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3 surprisingly dirty places in the home and how to clean them

by Christina Poletto / / Source: TODAY

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Many folks aspire to keep a clean and healthy home, but, like us, you may be surprised to learn there are a number of spots that often get overlooked. In fact, there are three places in particular — two in the kitchen alone — that are practical petri dishes for germs and bacteria.

Want to keep an even cleaner house? Add these key spots to your regular cleaning to-do list.

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1. Remotes and game controllers

Think about it — they're handled daily by multiple people at multiple times. There's a reason that hotel room remotes are often cited as harboring many nasty strains of bacteria, including E. coli and MRSA (methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus), among other things. At home, grab an alcohol wipe and give hand-held remotes and game controllers a weekly wipe down, or whenever someone is sick. For those super tiny crevices and spots, grab some Q-tips and rubbing alcohol to give them a thorough cleaning.

2. Salt and pepper shakers

Studies have revealed that restaurant menus are generally teeming with bacteria — yum! What's more, salt and pepper shakers often obtain the same amount of germ nastiness. The same goes for your at-home shakers. They're used daily, and rarely get the cleaning they need. Every time you wipe down the table, grab the salt and pepper shakers and give them a thorough swipe as well.

RELATED: Here's a cheap, eco-friendly fix for a slow-moving drain

3. Stove knobs

You're in a dinner frame of mind — preparing your veggies, cutting up your raw meats — and you reach for the stove knobs to get your pan heated up and ready for your edible masterpiece. You may think to give your hands a wipe on a dish towel, but even that's not enough to keep germs at bay. Studies show that nearly 15 percent of knobs have coliform bacteria (trust us, it's disgusting), and close to 30 percent carry strains of mold and yeast. Appetizing, right? To thwart excessive bacteria on knob surfaces, clean them weekly by removing the knobs and washing them in warm, soapy water.

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