Homemade Cleaning Solutions


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For those of you that like to make your own household cleaners, I thought I would post this list that I found a few years back.  I hope you find something here you want to try!

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FOR CLEANING NON-WOOD SURFACES AND TILES
Mildly acidic white vinegar dissolves dirt, soap scum, and hard water deposits from smooth surfaces. White vinegar is a natural deodorizer, absorbing odors instead of covering them up. (And no, your bathroom won’t smell like a salad! Any vinegar aroma disappears when dry.) With no coloring agents, white vinegar won’t stain grout on tiled surfaces.

Homemade Spray Cleaner Recipe

Mix in a sprayer bottle:
1 cup white vinegar
1 cup water

In the kitchen, use vinegar-and-water spray to clean countertops, lightly soiled range surfaces and backsplash areas.

In the bathroom, use vinegar spray cleaner to clean countertops, floors, and exterior surfaces of the toilet.

For really tough bathroom surfaces such as shower walls, pump up the cleaning power by removing the sprayer element and heating the solution in the microwave until barely hot. Spray shower walls with the warmed generously, allow to stand for 10 to 15 minutes, then scrub and rinse. The heat helps soften stubborn soap scum and loosens hard water deposits.

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FOR POLISHING WOOD SURFACES AND FURNITURE
Most of us no longer use hard-to-apply furniture wax, but rely on oil-based polish to keep furniture protected and shiny.

Our “salad dressing” version avoids the danger of silicone oil, found in most commercial polishes and sprays. Silicone oil can penetrate tiny cracks in furniture finish and enter the wood, causing problems in the event refinishing is needed. Lemon juice dissolves dirt and smudges, while olive oil shines and protects the wood:

Furniture Polish Recipe

Mix in a sprayer bottle:
1 cup olive oil
1/2 cup lemon juice

Shake well and apply a small amount to a flannel cleaning rag or cleaning cloth. Spread evenly over furniture surface. Turn cloth to a dry side and polish dry.

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FOR CLEANING THE TOILETS
Use undiluted white vinegar to scrub the inside of the toilet bowl. Before you begin, dump a bucket of water into the toilet to force water out of the bowl and allow access to the sides. Pour undiluted white vinegar around the bowl and scrub with a toilet brush to remove stains and odor. Use a pumice stone to remove any remaining hard water rings.

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FOR CLEANING SINKS AND TUBS
Baking soda’s mild abrasive action and natural deodorizing properties make it a powerful replacement for harsh commercial scouring powders. Put baking soda to work in your organized home:

Sprinkle baking soda onto a damp sponge to tackle grimy bathtub rings, scour vanities, or remove food deposits from the kitchen sink. For tougher grime, make a paste of baking soda and water, apply to the tub or sink, and allow to stand for 10 to 20 minutes. Dirt, soap scum and deposits soften and are easier to remove.

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CLEAN CLOGGED SHOWER HEADS
Clean shower heads that have been clogged with mineral deposits with undiluted white vinegar. Place ¼ to ½ cup vinegar in a plastic food storage bag, and secure the bag to the shower head with a rubber band. Let stand for 2 hours to overnight, then rinse and buff the fixture to a shiny finish.

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FOR SLOW-RUNNING DRAINS
Keep bathroom drains running freely by pouring ½ to ¾ cup baking soda into the drain, and dribbling just enough hot water to wash the solution down. Let stand for 2 hours to overnight, then flush thoroughly with hot water. The deodorizing effect is an added bonus! [Do not use this method on blocked drains.]

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FOR CLEANING MIRRORS, TV/COMPUTER SCREENS, AND GLASS
Rubbing (isopropyl) alcohol provides the base for an evaporating cleaner to rival commercial window and glass cleaning solutions. Use this glass cleaning spray recipe for windows, mirrors, chrome fixtures and for a shiny finish on hard-surface ceramic tiles:

Homemade Glass Cleaner Recipe

Mix in a sprayer bottle:
1 cup rubbing (isopropyl) alcohol
1 cup water
1 tablespoon white vinegar

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FOR SCRUBBING HARD FLOORS
Fill your mop bucket with steaming hot water. Add vinegar to water – 1 cup vinegar for every gallon of water. This works great on floors and doesn’t create any residue while picking up scuffs and odors.

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FOR SPOT-CLEANING CARPETS
Pour some undiluted rubbing alcohol on the spot, and rub with a wash cloth.


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