How To Clean An Artificial Christmas Tree · All Things Christmas


Guest post by Sharon of HowToGetOrganizedAtHome.com

Do you know how to clean an artificial Christmas tree? Is it something you’ve never thought to do but now are wondering if this is something you should be doing? 

I think it’s personal preference, some people never clean their artificial Christmas trees.

If you want the run-down on how to get your tree looking good this year then read on! 

How Long It Takes

When you dig that tree out of the storage spot and it has a musty smell, that’s easy to remove and isn’t that difficult, it’s just fiddley.

The most important thing to think about is time, it’s going to take a few hours maximum to clean and then it will need time to dry before you start decorating. 

So, don’t plan to clean and decorate in the space of an evening, it isn’t going to happen.

Keeping It Clutter Free

You need to get your tree out of its storage container, it will either be a bag or a box and if you plan on putting this box away for the length of time the tree is out then do that now.

The less clutter you have around you the less stress it will be getting your Christmas tree clean and ready for decorating.

How Do You Clean An Artificial Tree?

You need your vacuum to do the first stage, this gets off most of the loose dust and dirt. 

If you start at the top of the tree and work down the tree it will be easier, even if the tree is lying flat on the floor.

Use the attachment of your vacuum and make sure that the tree isn’t plugged in and that you are careful if the tree has lights attached, that you don’t suck the bulbs with the vacuum, move them out of the way first.

I use my Shark vacuum with the crevice tool to get all the loose bits off and this helps with the next process.

Wash Your Christmas Tree

Washing the dust off your artificial Christmas tree is not easy but it’s worth it.

What you will need to wash your artificial Christmas tree:

  • Bucket
  • Warm water
  • Your favourite disinfectant
  • Cloth

The idea is to wash down your tree with a damp cloth, the cloth shouldn’t drip any water, it just needs to be damp.

Start at the top of the tree and wipe down every branch and twig of your Christmas tree. 

This isn’t a quick task, but you will be surprised how much dust and dirt you get out of the tree. 

You must leave your tree to dry completely before turning it on or decorating it.

Help With Cleaning A Fake Tree

If you don’t want to spend the time washing your Christmas tree you could try dusting it with a Swiffer type duster.

This will trap the dust from the Christmas tree better than a normal microfiber dry dusting cloth, it traps the dirt so much easier.

This is going to be a quicker process than washing your artificial Christmas tree, but I don’t think you will get the tree as clean as you can with washing it.

The other disadvantage with this method is the musty smell that you get from artificial trees will still be there, you might have to think of other ways of removing the smell.

How To Keep An Artificial Tree Dust Free

However, using the Swiffer duster for a quick weekly dust of your artificial Christmas tree will keep it looking and feeling cleaner during the holiday season and before you take the tree down. 

Tips And Tricks For Dust Free

Another option for dust removal is using a tumble dryer sheet, not only will this attract the dust like a Swiffer duster, but it will have the added benefit of leaving the scent behind and removing the musty smell from the tree.

You must choose your tumble dryer smell with care, something that you like and isn’t overpowering is the best option.

Tips For Keeping Your Tree Smelling Nice

When you pack your Christmas tree away for the year, a great tip is to leave a couple of tumble dryer sheets in the bag or the box and when you open it next year it might not smell as musty as it did this year.

Fake That Fragrance

If you are looking for that natural smell of a real Christmas tree without the hassle of falling needles and making sure to keep it watered, then what you need is an artificial tree fragrance.

These are easy to buy, and it means your house can have that smell of the pine tree without all the added cleaning and maintenance that comes with a real tree.

Let’s Recap…

  • When you get your artificial tree out of storage think about how you are going to clean it and make it smell nice and not musty.
  • Vacuuming is the first action you need to take; this gets all the loose bits off that tend to fall on the floor before you even start to decorate.
  • Washing the tree is the next step, don’t get the tree wet, it must be a damp cloth. 
  • If you have lights in your tree keep the damp cloth away from the bulbs and make sure the plug isn’t plugged in or switched on.
  • Let the tree dry but give it a weekly dust with either a Swiffer duster or a tumble dryer sheet.
  • If you are looking for the smell of a Christmas tree without the fuss and maintenance, then think about having a tree fragrance in your home instead.

About the Author

Sharon Rowe, the owner of How To Get Organized is a mother to three grown up children who have all left home. Sharon lives with her husband of 28 years and their 6 year old black Labrador. She loves to help her readers to organize and clean their homes and lives.



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