Old School Spring Cleaning Tips

Use what you have on hand to make your home sparkle.

These days there is a cleaner for everything and the cleaning list is an ever evolving cycle of chores. But, there are some very simple and effective ways that you can get a jump on your spring cleaning- from duvet covers to driveway stains to musty bathrooms- by using some old fashioned ways of making things look new again. Or, if not new at least extremely clean.

woman changing bedding
Via: Volha Flaxeco/ Unsplash

For Rusty Outdoor Furniture

rusty lawn chair
Via: Michael Coghlan / Flickr

Some people swear by this trick. Take powdered lemonade mix and a damp scrubber and wipe down rusty outdoor furniture or railings. It is said to remove rust really easily. If I had to guess I’d think that the citric acid in the lemonade powder is what gives this kitchen ingredient its oomph.

Another Refreshing Drink?

can of coca cola on dark background
Via: Ayesha C/ Unsplash

Like lemonade many people use Coca Cola to clean around the house as well. In particular Coke is good for removing rust, removing odors on clothing, and for pouring on old oil stains on your driveway to get them out.

Airing Out

antique rug beaters in a laundry basket
Via: Thomas Quine/ Flickr

In the old days airing out was an important part of a cleaning routine and this was especially true for spring cleaning. Hard-to-wash items like duvets and rug were hung in the sunshine after being cleaned to really freshen them up. Special rug beaters were once found in nearly every home for exactly this purpose.

Not only do textiles cleaned in this way end up smelling like sunshine, the exposure to so much light on a sunny day helps to kill microorganisms. For a modern twist on airing out mix a few drops of essential oil into a spray bottle with some distilled water for a homemade linen spray with minimal effort or cost.

Toothpaste for Scratches

toothpaste being applied to a toothbrush
Via: Marco Verch/ Flickr

Scratches on windows and mirrors can be buffed out using traditional toothpaste. You have to use the regular kind (not gel) so that the abrasive properties can level out the scratch.

Citrus Fruits

lemons in a bowl for cleaning the house
Via: Julia Peretiatko/ Unsplash

You can use a lemon or grapefruit cut in half to clean with. Dip the half a citrus in salt for a scrubber and cleaning solution all in one. This tip works especially well to shine faucets, sinks, tile, and to remove odors and stains from cutting boards.

Remove Stickers

can of opened Crisco on a countertop
Via: Amy Stephenson/ Flickr

I used to use Goo Gone to remove stickers, but I found that whichever size bottle I bought always developed leaks. Now I use rubbing alcohol instead and it works well. But, if alcohol doesn’t cut it use Crisco or coconut oil to get stubborn stickers off of non-porous surfaces. Then you can go back in with alcohol or a some kitchen spray cleaner to remove the grease. Thicker emollients work well here since they can sit on top of the gunk without running all over the place.

Good Smells

fresh mint on white background
Via: Kateryna Aleksandrova/ Unsplash

Today we have scented candles, room sprays, Febreeze, and a ton of other perfumed products with which to make our homes smell sweeter. But, throughout history people used herbs and flowers to scent their spaces. Strongly-scented herbs like mint, lemon balm, rosemary, and basil can make a room smell really fresh. You can make a bouquet just of herbs, or you can add some your flower bouquets.