put all the accessories or attachments for the vacuum cleaner in a box and place it next to the vacuum cleaner. Store step stool and ladder on either side of the vacuum cleaner. You can install hooks (like a hose hook) on the wall above the vacuum cleaner to loop the vacuum hose.

Use the vertical space by installing hooks and utility racks to the inside walls (or door) of your broom closet, to store mops, brooms, dusters and dustpans. You can also install a pegboard to hang these items and tools. Another option is to use an over the door utility rack. This will clear your floor and optimize the available space in the closet. Also this will keep your cleaning tools up, organized, and out of the way. The heads of mops and brooms can get damaged when set on the floor. So hanging them off the floor will make them last longer and work better. This will also provide air drying of wet mops and brooms and prevent bacteria, mold and mildew growth. Keep bucket(s) below this mop/broom holder on the floor of the closet. You can use a vinyl remnant or water proof mat underneath the bucket.

Group cleaning solutions by function or room in baskets or boxes before putting them on the shelf. Label the containers for easy identification.

If your broom closet has one shelf on the top, store frequently used cleaners in the center of the shelf. Fold cleaning towels and put them on the shelf next to the cleaning solutions.

Similarly group sponges, microfiber cloths and reusable/disposable mop pads and dusters in separate containers and label them. Stack these containers according to usage (frequently used one on the top and infrequently used ones on the bottom) to optimize space. You can hang totes, mesh bags or plastic grocery bags from hooks, to store small rags, sponges and microfiber cloths, duster heads, mop pads etc., if you don’t have space on the shelf.

I use plastic grocery bags to line wastebaskets. Storing plastic grocery bags in a tall container like antibacterial wipes container will save space, look uncluttered and save you some money (no need to buy a separate storage container). Store trash bags and this container on the shelf next to frequently used cleaning supplies.

Store bulk containers of cleaning products and things that are used less often (like wax and polish, upholstery and fabric stain guard sprays), in plastic containers on the sides towards the walls of the closet.

You can also create individual cleaning caddies for bathroom, kitchen, general purpose etc., by putting cleaning solutions for each room, sponges/brushes, gloves and rags/paper towels/absorbent towels. Use different colored caddy for each room or label the caddies for easy identification. This way when you need to clean up a spill, just grab the caddy instead of looking for multiple things and wasting time.

If your broom closet has floor to ceiling shelves, place the caddy and other cleaning solutions on the top shelves out of reach of children and pets.

Don’t leave wet rags, microfiber cloths, towels and mop pads in buckets or on the floor of the broom closet because it can lead to mold and mildew growth. Wash them after each use. If you don’t want to run the washer and dryer for a couple of rags, you can either hand wash and hang them to dry or at least hang dry them and put it in a separate container or grocery bag. Label the container clearly so that you know they are dirty. Once the bag is full you can launder them all together.

You can either install a closet rod (if you don’t already have one) or a tension rod a few inches below the shelf to hang dry wet rags and mop pads. Another option is to install a towel bar or hooks on one of the inside walls (or door) of the closet for this purpose.

If the insides of the rubber gloves are damp, clip them (open side down) to a baby clothes hanger by a finger tip to air dry them. Turning the gloves inside out will help drying. You can put the hanger on the closet rod or a hook.

Attach a piece of vinyl remnant, plastic drawer liner, aluminum flashing or something similar on the wall or door, where the wet head of the mop and broom may come in contact, to protect the wall/door from moisture.

An organized broom closet will make cleaning chores easier and faster - whether routine cleaning or emergency clean up of spills. Don’t let all this effort go to waste by maintaining it.

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