|Lemons + Vinegar + Baking Soda as Natural Cleaners|
Magic memories of cleaning ingredients that looked like cooking recipes with ingredients picked from the lemon tree in the backyard and vinegar and baking soda out of the kitchen pantry to create incredibly effective and natural cleaners.
These three natural cleaning products kept our home magically clean and smelling fresh, without stretching an already thin household budget.
Using lemons, vinegar, and baking soda as natural cleaning products in your home:
Vinegar naturally cleans like an all-purpose cleaner. Mix a solution of 1 part water to 1 part vinegar in a new store bought spray bottle and you have a solution that will clean most areas of your home. Vinegar is a great natural cleaning product as well as a disinfectant and deodorizer. Always test on an inconspicuous area. It is safe to use on most surfaces and has the added bonus of being incredibly cheap. Improperly diluted vinegar is acidic and can eat away at tile grout. Never use vinegar on marble surfaces. Don't worry about your home smelling like vinegar. The smell disappears when it dries. Here are some uses for vinegar in the rooms of your house.
Use it in the…
Bathroom Clean the bathtub, toilet, sink, and countertops. Use pure vinegar in the toilet bowl to get rid of rings. Flush the toilet to allow the water level to go down. Pour the undiluted vinegar around the inside of the rim. Scrub down the bowl. Mop the floor in the bathroom with a vinegar/water solution. The substance will also eat away the soap scum and hard water stains on your fixtures and tile. Make sure it is safe to use with your tiles.
A solution of equal amounts of vinegar and water is a well-known window-washing trick. Dip black and white newspaper pages into the solution and wipe the glass until it's almost dry. Finish wiping with a dry newspaper page. The streaks will disappear and the window will shine.
Kitchen Clean the stovetop, appliances, countertops, and floor. Remove the lime coating on your kettle by filling it with water and adding a half-cup of vinegar. Let it stand overnight, then rinse with clean water and dry.
Disinfect and clean wood cutting boards: Rub with vinegar to disinfect and clean. If your cutting board has deep grooves, you can also soak the board in vinegar for 5-10 minutes.
Deodorize your sink drains: Pour a cup down your drain, let stand about thirty minutes, then run cold water.
For sparkling crystal dip crystal in a solution of 1 part vinegar to 3 parts water. Polish with a dry, lint-free cloth.
Washing Glass wash glass water bottles and stained flower vases with 1 tablespoon vinegar and 1 tablespoon salt in warm water. Allow to soak for several hours and shake occassionally.
Laundry Use vinegar as a natural fabric softener. This can be especially helpful for families who have sensitive skin. Add ½ cup of vinegar to the rinse cycle in place of store bought fabric softener. Vinegar has the added benefit of breaking down laundry detergent more effectively. (A plus when you have a family member whose skin detects every trace of detergent).
Toilet Bowl Pour one cup (or a little more) into toilet bowl and let set overnight. In the morning scrub well and flush. Great for hard water stains.
Ant Repellant Spray undiluted vinegar outside door frames and window sills, around appliances, and anywhere else you have ant problems.
Refrigerator Wash with a mixture of 1/2 water and 1/2 vinegar.
Microwave In a microwave safe bowl, mix 1/2 cup water and 1/2 cup vinegar. Bring to a rolling boil; this loosens baked on foods and removes odors. Wipe clean.
Lime Build-up Make a paste of 2 tablespoons salt and 1 teaspoon vinegar. Scrub area and rinse.
Soap Scum Mix 1/4 cup baking soda, 1 tablespoon liquid detergent and enough vinegar to make a thick, creamy texture. Scrub area and rinse.
Counter Tops Clean with undiluted vinegar. Makes counters smell clean and sweet.
Garden Undiluted vinegar in the garden to kill weeds; just pour it on the weeds you want to kill.
Lemon juice is another natural substance that can be used to clean your home. Lemon juice can be used to dissolve soap scum and hard water deposits. Lemon is a great substance to clean and shine brass and copper. Lemon juice can be mixed with vinegar and or baking soda to make cleaning pastes. Cut a lemon in half and sprinkle baking soda on the cut section. Use the lemon to scrub dishes, surfaces, and stains. Mix 1 cup olive oil with ½ cup lemon juice and you have a furniture polish for your hardwood furniture.
To wash and deodorize the refrigerator, garbage bin or kitchen compost container, use a solution of 1 teaspoon lemon juice to 4 cups water.
Baking Soda (Bicarbonate of soda or sodium bicarbonate)
The ancient Egyptians first mined the natural product called natron, which contains mostly sodium bicarbonate. The Egyptians used the mixture as a cleansing agent such as soap. It was not until 1791 in France that Nicolas Leblanc, a French chemist, artificially manufactured sodium bicarbonate as we know it today.
The colonists brought baking soda to America from England. However, it was not produced in the U.S. until 1839, but in 1846, Austin Church, a Connecticut physician, and John Dwight, a Massachusetts farmer, established a factory in New York to manufacture baking soda.
The versatility of baking soda is unsurpassed; it can be used in many areas both inside and outside the house.
Baking soda can be used to scrub surfaces in much the same way as commercial abrasive cleansers. To clean silver, use a paste of 3 parts baking soda to one part water. Rub the paste onto each item, then rinse with warm water and dry with a soft cloth.
Remove scuff marks or grease spills from the floor, sprinkle with baking soda and then wipe with a warm, damp cloth. This is even safe for no-wax floors.
For burnt-on food in the bottom of pots, sprinkle with baking soda, and then add hot water. Let soak overnight; the dried on food will come loose much more easily.
Fire retardant: baking soda can be used to extinguish oil and electrical fires.
Baking soda is great as a deodorizer. Place a box in the refrigerator and freezer to absorb odours. Put it anywhere you need deodorizing action. Baking soda will keep away garbage odours; sprinkle the bottom of the pail / garbage bin, and it also controls undesirable odors in the bottom of your dishwasher.
Desiccant: baking soda is a drying agent and can remove excess moisture from your refrigerator, cupboards and wardrobe.
Stain remover: apply a thin paste of baking soda to stains prior to washing, even blood stains.
Degreaser: apply baking soda on grease or oil patches on cement floors or driveways, or on stovetops and barbecue grills.
Blocked or sluggish drains: place a cup of baking soda in the drain followed by a cup of warm vinegar.
Cooking/baking: baking soda is a leavening agent which reacts with acid compounds causing dough to rise. In cooking it acts to neutralize acids, breaks down protein, and tenderizes also.
Hairbrushes and combs can be cleaned in a baking soda solution.
For Fido: To quickly clean pets and remove "wet dog" odour, sprinkle with baking soda and brush out their fur.
Personal care: baking soda can be used on sunburn, insect bites, dentures, sore throats, acid indigestion, deodorant, toothpaste and shampoo.
Insecticide/herbicide: repels ants and roaches. It can be used to kill many weeds.
Baking soda has been a household staple for nearly 200 years
Try these three inexpensive kitchen ingredients as natural green cleaning products in your home.
Happy green cleaning!
Ecobites.com does not warrant and shall have no liability for information provided in this article or on Ecobites.com. Each individual person, fabric, or material may react differently to a particular suggested use. It is recommended that before you begin to use any formula, you read the directions carefully and test it first. Should you have any health care-related questions or concerns, please call or see your physician or other health care provider.
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