The most effective ways to clean 9 household items you may not have realised 12



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Coffee pots, red wine stains, even the toilet – you might have been cleaning these 9 items a certain way for years, however there are some much more effective tips!

Don’t just grab an old rag or the bleach, here’s how to get these items properly cleaned.


1. Toilet

You may think simply scrubbing the toilet with bleach is enough however there’s an area you mightn’t be cleaning – behind the seat. Neglecting the area behind it can result in a build-up of urine and feces, however you can clean it easily with gloves and some paper towels rolled up tightly. Simply floss the back of the seat and let dry.

2. Towels

It’s tempting to grab the fabric softener when cleaning towels however Christina Peterson from Good Housekeeping says, “While everyone loves to dry off with a soft towel, liquid fabric softener and dryer sheets can reduce the absorption factor of terry cloth and other fluffy fabrics”. Instead, simply add some vinegar to every third or fourth load.

3. Pet hair

Pet hair gets everywhere and is notoriously hard to clean. You can’t prevent the hair from sticking to surfaces however you can clean it off the carpet easily – simply buy a cheap rubber squeegee and pull the hair towards you. It will come straight off.

4. Red wine stains

You may have heard to put white wine on top of a red wine stain, however this is not the most effective way to get out a stain. Instead, sprinkle with salt to absorb the wine then dab with cloth or paper towel.

5. Coffee maker

There could be mould in your coffee machine if you don’t clean it properly. Simply run it through a cycle with vinegar every few weeks to keep it in tip top condition.

6. Knives

Stop! Don’t put those knives in the dishwasher – they actually get more blunt every time you do so. Instead, wash in very hot soapy water when you need to.

7. Shower

Giving your shower head the once over with a cloth is not going to be enough to get the lime scale and rust off. A simple solution is filling a ziplock bag with vinegar and submerging the head. Leave overnight and wipe clean!

8. Cutting board

Disinfecting your cutting board is not as simple as washing it, you can instead rub lemon and salt on it – it really works! Then all you need to do is rinse.

9. Oven

Don’t buy expensive cleaners or use up a lot of elbow grease, there’s a very easy way to clean your oven, without the chemicals.

Simply make a paste with bicarb soda and water, and scrub it into your oven. Let it sit and dry, and chip off the dried bits. Then give your oven a wipe-down with vinegar and water, before running it on low for about 20 minutes.

Tell us, do you have any other cleaning tips to share?


Starts at 60 Writers

The Starts at 60 writers team seek out interesting topics and write them especially for you.

  1. I place the kitchen washing up sponge in the micro wave oven for 1 minute each night after tidy up ….meant to kill all ‘bugs’…for a while anyway.

  2. No hints but can anyone tell me how to get dried tea stains off a pair of light blue trousers? Tried soaking and washing but no luck – new pants ruined by knocking that cup of tea onto my lap at a Xmas party 🙁

    2 REPLY
    • Maybe soak in Colour safe Napisan. Depending on the fabric, I find it gets out most stains. Sometimes it needs soaking for several days and even changing the water. A scrub with Sard Soap is always effective too ( but not with denim).

  3. Has anyone the recipe for an all purpose cleaner containing vinegar. lemon juice dishwashing liquid and water? I have lost it You put it in a spray bottle Is very good around the house

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