Rabbi Baruch Efrati
Rabbi Baruch Efrati R.B.E.

General rule of thumb: The cleaning of our house should not come at the expense of our children's emotional well-being. The atmosphere must be pleasant and free from unnecessary stress. It is recommended to include the children in the cleaning process.

For details on preparations, see here and downloadble OU handbook.

Specifics: Computer keyboard and Mouse – Many people eat Chametz while at the computer year round. Therefore, you should shake it out upside down, and preferably wipe it down with a wet cloth as well.

Cellphone- clean it with wipes.

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Erev Pesach, Thursday night 14 Nissan: Bedikat Chametz, searching for leaven

The Minhag is to sell Chametz that will cause a significant financial loss if burned or thrown away. The Chametz can be sold via email

After evening prayers, Arvit, check for Chametz by the light of a candle with a Bracha, as it is written in the Siddur. Avoid starting a meal or time consuming task, melacha, half an hour before nightfall.

Check all of the places where it is likely to find Chametz, including your car (with a flashlight). Refrain from talking throughout the Bedikah.

When we do the Bedika we look for big pieces of chametz ("Ca'zayit"= the size of a small matchbox) and not crumbs. Midat chasidut - extra stringency - is to also search even for crumbs.

After the search, say the prayer for Bitul Chametz, nullifying the leavened products, in the Nussach that appears in your Siddur. You should understand what it is you are saying and say the Bitul in words that are simple and understandable for the person nullifying the Chametz. The Nullification is the essence of the Mitzvah and therefore you must devote time and intent to what you are saying.

Erev Pesach, Friday morning 14 Nissan: Burning the Chametz

In the morning, there will be a Siyum Masechet for the first-born men who are fasting.

Look up the time when one must cease eating Chametz, and the time it must not be used anymore, as that varies from place to place.

After the burning you say Bitul Chametz again, according to the way it is written in your Siddur, with a clear understanding of what you are saying and your purpose for saying it.

During the day, do not eat Matza.

After Chatzot, halakhic midday, do not do Melacha such as laundry in memory of our being busy with Korban Pesach during the time of the Beit Hamikdash. Melacha that is needed for Pesach (לצורך) or in case where refraining from Melacha can cause a big financial loss; it is allowed.

It is good to daven Mincha early and say ‘Seder Korban Pesach’.

Prepare the table for the Seder. You should buy Shmura Matza for Seder night.

Yom Tov Pesach, Friday night, 15 Nissan

Candle lighting – the brchaot are: "להדליק נר של שבת ויום טוב" and "שהחיינו". It is best to have big enough candles that will last throughout the whole Seder.

On the night of the Seder, focus on remembering the slavery and remember the redemption and tell your children about it. The main point of the holiday is transmitting the message of our transition from slavery to freedom to the next generation.

Every single person is required, according to the Torah, to eat at least a כזית of matza. It is our custom to eat 2 כזית portions at the start and then a portion during כורך and then a portion during the Afikoman.

The size of the כזית portion is the size of the volume of a Syrian olive, a large modern-day olive, which is the size of half of a machine baked Matza (for sfaradim- 30 gram). One should try to swallow the two כזית portions quickly, if possible, albeit politely - try not to wolf it down. If, within 4 minutes, 2/3 of a prepared Matza was eaten, one has fulfilled the Mitzvah.

One should eat the Matza and drink the cups of wine while leaning. It is appropriate also for women to lean, but they are not required to do so.

Drink 4 cups of wine. From each glass, a 'רביעית' should be drunk. The volume of רביעית is about half of a disposable cup. Ideally, it is best to drink the רביעית in one swallow. If this is not possible, the רביעית should be drunk within 4 minutes.

It is a common custom that the children hide/seek the Afikoman and then receive a prize for it. This is done to make the mitzvah dear to them.

After the eating of the Afikoman, nothing else should be eaten. It is permissible to drink. The Afikoman should be eaten by midnight – 00:37. It is appropriate to prolong telling the story of יציאת מצרים and there are those who do so until the morning.

Shabbat and Yomtov morning

Shacharit of Shabbat and Yom Tov are said.

Tfilat Tal is said in Mussaf. If Morid HaTal was forgotten and it was remembered before you reached the end of the Bracha, go back to the beginning of the Bracha. If not, go back to the beginning of the Tefila.


Chol HaMoed - the Intermediate Days of the Holiday

Counting the Omer, Sefirat HaOmer begins the second night of Pesach. If you forgot, count during the day without a blessing and during the rest of the nights, count with a blessing. If you also forgot during the day, count all of the following nights without a blessing

Second Day Yom Tov – a guest visiting from abroad – only has to perform the Mitzvot from the Torah, and is allowed to do things that are Rabbinic prohibitions.

It is our custom not to use Tfilin on Chol HaMoed.

You should not work on Chol HaMoed. Although, if you will lose your job as a result of not working, you are permitted to work.

Whoever has to work on Chol HaMoed, is allowed to work in a place that has not been deemed Kosher for Passover. Just don't sell actual Chametz.

Do not shave or get a haircut during Chol HaMoed. But, those who make sure to shave every day during the year, and will be bothered by the itchiness or discomfort, are permitted to shave on Chol HaMoed.

Do not do laundry on Chol HaMoed , unless you run out of clean clothes for babies.

The Seventh Day of Pesach, Friday, 21 Nissan

Make sure to prepare Eiruv tavshilin - a hard boiled egg and a matza will do. Set them aside to eat on Shabbat and say the bracha found in your Siddur. This allows you to prepare for Shabbat on Friday which is a holiday this year.

Candle Lighting – the Bracha is להדליק נר של יום טוב

Some say the Song at the Red Sea in a group. It is the Torah reading in the synagogue.

Shabbat 'achrei mot'

Light the candles from a existing fire (suggestion: light a large memorial candle before the holiday and it will last long enough to use for the Shabbat candles)

You can eat chamez that was sold to a goy, right after Kiddush (according to Rav Ovadya). There are people that do not eat the chametz gamur until motsaei Shabbat (Rav Auerbach), because there are problems with pesach dishes, and a problem with מוקצה

Counting of the Omer Period

Until the 33rd day of the Omer, one does not get married, have a haircut or shave. If you are invited to a wedding you can attend.

During the days of Sefira, refrain from listening to loud, merry music. During this period we are mourning the death of Rabbi Akiva’s Talmidim. 'Regular' music, with some joy in it, like the songs played on the radio, are permitted. However, one should refrain from listening to live music.

On Yom Haatzmaut, one is allowed מלכתחילה to get a haircut and shave and listen to happy music and even live music.

On the morning of the 33rd of the Omer, one is allowed to have a haircut and shave. Sephardim can do so on the morning of 34 of the Omer.


Chag Sameach and may we continue to see the return to Zion with mercy and soon eat from the Passover offerings at the rebuilt Beit Hamikdash

יהי רצון שנמשיך לראות בשוב ד' לציון ברחמים

ונאכל שם מן הזבחים ומן הפסחים







Erev Pesach, Thursday night and Friday, 14 Nissan

  • After Arvit, check for Chametz by the light of a candle with a Bracha, as it is written in the Siddur. You shouldn’t start a meal or Melacha half an hour before nightfall.

  • You should check all of the places where it is likely to find Chametz, including your car (with a flashlight). You shouldn’t talk throughout the Bedikah.

  • After the search, you said ביטול חמץ in the Nussach that appears in your Siddur. You should understand what it is you are saying and say the Bitul in words that are simple and understandable for the person nullifying the Chametz. The Nullification is the essence of the Mitzvah and therefore you must devote time and intent to what you are saying.

  • On the morning of the following day, there will be a Siyum Masechet for the first-born men who are fasting.

  • After the burning you say Bitul Chametz again, according to the way it is written in your Siddurim, with a clear understanding of what you are saying and your purpose for saying it.

  • During the day, do not eat Matza.

  • After Chatzot, do not do Melacha such as laundry being that we are busy with Korban Pesach (when Beit Hamikdash is built). Melacha that is needed for Pesach (לצורך) or in case where refraining from Melacha can cause a big financial loss; it is allowed to the Melacha.

  • It is good to daven Mincha early and they say ‘seder Korban Pesach’.

  • Prepare the table for the Seder. You should buy Shmura Matza for Seder night.

Yom Tov Pesach, Saturday, 15 Nissan

  • Candle lighting – the brchaot are: "להדליק נר של שבת ויום טוב" and "שהחיינו". It is best to have big enough candles that will last throughout the whole Seder.

  • On the night of the Seder, focus on remembering the slavery and remember the redemption and tell your children about it. The main point of the holiday is transmitting the message of our transition from slavery to freedom to the next generation.

  • Every single person is required, according to the Torah, to eat at least a כזית of matza. It is our custom to eat 2 כזית portions at the start and then a portion during כורך and then a portion during the Afikoman.

  • The size of the כזית portion is the size of the volume of a Syrian olive, a large modern-day olive, which is the size of half of a prepared Matza (for sfaradim- 30 gram). One should try to swallow the two כזית portions quickly, if possible, albeit politely and try not to wolf it down. If, within 4 minutes, 2/3 of a prepared Matza was eaten, one has fulfilled the Mitzvah.

  • One should eat the Matza and drink the cups of wine while leaning. It is appropriate also for women to lean, but they are not required to do so.

  • Drink 4 cups. From each glass, a 'רביעית' should be drunk. The volume of רביעית is about half of a disposable cup. Ideally, it is best to drink the רביעית in one gulp. If this does not happen, the רביעית should be drunk within 4 minutes.

  • It is a common custom that the children hide/seek the Afikoman and then receive a prize for it. This is done to adore the mitzvah to them.

  • After the eating of the Afikoman, nothing else should be eaten. It is permissible to drink. The Afikoman should be eaten by midnight – 00:37. It is appropriate to prolong telling the story of יציאת מצרים and there are those who do so until the morning.

  • Shacharit of Shabbat and Yom Tov. Tfilat Tal. If Morid HaTal was forgotten and it was remembered before you reached the end of the Bracha, go back to the beginning of the Bracha. If not, go back to the beginning of the Tefila.


Chold HaMoed

  • Count Sefirat HaOmer. If you forgot, count during the day without a blessing and during the rest of the nights, say it with a blessing. If you also forgot during the day, count all of the following nights without a blessing

  • Second Day Yom Tov – a guest visiting from abroad – only has to perform the Mitzvot from the Torah, and is allowed to do Rabbinical מלאכה.

  • It is our custom not to use Tfilin on Chol HaMoed.

  • You should not work on Chol HaMoed. Although, if you will lose your job as a result of not working, you are permitted to work.

  • Whoever has to work on Chol HaMoed, he is allowed to work in a place that has not been deemed Kosher for Passover. Just don't sell actual Chametz.

  • Do not shave or get a haircut during Chol HaMoed. But, those who make sure to shave every day during the year, and if they will not shave on Chol HaMoed, will be bothered by the itchiness or discomfort, is permitted to shave on Chol HaMoed.

  • Do not do laundry on Chol HaMoed , unless you run out of clean cloths for babies.

The Seventh Day of Pesach, friday, 21 Nissan

  • Eiruv tavshilin

  • Candle Lighting – the Bracha is להדליק נר של יום טוב

  • Some say Shirat Hayam in a Tzibur

Shabbat 'achrei mot'

  • Light the candles from a existing fire

  • You can eat chamez that was sold to the goy, right after the Kiddush (rav ovadya). There are people that do not eat the chametz gamur until motsaei Shabbat (rav oyerbach), because there are few problems that can accord if you will eat chamezt right after the Kiddush with pesach dishes, and a problem with .מוקצה

Counting of the Omer

  • Until the 33rd of the Omer, one should not get married; have a haircut or shave. If you are invited to a wedding you can attend.

  • During the days of Sefira, refrain from listening to loud, merry music. During this period we are mourning the death of Rabbi Akiva’s Talmidim. 'Regular' music, with some merriment to it, like the songs played on the radio, is permitted. However, one should refrain from listening to live music.

  • On Yom Haatzmaut, one is allowed מלכתחילה to get a haircut and shave and listen to merry music and even live music.

  • On the morning of the 33rd of the Omer, one is allowed to have a haircut and shave. Sephardim can do so on the morning of 34 of the Omer.


יהי רצון שנמשיך לראות בשוב ד' לציון ברחמים

ונאכל שם מן הזבחים ומן הפסחים