40 Handy Hints for Cleaning Every Nook and Cranny of Your House
You’ll have every corner of your house spick-and-span in no time by following these seriously smart house cleaning hacks. You won’t believe what everyday items can do!
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Garbage can deodorizer
Borax, or sodium borate, is a naturally occurring substance and is an ingredient in many household cleaning products. If you have a smelly garbage can, deodorize it with equal parts borax and water. For our small garbage can, we used 1/2 cup of water and 1/2 cup of borax. Let it soak and then rinse it out. Sprinkle some borax in the bottom once it’s dry, to keep bugs away and to absorb any future odor-causing moisture. Check out these professional secrets that will make your house sparkle.
Clean the air while you clean the house
Your vacuum’s agitator brush and exhaust whip up dust that eventually settles on the surfaces you’ve just cleaned. Filter out some of that dust before it settles by switching your thermostat to “fan on.” This turns on the blower inside your furnace and filters the air even while the system isn’t heating or cooling. Leave the blower on for about 15 minutes after you’re done cleaning. But don’t forget to switch it back to “auto.” Most blowers aren’t designed to run constantly.
Dust bunny broom cleaner
Every time you sweep, clumps of dust and hair collect at the ends of the broom’s bristles. To solve this problem, hot glue a wide-tooth comb to the top of a dustpan. Just run the bristles through the comb to remove any excess gunk dangling from the broom. If the dust in your house is making your allergies worse, you’ll love these cleaning products for people with allergies.
Saw dust filter fan
My workshop doesn’t have air conditioning, and it gets pretty hot while I’m working. I used to blow a fan directly at myself, but it sucked in dust from around the shop and blew it at me. I had a few extra furnace filters lying around, so I tried attaching one to the back of the fan using hook-and-loop fasteners. This made a huge difference! Don’t use a super-high-performance filter, as it could cause the fan to have to work too hard to pull air through, resulting in an overheated motor. — Reader Larry Brannock.
Use dryer sheets to clean your floors
Don’t throw away used dryer sheets. There’s another use for them. Wrap a couple of dryer sheets onto the flat head of a sweeper. The dryer sheets pick up dust and hair just as well as name-brand sweeper refills. Say goodbye to those dust bunnies! Here are a few more tips to spring clean your entire house in just one day.
DIY mason jar dish scrubber
If you are all about ease and convenience when it comes to washing the dishes, check out this DIY mason jar dish scrubber. It even has a soap-dispensing handle. First, punch a few nail holes in the jar’s lid. Trace the lid onto a sponge and cut it out. Hot glue the sponge to the inner rim of the screw-on part of the lid. Fill the jar with soap, screw on the sponge and you’re set!
Clean hard-to-reach spots on oddly shaped containers
If you own a hummingbird feeder or tall flower vase, you know how difficult it is to clean inside them. A toothbrush is perfect for cleaning these hard-to-reach places. So, when your old toothbrush has retired from duty in your mouth, give it a new job! Here are some more cleaning tricks for hard to clean objects.
For more than just the news
If streaky mirrors and glass tug on your nerves, we’ll show you how to get streak-free glass with a couple of items already lying around your home. To get started, you’ll need window cleaner and newspaper. Spray window cleaner on your dirty glass and then scrub in a circular motion, using the newspaper. Switch to a vertical, and then a horizontal stroke until all the liquid has dissipated and you’re left with shiny, streak-free windows!
Note: for vinyl windows, we’ve found that the newsprint leaves a mark on the white frame. Avoid rubbing the window frame with newspaper and stick to the glass.
Remove bathroom soap scum
Soap has a nasty way of forming a hard-to-remove film on the tile in tubs and showers. You won’t get rid of it by rubbing. Instead, wait for the surface to dry, then scrape off the scum with a 4-in. plastic putty knife. For grout lines and textured surfaces, use a Mr. Clean Magic Eraser.
To prevent soap scum buildup, stop using real soap and start using a synthetic. Chemically speaking, any soap in a liquid or gel form and some bar soaps (Zest and Ivory) are actually synthetic soaps and much less likely to leave a tough film in your sink, shower or tub. Just be sure to avoid wiping your magic eraser on these 10 things you should never clean with a magic eraser.
Citrus peels and ice cubes for a stinky disposer
If your disposer has developed an odor, it may contain bits of rotted food. Here’s how to clean them out:
- With the water running at about half throttle, drop in orange or lemon peels. Run the disposer for five seconds. Citric acid from the peels softens crusty waste and attacks smelly bacteria. Give the acid about 15 minutes to do its work.
- Turn on the water and the disposer and drop in a few ice cubes. Flying shards of ice work like a sandblaster inside the disposer.
- Run the water until the bowl is about half full. Then pull the stopper and turn on the disposer to flush it out.