Cleaning with Baking Soda

A theme around our house is reducing chemicals and finding more natural ways to cook and clean. One of our favorite multi-purpose items is banking soda.

Benefits of cleaning with baking soda:

A. It is non-toxic. Always a plus, especially in homes with kids and pets.

B. It is multi-purpose. You can use baking soda to clean a plethora of rooms so no need to keep a ton of specialized cleaners.

C. It is cheap! My favorite reason to use baking soda is the low-cost. It can be purchased in large boxes or bulk bags and is a very affordable alternative to expensive chemical cleaners.

So we all know about putting a box in the fridge or freezer to reduce food odor, but what else can banking soda do?

#1. Washing Hair – Possibly my favorite use for baking soda is the “No-Poo” idea to use baking soda as a shampoo. Simply use 1 tbs. baking soda in 1 c. of warm water. Mix and pour over your head. Scrub just like you would with a shampoo. Then rinse. Our family uses this instead of shampoo and our hair has never been healthier. No, you won’t get suds and fruity smells, but you will get hair that isn’t damaged by the chemicals in shampoo. Shampoo strips away the natural oils that your scalp produces, requiring your body to make more oils. It takes about 1 week for your body to adjust its oil production. After that adjustment you will see healthier, thicker hair. This is especially great for my naturally (very) curly hair. Follow with a vinegar rinse as conditioner (1 tbs. vinegar to 1 c. water). You can select various vinegar flavors (apple cider, cranberry etc.) if you want to add a soft sent. Rice vinegar is a great inexpensive alternative and can be purchased in large amounts at any oriental market.

#2. Odors – There are tons of applications in the kitchen besides the box in the fridge.

  • Sprinkle the bottom of the trash can and bag with baking soda to reduce odors there.
  • Sprinkle it into plastic containers that still have the smell from left-overs. For really difficult smells soak overnight in 1 tbs. baking soda per 1 c. warm water.
  • Sprinkle on carpet, particularly over pet stains. Let stand for 15 minutes and vacuum up. Repeat for really stubborn carpet odors.
  • Add 1/2 c. to stinky laundry loads to eliminate odor.
  • Sprinkle on the bottom of the laundry hamper to absorb odor.
  • Sprinkle in your gym bag to keep the post-workout smell away.
  • Sprinkle over shoes and shoe storage areas to keep things smelling fresh.
  • Sprinkle in dishwasher to eliminate odors.

#3. Grease – Baking soda will help with all kinds of grease messes.

  • Pour over a grease fire to put it out (never use water for grease fires!).
  • Make a paste (3 tbs. baking soda to 1 tbs. water) and rub on grease stains on laundry. Let sit for at least 15 minutes. The baking soda will absorb the stain.
  • Sprinkle on grease spills on carpet. Let stand for at least 15 minutes, then vacuum up. For stubborn grease, use a paste and blot clean with hot water and a towel.

#4. Bathroom

  • Make a paste (3 tbs. baking soda to 1 tbs. water) for stubborn stains on hard surfaces.
  • To unclog drains, pour 1/2 c. baking soda down weekly and follow with hot water rinse. To break up stubborn clogs, follow with 1/2 c. vinegar.
  • Make a solution of 1 tbs. baking soda and 1 c. water to clean hair brushes and combs.
  • Use 1/2 c. baking soda in a bucket of water to mop floors to a sparkling clean.

#5. Pets – They come with their own set of odors and challenges.

  • Sprinkle in the litter box to reduce odors.
  • To get rid of the “wet dog” smell, sprinkle over dog’s coat and brush trough.

#6. Kids

  • Sprinkle in the diaper pail to reduce odors.
  • Clean toys in a 1/2 c. baking soda to 1 q. hot water mixture. Let the toys sit in the solution, wipe, and rinse clean.

#7 Outside

  • Sprinkle camping gear with baking soda before you put it away to help keep odors away.
  • Clean plastic outdoor play equipment, especially if it has mildew, with 1/2 c. baking soda to 1 q. water solution. Rinse clean.
  • Clean outdoor lawn & patio furniture with 1/2 c. baking soda to 1 q. water solution. Rinse clean.
  • Clean grill grates by sprinkling with baking soda and soaking for 1 hour to overnight. Rinse clean.
  • Sprinkle on greasy spills. Use a paste for stubborn stains. For concrete, use a wire brush to scrub. Rinse clean.

#8. Everything Else

  • Sprinkle on a damp sponge, making your own “Magic Eraser” and use to clean walls, doors, and furniture, especially scuff marks and dirty finger prints.
  • Make a 3:1 paste and use it to clean silver (in the kitchen or jewelry) to a sparkling shine. Rinse thoroughly with water.
  • Use baking soda on a damp sponge to get the microwave and counters super clean.
  • Dust over produce and scrub lightly with a sponge or veggie brush and then rinse to clean dirt off produce.

What is your favorite way to clean with baking soda? Share your ides in the comments!

2 thoughts on “Cleaning with Baking Soda

  1. Pingback: Remedies for Sunburns and other Beach Mishaps | The Organized Wife

  2. Pingback: Make Your Own Dishwashing Detergent | The Organized Wife

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