30 Clever Cleaning Hacks for Your Home
There’s nothing like a fresh and clean home, is there? Unfortunately, it may seem like there’s not enough time in the day to squeeze in the hours needed to get your home spic and span. Clever cleaning hacks will let you cut the time spent scrubbing, dusting, and wiping down various surfaces in your home. Here are 30 unbelievable cleaning tips anyone can use!
1. Vacuum up crumbs and debris from electronics with a Shop-Vac and ketchup bottle cap
Do you have a Shop-Vac? Put it to use cleaning out dust and particles in small spaces on electronics. You just need a plastic ketchup or mustard bottle– the reuseable kinds that you often see at diners, not a bottle of ketchup from the store! The bottles are usually sold at discount stores, and you can remove the cap for this trick. Take the cap and put it on top of the Shop-Vac hose, then use to vacuum accordingly.
2. Use simple household products for a clean smelling house
Even if you don’t have time to clean everything in your home, you can certainly make it smell like it’s clean! First, while your box fan is on, stick a dryer sheet onto the back of it. The static cling will attach it to the fan, while the dryer sheets’ scent will be pushed through the room with the airflow. Have an extra car air freshener? Clip it to an air vent in your home for the same effect. When you vacuum, put a drop or two of essential oil on a piece of tissue or cotton ball, then vacuum it up to release the scent while you vacuum.
3. Scrub soap scum away quickly with a grapefruit and salt
Stubborn soap scum can be tough to remove, especially if it’s been lingering on your fixtures or shower for too long. There’s an unlikely source that can cut through the soap scum, however: citrus fruit, such as grapefruit. Take one grapefruit half and sprinkle liberally with table salt, then rub the grapefruit on the soap scum as needed. You can kick up the cleaning power with a bit of baking soda in the mix as well. After scrubbing, rinse the area well with warm water, and you should have a shiny shower and tub.
4. Clean your toilet in minutes with Kool Aid
Remember Kool Aid? It’s time to head to the drugstore or grocery store and pick up a package. There’s no need to use stinky or toxic cleaners in your toilet, because a Kool Aid packet is all you need. You can opt for lemon or orange, because you want one with citric acid. Just sprinkle the package into the bowl before bed, then scrub lightly with a toilet brush, and let it sit. The citric acid will work its magic on buildup and stains all night long, so when you flush the next morning, they’re all gone.
5. Cut through grease and grime on a glass stovetop with baking soda
Cleaning a glass stovetop is tedious, but a necessary chore, especially if you often cook on the surface. Sprinkle baking soda on the stovetop and then set a damp towel on top, and let it sit. the baking soda is an inexpensive alternative to pricy and strong-smelling glass stovetop cleaner, and is a gentle scrubbing agent.
6. Wash dusty and dirty vent covers in the dishwasher
Why stand on a chair or ladder and scrub the vent cover with cleaner? You can just remove them with a screwdriver, then toss them in the dishwasher for a good deep clean on the sanitize setting. This process is safe for both plastic and mental vents provided they can be washed— just be sure you don’t run the heat cycle or else you might with melted vents when it comes to plastic.
7. Clean grimy faucets and showerheads with white vinegar
Mineral deposits and hard water stains can make your fixtures look gross, but you only need a bit of a vinegar to make them look shiny again. First, if your showerhead needs it, tie a plastic baggie filled with white vinegar, and let your showerhead soak in it overnight or for a few hours. Wipe the showerhead clean of the vinegar, then run the shower to push out any leftover vinegar. Next? The faucets and handles. Soak some paper towels in fresh white vinegar, then lay over your fixtures and let sit on for an hour. When the hour is up, just wipe down clean with a damp rag for shiny fixtures.
8. Scrub your trash cans with toilet cleaner or baking soda and vinegar
When did you last clean your trash cans? Just because they hold trash doesn’t mean you can skip cleaning them — smells, debris, and other things can build up to a disgusting mess. If you have plastic trash cans and it’s been a while, you need to scrub them up. Toilet cleaner and a clean toilet brush are a great solution, as is baking soda and vinegar. Distribute the cleaner of your choice, scrub, then rinse well with the garden hose.
9. Clean your microwave in minutes without chemicals
You can scrub for an hour to get your microwave clean, or you can try this clever hack. Take ½ cup of water and ½ cup of vinegar, then mix in a microwave-safe bowl. Microwave the bowl until it steams, then let the steam break down the stains and caked-on food. Wipe clean! No vinegar? Grab a lemon, cut it in half, and place inside a bowl of 1 ¼ water, microwave for several minutes, and you’ll be able to wipe it clean. Microwave dirty and smelly? Try this mixture: 1 cup of baking soda — make sure the cup is microwave-safe — then add cup of water. Microwave the cup for several minutes, then wipe clean. The baking soda will neutralize odors and give you a good clean.
10. Use tongs and a microfiber cloth to clean blinds
Blinds can be a pain to clean, especially when dust builds up between the blinds. You can shorten your time cleaning by taking a microfiber cloth and a pair of kitchen tongs to them. Spay a cleaning solution or vinegr on the cloth, then attach it to the tongs with a rubber band. Now you can slide your tongs through the blinds to pick up all of the dirt and dust. No cloth? Use a clean old sock!
11. Dust electronics and other areas with dryer sheets
Dryer sheets attract dust and are gentle on electronics, so they’re perfect for screens and other components. Just go over the area carefully with a dryer sheet, and you’ll pick up all of the dust instantly. Dryer sheets are also handy for dusting baseboards and the edges of picture frames as well. Another bonus is that dryer sheets have an anti-cling property which will repell dust for a while. No dryer sheets? You can use a lint-free coffee filter in their place.
12. Get a fresh, clean mattress with vodka or baking soda and essential oils
Mattresses trap a lot of dust, sweat, smells and dead skin. Even though you may change the sheets regularly, the mattress still needs cleaned for a healthy bedroom. One option is to use a spray bottle of vokda mixed with your favorite essential oil. Just spray it on the mattress then once it drives, all that will remain is the light oil smell. The other alternative is to clean your mattress with baking soda and oils. Mix a jar full of baking soda with a few drops of essential oil — lavender is a great choice since it has sleep-inducing effects and is calming. Shake your jar well then strain the mixture on the mattress, and then it sit for an hour, then vacuum.
13. Let Magic Eraser clean your toilet for you
Dirty toilets are no match for the cleaning power of a Mr. Clean Magic Eraser. No, you won’t have to use it to scrub the toilet by hand, but instead, you can let it clean the toilet for you. Cut a piece of the eraser off then place it in the bowl, and let sit overnight. When you flush, the rings will be gone.
14. Sanitize and freshen up your garbage disposal with ice and citrus fruits
Garbage disposal smelling a little awful or has it a while since you cleaned it? Make frozen cleaning tablets with vinegar and citrus fruit. Take an ice cube tray or a muffin pan, then place your sliced citrus fruit inside. Fill up each section of citrus with vinegar, then freeze for 24 hours. Run hot water in the sink for 1 minute, then take a ½ cup of baking soda and drop it in the disposal. Add a tablet, and let the deodorizing begin when you turn the water on again, followed by the disposal.
15. Scrub your blender with a push of a button
After you make a smoothie or milkshake, why take the blender apart to clean it? Just squirt some dish soap in then add a bit of water, and hit the “blend” button. The whirling action inside the canister will scrub the blender blades clean, and you’ll be shaving minutes off your cleaning routine. What could be easier? Dump the dirty water, then do the same process but with clean water to remove any residue.
16. Make grill cleaning easy with a cut onion
If you spent the season grilling up all of the hot dogs and hamburgers you desired, you probably have a nice collection of greasy buildup on your grill grates. Turn on your grill and let it get hot. Take an onion and cut it in half, then rub it on the grates well with a BBQ fork. The acid in the onion will break down food debris and clean the grill for you.
17. Use your drill to scrub away at stubborn stains faster
Combine the cleaning power of a brush with the fast power of a drill. Just buy a small brush for scrubbing your tub, shower or anywhere you want to “power clean.” Drill a hole in the brush and insert the bit so the bit fits snugly on the brush. Now just power up the drill and scrub faster than you’ve ever scrubbed before!
18. Remove water rings from furniture with mayonaise
Wooden furniture is beautiful, but when it gets nasty water rings, it’s unsightly. Remove your water rings with a common condiment: mayonaise. Just take a dollop of mayo then spread it on top of the water ring, and leave overnight. In the morning, wipe the spot clean, and the ring should be gone.
19. Shine up faucets and remove fingerprints from surfaces with wax paper
No need to scrub your faucet thoroughly if it has fingerprints, just grab a roll of wax paper. Rub a piece of the paper on the chrome of steel surface to wipe away fingerprints in the blink of an eye. This method should work on most metals, plastics, and other surfaces.
20. Make your own carpet cleaner
Carpet cleaners like Bissel etc let you put in special formulas but why spend the money? You can use what the professionals use, and it will cost you way less for the same results! Take a ½ cup of vinegar and ½ of hot water, then mix in a few drops of your favorite essential oils. Shampoo the carpet like you would usually and you’ll get a cleaning agent and a deodorizing in one. You may have a lingering smell of vinegar, but it will lift once the carpet dries.
21. Clean the coffee maker with a rinse of vinegar
Is there anything vinegar can’t do? This time it’s coming to the rescue for cleaning your coffee maker. Just run a cycle with vinegar and hot water, and let it remove buildup and deposits thoroughly. Vinegar is a great way to sanitize the machine and descale it so you have fresh, great-tasting coffee again. Run the machine with just water after that to make sure you’ve removed all of the vinegar.
22. Get grout clean with toilet cleaner
Toilet cleaner isn’t just for toilets, because you can use it to clean all kinds of areas in your home. Most grout can be cleaned with toilet cleaner than bleach, you just must test the cleaner on your grout in a small out-of-the-way section. The best way to clean is to pour the cleaner on the top, then let it sit five minutes, being careful to not touch it with your bare skin. Next, scrub it with an old toothbrush, then rinse thoroughly with water and dry.
23. Use an old fuzzy sock to pick dust and dirt on your floors
Put on your favorite fuzzy socks and slide across the floor if you’re feeling truly lazy, or do this clever tip: take the sock and put it on a Swiffer mop, then go over the floor with your sock. The fuzzy nature of it will attract dust and crumbs, and you can feel like your floor is walkable again. You’ll also save on cleaning costs, because you won’t have to keep buying refills.
24. Scrub the shower with a dish wand
You know the dish wands that are made for scrubbing dishes? Well, they’re perfect for scrubbing your shower too. Squirt some dish soap (Dawn is common) and a bit of vinegar in the wand then dispense and scrub as needed.
25. Clean your shower curtain liner in the washing machine
Sure a new shower curtain liner is a few bucks, but if you’re tired of buying new ones or want the liner to look good for company, here’s how to do it. First take down the liner from the curtain rings, then place it in the washing machine with ½ cup of baking soda, your usual amount of laundry detergent, and 1 cup of vinegar. Run the hot water cycle, and let the liner get washed thoroughly. Once clean, hang dry — don’t put in the dryer! This should’ve removed any mold, grime or yellow stains.
26. Use vinegar in your toilet tank for a quick clean
Vinegar is a cleaning agent that even be used in the toilet. Let the acidic nature of the vinegar and its deodorizing properties clean your toilet. Just pour the vinegar into the tank, then flush. When the bowl refills, the vinegar will come along for the ride, scrubbing the stains. Be sure you pour a bit in the bowl as well, then flush. Stubborn stains can be removed by soaking vinegar in a paper towl then putting them along the rim to soak for a bit.
27. Suck up dryer lint with a vacuum and a paper towel tube.
Got an empty paper towel tube? Put it to use and get rid of any dryer lint that may linger in your dryer. Dryer lint can lead to fire, and even just cleaning the lint trap isn’t enough. Put the tube on top of your vacuum hose, then squish it into place to suck all the lint. Your dryer will probably perform even better with a spic and span lint space now.
28. Use Lysol or all-purpose cleaner in a toilet brush holder
Every time you clean your toilet with your favorite cleaner, you likely use a toilet brush, right? The problem is, the toilet brush gets really funky with all of the gross scrubbing you probably do with it. The solution? Throw a bit of toilet cleaner INTO the toilet brush holder so your brush is sitting in the cleaner getting nice and clean.
29. Cut cleaning time in half with a dishwasher
A dishwasher isn’t just for dishes, because you can use it to save tons of cleaning hours. Tennis shoes, plastic non-electronic toys, most glass ceiling light covers, switchplate covers, hair brushes, and more can go in the dishwasher. Even ball caps may be washed in the dishwasher! Just be sure you don’t use the dry setting or you may warp items. The best cycle is a sanitize
30. Clean a front-loading washing machine’s gasket naturally
Have you ever looked at the rubber gasket near your front-loading washing machine’s door? This place is a hotbed for germs and debris, and can be pretty gross, especially if it develops mold. Now imagine if that grime and mold got on your clothing or linens! Stop that from happening by cleaning your gasket thoroughly. Mix ½ hot water and ½ apple cider vinegar in a spray bottle, then spray on the seal/gasket. Let sit for several minutes, then use a clean washcloth or a scrub brush to wipe clean.