Thrifty Mom's Cleaning Recipes

Laundry Products
Use detergents that are phosphate-free and biodegradable.
Use non-chlorine dry bleach, borax or baking soda to whiten clothes. 
For non-greasy spots, rinse immediately with
cold water, then rub in a paste of dry bleach, borax, or baking
soda mixed with water prior to laundering. Club soda or
rubbing alcohol can be used to treat blood and wine stains.
For grease, apply paste of cornstarch or baking soda and
water. Brush off when dry. For ink, soak garment in milk or
use hydrogen peroxide.

Oven Cleaner
Clean regularly with a mixture of baking soda and warm water.
Use steel wool or a bread knife to clean large food deposits.
Pour lots of salt on fresh spills, let oven cool and then clean.
To minimize cleanups, place aluminum foil on the bottom of the oven. 
Note: A clean oven operates more efficiently.

Aerosol Spray Can Products
Use similar products that are pump sprays or solids. 
For air fresheners, set out small dishes of baking soda, potpourri,
simmer spices or herbs, or burn scented candles. 
Use baking soda to keep trash cans and refrigerator smelling fresh. 
Keep areas clean and open windows for ventilation.
Minimize use of these products, and use what you buy. 
If you use these products, apply in a well-ventilated room as they
contain a high level of solvents.

Household Batteries
Purchase solar powered calculators, radios, and watches, or
items that can be charged through AC adapters. 
Use rechargeable nickel-cadmium (nicad) batteries.
They can be recharged 100ís of times. Buy low- or no-mercury brands.

Lime/Hard Water Removers
Use vinegar to soak off lime or hard water mineral deposits.
Apply full strength to tile and let sit before rinsing. 
For build-up on faucets or showerheads, soak a paper towel and
leave for about an hour... buildup should then wash away.
To remove stickers, peel off, then soak leftover adhesive with
vinegar and wipe clean.

Metal Polish
Use a soft cloth to polish all metals to a shine. 
For chrome, wipe with vinegar. For brass, bronze, copper, and
pewter, apply a paste of 1/2 tsp. salt and 1/2 C. white vinegar,
and small amount of flour, let stand, then wipe clean OR use a
paste of lemon juice and salt, rinse both with water. 
For silver, try toothpaste OR boiling silver for 3 minutes in a quart
of water containing 1 tsp. baking soda, 1 tsp. salt, and a piece
of aluminum foil, OR rub with a paste of baking soda and
water. For stainless steel, wipe with white or cider vinegar.


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