Posts Tagged ‘Cleaning tips’

Why you should clean your dryer lint screen

Thursday, November 6, 2008 3:45 Comments Off on Why you should clean your dryer lint screen

Do you use fabric softener when you do your laundry?  And have you ever given your dryer’s lint screen a clean?  If not, you are adding to your electricity bill each and every month.

Part of what makes a dryer dry clothes is the air flow that circulates the hot air to the outside of the house, which is channeled through the link screen.  This is why it is important to remove the lint from the lint screen before using the dryer each time, because otherwise the circulation isn’t as good and it takes longer to dry – not to mention the potential fire hazard if lint is left in the lint trap through multiple dry cycles.

Now, take out your lint trap and pour water into it… you would expect water would pour through it, but in actuality, chances are it is acting more like a thick cheesecloth and it is slowly dripping through… this is because the coating from fabric softener sheets also coat the lint trap, causing air to not circulate as well. 

Using a stiff brush, wash your lint trap with hot, soap water, allow to dry and then insert back into your dryer.  You should notice an immediate difference in how quickly your washing machine dries clothes.

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How to clean an espresso or coffee grinder

Wednesday, November 5, 2008 2:07 Comments Off on How to clean an espresso or coffee grinder

Coffee grinders are notoriously difficult to clean because most parts cannot be washed with water.  And washing with a damp cloth often leaves coffee streaks everywhere and leaves your grinder looking far dirtier than it was when you started.

Because the coffee dust is dry, you can simply take a pastry brush or a clean unused makeup brush and brush the inside of the coffee grinder.  It will easily brush all the dust and coffee particles from the inside and especially around the hard-to-reach grinder blades, which could be dangerous to clean otherwise.

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How to clean a garlic press

Sunday, November 2, 2008 1:47 Comments Off on How to clean a garlic press

If you use your garlic press alot, you have probably washed it, only to discover dried on pieces of garlic caught in the press.  Dishwashers don’t get them completely clean if you leave a little bit of garlic, especially the outside of it, in the garlic press. 

Next time you get a freebie toothbrush from the dentist, keep it to clean the screen of the garlic press.   The toothbrush is small enough to get in the crevices of the garlic press and the bristles strong enough to dislodge any stray bits of garlic.

As a bonus, it is also great to clean other kitchen utinsels with little crevices, such as the inside of a lemon rasp or a small sized wisk.

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Make your own Soft Scrub Cleaner

Thursday, October 30, 2008 10:40 3 Comments

Do you need a nice non-abrasive cleaner for cleaning your kitchen and bathroom?  You can make your own at home, rather than buying the commercial variety in the store.

Make your own Soft Scrub Cleaner

You can also make it scented by using scented dish soap, such as lemon, green apple, orange or even some of the new “aromatic scented” ones like French Vanilla, Lavendar or the variety of “Rain” scented soaps.

Another bonus is because you use such a small amount of soap, you don’t need to feel that you are wasting any of the good scented dish soap you have on hand – but it does work just as well with the plain unscented or standard scented dish soaps.

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How to Clean Your Microwave

Wednesday, October 29, 2008 2:33 Comments Off on How to Clean Your Microwave

Because it is often “out of sight, out of mind” until you go to use it, microwaves can quickly become hidden science experiments pretty quickly, if you don’t clean up splatters and spills when they happen – and let’s face it, most of us are usually busy when we quickly pop something in the microwave to spend the few minutes cleaning it.

If your microwave is a mess of ick, here are some quick cleaning ideas

  • Run the turntable through the dishwasher.  This is the easiest way to quickly do part of the clean up, just pop the turntable into the dishwasher at night, or whenever it is you do the dishes, so at least that part is clean without a problem… just remind your kids they can’t use the microwave when there is no turntable in it!
  • Use a microwave safe container or cup (at least 4 cup size) and fill it with 3 cups of water, a squirt of lemon juice and a slice of lemon.  Microwave for 5 minutes on high and then let it sit for another few minutes for the steam to help clean.  More details here.
  • If your microwave is stinky too, if someone burned something in it or microwaved something smelly, use the same tip as above, but skip the lemon juice and lemon slice, and add 3 tsp of baking soda instead. And after you let the microwave steam for a few minutes, let the water cool slightly and you can use the baking soda water to clean the inside of the microwave with a sponge.
  • Need even more help to romove smells after the baking soda trick?  Put some ammonia in a bowl and leave it in the microwave overnight to help eliminate the smell.

After following one (or more!) of these tips, you should have a sparkly and clean smelling microwave!  Any other microwave cleaning tips?

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Cleaning bath toys instead of tossing them out

Sunday, October 26, 2008 4:42 1 Comment

We have all done it – suddenly discovered a favorite bath toy has gone all green and black inside because of water sitting in there, and toss it out in hopes it won’t be missed at bathtime.  Next time, try cleaning it first.

Take a large pail and dump a half cup of vinegar in with a gallon of water (double the vinegar and water if you have a large batch of bath toys).  With gloves on, immerse the toys in the mixture, squeezing them to expell out any bacteria and mildew, as well as to get the vinegar mixture inside, then let soak for 15 or so minutes.  Repeat if they are really gross! 

You can also do this as a preventative treatment every few weeks to prevent the build up from happening.  You can also make it a rule for your child to squeeze out all the water from inside the toys when he or she is getting out of the tub, as this will also help prevent the problem from starting.

So next time you notice that yellow rubber ducky is looking a little bit green around the gills, try this!

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Homemade Febreze recipes you can make yourself

Saturday, October 25, 2008 1:06 3 Comments

Frebreeze can be expensive to buy, especially since families can go through it quite quickly when they are trying to make sure everything smells nice and fresh!  Here is how you can make it yourself, with a variety of scents.

Regular scented febreze
4 tbsp Ultra Downy fabric softener
32 oz spray bottle (clean!)

Fill the remainder of spray bottle with water, leaving a small amount of space at the top.  To use, give it a quick shake first, then use as you would Febreze.

For other scents, use other Ultra Downey scents… there are even several Downy’s with Febreze, if you love the smell of Febreze, including their Fresh Scent, Citrus & Light, Spring & Renewal, and Meadows & Rain.  But only buy these if you would use the fabric softener as well, or if you go through enough Febreze that using only four tablespoons at a time is worth it for you (you will still save A LOT of money buying the Febreze fabric softener and making it yourself than buying bottles of regular Febreze.

If you already have another brand of fabric softener in your house already, or a coupon for one, feel free to use that.  And please let us know which fabric softeners you used, and how they smelled :)


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