Cleaning Tips

You can make your own polish-impregnated cloths to dust furniture. Pour some furniture polish (Guardsmen) into a large glass jar and shake it until the sides are coated. Pour the remainder of the polish back into the polish container. Place terry or other absorbent cloths in the jar and cover tightly. Leave overnight or until the cloths have absorbed all the polish. Store the cloths in the jar.

Here’s another method for making polishing cloths (My favorite!) – Add 1/4 cup polish (such as lemon oil) to 2 cups hot water. Mix well. Soak dust cloths in the mixture, and then let them dry before using. Save the mixture in a glass jar. When the cloths become soiled, wash them, re-treat them, and use again.

Removing Water spots from glass – Water spots are tricky and stubborn. Remember once water spots are allowed to set on any surface, glass or otherwise, the alkali literally etches into the surface. You can remove the whitish part of the water spot but the etching is there to stay even though it may not show up. The surface will still feel rough. You can apply a good paste wax to the now clean area(s) to deter future water spots. (Note- do not apply wax to tubs or shower floors as you will have a slip and fall hazard)

Placing a shower curtain in front of a glass shower door will also help to keep your glass clean and spot free. Most shower curtains can be machine washed even the plastic ones. Put them in the washer with a few bath towels. The towels will help scrub the curtains.

Before hanging shower curtains, soak in salt water solutions to prevent mildew.

Do you have odors on the floor from around the toilet even after a through cleaning? First check the seal – then use enzyme cleaner, and allow this to sit for a while so that it can work, then blot the area with a clean absorbent cloth to remove as much moisture as possible, next cover the area with baking soda and let the baking soda sit overnight to absorb any remaining moisture. In the morning, sweep up the baking soda. (Note- Broken seals should be replaced immediately)

Wood cabinets in bathrooms or Kitchen starting to look old/dry – clean and condition with lemon or orange oil or bees wax

Keep the toilet bowl ring-free by pouring a half-gallon of white vinegar in it once a month. Let it soak overnight before flushing.

Quick fix for shiny wood floors. Put a piece of waxed paper under your dust mop. Dirt will stick to the mop and the wax will shine your floors.

Cleaning Windows

If necessary, dust off the window and sill with a clean paintbrush. Excess dust and water can cause mud.
Use a professional-type squeegee available for about $20 at a janitorial supply store. Forget the cheap brands you find at the grocery store. They are not as effective, and you have to replace the whole thing once you get a nick in the blade.
Don’t clean windows while they are in direct sunlight. Your cleaning solution will dry too fast.
Dip a 100% cotton cleaning cloth in your solution. Wring out the excess and then wipe the window to loosen dirt.
Grab your squeegee. Start each squeegee stroke in a dry spot. Wipe a strip with a cleaning cloth to get started.
Squeegee in a pattern from top to bottom, or side to side. If you clean the outside and the inside, Work top to bottom on the inside and side to side on the outside. By doing this, you’ll be able to identify which side any streaks left behind are on.
Keep the squeegee blade dry by wiping it with a cleaning cloth after each stroke.
Replace the blade when necessary. Even the smallest nick can cause streaking.
Don’t have a squeegee? Use newspaper for drying freshly washed windows. It’s cheaper and leaves no lint behind.

Burnt Food in Pots and Pans – Sprinkle pans liberally with baking soda, adding just enough water to moisten. Let stand for several hours. You can generally lift the burnt food right out of the pan.

Garbage Disposal Cleaning – When going about your regular kitchen cleaning, you don’t want to overlook your garbage disposal. Especially if food is scraped into the disposal when regularly washing the dishes. To clean grease and leftover food from your disposal and sharpen the blades at the same time, sprinkle liberally with baking soda and pour white vinegar over until it bubbles. Let set ten minutes. Rinse with hot water. Put two or three ice cubes in the disposal and grind. Rinse again with hot water. Now your disposal is clean and odor free.

Household Odor Removal – Kitchen cleaning also means having to remove cooking or generally unpleasant odors in your home, you could try : 1) Simmering a pot full of stick cinnamon, orange peel, whole cloves and water on your stove. 2) Place small bowls of vinegar around the room, as it absorbs any lingering odors. 3) Sprinkle some cinnamon on a cookie sheet and warm it in the oven.

Whiter Sinks – When going about your kitchen cleaning, you want your white kitchen sink to shine when you’re through. To get it to sparkle, place paper towels across the bottom of the sink and saturate it with bleach or hydrogen peroxide. Let it stand for 1/2 hour then rinse.

Silver cleaner –

1 piece aluminum foil (big enough to cover the bottom of the cleaning container)
1 to 2 tablespoons baking soda
2 quarts boiling hot water

Lay the aluminum foil along the bottom of a plastic or glass container. Place the tarnished silver on top. Sprinkle the silver with baking soda, and cover it with boiling water. Soak until bubbles stop, then rinse and polish the silver with a soft cloth.

In the chemical reaction, the silver sulfide (tarnish) breaks down and transfers to the aluminum foil, which you can then throw out. The result: shiny silver.

(Note: This technique removes tarnish uniformly, so don’t use it with antique or intricately patterned silver.)