As a baker, crafter and all-around mess-maker, having a multitude of cleaners on hand at all times is a must. After a while, my cabinets became packed with various cleaners that I just didn't need, so I sought out a way to narrow them down, and better yet, I did it by making my own all-purpose cleaner using items around the house that will clean just about anything.
This month we're focusing on cleaning and organization, and we're giving away a series of helpful cheat sheet PDFs from the Curbly library. So far, we've shared a kitchen cleaning cheat sheet, a bathroom cleaning cheat sheet, and a general house cleaning cheat sheet. Today we have one on "Alternative Uses for Vinegar". Read on to find out how to download it!
There are a million different cleaning products on the market all vying for a spot in your supply closet, not to mention a chunk of your budget. But before you bring home the next new wonder spray, consider these three money-saving cleaning must-haves: they're widely available, kid and pet friendly, and cheap, cheap, cheap!
The Big Three:
This product literally has 1001 uses if not more (there's an entire website dedicated to its awesomeness). Here are the top five ways to use this cost-saving cleaner in your home.
1. To disinfect hard surfaces, spray with undiluted vinegar (or wipe with a cloth soaked in vinegar), wipe clean. Great for countertops, door knobs, etc. Never use on marble!
2. Deodorize and clean a funky-smelling garbage disposal by making vinegar ice cubes. Just toss a few down the drain and turn the disposal on. (Make sure you mark which ice cube tray has the vinegar in it!)
3. Add 1 cup vinegar to 1 gallon of warm water for a great disinfecting, grease cutting, deodorizing floor cleaner.
4. Deodorize and clean a toilet bowl by adding 3 cups vinegar. Let it sit for about 30 minutes, scrub, and flush.
5. Remove mold and mildew by mixing 3 parts vinegar to 2 parts water in a spray bottle. Apply the mixture to the area and let sit for 30-60 minutes. Wipe clean with water.
Check out more fantastic ways to use vinegar on VinegarTips.com.
Baking soda is widely known for its deodorizing powers, but it has many other uses that will help you cut cleaning supply costs while maintaining a fresh-smelling home!
1. A mixture of 3 parts baking soda to 1 part water can be used to polish silver. Simply rub the mixture on with a soft cloth and rinse with cool water.
2. / 3. Soak smelly sponges in a solution of 4 tablespoons baking soda and 1 quart of warm water. The soaked sponge can then be used to clean the inside of microwaves. Zap it for 4 minutes to further disinfect the sponge and/or loosen food particles in the microwave.
4. For an excellent bathroom scrub, make a paste from baking soda, salt, and liquid dish soap. Let it sit, then scour and wipe clean.
5. Clean painted furniture and walls with a damp sponge sprinkled with baking soda. Wipe clean with a dry cloth.
Check out more great uses for baking soda on Yahoo and Real Simple.
We shared 31 things to do with lemons earlier this week, but their cleaning abilities go beyond that. Here are five more ways to put this fruit to work.
1. For a fresh-smelling sink, drop a few lemon peels down the garbage disposal. Let that thing go and you'll soon be in citrus heaven.
2. Polish chrome with a lemon half. Simply rub on, rinse, and buff with a soft cloth.
3. For copper, brass, and stainless steel, dip a halved lemon in salt or baking soda and rub. Let sit for 5 minutes, rinse, and polish.
4. Disinfect and clean cutting boards by running a lemon half over the surface. Don't forget to rinse off the juice when you're done.
5. Clean greasy spots in the kitchen by sprinkling them with salt and then rubbing with lemon halves. Wipe clean and you're done. (As with vinegar, do not use this method on marble or other surfaces sensitive to acids.)
Check out these other great tips for using lemons in your home.
Do you have any money-saving cleaning tips of your own? Share in the comments!
If you haven't given up drier sheets yet, you really should. (They're icky...for a lot of reasons that I won't go into here.) The best kind of fabric softener to use is the liquid kind, and this formula from Recipezaar is not only environmentally friendly it's CHEAP! All it takes is.......
TipNut scores with another excellent household top ten: Using vinegar to make your laundry efforts a bit more successful.
1. Color Brightener.
2. Color Protector.
3. Whiter Whites.
4. Restore Whites.
5. Preserve Linens.
6. Yellowed Items Reviver.
7. Heavy Duty Pre-Soak.
8. Lint Busters.
9. Fabric Softener.
10. Ring Around The Collar Remover.
You know your shower isn't functioning properly when it spurts and sputters, or your forced to rinse yourself with a minimal trickle.
The traditional technique is to unscrew the showerhead, and soak in CLR for a few minutes, then scrub away any buildup with a toothbrush, as suggested in this tip from Real Simple.
But, to avoid the drama of removing your showerhead, simply fill a plastic sandwich bag with white vinegar, and tape it...
Traditional methods of removing mold in your home calls for spraying the affected area with water mixed with harsh chemicals, such as ammonia or chlorine bleach. Unfortunately, chlorine bleach contains sodium hypochlorite (NaOCl), which, when mixed with water forms hypochlorous acid (HOCl).
When my pal Jasimar posted the question about non-toxic cleaning products, my first thought was vinegar. I’ve used it to freshen my drains and clean my wood floors and windows for years. My second thought was POST TOPIC! How many other vinegar hints could I find if I employed almighty Google? How about 1001 on one website alone? Vinegartips.com is devoted to distilled white vinegar and even includes fun vinegar facts. Of course I can’t promise...