Friday, January 31, 2014

31 Days to a Cleaner Home-Day 25: Cleaning with Baking Soda

Baking Soda.
No pantry is complete without this item.
Cookies, pancakes (you don't think we love pancakes do you?), bread, cakes, and other delicious items. oh man now I'm hungry!

But baking soda has a lot of other wonderful uses too!
Mixed with water it can be used as an antacid for heartburn or acid indigestion.
Did you know it is the medicinal ingredient in Gripe Water used for infants?!
It's in some toothpastes and can be used as deodorant
It's what you want to grab if you have a grease fire in your home as it smothers the fire.
Fire needs oxygen. Fire problem solved. 

Which brings me to how it works.
When you heat sodium bicarbonate it releases carbon dioxide.
It also reacts with acidic components found in batters which releases carbon dioxide which is why buttermilk and baking soda make fabulously fluffy pancakes. The heat and the acidic buttermilk makes tiny bubbles form in the batter and the fluff. 
[Must Stop Talking About Pancakes.]

It's a great deodorizer.
Soak freshly washed socks in 1 gallon of warm water and 1/4 cup baking soda for 30 minutes. Spin out (don't wash) in the washer, dry, and you have odor-eater socks.

Help brighten and deodorize your clothes by adding a cup of baking soda when you do your next load of laundry.

Sprinkle baking soda over your carpets and let it sit.
Vacuum it up 30 minutes later and your room will be deodorized. Plus it'll help deep clean your carpets and your vacuum. You could even add a few drops of essential oils to it before applying it to the carpet to make it scented. But for people with allergies to commercial powdered carpet "fresheners" this is PERFECT as there is no scent and it's all natural!

Put in the bottom of litter boxes with litter over top to help with the odor left behind by your furry friends.

Clean grout of any color.
Mix 3 cups of baking soda and 1 cup warm water. 

You can get streaks and greasy films off car windshields with a thin paste of baking soda and water then rinse well.

Screen stains and mineral deposits can be taken off windows with a wet cloth and baking soda and rubbing gently.

Get rid of sweat stains. Make a paste of baking soda and water. Let it soak for 30 minutes then washing like normal.

 A mild abrasive.
You can use this in place of commercial cleansers for tubs and sinks.

On any hard surface to remove stains.

Baking soda on a damp cloth removes crayon off hard surfaces or clean smudges from wall paper the same way.

You can also remove shoe scuffs from hardwood floors.

Clean up vomit.
This really truly works. I wish I didn't know this one quite so well first hand but when my youngest got a GI bug recently...well lets just say there were bodily fluids that ended up on the floor I was left unsure how to clean it up. While it wasn't vomit it still worked wonderfully. Just put a heavy coating of baking soda on the vomit let it dry. I know it's pretty nasty to think about but just let it sit and soak up the fluids. You'll be able to scoop or vacuum up the mess. The other benefit is the baking soda neutralizes the acids to help with the stink and helps prevent stains. Seriously this rocked my world the week we had the sickies here.

There are countless uses for baking soda.
Later this week you'll find lots of ways to use this mixed with other items in my 6 list to make it work even harder for you. Now I know what you're probably thinking "baking soda comes in such a small box." But little tip look in the laundry isle! I can find it at my local Walmart right next to the super washing soda a huge box of baking soda or get it through amazon shipped right to your door.

Today go through and use some of the tips above to freshen, whiten, and clear up marks and scuffs around the house. Instead of spending money on products that promise to be "magic" and erase marks and scuffs now you have one in your home to use as needed plus it does so much more. [Starting to sound like an infomercial here. Sorry all.] 
Maybe your stairs are marred up from shoes, or some little loves got a hold of some crayons, or maybe its that the grout in your tile floor is looking dingy and dirty. 
Go on. You've got the product. Take some time to day to give a little extra love to your home.
Also see if there is one area you could declutter or minimize the stuff hiding in a closet.

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