Get rid of pests, unclog drains and more with borax

Borax can be used for a number of things around the house.

Most people use cleaning products that contain borax all the time – known by the proper name of sodium tetraborate, it’s an important element of laundry powders. 

And while borax might not sound natural, it’s actually found naturally in plants and soil, making it a great eco-friendly cleaning agent that can work wonders around the house. It’s similar to baking soda and has anti-fungal properties, so can be used to make plenty of little jobs much easier.

Although you may not be familiar with it, you can buy borax at most supermarkets, as well as online.

Preserving flowers

This hack works because borax removes moisture from the leaves and blossoms of flowers, which prevents them from wilting. This means you can dry flowers or whole bouquets that you’d like to keep. Simply mix one part borax with two parts cornmeal until combined. Sprinkle the mixture into a box and place the flower on top. Sprinkle some more on top of the flower and cover the box for two weeks until the flower is dry. 

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Deterring pests

Borax works at deterring both creepy crawlies and furry fiends, and is more natural than many commercially available pest product that deter mice, cockroaches, waterbugs and ants. Simply sprinkle some borax on the floor, along the walls, at the front of entrances and in problem areas to rid your house of pests. If you have a pet, borax is also a great flea deterrent. Sprinkle some on carpets, pet beds and other areas you suspect may be harbouring fleas. Make sure you keep your pets away from the borax while it works its magic as it can be toxic, if ingested. Vaccum up the borax after a few hours to protect your pets. 

Improve fruit trees

If you add a cup of borax to the soil around a full-sized fruit tree every three to four years, you will get a larger harvest and a more healthy plant. The trace element of boron, present in borax, is great for cell-wall growth, seed development and fruit formation.

Cleaning toilet bowls

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Borax doubles as an effective toilet-bowl cleaner that will have your throne looking as good as new! Measure out one cup of borax and sprinkle it into your toilet bowl before you go to bed. Scrub the toilet with a toilet brush the next day and flush away the debris. The borax works by loosening up the grime, making it easier to clean.

Unclog drains

As mentioned above, borax is great at loosening up grime and debris, which makes it an excellent agent for unblocking a clogged up drain. Add half a cup of borax to the blocked drain, followed by two cups of boiling water. Let this hot solution sit in the drain for 15 minutes and then flush out the borax with running water. Your drain should now be unclogged.

A mould inhibitor

Borax works well as a mould inhibitor and can be used in any area of the home. Combine water and borax to create a thick paste. Apply the paste to any problem areas and let it dry overnight. Use a wet cloth to remove the mixture and apply every couple of months.

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Do you use borax around the house? Do you find it to be an effective cleaning agent?

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