Some Proven Recipes for Cleaners
General cleanser - always use the simplest, mildest product that will get the job done. Try warm water mixed with soap or vinegar.
Air freshener - find source of odour and eliminate, place bowls of potpourri.
To absorb odours - two to four teaspoons baking soda or vinegar in small bowls in refrigerator, around the home, bottom of rubbish bin.
Disinfectant - one quarter of a cup of white vinegar in two litres of hot water.
Dishwashing - liquid or powdered pure soap - For more difficult jobs - add two to three teaspoons vinegar. For baked on foods, place 4 tablespoons of baking soda in the bottom of oven-proof' dirty dish and add just enough water to cover bottom of dish. Heat for 30 minutes, switch off oven and leave dish in overnight. Alternatively spread a sloppy paste over burnt-on food and leave to soak overnight then wipe off paste.
Environmentally friendly dishwasher - put bicarbonate of soda (baking soda) in soap powder container, and vinegar in the rinse aid dispenser. You may need to occasionally use baking soda to scrub out the inside of mugs.
Tub, tile toilet - scrub with sponge or firm bristle brush using powdered soap or a scouring powder of baking soda, borax or salt.
Lime deposits - undiluted vinegar.
Soap scum - paste of vinegar and washing soda.
Windows or mirrors - three tablespoons vinegar 1 litre warm water. Baking soda is also an economical cleaner for windows, stainless steel and chrome and laminate surfaces. Apply then polish off with a soft cloth.
Detergents - soap flakes or powder adding washing soda to soften' water.
Fabric softener - one cup vinegar and/or one quarter cup baking soda during final rinse.
Spray starch - two tablespoons cornstarch dissolved in half a litre of cold water in spray bottles.
Kettle descaler - you can use a couple of teaspoons of white vinegar in a kettle of water to remove the black manganese build up we get in Marlborough.
Drains - never tip oil or fat down drains. Always use a strainer. If blocked, pour a mixture of up to three cups vinegar and three tablespoons baking soda down drain, then seal tightly with a rubber plug - flush 30 minutes later with hot water.
Oven cleaner - wipe with soapy cloth while warm. Baking soda also makes an effective cleaner for dirty and greasy ovens. Mix enough baking soda with water to form a stiff paste. Spread over all inside oven surfaces. Heat for 30 minutes. When cool brush off.
To clean the glass on an oven door, wipe over with a clean cloth dipped in baking soda then sponge off with clean water. Wipe the outside of the oven, around hot plates and enamel stove surfaces with a solution of four tablespoons borax dissolved in 5 litres of hot water. Store excess cleaner solution in a suitable container with a tight fitting lid - well labelled and out of reach of children.
- Aluminium - soak overnight in vinegar and water, rub. Brass - mix equal parts salt and flour with a little vinegar, and then rub.
- Chrome - rub with undiluted vinegar.
- Copper - rub with lemon juice and salt or hot vinegar and salt.
- Gold - lukewarm soapy water, dry and polish.
- Silver and stainless steel - rub with paste of baking soda and water.
- Eco Store - If you don't have time to make your own, call free hone 0800 432 678 for a copy of the Eco Store catalogue. The Eco Store has a lot of products New Zealand made from natural ingredients.