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14 Nifty Home Cleaning Hacks

I have often bought expensive cleaning products, when instead I could have resorted to a number of simple solutions lying in my pantry. I always appreciate some tips for saving myself time or extra work. Here are 14 tips I was so happy to learn and share. I hope you find them as useful as I have.

1. Clean your dishwasher with vinegar and baking soda
Home tips
Your dishwasher needs a cleaning from time to time. Run the dishwasher with regular detergent like normal, and place a dishwasher safe glass of white vinegar on the top rack and sprinkle baking soda on the bottom rack and door, for a sparkling clean look. 
 
2. Vinegar and baking soda: multi-purpose household cleaner
Home tips
This is the solution that should be your go to for all household cleaning. The classic acid/base reaction will be useful for so many surfaces in your house. An added bonus is that it's safe and cheap.
 
3. Clean your Garbage disposal with vinegar and lemon ice 
Home tips
Using an ice tray, mix 8 parts water with 1 part white vinegar. Add chopped lemon peel and freeze. Once frozen you can drop this solution in your garbage disposal to clear out any leftover bits of food. The ice sharpens the blades while the vinegar sanitizes. The lemon makes the machine smell nicer.
 
4. Lemon juice to remove hard water stains
Home tips
Hard water leaves stains which can be tricky to remove. Instead of buying fancy cleaning solutions try using lemon juice. The acid will dissolve the calcium. If the buildup is really tough, add salt to the lemon.
 
5. Ammonia cleans an oven easily
Home tips
This trick only works with a completely cold oven. Pour half a cup of ammonia in a bowl. Place it in the oven overnight with the door left slightly ajar. The fumes will loosen any grime, enabling you to easily wipe the dirt away.
 
6. Ammonia also cleans gas burners
Home tips
Using the same idea above, use ammonia to loosen grime built up around your burners. Place a little ammonia in a sealable plastic bag along with the removable burner parts and let them rest overnight. The next morning you should be able to wipe away the dirt.
 
7. Aluminum for cleaning glassware
Home tips
Using a crumpled piece of foil, you can remove any excess dirt that has stuck to your glass cookware. The foil has a similar surface to steel wool but is far less rough on your hands. It's also another way to re-use any leftover foil.
 
8. Pick up broken glass with bread
Home tips
Instead of using a brush and pan or a rag, gather the shards of broken glass with a slice of bread. The bread allows you to pick up the small bits you would usually miss by using a brush. When you're finished cleaning, you can throw the whole thing away.
 
9. Homemade vacuum nozzle
Home tips
Sometimes your regular vacuum nozzles can't reach all places that dirt might be hiding - such as small plugs or keyboards. Attach a squirt nozzle to the vacuum pipe and those hard to reach places will be dirt-free.
 
10. Remove grease stains with chalk
Home tips
Some grease stains don't just come out by being tossed in the washing machine. Try rubbing some chalk over the stains before you run a load of laundry. The chalk dust absorbs the grease and rinses away the stain.
 
11. Clean glitter with play dough
Home tips
Pick up loose glitter with a blob of play-dough. Your mess will be gone and your play dough will sparkle.
 
12. Remove fuzz from your carpet with a squeegee
Home tips
Hair tends to clog up the vacuum cleaner. You can prevent this from happening by removing the hair from any floor surface with a squeegee. The hair collects into clumps for easy disposal.
 
13. Use baby shampoo to clean make-up brushes
Home tips
Wash, rinse and blot the brush to make sure no makeup has remained in the brush. Once this is done, you can hang them upside down to dry. This prevents water from collecting in the handle. The brush should be makeup free and shimmering.
14. Lemon and salt clean wood and bamboo
Home tips
Use lemons to clean a wooden or bamboo cutting board. Sprinkle with coarse salt and go over it with a slice of lemon. Rinse without soap and let it dry.
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