Have you cleaned under your kitchen sink lately? I cleaned mine yesterday and was amazed at how many products there were that I seldom use. They were products that I bought for a specific problem and apparently I didn’t need them again. There they sat collecting dust and taking up valuable cupboard space.
After I agonized over whether I should keep those expensive, dust collecting products I reluctantly tossed them. I knew that there had to be some tips for replacing these products with ones that would be useful in more than one area of my life.
One of the products that was collecting dust under my sink was a rust remover, how and why it was there was beyond me. There was also a box of flea killer powder, we haven’t had any pets for a couple of years so that one made it’s way to the garbage can too.
After consulting family and doing a little research I found that Borax, the stuff that I buy specifically for my Homemade Laundry Detergent, would solve a number of different problems, more specifically it can be used on rust and flees. I was no longer agonizing over tossing out those cleaners once I created this list.
1. Carpet – to remove stains. Mix 1/4 cup Borax and 1 cup water in a spray bottle. Spray the stain and blot the area to remove. Repeat until stain disappears
2. All-Purpose Cleaner – to make your own, mix 1/2 cup Borax, 1 teaspoon ammonia and 1 teaspoon dish soap in 2 gallons of warm water.
3. Stain Remover – mix 1 cup Borax and 1/4 cup lemon juice. Rub the stain with the mixture and rinse with warm water. Works great on tubs and sinks.
4. Toilet Cleaner – pour 1/2 cup Borax into toilet. Let sit for 1 hour then scrub with a toilet brush. Flush to rinse.
5. Garbage Can Cleaner – pour 1/2 cup Borax and 1 gallon warm water into the can. Scrub with a brush or rag. Rinse and let dry.
6. Rust Remover – make a paste using Borax and lemon juice. Scrub rust with the paste. Rinse with clean water.
7. Water Spots – to remove, add 1 tablespoon of Borax to your dishwater.
8. Hair Brushes and Combs – mix 1/4 cup Borax and 1 tablespoon dish soap in a sink of warm water. Soak brushes for 30-45 minutes. Rinse and allow to air dry on a towel.
9. Delicates/Hand Washables – in a sink or bucket, dissolve 1/4 cup Borax and 2 tablespoons of laundry detergent in warm water. Soak garments for 10-15 minutes. Rinse with cool water, blot with a towel to remove excess water. Hang to dry.
10. Teapot Cleaner – to clean a metal teapot or coffee pot, fill it with water and add 1 teaspoon Borax and 1 teaspoon laundry detergent. Boil the water and let it sit until cool. Rinse.
11. Mattress Stains – to remove, mix 1 cup Borax with 2 cups warm water. Rub the mixture directly onto the stain and let dry. Vacuum and repeat if necessary.
12. China – to clean and shine, mix 1/2 cup Borax in a sink of warm water. Wash China and rinse with clean water.
13. Mildew Remover – mix 1 teaspoon Borax, 1 teaspoon of dish soap and 4 cups of warm water in a spray bottle. Spray the mixture on the mildew, wipe clean and rinse. Works great on outdoor furniture.
14. Metal Cleaner – create a paste using Borax and water. Scrub the metal with the paste and rinse with clean water. This won’t damage metal because it’s non-abrasive.
15. Refrigerator Cleaner and Deodorizer – mix 1 tablespoon Borax and 2 cups warm water in a spray bottle. Spray and wipe clean.
16. Garbage Can Deodorizer – sprinkle some Borax in the bottom of the can it will absorb the odors.
17. Urine Deodorizer – dampen the urine spot with water then sprinkle it with Borax, rub it in. Let dry, then brush or vacuum clean.
18. Mattress Deodorizer – sprinkle mattress with Borax. Let is sit for 15-30 minutes before vacuuming.
19. Drain Deodorizer – pour 2-3 tablespoons Borax into the drain. Let it sit for 15 minutes before flushing it with hot water.
20. Clogged Drains – pour 1/2 cup Borax in the drain, followed by 2 cups of boiling water. Let it sit for 15-30 minutes. Run the water for a few minutes to rinse.
21. Poison Ivy – to alleviate itching, wash infected area with Borax.
22. Skin Softener – use Borax to wash with, be sure to rinse well.
23. Shampoo – softens hair and conditions scalp. Mix 1 part Borax with 5 parts water. Shake and let it sit for a couple of hours. Pour onto hair and work into scalp. Rinse well
24. Acne – wash affected area daily to control. Rinse well
25. Liver Spots – wash affected area daily. Rinse well
26. Flea Killer – sprinkle Borax on your carpet and let it sit for 1 hour before vacuuming.
27. Insecticide – sprinkle Borax around the perimeter of your house and any areas inside your home where the insects are entering.
28. Mice – sprinkle Borax on the floor along the wall to keep these little rascals out of your home.
29. Weed Killer – sprinkle where you’ve seen unwanted weeds, such as in the cracks of your concrete. * Don’t use in gardens, it will kill the plants.
30. Candle Wicks – to make long lasting wicks, dissolve 4 tablespoons Borax and 2 tablespoons of salt in 1 1/2 cups warm water. Soak cotton, kite string in the solution for 15 minutes. Hang the string to dry for a few days, then dip it in wax a few times before using.
Fun with Borax:
- Slime Recipe from Science Bob
- Floam Recipe from E is for Explore
- Snowflake Recipe from About Education
- Polymer Ball from Science Bob
- Fake Snot Recipe from Grossology
I hope that you enjoyed this list, I’m heading to the bathroom now to toss out some other one purpose cleaners that I can replace with Borax.
What one purpose cleaners are lurking in the back of your cupboard?
** If, by some small miracle, you worked at Amway in Ada, MI in the 1980;s and were the person my mother loaned the notebook to, please contact me. The notebook is a small (approx 6×9), black leather, 3-ring binder, and contains hand drawn patterns (teddy bear), recipes, and household tips and tricks. It would mean so much to my family to have it back.