11 Ways to Get Rid of Dust in Your House

Dust is not only unsightly, but it contains allergens that can make us and our pets sick. Let’s go over ways to take some control of the endless cycle of dust.

Dust is mostly made up of dirt, dead skin cells, dust mites, fibers from fabric, and pollen. Dust mites and pollen are significant contributors to indoor allergens.

11 Ways to Get Rid of Dust in Your House
How do you get rid of dust in your house?

So how do you get rid of the dust in your house?

11 Ways to Get Rid of Dust in Your House

Getting rid of dust can seem like an endless battle. Here are some ways to get control:

1. Vacuum

Vacuuming is the quickest and safest way to clean your house without much trouble or effort.

If you vacuum with a HEPA filter, it not only helps you remove dust but also small particles that may trigger allergies.

Be sure to use a brush attachment to tackle those hard-to-reach places.

And remember to always vacuum before you dust, as vacuuming stirs up the dust that eventually lands on everything in your home.

Related Article: Are There Dust Mites in the Air? What You Need to Know

2. Use Compressed Air

You may have seen compressed air being used at work to clean out a keyboard or a scanner machine.

For those cumbersome places that are hard to reach, you can purchase compressed air specifically meant for places you do not have easy access to.

Point the nozzle of your can of compressed air at different nooks and crannies around your house, such as high places like ceiling corners and light fixtures.

Just make sure you’re wearing protective eyewear before spraying any type of debris from a distance because it can destroy your eyesight.

3. Feather Duster

A good, old-fashioned feather duster can do wonders for your furniture and electronics. Just keep in mind that not all feather dusters are created equal.

Feather dusters made of ostrich down are known to be the best feather duster for your home. The down feathers of an ostrich trap the dust rather than spread it around when you dust.

Also, know that gray ostrich feather dusters come from the female ostrich, and the black ostrich feathers are from the male ostrich.

What is an Energy Recovery Ventilator (ERV)? Ultimate Resource Learn how an energy recovery ventilator helps capture indoor humidity, odors, and pollutants such as chemicals, pollen, and smoke particles.

A black ostrich feather duster will be much more effective at picking up dust, as it traps and holds onto the dirt much better than the gray-colored ostrich feather duster.

You’ll need to periodically wash the feather duster to keep it from transferring germs around your house.

Hold the feather duster away from you, close to the floor, and shake. The dust being held inside of the feather duster will come loose and fall to the floor.

You may also wet the feather duster as another means of cleaning out the dust. Allow the feather duster to air dry.

4. Dust Mop

A dust mop can also do a good job of picking up dust from your floors, especially if you have hardwood or tiles.

You must regularly replace the pads on your mop because they tend to get pretty nasty after just a few uses.

5. Damp Cloth

There is a bit of controversy as to whether one should dust with a damp or a dry cloth.

Some people use a damp cloth because they feel it can more effectively help with picking up the dust, whereas it would seem a dry cloth would merely move the dust around, not adhering to the cloth.

And some swear by the dry-cloth dusting method, as they do not want to introduce moisture to the surfaces of the items they are dusting.

If you decide that using a wet cloth is best for what you need to wipe down, wet your cloth with water and wring it out so it’s just damp.

An overly saturated and dripping cloth runs the risk of causing moisture damage to furniture and other items in your home that may be sensitive to moisture.

Related Article: Dust mites are in every home, even yours. 9 Ways to Get Rid of Dust Mites: Proven Strategies that Work

6. Dry Cloth

I prefer a damp cloth, as I feel that a dry cloth is not going to pick up the dust but rather rub it around, potentially scratching furniture and merely relocating the dust.

If you used a wet cloth, then running a dry paper towel or cloth over the area may ensure that you are not leaving any unwanted moisture behind.

Just make sure not to use too much force. It’s better to pass over an area more than once in a delicate manner to prevent scratching and wear and tear on furniture surfaces.

7. Upholster Furniture

The best way to control dust from getting on your furniture is to keep it protected with washable furniture coverings, especially if you have a lot of wooden chairs and tables.

Even a nicely-matching cover over furniture that is already upholstered can do wonders with cleaning ease, as all you have to do is toss the covers in the washing machine.

And voila! You’ve just washed the dust away.

To clean upholstered furniture such as couches and reclining chairs, rent a carpet cleaner from your local store.

Wet carpet cleaners do more than just clean carpets.

8. Wash Your Bedding Weekly

Whether you realize it or not, dust mites live in your bed. That’s right, I said it. It doesn’t matter how clean you are, it’s a rare bed that is void of dust mites.

To learn more, visit our article Do I Have Dust Mites in My Bed? You Sure You Want to Know? This is an in-depth article that covers all of the ways to help reduce the number of dust mites in your bed.

Dust mite allergens are common in every home causing sneezing, coughing, and a sore throat among other symptoms. Dust mites may also trigger an asthma attack in those suffering from asthma.

When our bedding is moved, dust mites and dust mite particles become airborne. By washing your bedding weekly, you help to cut down on the dust mite allergens in your home.

9. Eliminate Carpeting

Let’s face it, no matter how careful we are in our homes, carpets get tracked on.

Dust in the air eventually falls onto surfaces within a home, and our carpets are the main catcher of that dust.

Carpets are dust and allergen sponges. We can vacuum our carpets, but dust settles down into crevasses that are difficult to reach.

By removing wall-to-wall carpets and replacing them with throw rugs, the dust in your home will be easier to manage.

Throw rugs can be tossed into the washing machine for easy maintenance.

10. Clean from Top to Bottom

To clean the dust in the best way possible, you must start at the top of the room and work your way down.

Ceiling fans and light fixtures collect dust as well as crown molding and anything else that is up high and difficult to reach.

When time permits, grab a chair or a ladder and start at the top of your room first.

Dust particles will be falling from the places you are cleaning, so starting at the top of the room is the best plan of attack.

11. Use an Air Purifier

To help eliminate dust and allergens that float in the air of your home, consider purchasing an air purifier.

Do Air Purifiers Help Get Rid of Dust Mites? We Find Out was an article we wrote on how to tackle dust mites, but this is the same concept for all in-home airborne allergens, not just dust mites.

Dust mite particles indeed become airborne and are one of the most common particles in dust.

For those suffering from allergies, an air purifier in your home can help to relieve many of those symptoms.

What Causes Dust in a Home?

Dust is made up of many things besides just dirt, and to get a handle on the amount of dust in your home, one needs to understand what dust consists of.

What causes dust in a home?

Dust in a home is caused by a mix of things like dead skin cells, pet dander, dust mite carcasses, fabric fibers, bacteria, soil from outdoors, pollen, and specks of plastic. The type of dust in a home varies by household and one’s living habits.

Countless things can be found in dust, but let’s go over the ones most common.

Soil, Pollen, and Other Outdoor Matter

Approximately 60% of all household dust is brought in from the outdoors. Our shoes track countless amounts of particles that contribute to the overall dust in our homes.

Removing one’s shoes before walking around inside a home is strongly recommended to prevent the transfer of outside matter from being tracked inside.

Even our bodies and hair have collected pollen and anything else that was in the air outside that you then bring into the house.

Pollen, a common allergen, becomes airborne easily and creates havoc on those who have allergies.

Dust Mites

Dust mites are microscopic pests that occur naturally and thrive in humid environments. Even if your home isn’t abnormally warm or damp, you likely have dust mites hiding out on your bedding, carpets, and curtains.

Since dust is made up of things like pet dander and dead skin — some of the dust mite’s favorite snacks — the more dust you have, the more dust mites you have.

It doesn’t matter who you are, you have dust mites. Dust mites cling to fragments too heavy to be airborne for an extended period, but their feces and carcasses easily become airborne.

As put off as you might be by these invasive little pests, they are typically not harmful to most people. They do not bite and they do not carry diseases.

Dust mite body parts and feces make up a significant amount of the dust in our homes.

When we walk on our carpets, sit on our furniture, or toss and turn in our beds, we stir up dust mite allergens. This in turn creates more dust, one of the most common kinds.

Related Article: Will Dehumidifiers Kill Dust Mites? Take Control of Your Air

Pet Dander

Pets shed dead skin cells known as pet dander. Pet dander is a common allergen found in homes, and if you have pets, you more than likely have more than your share of pet dander in your in-home dust.

Visitors that come into your home can also bring pet dander into your home. So even if you do not have pets, your home may also be abundantly full of visiting pet dander.

Dust mites thrive on dead skin cells, so pet dander that settles onto your home’s surfaces makes dust mites very happy. This in turn contributes to a vicious cycle of dust.

Dead Skin

No matter how clean we are and how much we exfoliate, we all shed dead skin cells. Dead skin cells are dinner for dust mites, so staying on top of your dusting chores is highly recommended.

What is the Best Way to Dust Furniture?

The way you have been dusting your furniture may appear to be working just fine. Here we go over some recommended do’s and don’ts when it comes to dusting your furniture:

  • Dry rags do not pick up dust but rather push it around and relocate it, encouraging airborne allergens in your home that you end up inhaling. Rubbing dry dust around also scratches your furniture.
  • Only use a dry rag on a surface that is already wet, such as cleaning up a spill.
  • To clean the surface of furniture, use a lightly damp microfiber cloth to pick up and remove accumulated dust.
  • Spritz dusting polish onto a dry cloth to clean and polish while causing no damage to your furniture.

Ways to Get Rid of Dust Floating in the Air

Use a Fan

To get rid of dust floating in the air, turn on a tower fan that blows air vertically and not horizontally because it will help sweep the particles toward the ground instead of just blowing them around the room.

After about 30 minutes, turn off your fan so you can focus on cleaning up any dust that’s collected near the floor.

Use an Air Purifier

An air purifier is a great way to get rid of the dust that’s floating in your house. You can either buy one or rent it from a home improvement store for just a couple of bucks a day.

If you’re using an air purifier, make sure you change its filter regularly so it doesn’t cause allergies and other health problems. Also, make sure the air purifier you are using is ozone-free.

Use a Swiffer

A Swiffer can also help get rid of dust that’s floating in the air. Be sure to use their special moist or wet clothes, not dry ones because they won’t suck up any particles.

Ways To Stop Dust from Coming Through the Windows

Use Drapes or Curtains

Covering your windows with tight-fitting drapes or curtains will keep dust from blowing in through the cracks and crevices, especially if you’re living in a windy area.

Attach your curtains vertically and then attach them to the wall so they stay closed even when there’s a draft coming into your house.

You should also sew weights into one of the corners so they don’t fly up and collect dust!

Treat Window Panes with Vinegar

You can prevent dust from entering through your windows by treating them with white distilled vinegar overnight.

If you do this, make sure you put something under the lid so it doesn’t warp over time due to excess moisture.

Use Window Film on the Outside of Your Windows

Using a sticky, static-cling window film on the outside of your windows can help prevent dust from entering through cracks and crevices.

You’ll need to clean it regularly with water and dishwashing soap so that you don’t trap any more particles than necessary.

Clean Your Windowsills

Cleaning out the dirt and debris from your window sills is a great way to prevent dust and insects from entering through cracks and crevices.

You should also make sure that nothing is covering your air conditioner because it can cause poor air circulation, which will let even more particles over time.

Remove any Peeling Paint

If you notice that any of your window panes or frames are peeling, scrape away the edge with a utility knife so that they’re sealed off tight against the wall.

If you follow these tips then you’ll be able to stop dust from entering your house. Remember to use chemicals and other products with caution because they could cause serious damage if not used properly.

If there are people in your home who may be sensitive to dust or other chemicals, make sure they stay out of the room while you clean it up.


Trina Greenfield, Author
SmackDown Media LLC

About the Author:
Trina Greenfield, the owner of SmackDown Media LLC, is passionate about providing information to those interested in the air quality in and around their homes. Trina writes content about things she’s passionate about, such as safe, in-home air, educational platforms for children and adults, as well as all things family-related.