Self-Sufficient Homesteading

Miscellaneous Cleaning Recipes

Home Canning Recipes
Home Health Remedies
Laundry Soap Recipes
Money Matters
Vegetable Gardening
Self Sufficient Living
How to Make Your Own Household Cleaners
How to Make Insect Repellents
Everything You Need to Know About Using a Pressure Canner
How to Season a Cast Iron Skillet
How to Make Playdough
Cooking with Rhubarb
How to Store Green Tomatoes
Should I Get a Flu Vaccine?
How to File Your Income Taxes for Free
Can You Trust the Farmer's Almanac?
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Homestead Pets
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How to Save Money While Shopping
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Ever wondered how to make your own air freshener, remove wallpaper, get the musty smell out of old books, clean out the humming bird feeder? Look for answers to these questions and more.

A word of caution. Never use vinegar on marble surface or some metals because it will pit or etch them.
Always spot test everything when trying a new cleaner. You don't want to bleach or ruin something cleaning it.
Even though these are safe chemical free cleaners, always use caution avoiding skin and eyes when using a cleaner.

Air Freshener

Use old fabric softener sheets as an air freshener. Just add with water and put  in a spray bottle and spray.

Berry Stains

For berry stains on your hands, try toothpaste.

Car Wash Cleaner
Add 1/2 cup of gentle dishwashing liquid with 1/2 cup of baking soda. Add to one gallon of water. 
To use mix 1 cup of this solution in a pail of warm water.

Copper and Brass
Use a tablespoon of vinegar with a couple of teaspoons of salt. Let sit a few minutes and then scrub off. It should be shiny clean.

Another trick is to use ketchup. Just rub it on the metal and the vinegar will work to clean it.

Flower Vases
Fill the vase with a mixture of one part water and one part vinegar.
Vinegar can pit certain types of metal, so never use it for that.

Furniture Polish
Add a drop or two of lemon oil to 1/2 cup of olive oil for a good funiture polish that will help protect your wood furniture.
In a pinch use a spray on cooking product. This won't have the nice smell of lemon, but is a good polish that will pick-up the dust.

Use a small paint brush to get into small cracks and hard to reach areas.

Another way to make your own furniture polish is to add 1/4 cup of olive oil with two tablespoons of white vinegar. 

Hummingbird Feeder
Clean with white vinegar and rinse well. This doesn't leave a residure like soap

Mildew Odor
To remove the mildew smell from books or other paper items, just dust with cornstartch and leave on for several says.
It helps also to put old books in a sealed container and stuff with newspapers. The newspaper will absorb ordors.
I've also tried covering books with baking soda and sealing them tight and leaving for a couple of months.

Mold and Mildew
Clean the area with vinegar. It will deoderize as well as stop the growth.
Never use vinegar on stone or marble.

Pet Odors in Carpeting
Shake baking soda lightly across carpeting. Let sit just a little while and vacuum.
Use in the cat box to remove odors.

Removing Wallpaper
Recipe 1
Add 1 cup of vinegar to one gallon of hot water. Apply to wallpaper and wait about 30 minutes and it should peel right off.
Recipe 2

First score the wallpaper with a wire bristle brush. Spray on  liquid fabric softener to remove. Use a spray bottle and just spritz it on the walls. Let the solution soak into the walls for at least 20 minutes.

Then use a wall paper scraper or putty knife and just remove the wallpaper. For difficult areas or where there is double waterpaper, reapply and repeat.


Use toothpaste to clean silver.

Smoking Odors
Put small caps of vinegar in discreet places in the house to absorb the ordors.
Baking soda in ashtrays also helps.

Remove Rust from Tools
Just let them sit in some white vinegar for a few days

Window Cleaner - Recipe #1
In a spray bottle (save the one from your last bottle of store bought or buy at a dollar store) mix 1 part vinegar with 3 parts of water.
Instead of paper towels use old newspaper to wipe the windows. They will be sparkling clean.
Window Cleaner  - Recipe #2
Mix a cup of  rubbing alcohol with a cup of water and a tablespoon of white vinegar.
Pour into a spray bottle.