Unusual kitchen tips are interesting to read but do they actually work? We've tried the weirdest and wonderful cleaning hacks to find the ones that really are worth trying. Here are my top 15 cleaning tips that are sure to make your life easier.
1. Line your fridge shelves with cling film
This is an amazing little trick for keeping your fridge nice and clean. Line each shelf with a layer of cling film and every week replace it with a new one. This will make it much easier to clean up any spills, leaks or food stains.
2. Keep your AC unit smelling fresh with dryer sheets
If you use air conditioning in your home, it may start to smell musty and the air will feel stale. Keep it fresh by taping a dryer sheet to the front vent and leaving it on for a few hours.
3. Use a pastry brush to clean your toaster
Tip your toaster upside down to get rid of the bulk of the crumbs then use a dry pastry brush to sweep away any of the crumbs stuck in those fiddly little crevices.
4. Clean gas burners with ammonia
Pick up a bottle ammonia from your local hardware store and some zip-lock plastic bags. Pour in 1/4 cup of ammonia into each bag with a gas burner in each then leave overnight and rinse in the morning. They'll be clean and grease-free. No effort required!
5. Double line your kitchen bin
This little trick has changed my kitchen chores completely! Double line your bin with black bags, the first lining will act as a protective barrier for your plastic bin and catch all the spills and gunk that may leak out of the second bag. You can change the first bag whenever you need to - it'll save you from washing and cleaning your bin as much.
6. Clean the gaps between your stove and counter with a knife
If you have a tiny gap where crumbs and other food particles like to settle, don't just let them live there for all eternity. Take a knife and a slightly damp cloth and pop the cloth over the gap and slide the knife from one end to the other. Check out Home Keeping for All for photo instructions.
7. Keep your sponge upright with bulldog clips
Keeping your sponge laying flat in a pool of water will encourage bacteria to breed faster. Keep it fresh and dry by using some bulldog clips to hold it upright. It'll dry quicker and last much longer than a soggy sponge.
8. Line your grill pan and oven trays with foil
For an easy clean up, double line your trays with foil. It helps prevent the oil and grease from seeping through to the pan so you won't be scrubbing away thick grease ever again. You'll go through your kitchen foil quicker, but it's guaranteed to make tray cleaning easier.
9. Blend soap and water in your blender for an easy clean
For easy-peasy cleaning, blend hot water and liquid soap in your blender then rinse out. It's far less perilous than sticking your hand into the jug and sponge cleaning the blade.
10. Clean a burnt pan with rhubarb
Boil some water inside the burnt pot with some stalks of rhubarb. After three to four minutes, take the pot of the heat and let the water cool. Grab a sponge and give it a quick wipe over and the stains should lift off.
11. Clean your microwave and sponge in one go
Leave a bowl of water in your microwave and put it on a high heat. The steam will help lift off any stuck on food so you can use a wet sponge to clean the inside of your microwave. When you're finished, rinse your sponge and place it in the microwave and power on for a minute to get rid of any germs and bacteria that may have transferred.
12. Banish cooking odours with vinegar and cloves
If you've been cooking strong-smelling ingredients like garlic and curry powders, get rid of any long-lasting smells by boiling a cup of distilled white vinegar and a couple of cloves in an uncovered saucepan for a few minutes.
Cloves aren't the only natural ingredient that can help mask smells, there are a further 18 in Colleen's article 19 natural ways to make your home smell wonderful.
13. Pick up shattered glass with bread
Quick - grab a slice of spongy packed bread and place it over the broken glass. It acts like a magnet to pick up even the smallest shards of glass.
For delicious things you can make with a loaf that is slightly past it's best, check out 11 comforting things to make with stale bread.
14. Invest in a portable steam cleaner
These handy little cleaners uses high-pressure steam so you can clean almost any surface with the need for cleaning products or detergents. They swiftly remove grime in even the most awkward of places, and they're fairly compact and lightweight to boot. Clean your oven grills, tile grout, bathroom taps and shower heads effortlessly - your cleaning life will be changed forever!
But don't worry, they don't cost the earth - you can get a Hoover Steam Express from Argos for just £24.99.
15. If you're in a hurry grab some baby wipes!
If you've got unexpected guests coming around or you just need everything to look clean quickly, grab some baby wipes! They're fantastic at making chrome appliances sparkle (for an hour or two at least) and surfaces shine.
Baby wipes are a great for cleaning, check out my article 39 unexpected uses for baby wipes, and if you need to know how to clean your home in a hurry, take a look at How to speed clean your home in 30 minutes.
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