I buy cleaning supplies about every 3 months or more and have decided that this next trip to the store is going to be stocking up on items to make my own cleaning supplies for use in the kitchen and bathroom. I like knowing the ingredients are simple and easy to understand and that I had a hand in making the cleaning solution work for me.
Because I am not fully certain that all cleaning solutions will work, my back up plan is to buy some 7th generation products, with their coupons, if something fails to work - But I hope all goes well.
☑ I need spray bottles for liquid solutions I make as I don't have any leftover bottles around the house I feel comfortable using and I need a container for shaking out the powder solution made as well.
Before I figure out how many containers to buy, I need to figure out what ingredients are used that I may need to buy:
☑ Baking soda - deodorizes, scours surfaces, and is a natural cleaning agent
☑ Vinegar - kills most mold, bacteria, and germs
☑ Salt - scours, cleans, and deodorizes
☑ Borax/Washing soda - water softener and sanitizer and makes an excellent freshener when added to laundry and an all-around deodorizer (use gloves)
☑ Hydrogen Peroxide - kills bacteria and mold
☑ Ammonia - general purpose cleaner for many surfaces (never use in combination w/bleach)
☑ Lemon juice - has antibacterial and antiseptic qualities, is a natural bleach, and it controls odors
Toilet - Vinegar straight or used in combo with baking soda or borax. Alternatives: couple of denture cleaning tablets, coca-cola or a pumice stone for stains
Bathtub - A powder mix of baking soda w/ salt or bar soap, add a little vinegar after for tougher stains. A liquid cleaning mix of lemon juice and vinegar. Also pour warm vinegar in a sandwich bag and rubber-band to shower-head for an hour to clean. Alternatives: left over shampoo
Sink/Counter - A mix of baking soda w/ salt or bar soap or 2 teaspoons borax, 4 tablespoons vinegar, and 3 to 4 cups hot water in a spray bottle.
Counter-tops - All purpose spray: Equal parts vinegar and water with a few drops of lemon juice.
Oven - A pan of ammonia left in the oven for a few hours if no one else is in the house and it is well ventilated. Otherwise a paste of three parts baking soda, one part salt, and one part water spread all over the inside of the oven and let sit overnight. Alternatives: Lay down aluminum foil on the bottom to cut down on cleanup, use cookie sheets under dishes in the oven
Microwave oven - Heat up a bowl of vinegar in the microwave to steaming and wipe off with warm rag.
Refrigerator/Freezer - For manual defrost freezers and refrigerators the use of hot water with a cup of vinegar helps clean it out quickly.
Cutting boards - Clean with vinegar and hydrogen peroxide, but not together, one after the other in any order.
Dusting - Mix olive oil and vinegar in a one-to-one ratio and polish with a soft cloth.
Drains - Pour Baking soda and vinegar down the drain and let bubble and sit. Then follow with Hot water.
Moldy Grout - Mix a half a cup of hydrogen peroxide with one cup of water. Spray on and let sit for an hour. For colored grout, mix a paste of baking soda and water. Lemon Juice can be tried as well, testing a small area.
Carpet Deodorizing - Sprinkle corn starch or baking soda on carpet and vacuum up to freshen carpet. For stains, mix equal parts borax or baking soda, salt, and white vinegar. Apply the paste to the stain and let dry, then vacuum.
Carpet Steam Cleaning - Double check your manual, but most will accept 4-6 ounces of vinegar with the hot water in place of the steam cleaning products
Overall it appears that Vinegar, Baking soda, Hydrogen Peroxide and Lemon Juice are the top used items. Salt, Borax and Ammonia seem to be the runner's up.
What things have you found that help with the above cleaning items?