Introduction: Make Cleaning Up Easy and Cheap With These Tips
Cleaning around the home or or office can be frustrating, and cleaning supplies are often expensive. I want to share some super cheap, effective, and convenient fixes for cleaning up.
Step 1: Fix That Annoying Sprayer
This is such a no-brainer that I was astounded that I'd never seen it done before. Every spray bottle is made with the same simple flaw. If you try to spray downward onto a horizontal surface, you soon find yourself sucking air. As the pictures illustrate, the only thing you need to do to never experience this again (unless the bottle is nearly empty) is to bend the straw. Simple. Frustration over.
Step 2: Cheap Cleaning Solutions
Most brand name cleaners are very expensive. This is because they are specially formulated, and contain things which a regular consumer couldn't reproduce for less money right?
Most cleaners contain one or two ingredients which can be bought in bulk and are diluted with water.
Some non-conventional cleaners work better than the big names too, and can be purchased for less money.
Before I get into this part of the instructable, a
Some chemicals are severly dangerous when mixed. One should never, for instance, mix an ammonia based cleaning agent with a chlorine bleach based cleaning agent. The results can be a fatal cloud of toxic gas filling your bathroom and killing you and your whole family in a nasty, painful way that is even forbidden to armies under the Geneva Convention... so don't do it.
On to the next step for some cleaning agent recipies...
Step 3: Cleaning Glass
I once worked repairing copiers and scanners and stuff like that, before I decided to get a real job and went back to school but I digress...
We had a solution for cleaning the glass and mirrors which worked magnificently for smudge and streak free glass.
Isopropyl rubbing alcohol and a clean cloth.
We used 90%, but it isn't really necessary to clean around the house with that kind of exactness. The 90% evaporates completely and leave no residue in about 1min. For my money, 70%, available on the cheap at any drug store, works magnificently.
Put it in a spray bottle and it works as a disinfectant for surfaces and a deodorizer for some smells... I remember one guy suggested waving a towel with a bit on it to clear up a fart smell before the customers noticed you'd smelt up their break room.
So the recipe for "Pir8P3t3's SuperKlear glass cleaner and surface disenfectant"
Pour 70% isopropyl rubbing alcohol into a clean reused spray bottle
Step 4: Tile, Tub and Mildew Cleanup
Lifeguarding for a public pool was another thankless part time job I once had. We had a hot tub and shower room and were made to clean them as part of our duties. We therefore had to keep an MSDS on a certain Dow Chemical product we used for the job. The sheet was revealing in that it disclosed through its various warnings and whatnot that the spray tile cleaner was in fact notheing more than a weak solution of chlorine bleach and surfactant.
Surfactant is a word which means soaplike substance... you know... like ... soap.
So I tried it at home, and found that a 1/10 solution of bleach with a squirt of liquid hand soap was as good as the brand name tile cleaner which was going for something like $3.50 per 20oz bottle. My "refill" was costing me somewhere around $0.05!
so here's the recipe for "Pir8P3t3's TileKleen"
Mix in a reused sprayer bottle:
1/4 cup chlorine bleach
1 squirt (~1 tsp) liquid hand soap
water to near top
McAdwell comments that he makes a similar tub scrub by adding baking soda to make: "McAdwell's TubScrubb"
1/10 bleach and water mix
baking soda until paste like consistency
I'm not sure if he uses soap in this though, but it probably can't hurt