TODAY   |  November 05, 2013

How healthy is your home? Anchors get quizzed

If you are getting a cough or the sniffles, it may be your home that is making you sick. Lynya Floyd of Family circle suggests ways to clean your home and some practices to follow when doing your daily chores.

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This content comes from Closed Captioning that was broadcast along with this program.

>>> had a bad cough or allergies that don't seem to go away, your home could be making you sick.

>> bacteria, mold, dust mites all liking lurking around your house in very unexpected places. she's health director at family circle magazine and is here to put us to the test. good morning.

>> good morning.

>> how worried should we be in general about our home?

>> we don't want to freak anybody out but there's always a little something extra we can do to make sure that our homes are spotless and that we keep our families and loved ones healthy.

>> let's get started.

>> let's begin.

>> first question is true or false, cross contamination with salmonella, e.coli can occur when preparing fruits and vegetables.

>> true. definitely.

>> you're correct. what's going on in your grocery store, that misting system that can spread dirt and bacteria on to the produce unfortunately. and then when you bring your vegetables home and you're cutting you can actually cross contaminate if you don't clean your cutting board .

>> surfaces, the knife. your hands even in between slicing the vegetables. keep in mind the cleanliness.

>> quote of the say so far, melons are the worst offenders.

>> i knew you would pick up on that. good for you willie.

>> the best time to run your dishwasher is overnight so you wake up to clean dishes? first thing in the morning so you come home to clean dishes or when you have time to empty it as soon as it's finished.

>> number three.

>> it's absolutely number three and the problem is there mold actually can form. if you leave the dishwasher closed and it creates that environment where it's heat and water and dark and damp. as soon as it's done you hear the beep, take them out.

>> how about the fridge.

>> so which of these is one of the germiest items in your kitchen. is it the refrigerator water dispenser, a storage tray or a pizza cutter ?

>> i'm going with the water dispenser.

>> i'm going with the flatware storage situation.

>> it's the ice and water dispenser. a lot of us don't think about cleaning it but a study found there's mold in there and yeast in there so be good about cleaning that. you want to clean the spout. get in there with a q-tip and dry cloth.

>> you can put a little solution in there also but you can just clean it -- just do it on a regular basis like once a week. but i wonder how many people have ever done this.

>> never.

>> never ever. but definitely clean that spout once a week. when it comes to the ice tray, once a month. get in there with soap and water. dry it completely before you put it back in there and then you actually once a year or twice a year, think daylight saving time , run distilled white vinegar through the tube that goes from your sink in.

>> i think have to do that when i get home today.

>> it's worth it.

>> what's next?

>> what is the best tool for cleaning ceiling fan blades. is it a fan blade tool that clips over the blade? is it a damp paper towel or cleaning rags or is it a pillow case ?

>> i'm saying a damp paper towel .

>> no. no.

>> it's the pillow case .

>> it's the pillow case .

>> absolutely.

>> how do you do it? what do you do with a pillow case ?

>> it sounded unconventional so i thought you were going to introduce us to something new and i was right.

>> you're right.

>> you have no idea why.

>> i will show you. what you're going to do is you actually pull the pillow case over the blade and then you draw it across so that the dust is going inside the blade and then you take that outside and empty it out and then put this in your washing someone.

>> you are just spreading it around it's dust mites and alaba horrible for people with allergies.

>> laundry has something to do with our next question.

>> we're actually talking about second and third-hand smoke. it's actually bad for you. the question is how does it get into your home. can it get in via the bathroom and kitchen vents, b your clothing or c your beloved pet or d all of the above?

>> all of the above. it's really tough to get away from this stuff.

>> you guys are doing great. i'm very proud of. so it's really tough to get this stuff out of your house but you do what you can. you have to seal up cracks in your apartment and do weather proofing so that the guy down the hall, his smoke isn't coming into your house and the way you baby proof the outlet plugs, do that also because that's another crack smoke can come in through.

>> now our tie breaker.

>> we both have to choose a different answer.

>> all right. there's a musty smell in your laundry room but there's no dirty clothes. what is the likely source. is it a the washing machine or b, the dryer lint trap.

>> it's this thing.

>> can you explain that a little more.

>> i know because mine does it. the water stays in there. the solution doesn't go down all the way and it gets mildew.

>> it can in there and as well in the actual front of the machine. it's particularly a problem, mold and staff are particularly a problem with front loading machines and what you want to do is make sure you're doing that self- clean cycle once a month and if it doesn't have a self- clean cycle then run it through with bleach without clothes in it and leave the door open.

>> so would you say i won?

>> i would say that you did fantastic.

>> overall performance.

>> both of you.

>> we tied willie. can you accept it? thank you very much. sorry for this childish