In my PrepWise Wednesday thread last week, I talked about learning how to make your own cleaners. So here are some of the “recipes” I have collected from various places. Most of them are pennies to make so budget friendly in addition to being environmentally friendly. So try some homemade cleaners and save your home environment and money too!
All Purpose Window and Glass Cleaner
Vinegar cuts grease and leaves windows sparkling clean. Best of all, this mixture is absolutely safe. It’s the best choice if you have young children in the house.
1/4 cup white vinegar
1 quart of water
Pour vinegar and water into a bowl or container, or mix the ingredients in a spray bottle. Clean windows directly with a sponge dipped in the bowl of cleaner or spray on and wipe clean. I have heard that you can use newspaper to clean windows quite well.
4-5 oz vinegar
4-5 oz wintergreen alcohol
Fill up the rest of the bottle with water.
In a clean, empty gallon milk jug put:
2 Tablespoons ammonia
1 teaspoon dish detergent
1 pint (2 cups) rubbing alcohol
4 drops food coloring – optional
a few drops of your favorite essential oil for a nice fresh scent,
I used Orange
Fill the rest of the gallon jug with hot water. Pour into spray container to use.
Natural Cleaner Recipe
Fill your spray bottle almost full with HOT water, then add:
· 1 teaspoon borax
· 1 teaspoon washing soda
· 1 tablespoon liquid Castile soap (Dr. Bronners)
· 1/2 cup vinegar (kills mold/mildew)
Shake well before using.
Note: If you put the other ingredients in before the water it will foam up a lot when you add the water.
Washing Soda – (sodium carbonate) Cuts grease and disinfects. It will also increase the cleaning power of soap.
Borax – (sodium borate) It deodorizes, removes stains and boosts the cleaning power of soap. It also prevents mold and odors. Great alternative for those who do not want to use bleach.
Use your old 409 or Fantastik Bottle.
Put in 2 Tbls of ammonia (I use lemon-scent)
Put in 2 Tbls of castile (Dr. Bronners – I use mint)
Fill slowly with warm water about halfway. Shake. Set for a while to let foam dissipate, then fill the rest of the way with water.
1 empty gal. size milk jug
2 c. white vinegar
3/4 cup ammonia (lemon scent smells best)
4 squirts of dishliquid (dawn is awesome but any kind will work)
Pour vinegar, ammonia, and squirt dish soap into jug…fill rest of way with water and gently swish it around to mix it…pour into a spray bottle and use the same as 409.
Heavy-Duty Disinfectant Cleaner
1/4 c. powdered laundry detergent
1 Tbsp. borax
3/4 c. hot water
1/4 c. pine oil or pine-based cleaner
Slowly stir the detergent and borax into the water to dissolve.
Add the pine oil and mix well. For bathroom cleaning, use the mixture full strength. In the kitchen, dilute with water.
Fels Naptha Laundry Soap
1/3 bar Fels Naptha, grated
1/2 cup washing soda
1/2 cup borax powder
Put the grated Fels Naptha in a large pan with 3 pints of water – heat – stir to dissolve. When dissolved stir in the 1/2 cup of washing soda – then the 1/2 cup of Borax [remember 20 mule team borax – upper shelf on laundry isle in grocery stores] This will all thicken and look like honey – remove from heat. In a two gallon bucket put 1 quart of hot water. Next add your honey looking soap. stir! Then fill the bucket with cold water. Stir till well blended. Pour into old laundry soap containers. It will gel up in about 24 hours, so don’t wait too long to pour into your containers or you will have to scoop it out of the bucket : ) Use 1/2 cup for each load.
Note: For those with sensitive skin, a mild soap like Ivory brand can be substituted for the Fels Naptha without losing much of the cleaning ability—-really dirty laundry would benefit from a little extra Borax and Washing soda added to that load.
6 cups of water
3 cups of vinegar
2 cups of any hair conditioner (cheapie dollar store stuff will do)
mix in a gallon container – do not shake as it will foam. – pour small amount in the fabric softener dispenser say 1/2 cup per load.
Homemade Automatic Dishwasher Soap
Mix together in a small plastic tub with a snap on lid:
1/2 cup Arm & Hammer Super Washing Soda
1/2 cup 20 Mule Team Borax.
Use about 2 tablespoons in the dishwasher compartment.
If your silverware seems a bit dull, add Citric Acid (from either canning products or tang). Try adding 1 to 2 tsp. to the above mixture to start with.
Carpet Freshener Blend
1/2 cup baking soda
50 drops lime oil
30 drops tangerine oil
20 drops patchouli oil
Mix and set aside for 24 hours.
Sprinkle on carpeting and let sit at least 15 minutes, then vacuum.
1 Cup Fabric Softener
1 Cup Vodka (or rubbing alcohol)
1 Cup Baking Soda
2 Cups Water
Combine in a spray bottle. Test on a hidden spot before using.
Brass & Copper Cleaner
Mix salt and either lemon juice or hot vinegar.
Sprinkle cornstarch on dry carpet and vacuum after five
Mix 1/2 cup of pure liquid dishwashing soap and two cups of
boiling water; let it cool and then whip to jelly. Rub carpet
gently with mix and dampened sponge. Then rinse with cloth and
one quart of water with one cup of white vinegar. Wipe carpet
dry with a clean cloth.
Use hot water with either rubbing alcohol or ammonia.
Pour 1/4 cup of baking soda and 1/2 cup of vinegar into the
drain. Cover the drain until fizzing stops and then flush with
Use olive oil on unvarnished wood. On varnished wood, spray
lightly with two tablespoons of olive oil, one tablespoon of
white vinegar and one quart of water and let it dry.
Homemade Cleaning Wipes
1/2 roll of white Bounty or Brawny towels
1/2 cup Pine cleaner
2 cups water
Mix the ingredients and pour over the stack of folded towels. They will “squish” down after they are saturated. Keep in a tightly sealed container.
Stainless Steel Sink Remedies
Olive Oil: Rub stainless steel sinks with olive oil to remove streaks.
Vinegar: To clean and polish sink, simply moisten a cloth with undiluted white or cider vinegar and wipe clean. Can also be used to remove heat stains on stainless steel cutlery.
Club Soda: Remove streaks or heat stains from sink by rubbing with club soda.
Septic Tank Treatment
This is an effective cleaner for your septic tank, and it will not harm the system.
2 C. brown sugar
5 C. warm water
1 T. baker’s yeast
Stir sugar and yeast into the warm water until dissolved. Pour the solution into the toilet and flush. Wait 30 minutes before flushing again to allow the yeast time to work.
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Put a non-aluminum pan with
1/4 cup of ammonia and water in the oven, with door closed,
overnight. Scrub clean with baking soda in the morning.
Pest Sprays for Foliage
Garlic Water: Mix two tablespoons of garlic juice, one ounce
of diatomaceous earth, one teaspoon of rubbing alcohol and
four quarts of water. This can be frozen.
Pepper Water: Blend three very hot peppers, 1/2 onion and
garlic clove in water. Boil the mixture, steep for two days,
and strain. This is good for indoor plants too, and it can be
Soap: Use two tablespoons of pure liquid soap or 50 grams of
pure dry soap per quart of water.
Tobacco Water: Let a large handful of tobacco stand in four
quarts of warm water for 24 hours; dilute and spray (poisonous
Immerse silver in a mixture of one quart of water, one
tablespoon of salt, and one tablespoon of baking soda; bring
to a boil. Remove, rinse and polish.
Cleaning a shower curtain
With warm water, fill up your washing machine. Add in two large towels.
Add one half-cup each of laundry detergent and baking soda.
Run this mess through your entire wash cycle, but add 1 c. vinegar to the rinse cycle. Don’t spin dry; don’t rinse out that vinegar, either.
Hang up the curtains right away. I think the vinegar helps slow down the formation of more mold, and the curtains always look like new.
Homemade Oxygen Cleaner
1 cup hot water
1/2 cup baking soda
1/2 cup hydrogen peroxide
It removes even old blood stains!
Just soak the clothing in it for 20 minutes to overnight and then wash as usual.
This will not harm fabric like bleach.
How to clean your washing machine
1 quart chlorine bleach
1 quart white vinegar
Fill your washer with hot water.
Add 1 qt of chlorine bleach (no detergent please!).
Run the washer through the longest wash cycle.
When the washer is still wet- this should be immediately after the bleach cycle- add 1 qt of white vinegar and run the washer through the same cycle again refilling the tub with hot water. This will clean out soap scum and mineral deposits from the spin basket and also from the hoses.
Wall and Woodwork cleaner
1 cup ammonia
1/4 cup baking soda
1/2 cup vinegar
1 gallon water
Mix well and put in spray bottle.
Homemade carpet cleaner
1/2 cup liquid Tide
1/4 cup Clorox II
1/4 cup white vinegar
Add this to 1 gallon of hot water in machine.
If you need to pre-treat some areas you can mix this in a spray bottle and spray the area before you start.
1/2 cup white vinegar
1/4 cup baking soda
2 tablespoons ammonia
3 cups water
Stir together and fill a spray bottle. Spray on heavily soiled spots just before washing. Test for colorfastness.
Tightwad Gazette Stain Removal
Add 1 cup each of powdered Cascade and Clorox II to 5 gallons of the hottest water from your faucet. Soak several articles overnight and launder as usual. She states this will remove 90% of stains that do not come out with normal laundering. Do not use on delicate fabrics, or those not colorfast. Particularly good for removing food stains.
Let me know what you try this week and how it works for you!
A married woman must often leave God at the altar in order to find Him in her housework ~~St. Francis of Rome