China, Enameled-Cast Iron, Fiberglass, Man-MadeFixtures may be china, enameled-cast iron, fiberglass or other man-made products. Regular cleaning prevents soap scum buildup and discoloration. Don't use abrasive cleaners.
Enamel and TileUse 1 tbsp. Sodium Hexametaphosphate (Calgon) of Tri-Sodium Phosphate (TSP) dissolved in 1 gallon warm water. (Never use hot water. Wear rubber gloves, as these are caustic.)
Cultured MarbleUse nonabrasive commercial cleaners.
Chrome and BrassUse glass cleaner or metal polishes.
GroutUse a stiff brush on grout. For heavy stains, use commercial grout cleaner. Tubs and showers should have old caulking removed and new installed whenever cracking appears.
Cleaning Chopping Blocks
Cleaning Wooden Chopping Blocks
- If you have wooden chopping blocks, you must give them special care. Protect them from spills by coating with a thin film of olive oil and letting it soak in for a few minutes. Then rub dry with a paper towel or lint-free cloth. Repeat several times.
- Do not use board for 24 hrs. after oiling.
- To remove stains, sand lightly with a fine grade sandpaper and re-oil.
- To remove onion, garlic or other odors, rub with a slice of lemon or orange, sprinkle lightly with salt and wipe immediately with paper towel or soft lint-free cloth.
Cabinets and Counter Tops
Cleaning Cabinets and Counter Tops
- Don't clean with harsh abrasives.
- Clean wood cabinets just as you do furniture.
- Use a detergent solution for plastic coated or laminated cabinets.
- Protect counters. Although most are resistant to heat and to stains, you cannot put hot pots, and pans or irons on them without using a trivet or other protection.
- Never cut directly on Formica tops, as knives will nick the surface.
- Use a chopping block to protect counter tops when cutting or chopping.
Cleaning Mildew with BleachPut bleach solution (one part bleach, three parts hot water) in a spray bottle. Spray the bleach solution on the ceiling and walls of bathroom and let work. After a few minutes wipe off with wet rag.
Also, bleach erases writing from permanent markers on the walls even if they have been painted over several times.
Thanks to Lawrence Bennett
Dampness Brings Mold and MildewYou only need some dampness in and around the house for mold and mildew to thrive. Any roof or foundation leaks, humidity inside the house, and flooding are some common ways organic matter establishes itself. During house upkeep and repairs check your drywall, wallpaper, and carpet backings to keep mold and mildew in check.
Musty OdorsTrying to get some musty odors out of your sealed up house? Place a couple pieces of charcoal in inconspicuous areas around the house to absorb and eliminate odors. For a very strong odor, try leaving a bowl or two of vinegar in that particular area for several days!
Cleaning Up GreasePlain old dish detergent if up to the job of dealing with many grease problems around the home. The secret is TIME….so spray on the solution and let soak for 10 seconds or more. Then wipe it away!!
Hard Water Deposits
Getting Rid of DepositsMuch tap water is “hard”, and leaves deposits on everything. Therefore an acid cleaner is needed to get rid of the deposits. Phosphoric acid (4%) in tile cleaner works well, or you can get 8 to 9 % solutions at a janitorial supply store.
Iron CleanoutIf your steam iron no longer steams, it might be clogged with mineral deposits. Try cleaning with vinegar in the water reservoir, then set the iron flat on an oven rack, plug the iron in, with the setting at “STEAM.” By the time the vinegar is steamed out, your iron should be clean.
Sticky StickersWe’ve all had our share of stickers and trying to remove them!!! Here are a few hints:
- Try laying a piece of regular tape over the sticker and pull it up fast. Many stickers will come right along with the tape.
- Don’t scrape this only leaves gouges, scratches and gashes. <.li>Try soaking, since water-soluble adhesives are on many stickers. Use warm water for a couple minutes. If object cannot go in the water, use a wet paper towel on its surface.
- Water doesn’t work? Try a solvent such as De-Solv-It. Its safe for most surfaces and quickly dissolves and removes label and tape adhesives. After softened gently scrape with your fingernail, a nylon scrubbie or soft nylon scraper.
Smoke and Soot Removal
- Always try to remove as much of oily smoke and soot particles as possible before using any liquid cleaners.
- Vacuum area to remove any loose material on the surface.
- Use a dry sponge (5 by 7 inch pad of virgin rubber), or an art eraser to remove all surface soil.
- Use cold water laundry soap,(1/2 c./gal. Warm water) brushing on heavily and quickly blot with a thick, clean towel to remove the loosened dirt before it’s absorbed back into the brick. Repeat as is necessary.
- Since drips or runs onto uncleaned surfaces may leave marks, always start at the bottom and work upward!!!
Cleaning SolutionsAfter cleaning your coffee maker with water and white vinegar take the solution while still hot and use to help clean your kitchen and bathroom faucets. The hot water will dissolve any soap residue, while the vinegar gets any lime deposits .
Coffeemaker CleanerYou never want to use soap to clean a coffee machine because it leaves a film that affects the coffee taste! Instead mix equal parts of white vinegar and water and run through the machine. Let it run through its cycle, then refill with clean water, and repeat. A once per month cleaning should be sufficient unless you have extremely hard-water. There the mineral buildup inside your coffee maker is more of a problem.
Rustproof ChromeRub some paste wax on your chrome area using steel wool 000. Let the wax dry, and then buff with a soft, clean cloth. The wax will help stop rusting and you will have less cleaning to do!
Tarnished MetalsA homemade paste for cleaning slightly tarnished metals is equal parts of salt, vinegar and flour. Rub paste on with a soft cloth, rinse off and buff. More stubborn stains might need a rubbing with salt and vinegar or some lemon juice.
Earth and Use Friendly Cleaning Recipes
- Making your own cleaning products promotes a healthy environment, reduces trash, saves you money, and eliminates cluttered cabinets. Give it a try!
- For an all purpose cleaner use ¼ cup baking soda and 1 quart of warm water. Wipe the surface with a sponge, then let dry.
- For an aluminum cleaner soak your article in a solution of ¼ cup white vinegar to 1 quart water, boil if necessary. Or you can try soaking your dirty article in a solution of 2 teaspoons cream of tartar to 1 quart water, boiling if necessary.
- For a furniture polish, mix 1 teaspoon lemon oil and 1 pint mineral oil. Spray on the furniture, wipe clean with a clean soft cloth.
- For a window cleaner you can add 2 tablespoons of vinegar to 1 quart of warm water. Clean away!
- For a brass & copper cleaner, mix 2 tablespoons salt, 1 tablespoon lemon juice and 1 tablespoon vinegar. Rub with sponge and let dry. Then rinse with hot water, drying with a soft cloth.
Dumping of Cleaners, and Shop SuppliesPrivate homeowners should save their hazardous toxic products and deposit them at a hazardous waste site. Your local area should have certain dates and times they will accept these products. DO NOT pour paint thinners, oil paints, abrasive cleaners, down your drains. Also, try to use alternative non or low toxic household products, thereby causing less environmental damage. The earth thanks you!
HELP, I Have Ants In The House!To cheaply keep ants out of your kitchen area, eliminate all food sources for them. This means sealing food in airtight containers, wiping up grease and crumbs. Also try leaving a few bay leaves on some cupboard shelves. If ants are persistent try commercially prepared ant traps. Keep out of reach of children and all pets.
Weather and Ants In The House!Wet weather often brings ants into the house, since they are trying to escape their waterlogged nests. If you keep your food inaccessible to them, they will leave as soon as the ground dries out.
Chewing Gum RemovalYour best bet getting gum off items is to place a piece of ice ( in a plastic bag) and try to harden the gum. You can also put the stained article in the freezer. Use a dull edged object to scrape away as much gum as possible. Any remaining stain can be removed with some cleaning fluid or turpentine.
How To Save StainUsing pump-type sprayers with an adjustable spray tip works great for applying stain. Spray a small section at a time, then wipe off excess. Works great on intricate parts of objects, like spindles and chair legs. You should also use less stain per job!
Cleaning Ivory Piano KeysTo clean your ivory piano keys, dip a slice of lemon in some salt and rub keys gently. When dry, wipe gently with a damp cloth and buff. If you put a piece of cardboard between the adjacent keys you can stop some seepage of the lemon.
Cleaning MiniblindsTo clean your miniblinds easily, fill the tub with dish detergent , a little ammonia and enough water to cover the blinds. Leave the blinds in sudsy water about 20 minutes. They will soak clean. Empty the tub, rinsing the blinds with the showerhead. Then air dry the blinds right in the tub or outside if its a nice day.
Cat Urine In CarpetTo rid your carpet from cat urine smells in the carpet, try some plain white vinegar. It will clean a new stain or spot and maybe some older ones! Another product you can try is "Resolve", it contains a special formula for pet stains and odors.
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