If you haven’t read my first post on House Cleaning Essentials on a Dime, I encourage you to do so. We are going through what I consider the most important products, and what the most thrifty solutions are when cleaning my home:
- Disinfecting wipes. These come in handy for all kinds of quick clean-ups around the house. I like to get the ones that have a scouring side to them. I go over counter tops, tables, chairs, highchairs and more with disinfectant wipes on a daily basis. It is also the fastest way I have found yet to clean the outside of a toilet. This is probably one of the most expensive items on my lists, but we buy in bulk from Costco and only have to get more every few months, so this is one that is worth it to me. Note: If you are going to use these on granite, tile, toilets, or stainless steel, I recommend running over these with a dry cloth when you are finished for that special streak-free shine.
- Barkeeper’s Friend. My dad used this all of the time when cleaning. I remember when we were kids, it was the only thing we knew how to get Kool-Aid out of a white counter with. And I still use it today. I have never used the liquid before; the powder works just fine, and my guess is that the powder form isn’t just cheaper, but has better scrubbing powers. I can get a container of this at the store for around a dollar and it will last me for months! You can use it on your cook tops, counter tops, tub and tile, cement or stainless steel. I like to use it to get rid of that copper color that builds up on the bottom of our pots and pans. It’s powerful, but gentle on your surfaces, on your breathing, and on your hands (trust me, I have sensitive skin).
- Carpet Cleaner. I honestly don’t have much of a preference when it comes to carpet cleaners, but with keikis who are free to roam in my house, it is essential. When I don’t have it, I simply make a paste from baking soda and vinegar. Place that on the carpet and allow it to dry. Then, it should vacuum up along with the stain.
- Mr. Clean Magic Eraser. These are very cheap ( I can get six of them for about eight bucks and one lasts a while). I use these everywhere. I’m not impressed with their bathroom or kitchen ones, but the original is the best. I use these on cabinets, doors and door frames, light switches, and baseboards every time I have a Cleaning Zone designated. Take it from a mom who knows, these remove, marker, crayon, scuff marks, and sticky residues!
- Window Cleaner. My first and favorite option has always been vinegar. No harsh chemicals so I can let the kids help me (when I’m up to it), it’s odorless, and scent-free.
- Air Freshener. One of the first things people will inevitably notice upon arrival to your home is the smell. It’s a psychological trait that mammals have – an instinct if you will. My favorite solutions include fresh-baked goods, candles, or essential oils. Baking soda or borax are both great odor eliminators, but not an air freshener. There are also many industrial options out there for relatively inexpensive rates. I try to set a mood when I pick a scent for a day. I bake goods that are seasonal when applicable, and I bake bread often to get that “home sweet home” smell that my family loves. Plus it feeds their bellies!
Do you have any tips or ideas? What would you like to see featured in “My House Cleaning Essentials On a Dime: Part 3”?