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Now that the Summer of 2012 is winding down and weather is getting cooler we look to beginning our fall cleaning. In the Chicago area as in much of the country we suffered through a long and extremely hot summer. I really didn't have much energy to tackle any cleaning jobs. Here are a few hints for cleaning using natural products.

Lemon juice is a wonderful deodorizer and cleaner. Squeeze on stains on the countertop, let sit for ½ an hour. It has a natural bleaching action. The acid in the lemon will gently fade stains. It's also great for keeping cut fruits and vegetables from browning. The juice will also get rid of onion or garlic odor left on your hands. Remove odors on cutting boards, rub with a cut side of a lemon half. Lemon is also a disinfecting agent.

Baking Soda is a wonderful gentle scouring agent. Sprinkle on the surface, moisten with water and scrub. Test an inconspicuous spot to make sure it doesn't scratch. Baking soda will also deodorize so it's great to use on garbage cans. Throw a cupful down the drain. Add a cupful of vinegar. Let sit for 15 minutes before rinsing. It will bubble so don't worry. You are left with a clean smelling drain. Sprinkle baking soda on pans with burned on food. Moisten with water and let stand overnight. Mix 3 tablespoons baking soda with 1 quart warm water. Use to clean inside and out the refrigerator. Clean the glass door of the oven with a moistened sponge sprinkled with baking soda.

Vinegar is also great on hard water stains. It works well on coffee pots as well as inside the coffeemaker. Run a cup of vinegar with a full pot of water through the machine, follow with 2 pots of clean water. Add ½ cup vinegar per gallon warm water, a great cleaner for vinyl floors and wood too! Vinegar will also remove stains on stainless steel sinks. Run a cup full of vinegar through the dishwasher cycle to remove soap residue.

Toothpaste is also a natural abrasive. Good to use on delicate porcelain.


Posted: Tuesday, August 21, 2012 9:31 AM by Dean's Team


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