"How Clean is Your House," the BBC reality television show about a duo of cleaning experts who tackle dirty homes, offers solid tips for viewers at home. The team of Kim Woodburn, an experienced cleaner, and Aggie MacKenzie, the duo's bacteria "expert," show you simple ways to remove stains and odours from common household items and areas.
Rugs and Furniture
Damage to your furniture and carpets is frustrating and embarrassing if you have company coming over. Lighten minor scratches on your wooden furniture and door or window trim by rubbing a walnut or Brazil nut on the area. Make sure to cut the nuts just before use to preserve the oils.
Peanut butter helps remove stuck gum from your rug fibres. Apply ice to the gum first, remove what you can, and then massage a bit of peanut butter onto the mess. Sponge the peanut butter and gum off with water, but add a small amount of dish soap or vinegar if you see staining.
Wood Floors and Walls
Various chemical products are available for cleaning your hardwood floor, but the acid in black tea does a comparable job. You must brew the tea, so add the bags to a bucket of hot water. Very lightly mop the floor with a damp mop dipped in the tea water; do not soak the mop. How many tea bags you need depends on your floor and how much shine you want.
Grubby hand marks on your wallpaper can be erased with white bread. Gently rub a large piece of white bread over the marks. A mild water-displacing spray can be used to erase crayon from your walls, but be careful and watch for staining.
Baking soda both deodorises and helps prevent toilet clogs. Flush a cup of baking soda down your toilet each week to prevent smells and keep the toilet from backing up.
Your bathtub may have unsightly rings from soap and water deposits. Cover the stains with mayonnaise, leaving the condiment on for one night, and rinse off in the morning to eliminate the soap scum and mineral marks.
Place glasses with unsightly soap film or hard water deposits in your sink and add equal parts warm water and vinegar for an hour-long soak. Clean the glasses with a cloth afterward to get rid of any remaining cloudiness.
Although your cutting board is a sanitary tool for cutting foods for cooking, the board can develop an odour. Rinse off the board and apply a small amount of mustard powder, which you can get from your area grocery store. Clean the powder off with water after about five minutes and allow the board to air-dry.