How to clean a fan: 10-minute hack to banish dust and the two items you should never use

A cool breeze is what most of us expect when we plug in a table or tower fan, so it can be unpleasant when a wave of dust appears in front of you instead. While you can’t always see it, these handy tools can gather a lot of dirt as they spin around, and require regular cleaning to keep it at bay. No matter what type of fan you have, cleaning dust and grime is easy to do in just a matter of minutes – and all you need is a few simple ingredients.

How to clean a fan

Keeping fans clean is crucial to reduce allergies and irritation from dust blowing around your home, but also to keep the motor in good condition.

Floor, table and windows fans are usually lightweight and portable which makes them incredibly easy to wipe down and wash.

To ensure every speck of dust is removed from the grilles, you will need to take a multi-step approach, starting with vacuuming.

READ MORE: Kim Woodburn’s cheap, potent vinegar solution to eliminate limescale

Before cleaning any type of fan, make sure that the unit is unplugged from the wall outlet.

Using a handheld or full-sized vacuum with a dusting brush attachment, carefully glide over both sides of the fan and the base.

Get in between the grooves as much as possible to remove surface dirt and dust.

If you are struggling to get to those hard-to-reach spots, blast a hairdryer over the fan to disperse the particles.

Try to do this outside where possible to avoid spreading dust around the room.

Clean the blades

If you can’t access the blades of your fan, the best way to clean it is to use a cleansing spray and the turn the fan on for five minutes

This simple TikTok approved hack uses a mixture of white vinegar, a few drops of essential oil, and a spoonful of baking soda in a bottle, which is shaken up and sprayed onto the grilles of the fan.

Use a plastic bag to cover the grooves once you have sprayed the liquid, and plug it in for a few minutes.

The bag should catch any dirt blown out as the fan moves, leaving the blades free of unpleasant residue.

What should you avoid using to clean a fan?

Fabric softener is often recommended as a fragrant and effective dusting ingredient, but it should be avoided when it comes to fans.

This is because the liquid can leave your fan sticky, which makes it more likely to cling to airborne dust, rather than get rid of it.

Water should also be avoided in large quantities as this can be dangerous when the fan is plugged back in.

Instead, stick to white vinegar or commercial degreasing agents and always use them in small quantities while dusting the appliance.

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