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How to Clean and Get a Bathtub White Again in 7 Steps

Cleaning a bathtub has to be one of the worst chores on your chores list. It’s awkward to crouch over and try and fit yourself in the tub. And it takes a lot of elbow grease to get rid of stubborn stains and soap scum.
Because we know how annoying cleaning a tub can be, we put together a step-by-step guide of how to clean and get a bathtub white again with minimal effort.
Note: Don’t want to make your own DIY bathtub cleaner? Pick up Better Life’s Natural Tub and Tile Cleaner, made with tea tree and eucalyptus, this tub cleaner works against hard-set stains.
Otherwise, read on to learn how to make our own cleaning solution, and get your bathtub clean again.

1. Gather Your Materials

Start your bathtub cleaning process by getting everything you need in one place:

  • Baking soda.
  • Dish soap.
  • White Vinegar.
  • A sponge or scrub brush.
  • Papers towels or washable microfiber cloth.
  • Rubber gloves (optional, but it’s nice to avoid that vinegar smell on your hands).

2. Microwave the Vinegar

Pour ¼ cup of white vinegar into a microwave-safe bowl and put it in the microwave for no more than 90 seconds. You want warm water, not boiling hot water.

3. Pour Dish Soap Over the Tub

Take dish soap and pour it (or squirt it) over the surface of the tub. You don’t need it to be covered in soap but you want to be able to cover the entire surface with lather once you start scrubbing.

4. Add warm vinegar

Take your cup of warm white vinegar and pour that over the soap. Don’t scrub just yet.

5. Add baking soda

Take around four tablespoons of baking soda and sprinkle that over the tub. Now you have your baking soda layered on top of your soap which is layered over the tub.
You’ve basically have created a cleaning solution over your entire tub.

6. Scrub that tub

This will (hopefully) be the hardest you have to work. Take the rough side of your sponge and scrub your tub down. Try to cover every inch of your tub but really focus on the dirty/soiled parts. These parts will need a little extra elbow grease.
After you’ve scrubbed it down, let this lathery solution sit for about thirty minutes to an hour. You’re letting the mixture really break down any grime, stains, or mineral deposits.
Note: If you’re looking to get

7. Wipe down it down and rinse

After the time is up, take your paper towels or washable cloth and wipe down your tub. The grime and stains should be lifting right off. Then you can rinse the entire tub down by running your faucet and using a cup to collect water and then spill it over your entire tub.
If your tub still has some stains, it might need another round of cleaning.

How to Clean Shower Heads and the Tub Faucet

how to make your bathtub white again — don't forget to clean the showerheads
Despite what you’d think, showerheads can get very dirty. This is mainly an issue in homes hard water causes mineral deposits in your shower head nozzles. This results in uneven and weak water flow. In short, your dirty shower head is giving you a lackluster shower experience.
Luckily, there’s an easy fix.

  1. Take a zip-lock bag from your kitchen and grab a rubber band. The bag needs to be big enough to fit over the showerhead but not so big that the cleaning solution you’re about to make won’t work.
  2. Fill up your zip-lock bag with a cleaning solution. We recommend white vinegar but if you want you can use a store-bought cleaner that is designed to remove build-ups such as calcium, magnesium, and rust.
  3. Put the showerhead into the zip-lock bag.  You want the showerhead’s entire front face submerged into the mixture. Then you use your rubber bands to secure the bag to the showerhead.
  4. Let it sit for 30 minutes to an hour. Once the time is up, remove the bag and throw it away. Then wipe down down the showerhead with a washable cloth and then turn it on the faucet. Enjoy your new, even and powerful water flow.

Note: If your showerhead is clean but still giving your poor flow, it might be time for a new one. If you want to learn more, we put together a list of the best showerheads.

How to Bleach a Bathtub to Remove Mold and Mildew

Sometimes just cleaning your bathtub isn’t enough – no matter how hard you scrub. Plus, it’s good to, every now and then, use bleach to clean your bathtub because bleach kills mildew and mold.
A lot of commercial bathtub cleaners will use a little bit of bleach in their formula.
But sometimes the cheapest – and most effective – way to bleach a bathtub is just to use pure bleach and water.
This mixture will remove bacteria from your tub while whitening the enamel surface.
In this post, we’re going to show you how to bleach a bathtub in 7 steps. Before we get started, some things to know:

  • We’re handling bleach, so please wear cleaning gloves and some kind of protective eyewear (even sunglasses are better than nothing, you don’t want to splash bleach into your eyes).
  • You’ll need an empty spray bottle, a sponge, bleach (we like Clorox but any brand of bleach will work), and water.
  • We recommend you do this at night so your bathtub will be ready to use the next morning.

1. Make sure you can ventilate your bathroom

Bleach fumes are potent. If you’ve ever cleaned with bleach before your eyes have probably teared up. If you’re cleaning a really dirty tub with bleach, then you’re going to be close to the bleach while you scrub.
Instead of coughing up bleach flumes, make sure your bathroom has good air circulation going.
If you have a window, open it up.
If you don’t have a window, make sure the bathroom fan is on and the bathroom door is open.
If you feel lightheaded or sick after breathing in bleach fumes, take a break.

2. Prepare your tub for a deep-bleach clean

This means take out shampoo bottles, any loofahs, shower caddies, soap dishes. If you have an anti-slip mat, remove that.
All you want in your tub are the stains and mold and mildew that you’re going to clean away with bleach.

3. Fill the tub with two gallons of water

First, rinse out the tub, getting any loose hairs or dirt out of the way.
Then fill the tub up with two gallons of water.
Note: If you don’t have an empty gallon container ready to use, just leave your bathroom faucet running for anywhere between 1 to 2 minutes. As most faucets pump out water 2.2 gallons per minute.
After you’ve filled the tub with water it’s time to . . .

4. Add the bleach

The ratio of bleach to water should be 1:1. So one cup of bleach for every gallon of water. In this case, add two cups of bleach.
However, if you have a really dirty tub that needs a deep clean, then you can add more bleach using a 1:2 ratio.
But keep in mind that this means the beach fumes will be stronger.

5. Spray down the tub walls

How to clean a bathtub — spray down the tub walls
Take an empty water bottle and fill it up with equal amounts of bleach and water. Then spray this mixture over the tub walls.
Let the tub and walls soak up the bleach for at least 15 minutes.

6. Scrub down the walls and tub

After those 15 minutes have passed, put back on your gloves and protective eyewear, and scrub down the tub walls and the tub itself with a sponge. We like this special bathtub sponge because it has a handle, making it easy to get a good grip.
In our experience, you shouldn’t spend more than five minutes scrubbing.
If you’re scrubbing hard for five minutes and there are stains still not coming off, we’ve had some luck using Mr. Clean Magic Erasers on tough to remove stains.

7. Wash the filth away!

Open up your drain, letting the bleach and dirty water run down the drain. Then take your shower head and wash down the tub. Or if it’s not removable, then fill up a large cup with water and rinse off the walls and the tub.
Leave the fan, the window open, and the door open to let the bleach fumes dissipate out of your bathroom.

FAQs

What is the best bathtub cleaner?

We like the simple, non-abrasive solution in our list above. But if you need something more heavy-duty, check out our list of the best bathtub cleaners of 2022.

Is my tub porcelain or enamel?

To figure out if your tub is porcelain or enamel, just stick a refrigerator magnet on the side. If it’s enamel, your magnet will stick to the side. If it’s porcelain, the magnet won’t stick.

Can you use bleach on a bathtub?

Yes, bleach is great at killing mold, mildew, and other bacteria.
You don’t need to use bleach every time you clean your bathtub, but it’s a good idea to bleach a bathtub every now and again or bleach a bathtub when you move into a new home to make sure you’re using a clean and healthy tub.

For more house cleaning tips and home improvement guides, see our posts on:

Affiliate note: We are in part supported by affiliate partnerships. If you purchase a product based on our recommendation we may earn a commission. 

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How Many Air Purifiers Do I Need?

Indoor air pollutants are 2 to 5 times higher than outdoor levels, which can be a startling fact when you think about how much time we spend indoors. But it makes sense when you think about it. Indoor areas aren’t as ventilated, we’re using ovens, colognes/perfumes, we’re tracking in dirt from outside, we have more products (like furniture), and so on.

That’s why having an air purifier should be a given.

But when you start looking at how to get clean air in your homes and offices, you’re going to quickly come up against a big question — how many air purifiers do I need?

Do you need air purifiers for every room, or could one big unit do the job? Should your air purifier always be on or just when you’re in the room? What if you have pets or are sensitive to allergens?

In this post, we look at those questions in detail, focusing on how many air purifiers you need by considering your room size and your needs.

How To Know If I Need Additional Air Purifiers?

In a perfect world, it would be great to have one inexpensive air purifier that could easily purify your entire home. But, unfortunately, that is not the case.

Some people might think, “Oh, I’ll buy cheap air purifiers for all rooms.” Well, they’ll be the reason behind the skyrocketing energy bill and could break down in a year.

The key to finding how many air purifiers you need is to consider a few factors and calculations. If you hate math, we have created a table of how many additional air purifiers you need.

Calculate The Amount of Indoor Air

You need to start by calculating the volume of indoor air. Use this simple equation:

             Volume = Indoor Area (sq ft) x Ceiling Height (ft)

For example, the indoor air volume calculation for your 1,200 sq ft home and 8 ft ceiling height will be:

1,200 sq ft x 8 ft = 9,600 ft3

Therefore, you need to clean about ten thousand cubic feet of air about 4 times for effective purifying. Essentially, that means the air purifier needs to clean 9,600 ft3 x 4 = 38,400 ft3 of air per hour.

The Capacity of Your Air Purifier

It is essential to understand that every air purifier has a unique capacity. An average air purifier cleans about 200 cubic feet of air in a minute. It means that the unit can clean 12,000 cubic feet per hour.

Given that you have to clean 38,400 ft3 of air per hour, you will need more than one quality air purifier for your home. Having multiple air purifiers is better than relying on one unit as they can efficiently remove airborne contaminants.

The Number of Air Purifiers You Need

We know that an average air purifier can clean 12,000 cubic feet of air. To find how many units you need, use this simple equation:

For your home, the calculation will be:

Total Number of Units = Total Volume of Air To Be Cleaned / Air Purifier Capacity

38,400 ft3/ 12,000 ft3 = 3.2 air purifiers

Air Purifier Table According To Home Size

For a house bigger than 800 sq ft, it would be best to purchase more than one air purifier. If budget is not a problem, a good idea would be to invest in air purifiers for every room of your home.

The following table can help you determine the right number of air purifiers suitable for your home:

AREA  AIR CHANGES PER HOUR (ACH)NUMBER OF AIR PURIFIERS NEEDED
 

1,200 sq ft

 

4

 

3

 

1,600 sq ft

 

4

 

4

 

2,000 sq ft

 

4

 

6

 

2,400 sq ft

 

4

 

6

 

2,800 sq ft

 

4

 

7

 

3,200 sq ft

 

4

 

8

Number of Air Purifiers Depending On Rooms

Now you know about the square footage that correlates to the amount of air an air purifier needs to clean and the unit’s capacity. So, let’s make it a step easier by breaking down your home into areas that require an air purifier.

For open living, kitchen, and dining, you need at least 2 air purifiers. Get an air purifier with a heavy activated carbon filter, especially for the kitchen, as it will absorb cooking odors.

You’ll need a low-noise, powerful air purifier for the master bedroom and baby room to ensure the unit absorbs as many contaminants as possible. For the basement, you’ll need a low-maintenance air purifier that can work along with a humidifier to prevent the growth of mold.

If anyone smokes in your house, their room might require more than one purifier.

Single or Multiple Air Purifiers: Which Option Is More Economical?

Instead of getting a whole-house air purifying unit, it would be best to have multiple air purifiers. After all, a mid-range unit could cost you around $100-$300, while a whole-house unit can easily set you back $2,500-$6,000.

Moreover, a whole-house unit is not easy to maintain and requires a professional cleaning service. Homeowners who are on a tight budget need to consider multiple air purifiers.

Even if purchasing 3 or 4 air purifiers upsets your budget, you could get one high-quality unit and easily move it from room to room.

What Size Air Purifier Do I Need?

Instead of buying an underpowered air purifier, you need to consider four sizes in which these units come:

Small Air Purifiers: These units are ideal for small, personal spaces. You should get one for a room up to 200 square feet.

Medium Air Purifiers: These units are ideal for rooms between 200 and 400 square feet. You could get 2 or 3 units depending on the usage.

Large Air Purifiers: These units are best for rooms between 400 and 1,200 square feet. If buying one unit exceeds your budget, you could get 2 mid-range units.

Whole-House Air Purifiers: These units are installed in the HVAC system and are worth the money. However, this unit is a sound investment only when you can afford it without breaking the bank.

 

FAQs

How much electricity does my air purifier use?

The good news is that an air purifier does not use a lot of electricity. Its energy use is similar to a small to medium-sized TV. However, it can have an impact on your electricity bill if it is overworking or malfunctioning.

A small-sized air purifier for a big room can overwork. Moreover, you don’t need a big air purifier for a small space; it’ll just consume more energy.

Can I run my air purifier all day?

Yes, manufacturers recommend running an air purifier all day. It is because they are specifically designed to run and clean the air constantly. So you can turn them on even when you’re out of your home.

How long does an air purifier take to clean the air?

On average, an air purifier takes about 30 minutes to 2 hours to clean all the air in the room. Just how quickly it purifies the air depends on the quality of the unit, filter quality, power setting, and ACH (rate of changes per hour).

 

 

 

 

 

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Steam Clean Vs. Shampoo Carpet

Let’s find out which method can bring a fresh look to your dirty carpet.

Experts recommend carpet cleaning and maintenance after every 12-18 months to get rid of below surface dust and to offer clean and safe air to breathe in for your kids, pets, and guests. 

It’s well known that carpet fibers are powerful magnets that attract dust, dirt, dander, mold spores, and sticky stuff. Over time, all such particles resting on your carpet lead to multiple health issues such as skin allergies, cough, or flu. 

You may be vacuuming your carpet regularly. But you can’t overlook the importance of deep cleaning, which you can do effectively with either a steam cleaner or shampoo cleaner. 

In this post of Steam Clean vs. Shampoo Carpet, you can have a complete view of both methods. It’s time to look into the advantages and disadvantages of shampooing and steam cleaning so that it won’t be tricky to know which one is suitable according to your carpet quality and type.

 Besides, you would be able to clean your carpet without damaging its fibers while keeping its looks and beauty intact. Don’t you want that? Of course, you do. So, let’s start digging into details. 

What is a Steam Cleaner?

A steam cleaner is a strong cleaning system consisting of a tank, boiler, detergent compartment, refill and steam vacuum. In the boiler, water heats up under high pressure and heat ( low pressures up to 150 psi and temperature up to 360 degrees F). Steam combines with detergent in the detergent tank. 

This steam detergent combo is applied all over the carpet surface to lift and remove pathogens, bacteria, mold, allergens, dirt, and stains. It also sanitizes hard and soft surfaces. In addition, if the machine has a steam vacuum, it extracts all the dust, particles, and other content from your carpet and boosts cleaning efficiency.

While the machine is running, you need to add water in the refill (a non-pressurized tank) that goes into the boiler to turn water into steam. If a steam cleaner has an automatic refill, it will offer a direct water feed to ensure continuous working of the steamer.

How Does Steam Carpet Cleaning Work?

Steam vapors penetrate deep into the carpet and surround the fiber. Fiber softens up and loses the dirt for easy removal. The vacuum applies pressure onto the fiber and lifts away all the moisture alongside dirt and germs. 

You can clean every inch of carpet via steam cleaning as steam penetrates deep. Since a very low water level is used in this process, the rug has less moisture after cleaning. As a result, it dries quickly and reduces the risk of mold and mildew growth. 

Advantages of Steam Cleaning

  • It is an ideal deep cleaning method.
  • The vapor contains less water, and dry time is shorter than shampoo cleaning.
  • It improves the home’s air quality by eliminating dust, mold, mildew, and bacteria from your carpet.
  • This versatile machine helps you clean carpet and other surfaces, such as upholstery, curtains, mattress, kitchen appliance, mirror, floor, and tiles.
  • Heat kills germs, bacteria, dust mites, and bed bugs. 
  • It removes allergens from your carpets. People with asthma and breathing difficulties can breathe in healthy air.
  • Steam cleaners’ attachments clean hard-to-reach areas and make this machine easy to maneuver.
  • It can cut through stubborn stains such as grime and grease.
  • The high temperature of steam disinfects your carpet.
  • It is a safe cleaning method for kids and pets.
  • Steam won’t damage the look of carpet and its delicate fibers. Your carpet will look fresh and new.
  • There is no residue after cleanup because the percentage of water is more than detergent in a steam carpet cleaner.

Disadvantages of Steam Cleaning

  • Getting rid of tough stains without a cleaning solution is a tiresome task.
  • It is not a suitable cleaning method for an entire house and heavily soiled carpets.
  • You need to do spot treatment to deal with heavy stains.
  • Steam cleaning can’t be used for natural fibers or organic materials.

 

What is a Shampoo Cleaner?

A shampoo cleaner comprises a solution tank and shower feed brushes. This rotatory machine offers deep cleaning with its intense scrubbing action. However, before using this machine, you need to do thorough vacuuming. 

How Does Shampoo Carpet Cleaning Work?

Once the dirt particles are extracted from the carpet by vacuuming, this machine starts scrubbing carpet fiber. Its shower feed brushes feed the carpet with a shampoo solution. Again, you can expect excellent cleaning results due to the high agitation.

Advantages of Shampoo Cleaner

  • You can rent a carpet shampooing machine and do the cleaning by following a DIY approach.
  • It is the most economical method. 
  • It is suitable for a heavily soiled carpet.
  • You can buy a carpet cleaner as per your specific fiber or soil.
  • High agitation releases more soil from the carpet than other cleaning procedures.
  • It is a quick method of cleaning.
  • Machine extracts water and dirt in one go.
  • It helps you get rid of bacteria and germs efficiently.

Disadvantages of Shampoo Carpet Cleaner 

  • Experts disfavor shampooing because it leaves too much residue in the carpet fiber. 
  • If you don’t remain careful, this method may cause pile distortion or overwetting.
  • The residue leads to quick re-soiling in the carpet.
  • The carpet remains wet for 24-48 hrs. The drying time is more than two days.
  • Scrubbing with a cleaner often damages and weakens carpet fibers.
  • The detergent may cause yellowing of carpet material, and you can’t find a way to fix this issue.
  • You clean carpet from the surface level, not an ideal deep cleaning method.

Steam Carpet vs. Shampoo Carpet: Which One is Better?

Please consider some main points before picking one method of carpet cleaning.

Effectiveness

 Comparing the pros and cons of both methods makes you realize that steam cleaning is more effective than shampooing. 

Hygiene

  • You can kill 99 percent of bacteria and germs and keep your home environment germ-free, healthy, and clean. If you are a sensitive person with breathing problems, this method is undoubtedly the safest one. It’s because you deep clean your carpet while using minimal to zero levels of chemicals.
  •  A steam cleaner can hold allergy triggers at high pressure. So, if you are dealing with a dust allergy issue, it is the best fix you can get.
  • When your carpet has mold and mildew, you should always prefer steam cleaning over shampoo cleaning methods.

Foot Traffic

In heavy traffic areas, dirt builds up quickly in carpet. In that scenario, you need to go with shampoo cleaning. You can do surface cleaning with it and get rid of heavy soil via this method. 

Dry Time

Another reason for preferring steam over shampoo cleaning methods is drying time. You need to wait more than 48 hours with shampoo cleaning. However, the drying time of steam cleaning is 8-10 hours. 

Stains 

When you have kids and pets at home, food stains are unavoidable. In this case, go with steam cleaning as it’s a super effective way of getting rid of heavy stains. Another suggestion here is to do spot treatment first and try a cleaning method later.

Price

If you are looking for a budget-friendly approach, you need to go with shampoo cleaning. You can rent a machine and then use detergent to clean millions of square yards of carpeting without spending too much. If you remain careful with water and detergent use, you can get professional results easily.

Material

Always look into carpet material while choosing between steam vs. shampoo cleaning methods. If carpet material is delicate and incredibly soft, don’t go with shampoo cleaning because it damages both fiber and the overall look of carpet fiber. Heavy volume of water and detergent is used in shampooing. Thereby,  soap residue is a major shortcoming. This residue leads to quick dust and dirt build-up. On the flip side, steam carpet cleaning doesn’t cause residue and help you maintain the beauty of your fiber effortlessly.

After reading this post about Steam Clean Vs. Shampoo Carpet, what method you will prefer for your own place. Could you share with us?

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How To Shampoo Your Carpet In 6 Steps (Without A Machine)

As grueling and time-consuming carpet cleaning may seem, there’s no evading it. When we first think of this chore, what comes to mind probably involves an advanced machine with multiple features. Or hire a professional to do the job on your behalf.

However, multi-functional vacuum cleaners are a costly alternative and may require regular maintenance and repairs. Getting rugs cleaned at specialized cleaners is also hefty. As a result, many people tend to neglect washing their carpets when they weigh up all the costs involved.

Luckily, there is a third, cost-effective way to shampoo your carpets without a machine. Below is an overview of the process that comprises six simple steps. Keep reading and get your carpets sparkling clean with the help of only a few tools and supplies.

Essential Equipment

Before explaining the procedure, let us check a few cleaning agents you may use to get the wanted effect. First, we’ll consider a couple of natural products.

Baking Soda

This super ingredient works magic around the house and is particularly efficient for carpet spillages and cleaning. In case of a stain, consider spreading a spoonful of baking soda on it and allow it to sit. An hour afterward, the soda will absorb the spill.

More so, baking soda can come in handy for entire carpets as it cleans and gives them a fresh smell at the same time. Later on, we will discuss the process in more detail, but you would typically spread the soda all over the carpet.

White Vinegar

As a cleaning agent, vinegar requires time and experience to achieve the projected goal. In most cases, vinegar works for small-size rugs and stained areas rather than for large carpets. It is also not advisable to scrub too much when using vinegar for cleaning.

Many people use a 50/50 mixture of vinegar and water to disinfect carpets regularly. You can use this solution as a spray to get rid of bacteria and allergens. Note that the acidic smell may remain in the room for a while after spraying.

Specialized Carpet Shampoos

If you want to skip natural cleaning agents altogether, you’ll find a myriad of carpet shampoos available in stores. It’s up to you to decide which one you’ll use to clean your carpets without a machine.

It’s worthwhile mentioning that commercial carpet shampoos require intensive labor when scrubbing by hand. As a result, this method may not work for high pile carpets. For maximum effect, we suggest you stick with mass-produced cleaning products for low pile carpets only.

Whatever cleaning agent you select, you will also need warm water, a bucket, and a bristle brush at hand. Ensure you also have towels to absorb the excess water after the cleaning.

Now, as you are familiar with the essential prerequisites, let’s explain the six steps to clean your carpet without a machine.

Step 1: Pick The Debris

Before you start cleaning, it’s essential to pick up any remains or trash on the carpets. For instance, you can clear out any visible dirt, hairs, and dust. As a result, you will speed up the process and won’t have to take breaks to collect debris discovered while shampooing.

Since we agreed to skip machines to the greatest extent possible, reaching out for the vacuum cleaner is a no-go. Hence, you may consider using an old-fashioned broom or a roller brush as an alternative.

Step 2: Make The Cleaning Mixture

Depending on the cleaning agent you opt for, you will need to prepare the solution. With store-bought cleaners, things are more straightforward. Use a portion you believe is enough, or check the guidelines for use. Yet, avoid using too much shampoo since rinsing it off can be arduous.

For those who decide to go the natural way, a 1:2 mixture of vinegar and water would be an ideal non-toxic replacement. Sprinkling baking soda is another safe alternative to clean carpets if you have toddlers and pets around the house.

Step 3: Focus On Prominent Stains

Before you do the overall cleaning, removing stubborn stains first would be a thoughtful strategy. Depending on the stain type, you may need to use a different combination of ingredients. Here are a few DIY spot cleaning hacks for the most common smears on carpets.

Grease Stains

Get some paint thinner and apply a thin coat over the grease stains. Next, sprinkle cornmeal or salt over the initial layer and let it sit for several hours. Greasy spots are the most challenging and take the longest to remove. Once the grease vanishes, sweep the mixture off with a towel.

Tough Stains

Prepare warm water and baking soda paste and apply it to problematic areas. Scrub the mixture into the stains using a nylon brush for better absorption. Allow the paste to work for about half an hour, and wipe it off with a rag.

Bloodstains

Cleaning bloodstains may require repeating the process a few times until they are no longer visible. Use hydrogen peroxide to moisten the spot and leave it for an hour before you wipe it clean. Or mix dishwashing detergent and two cups of cold water to achieve the same effect.

Coffee Stains

For coffee smears, the perfect approach would be to soak them with a glass cleaning agent. Let the cleaner sit on the affected area for a while and then wipe it away. A combination of liquid dish soap, white vinegar, and warm water can also help.

Step 4: Use A Bristle Brush

Dip the brush into the mixture and soak it as needed to wet the carpet. Moist patches will enable you to scrub faster and eliminate dirt more efficiently. As for unremoved stains, try pouring a bit more water to allow you to rub intensely.

The essential aspect you must pay attention to is the saturation level. The shampoo solution should only dampen the area you’re cleaning. To this end, start brushing from one side and then move on to the other corners.

Step 5: Use Towels To Rub

Get a bucket and pour some water free of any cleaners. Use clean towels in the process. Ensure you squeeze off any excess water to prevent saturating the carpet. Go patch by patch and rub only areas where you previously used the bristle brush.

Using wet towels will help you rinse carpet patches mechanically. Often, you will have to repeat this segment a few times to remove any shampoo remains from the carpet.

Step 6: Dry The Carpet

When you finish rinsing, get ready for the finale or the drying part. Again, you will need some dry cloths to eliminate excess water. Extracting the wetness from the carpet is vital as it can become a breeding ground for harmful bacteria and mold.

Rub the rags into the carpet by pressing as hard as you can. Repeat the procedure until you can no longer soak the towels. The outcome you’re striving to get upon touch is light dampness.

At this phase, avoid overstepping the carpet. Wet materials are more prone to absorbing dirt than dry ones. Hence, take extra precautions to steer clear of the treated areas. A wise strategy would be to shampoo carpets in the evening and allow them to dry overnight.

Extra Tips

A good rule of thumb is to remove stains and smears once they appear. This way, even if you’re not vacuum cleaning, the carpet will remain fresh and spotless. Here are a few other hacks to bear in mind when shampooing carpets without a machine:

  • Clean on days when you can ventilate the place and enable faster drying;
  • Move furniture and items resting on the carpet before you start cleaning;
  • Work in small-scale sections. Start in one corner and proceed toward doors or thresholds to avoid walking over cleaned areas.
  • Switch on the air conditioning or a fan to speed the drying segment. Direct the blowing towards the wet rugs and carpets if possible.

Bottom Line

Shampooing carpets without a machine is a viable feat. You only need a few tools and the will to dedicate several hours. Yet, some factors can slow down the process, such as the cleaning agent and how you handle it.

Following this step-by-step guide will help you clean any stains from carpets and keep them dirt-free. Hopefully, our suggestions will bring your attempts to have an inexpensive cleaning experience to fruition.

How to Clean Grout with Baking Soda (in 3 Easy Steps!)

Cleaning the dirty grout in your bathroom is a simple way to give it a facelift. Because grout may become dirty quickly, it’s critical to keep up with cleaning to keep your bathroom looking its best.

Cleaning grout with baking soda is an easy method to have this space shining again, whether you’re looking to sell your home or just want to brighten up your bathroom.

Below, we look at the 3 easy steps to follow, but first here’s what you’ll need:

  • Vinegar
  • Baking Soda
  • Soda water
  • Toothbrush

Step One: Mix and Scrub

Make a paste with bicarbonate of soda and water, then scrub unclean grout with an old toothbrush.

You can also save your elbows by using an electric toothbrush with an outdated head. Work it into the grout thoroughly.

Step Two: Spray Vinegar Over Paste

Pour vinegar into a spray bottle and squirt it over the bicarb mixture. It should begin to bubble up into a thick liquid that is ideal for grout removal.

Step Three: Scrub the Filth Away

Scrub the filth away with your toothbrush. Rinse well with water.

 

What to Do When You Have Hard-to-Clean Grout?

Sometimes the mixture above just won’t cut it. Sometimes it’s been so long since you’ve cleaned your grout (tsk tsk) that you need an extra strong solution.

If that sounds like you, then follow this recipe for heavy-dirty DIY grout cleaner.

Add 1/2 cup baking soda to 1/4 cup hydrogen peroxide. Then add 1 teaspoon dish soap. Put that mixture over your dirty grout. Let it sit for about 5-10 minutes for the cleaning ingredients to soak into the grout.
Then, scrub the grout lines with a brush or the rough side of a sponge. Remember, when cleaning grout, you want to scrub vigorously to agitate the grout and cleaning solution and loosen any stubborn contaminants.

Alternatives to Making Your Own Baking Soda Paste

You can also use third-party products instead of making your mixture paste.

Here are just some alternatives to using baking soda:

  • Grout eraser: Using a grout eraser is a less time-consuming – but more expensive – technique to get the same result. The JML Doktor Power Magic Eraser is one of our favorites. The filth peels off the grouting with a simple wipe. With this procedure, you’ll go through sponges very rapidly, so buy a few!
  • Mold removers: The HG Mould Spray effectively removes mould from grout and sealant, making them seem as good as new. Make sure you follow the instructions on the package. A grout pen can be used to remove difficult stains. The UniBond Anti Mould Grout Pen gets our recommendation. It doesn’t remove the grime, but it does cover it with a fresh white coat of grout, making it look brand new.
  • Vinegar spray: To maintain the appearance of your bathroom, use distilled white vinegar to restore the luster. You can either buy a ready-made solution or make your own with ease. Mix a solution of half water and half vinegar in an old spray bottle and spray down your shower walls several times a week. Just make sure you use white vinegar!

 

How to Wash Pillows: Learn How to Wash Any Kind of Pillow

When it comes to washing your pillows, you can’t treat every pillow equally. Some pillows are machine-friendly (though how you wash them depends on what type of washing machine you have). Other pillows can’t go in the machine — they need to be hand washed.

Whether you own a front-loading washing machine, a top-loader with/without an agitator, or you’re stuck having to handwash your pillows,  we are here to unlock separate washing guides and to make it as easy as possible.

Let’s get started.

How to Wash Pillows by Hand

People remain concerned about the durability of pillows, so they often prefer hand washing over machine wash. Sometimes, this cleaning method is a choice and other times it’s more like following care instructions mentioned by the manufacturer. Whatever scenario you are facing, I’m sharing an easy guide for your comfort.

Things You’ll need

  • Washing detergent
  • A bathtub or a big bucket

Here are some simple steps to follow for washing a pillow by hand:

STEP 1. Pick a big bucket or bathtub that provides adequate space for washing two pillows at the same time. It should be big enough that pillows are fully submerged in water.

STEP 2. You need to fill the bucket with warm water. Keep in mind that hot water will damage the inner material, while cold water will not properly clean the pillow.

STEP 3. Add one tablespoon of washing detergent for each pillow you are planning to clean by hand. Swish the water around, so soap and water create an even mixture.

STEP 4. Put pillows in the water, push them down so they are fully exposed to soapy water.

STEP 5. Then, it’s time to knead and squeeze each pillow one by one. Do it gently, don’t put too much pressure.

STEP 6. Let pillows soak detergent and water for at least half an hour.

STEP 7. Now it’s time to rinse your pillows. Start running the water and keep squeezing the pillow from every side. The purpose here is to squeeze out excess soap. You need to be patient here as it might take several minutes. Keep running the water until there is no soap residue remaining in a pillow.

STEP 8. Hang a pillow under direct sunlight to let it dry for several hours. A quick option is to use a dryer, but it is only recommended for a pillow whose material isn’t too delicate to crumble inside.

STEP 9. Check your pillow for dampness. Press it inside and ensure that it’s dried entirely. The sponge of the memory foam pillow can hold water inside. Be careful, because if you bring the pillow back on the bed without completely drying it, it may lead to the growth of mold and mildew.

How to Wash Pillow in Washing Machine

We put together separate guides for front and top loaders (with/without agitator), so you can pick one guide as per your machine type.

Washing Pillows in a Front Loader

STEP 1. Take off the pillowcase or any additional cover before washing.
STEP 2. Fill your front-loading washer with warm water.
STEP 3. Add 15ml of liquid detergent or one tablespoon of powder washing detergent for every pillow you plan to wash.
STEP 4. Press the Start button, and the machine will do the rest of the hard work for you. Next, please press the Bulky/Large button (if your machine has this option).

STEP 5. After the initial wash and spin cycle, you need to run a second rinse cycle to ensure that all the soap is squeezed out of every pillow.

STEP 6. Put the pillows in the dryer after the rinse cycle. Adjust setting at low or no heat as per pillow’s label and washing instructions. Keep in mind that this setting takes a long time. You can speed up the drying process by adding two big towels alongside pillows.

STEP 7. Wrap tennis or laundry balls inside a clean cloth and then put them inside the dryer so that your pillow remains fluffy and doesn’t dry flat.

STEP 8. Remove pillows from the dryer and air dry them under direct sunlight for at least 5-6 hours.

STEP 9. Once pillows are fully dried, bring them back on your bed.

Washing pillows in a Top Loader

A conventional style of top loader washer has an agitator while an advanced version is designed without an agitator. Let’s find out how you can wash pillows in a Top loader washing machine with and without agitators.

With agitator

If you have a top loader washer or a conventional washing machine with an agitator, you need to be a bit careful while washing your pillows in this washing machine. It’s because if you don’t position the pillow right inside the bowl, the agitator might damage your pillow material.

Here are some steps to follow:

STEP 1. Remove pillow cover and protective case (if any), and then start filling your machine with warm water.

STEP 2. Add one tablespoon of liquid/powder detergent to the water. Let it mix, and then place two pillows in your machine at the same time.

STEP 3. Arrange two pillows vertically around the agitator.

STEP 5. As the agitator is harsh on pillow material, you need to run a short washing cycle in a gentle setting.

STEP 6. Set the machine on a cold water rinse cycle and then spin cycle, so all the excess water and soap are squeezed out from the pillows.

STEP 7. Take two clean tennis or dryer balls, put them in the dryer. They will fluff the pillow filling while speeding up the drying process.

STEP 8. Tumble dry both pillows until they are dried fully . Again, low- or no-heat settings are preferred.

Without an agitator

A high-efficiency top loader washer doesn’t have an agitator, so it consumes less water and wash more stuff at a time. If you have this kind of washing machine at home, here is how to wash your pillows in it.

STEP 1. Remove the pillowcase and zip case as you need to wash the body of the pillow.

STEP 2. Set your washer on the longest cycle. Fill your washer with hot water. Once the water starts filling in, you can add one scoop of regular or liquid washing detergent to it.

STEP 3. As soon as detergent dissolves in water, it’s the right time to place two pillows at the same time in your washer. The purpose of placing two pillows together is to ensure that the washer is balanced and one pillow doesn’t drown so much inside the water.

STEP 4. Turn on the machine, flip both pillows upside down. Keep the lid open and let pillows soaked in water and detergent mixture for an hour to get rid of dirt and some stains.

STEP 5. After an hour, rerun the machine on full cycle.

STEP 6. Once pillows are washed, their drying time begins. Place pillows in the dryer and set

the dryer at low settings for synthetic ones and no-heat settings for feather-filled pillows.

STEP 7. Wrap laundry balls in a clean cloth and then put them inside the dryer, so you get fluffy dry pillows at the end.

STEP 8. Most driers only dry surface material, so you need to check the pillow for dampness. Drying a pillow under direct sunlight is highly recommended. They will kill bacteria and dust mites.

STEP 9. Hang pillows outdoors and let them air-dry for some time. Squeeze them gently after an hour and turn their sides to ensure that they are dried completely

Washing Yellow pillows with Baking Soda

Pillows are prone to spots and stains as they are exposed to sweat, makeup, food, and dirt. So, when your pillows turn yellow or have spots, you can use baking soda for spot cleaning. Besides, baking soda is a natural deodorizer that helps get rid of smell and make your pillow fresh.

Things you’ll need

  • Baking soda
  • Washing detergent
  • Water
  • Bowl
  • Towel

STEP 1.Mix baking soda with water in a bowl and make a thick paste.

STEP 2. Dip a towel in this mixture and dab on the pillow surface.

STEP 3. Let it sit for half an hour.

STEP 4. Spot cleaning is done. Now it’s time to clean it all up. For yellow pillows, you will make a mixture of the following ingredients.Take a bowl and mix half a cup of vinegar, one cup of dishwasher detergent, 3/4 cup of baking soda, and three tablespoons of laundry detergent.

STEP 5. Turn the machine on, fill it with normal water and add this mixture. Place your pillows inside and run the first cycle.

STEP 6. Now run a second cycle with warm or hot water to have a sanitizing effect.

STEP 7. After the rinse, place pillows in the dryer and adjust settings on either air-dry or low-heat.

STEP 8. Wrap tennis balls in a clean cloth. Toss inside the dryer.

STEP 9. Place pillows under direct sunlight as this heat is the pillow’s natural disinfectant.

STEP 10. Once pillows are fully dry, please bring them back to your bed.

Washing Yellow pillows with Bleach

You can brighten up your yellow pillows with bleach, which can also kill bacteria and germs. However, before you try this method, you need to ensure that bleach is safe for your pillow material.

Here is a step-by-step guide to follow for washing yellow pillows with bleach:

STEP 1. Take a big bucket and soak your two pillows in a cup of bleach for thirty minutes to an hour.

STEP 2. Fill the machine with warm water and add two tablespoons of mild detergent. You can use hot water to kill the bacteria.

STEP 3. Place two pillows inside your washing machine and run the first cycle. STEP 4. Run the second cycle and rinse.

STEP 5. Put both pillows in the dryer alongside two tennis/laundry balls to prevent clumping and maintain the fluffiness of your pillow.

STEP 6. Check the moisture level in the pillows by squeezing them. Let the pillows air dry for hours.

3 Things to Consider Before Washing Pillows

Are you going to wash your pillows? Please consider these three points, so you can wash pillows without compromising their shapes.

Types of Pillow

There are different types of pillows, and you can’t wash them all by following the same technique.

  •   Memory foam pillows are delicate, so you need to hand wash them to maintain them properly.
  •  You can’t wash the buckwheat pillowcase in warm water as they will shrink. You need to use only cold water and mild detergent for them. You can’t clean the hull as wet hulls will lose support and may require replacement.
  • You can wash down and polyester pillows in a washing machine. It’s essential to wash two pillows at a time, arrange them vertically around an agitator or flat in a machine without an agitator.
  • Hand washing is recommended for latex pillows. Although they are sturdy, they need to dry properly. Else they will become a breeding ground of mold and mildew.

Spot cleaning is recommended for the following pillows:

  •  Gel pillows
  • Shredded foam pillows
  • Memory foam pillow
  • Latex pillows

Handwashing is recommended for the following pillows:

  •  Wool pillows
  • Memory foam pillows
  • Down pillow
  • Feather pillows

Machine Washing is recommended for the following pillows:

  • Shredded foam pillows
  • Polyester fiberfill pillows

You can’t wash buckwheat pillows, and you can only wash its shell.

Care Instructions

span style=”font-weight: 400;”>Before you wash your pillows, kindly check their care instructions. Some brands recommend hand washing, while others offer convenience with machine wash solutions.

Try to find out whether it’s okay to dry a pillow in a low-heat setting or does it have only a no-heat choice. Care instructions are your ultimate guide for washing a pillow, so please get directions from it.

Age of Pillow

Every pillow has its lifespan. You can check a label to determine the expiry date of a pillow. Some pillows have a lifespan of 2 years, while others last longer than that.

When a pillow turns very old, it’s not advised to use it. This is because this pillow won’t provide adequate head and neck support. So, it’s recommended to replace them instead of washing them.

If you don’t know the exact age, perform a simple test. First, fold your pillow in half. If it comes back to its original position, then it’s good to use. Otherwise, buy a new one.

Final Thoughts

Whenever you plan to deep clean your pillows, the best place to start is with their tags and care instructions. When you don’t find any guide or tag that isn’t readable, you can follow the step-by-step guide of washing pillows mentioned above. Always remove stains and spots from the pillow first and then toss them in the machine or bathtub for further cleaning. Washing them won’t take much time but you need to be patient during drying time . As they are bulky and fluffy items, they will take more than one day to dry completely. If you still have some questions and concerns regarding washing your pillows, please feel free to ask. We will be happy to handle your queries efficiently. 

 

How to Clean Your Toilet (in 5 Easy Steps)

Cleaning the toilet isn’t (usually) anybody’s favorite household chore.

It’s awkward to do — your bent over, scrubbing away, head close to toilet water. And sometimes it seems like no matter what you do — no matter what stain remover you use — there are stains and grime you can’t get rid of.

The good news is that cleaning your toilet doesn’t have to be. . such a chore.

In today’s post, we show you how to clean your toilet in 5 steps, including what you’ll need to get the job done and a routine you can follow to keep your toilet clean.

Step 1: Gear Up

When it comes to cleaning your toilet, there are a variety of products you can pick from the store, or even mix up solutions of your own. Any will get the job done as long as you apply it correctly. As for your supplies, you do not want to be searching for all your tools mid-clean so keep them at arm’s reach conveniently in a bucket.

You’ll need:

  1. Paper towels
  2. A toilet brush
  3. A small toothbrush
  4. Toilet cleaning solution
  5. Disinfectant Spray
  6. Bucket

Optional:

  • Toilet pumice stone
  • Vinegar
  • Baking soda

Step 2: Pre-Wipe the Area You’re Going to Clean

Many people misuse their cleaning supplies by just spraying on the solution and wiping it down. The key to getting the most out of your products with that 99% bacteria-killing promise is to pre-wipe the area of any debris.

Be sure to wipe the surfaces with a wet wipe and scrub any hard gunk that is stuck to the toilet’s exteriors and surrounding area. You can use the toothbrush to get into the hard-to-reach areas and then folding your paper towel into those areas to wipe that gunk away.

Step 3: Clean the Exterior

Each flush launches particles in the air, which then settle on nearby surfaces. That makes the area surrounding the toilet a major ground for bacteria and microorganisms. When cleaning these surfaces, be sure to spray behind and below your toilet as well.

After pre-wiping, spray all the surfaces of your toilet with a disinfectant spray. To completely disinfect the surfaces, let it sit for 10 minutes, or as much as the product suggests before you begin wiping it down.

Step 4: Clean the Bowl

Cleaning the bowl is a little trickier than just spraying. A lot of the cleaners used in the bowl are extra harsh because they can become diluted by the water. This means the best way to clean and sanitize this area is to first drain the water in the bowl. You can do this by filling a bucket with water and pouring it into the toilet to trigger the flushing action, or if you know where the water valve for your toilet is, you can turn it off and flush once, and you’re ready to start.

Start cleaning the bowl by applying the product to the underside of the rim and letting it coat the bowl. Let the product sit for at least 10 minutes before you proceed with scrubbing the toilet with a brush.

When scrubbing the bowl, the best way to prevent splatter and get the best clean is to keep the entire brush in the bowl while scrubbing and clean from top to bottom. This means starting from the rim, and getting the underside, and work your way down.

Once you’re finished scrubbing, you are ready to flush to remove all the debris and product.

How to Handle Odors and Hard-to-Clean Stains

If you’re still finding tough stains or any lingering odors you may want to take a couple of extra steps to get that cleaned.

Start by soaking the area with vinegar before scrubbing to soften the stain so you use less pressure that may cause damages to the surface.

Then use toilet pumice stone toilet which can help you scrub the hardest stains in the toilet bowl, but make sure to wet the pumice stone before use and to use this only in the hard porcelain bowl. The pumice stone will damage softer surfaces like the seat that are usually made from plastic.

If you do have stains on the plastic seat you can try a gentler method like a baking soda paste along with some elbow grease to target these areas.

For any lingering odors, we recommend using a solution of vinegar as a natural approach to attack the odor. Simply add a liberal amount of vinegar to the bowl and scrub the area inside the bowl. Let the solution sit for 5-10 minutes and flush it away.

Step 5: One Final Wipe

After all the toilet and tiniest areas have been scrubbed and cleaned, you’re finally done with one more cleaning wipe down to clean that seat.

While you may be tempted to use sponges or a wet cloth all of that is unnecessary. A paper towel will be just fine for the job. Spray on the last spray of disinfectant on the seat and wipe it down from top to bottom. Make sure to wipe all the solution off as sprays have chemicals that can break down the luster of toilet surfaces.

How to Store Your Supplies

After cleaning everything your supplies can become covered in bacteria that can multiply when stored away. In order to prevent bacteria and mold build up, make sure to sanitize and dry all your supplies before storing them away.

For all of your brushes, you can easily sanitize them with this pro-tip. Prop the toilet brush under the toilet seat and pour a cleaning solution of choice or bleach over the brush. Rinse the brush with water and then air dry it in that position before storing it away.

Next Steps: Keep Your Toilet Clean with this Routine

Cleaning your toilet should only take about 30 minutes and should be repeated to keep the area sanitized and clean. We recommend that your toilet is cleaned bi-weekly to keep the area free of bacteria and build-up, but should be repeated more often if someone is sick as more bacteria can grow in the area.

Having a routine that not only cleans but also disinfects is key to practicing healthy hygiene. Cleaning your toilet is a daunting task, but it can be done. Just follow this guide to clean your commode like a pro.

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How to Clean a Crock Pot in 7 Easy Steps

Let’s get to the good and imporfant info first: how to clean your crock pot in 7 steps

This process is great for that dreaded dried molten-lava-like food residue but can also be used for regular deep-cleans. Best of all, this process lets the crock pot essentially clean itself. 

  1. Add warm water to the crock pot, filling it to just above the ring residue. 
  2. Add ½ cup of vinegar to the crock pot for every 3 quarts. For example, a 3-quart crock pot needs ½ cup vinegar; a 6-quart crock pot needs 1 cup vinegar. 
  3. Next, SLOWLY add in your baking soda. You’ll be using a 1:1 ratio of vinegar to baking soda. So for a 3-quart crock pot, add ½ cup baking soda. A 6-quart crock pot needs 1 cup. Add the baking soda slowly, waiting for the bubbles to gradually subside before adding more. 
  4. Cover your crock pot, set to low and cook for 1 hour and up to 4. 
  5. When the heating period is finished, uncover the crock pot and gently use a wooden spoon or a spatula to scrape off any stubborn burnt areas. 
  6. Drain the dirty water. Scrape off any remaining residue with a soft sponge. Allow the crock pot insert to cool and then wash with warm water and mild dish soap. 
  7. Let the stoneware insert air dry. 

It’s that simple! Below, we cover more methods for cleaning (specific to getting stubborn stains or cleaning the inside of your crock pot).

How do I get stubborn residue off my crock pot?

Cooked-on food is an inevitable part of cooking with a slow cooker. When your slow cooker needs a little extra cleaning help, we recommend this process from the Crock Pot Brand – the gold standard of slow cookers. 

In fact, did you know the slow cooking tool in your kitchen isn’t technically called a Crock Pot?! Crock Pot is a brand of slow cooker! Crock Pot is such a popular brand their company name is often used interchangeably with “slow cooker” no matter what brand of slow cooker you may actually own.

What do I need to clean my crock pot?

The best hacks for cleaning your crusty crock pot call for items you likely already have on hand. Here’s what you’ll need for the easiest way to clean the inside of a crock pot: 

  • Crock pot stoneware insert 
  • Warm water
  • Vinegar (we recommend distilled white vinegar)
  • Baking soda
  • Spatula or wooden spoon (for scraping stubborn areas)
  • Soft scrub brush (no steel wool!)
  • Mild dish soap

How do I get the white residue off my crock pot?

After years of use, you may begin to notice a white residue on the inside of your crock pot, especially if you have a dark or black stoneware insert. This is easily remedied with vinegar. We prefer distilled white vinegar. 

Apply a small amount of vinegar to a clean paper towel or a soft cloth and rub out the inside of your crock pot. Let the insert dry on its own. Repeat this process if necessary. 

How to Tackle Stubborn Stains on your Crock Pot 

If you own a crock pot with a white stoneware insert and you find yourself with some stubborn stains, you can make a paste out of baking soda and water to restore the brightness of the white stoneware. 

Rub the paste onto the trouble areas and let it sit for a while. After the setting period is complete, wash the insert with warm water and mild soap. Scrub the insert with a mildly abrasive sponge or pad, but be sure to avoid steel wool. 

FAQs

Can I run cold water on my crock pot?

Always let your crock pot cool completely before running under cold water. Sudden changes in temperature can cause your stoneware insert to crack. That’s why you should never put a hot crock pot insert into cold water. 

Can I use steel wool on my crock pot?

We recommend avoiding steel wool to clean your crock pot especially on a dry ceramic stoneware. This can cause scratching and damage to your crock pot. For best results, we recommend using the cleaning methods we shared above. 

Why does my crock pot smell?

Notice a strange funk coming from your crock pot that smells like the ghosts of dinner times past? This can happen to your crock pot stoneware after repeated uses – unseen residue, stains and odor can get trapped into the ceramic insert, causing the smell. 

To get rid of this, be sure you’re giving your crock pot a thorough cleaning, including a deodorizing regiment. 

How can I deodorize my crock pot insert?

Use a mild dish soap and warm water to do an initial clean. Be sure to scrape off any cooked-on residue from the last meal, using our tips above if necessary. 

Dry the stoneware insert with a clean paper towel or let it air dry. Then add a small amount of white vinegar to a clean cloth or paper towel and wipe down the inside of the stoneware. Let dry completely. Once your crock pot insert is dry, sprinkle baking soda into the bottom of the crock pot insert. 

Using a large plastic bag – we recommend a clean garbage bag – put your crock pot insert into the bag and seal with a rubber band or twist-tie. Let the sealed bag sit overnight. This will help rid your stoneware of any additional odor. 

After letting your crock pot rest, remove it from the bag and clean again with warm water and mild dish soap. Dry with a clean towel. Repeat as needed after meals. 

How do you clean a crock pot without removable stoneware?

Cleaning a crock pot without a removable stoneware insert is tricky but not impossible. Just remember to avoid as much water or liquid as possible on the electrical elements of the crock pot. While you should always check your crock pot’s user’s manual first, here’s one helpful method to help your after-dinner cleaning routine. 

Using a spatula or wooden spoon, scrape out as much of the leftover food as possible. Once the crock pot has cooled slightly, fill it with warm water until just above the food residue line. Be very careful not to overfill. Remember that water can eventually boil if left too long in a heated slow cooker, so be sure you don’t add too much water. 

Add a few drops of mild dish soap and leave the crock pot on low for about an hour. Use your wooden spoon or spatula to carefully scrape away any stuck on bits. Then pour the dirty water into the sink slowly. Take a damp scrubbing pad or sponge and wipe away any other residue inside the stoneware. 

For stubborn areas, use a small bit of paste made from baking soda, water and a drop of dish soap. Wipe away all soapy residue and fill with water again to rinse. Carefully dump out water and dry with a paper towel or a clean cloth. 

How do I clean the outside of a crock pot?

You can begin with a simple wipe-down of the heating element. Always be sure your crock pot is cool enough to touch before doing any major cleaning. 

If your heating unit is in need of some additional TLC, you can use a soft sponge or pad, even a rubber spatula to scrape off any stubborn gunk. Here are a few other ways to tackle even the dirtiest messes: 

  • Use a soft cloth with warm, soapy water to scrub away any caked on food. Soap and warm water is the best approach. Harsh chemicals can damage the outside of your crock pot, which is commonly made of metal like stainless steel. 
  • Spray a mild cleaning product (vinegar is great) or a bit of dish soap onto the dirty area and let it sit. Then wipe the unit down with a warm, wet cloth. Remember to never submerge the heating unit/base in water or any liquid (including the dishwasher). This will ruin your crock pot.
  • Create a paste out of baking soda, Dawn dish soap, and water. Let this sit on any stubborn, baked-on stains. Wipe the heating unit down again with a warm, wet cloth to remove all of the paste and food residue. 
  • Never underestimate the power of elbow grease! But remember to also include these suggestions above, as it will save you a lot of scrubbing and will help preserve your crock pot. 

With just a little extra work at the end of each meal, you can keep your crock pot looking and smelling great. Proper, routine cleaning will keep your crock pot in wonderful condition for years to come.

 

How to Clean a Dutch Oven

Dutch oven cooking is a tradition that has been passed down from generation to generation – literally. Taking proper care of your Dutch oven will ensure its longevity for years to come. It’s no wonder these robust, versatile kitchen tools become a multi-generational family heirloom. 

Dutch ovens are perfect for cooking hearty stews, braising meats, and baking mouthwatering cobbler. But to ensure a lengthy lifespan, you’ll need to learn our (easy!) best cleaning practices and hacks. 

If you’re a baking aficionado who is just learning their hand at the Dutch oven, or a rookie seeking to expand your kitchen prowess, this article will teach you everything you need to know about keeping your Dutch oven clean. 

Cast Iron vs. Enameled Cast Iron

The type of Dutch oven you own will determine how you keep it clean. We’ll go over the basics of how to clean each of the two types: cast iron and enameled cast iron. Both are popular for different reasons. 

Traditional cast iron Dutch ovens are generally cheaper. They require a bit of extra maintenance when it comes to cleaning and seasoning, but they are durable and have that rustic, shiny black color that many people love. These Dutch ovens are hard to truly ruin and are easily resurrected. 

Enameled cast iron Dutch ovens are increasingly popular. They are easier to clean and don’t require any seasoning process. They vary slightly from cast iron, as they are coated inside and out with shiny enamel. The Dutch ovens are normally available in a variety of colors, and their enamel coating makes them “non-stick”. 

Whichever Dutch oven you decide to go with, keeping your Dutch oven clean can be done efficiently and easily, normally using the items you already have in your house. 

How to Clean a Cast Iron Dutch Oven

Before you start cleaning your cast iron Dutch oven, you’ll want to make sure you have all the necessary tools for our tried-and-true cleaning ritual. 

What do I need to clean my cast iron Dutch oven?

  • Salt
  • Paper towels
  • Water
  • Cooking oil, generally olive oil
  • Non-abrasive dish scrubber (NO steel wool) 
  • Plastic spatula or wooden spoon (for scraping stubborn bits of food)

When it comes to cleaning cast iron Dutch ovens, the technique is fairly straightforward. Remember you want to keep the integrity of the Dutch oven intact with each cleaning, so avoid any abrasive tools or harsh chemicals – even mild dish soap is a no-no! Don’t worry, we’ve laid it all out for you below.

Our Simple Dutch Oven Cleaning Technique 

This cleaning technique is designed to clean the Dutch oven, while keeping the necessary grease (seasoning) intact. 

For simple, small messes, you can use warm water and a non-abrasive dish scrubber. Wash out the food residue and dry your Dutch oven out with a paper towel. You want your Dutch oven bone dry to avoid any rusting. You can also stick your Dutch oven in your conventional oven at about 350 degrees for a few minutes or on a hot stove to get it completely dry. Using heat to dry your Dutch oven is the preferred method. 

For particularly dirty bits, add a handful of table salt to the bottom of your Dutch oven and continue to scrub with a non-abrasive dish scrubber. The salt should help to unstick any burnt food. You may also heat up warm water inside the Dutch oven and scrape a wooden spoon along the bottom of the Dutch oven to remove any residue. Be sure to rinse out all the salt and dirty water and then dry completely. 

After cleaning, you may want to add a drop or two of olive oil in the Dutch oven and wipe it evenly across the bottom with a clean paper towel. Stick the Dutch oven on the stove on high heat for a minute or two to allow the oil to soak into the Dutch oven. This regular seasoning maintenance will help create that perfect non-stick coating. This last step is not necessary if you already have a well-seasoned pan. 

Can I use dish soap on my Dutch oven?

A key rule to remember when cleaning cast iron is to avoid dish soap. Cast iron Dutch ovens use natural fats from the foods you cook to create that wonderful, seasoned coating on the bottom of the pan. That’s why you need to avoid using anything that will break down that natural coating like dish soap. 

If you’ve already used dish soap on your Dutch oven, don’t worry. You can re-season your Dutch oven to restore it to pristine condition. Read below on how to season your cast iron Dutch oven. 

Do I need to season my Dutch oven?

It might seem counterintuitive, but to clean and preserve your cast iron Dutch oven, you’ll need to work backwards a bit by making sure your Dutch oven has been properly seasoned. If you didn’t correctly season your Dutch oven first and your pan is rusty, don’t worry. We dive into how to clean off the rust below. Then you’ll re-season and begin a proper cleaning routine that will improve your Dutch oven’s longevity dramatically.

Seasoning your Dutch oven is an important step that is part of the regular cleaning process. We’ll describe the initial seasoning process and the routine seasoning step in-depth below. The more you regularly season your Dutch oven, it becomes easier to cook (creating that natural nonstick coating) and easier to clean.

How to Season Your Dutch Oven in 6 Steps

Thoroughly seasoning your Dutch oven helps keep bits of metal out of your food. As we mentioned above, proper seasoning coats the cast iron with a thick layer of oil that prevents rust and preserves the Dutch oven’s quality. While a variety of oils will work when it comes to seasoning your Dutch oven, we prefer olive oil, as it is less likely to go rancid after the seasoning process is complete. 

  1. Heat your oven to 425 degrees 
  2. Pour a small amount of oil into your Dutch oven. Using a clean, lint-free cloth or paper towel, evenly coat the surface of your Dutch oven with the oil – you can season your entire Dutch oven, including the outside of the pan. Be sure to coat the Dutch oven in a very thin layer of oil. Too much oil will create a gummy or sticky surface after heating. 
  3. Once the oven is ready, place the Dutch oven upside down (to avoid any oil pooling) on the rack. You may also follow the above steps with the Dutch oven lid, and place it in the oven as well. This will produce some smoke. 
  4. Keep the Dutch oven in the heat for about an hour, or until the smoke has disappeared. 
  5. Remove the Dutch oven from the heat and allow it to cool slightly. Add more oil to the pot and use the cloth to evenly distribute it across the surface. Return it to the oven. 
  6. Repeat this process for three coats of oil. You’re looking for a black, glassy-looking finish at the end of your seasoning process.

Following these steps will create that iconic, black color throughout your Dutch oven. If there are spots that don’t look fully seasoned, add more oil and repeat the heating process. Completely and properly seasoning your Dutch oven will make it easier to clean. Seasoning the Dutch oven (also called sealing) creates a non-stick surface for cooking food. The seasoning process helps meat to sear better, and cook evenly, as well. 

How to Remove Rust from Your Cast Iron Dutch Oven in 

Rust is the last thing you want to worry about when you’re preparing a meal. Failure to properly season your cast iron Dutch oven can cause rust to form on the iron. Your Dutch oven may also start to rust if it’s left in the sink to soak, cleaned in the dishwasher, or left to air dry.

But one of the best things about cast iron is that even the rustiest Dutch ovens can be restored to their former glory with a little work. 

  1. Wash your Dutch oven with warm, soapy water and steel wool. This is one of the ONLY times you’ll ever use steel wool (or soap) on your cast iron Dutch oven – when removing rust. Keep scrubbing until you’ve removed all the rust from the pan. 
  2. Dry your Dutch oven completely with a paper towel, or better yet, placing it on low heat on the stove for a few minutes. You want to make sure the Dutch oven is completely dry. 
  3. Apply a very thin layer of oil to the Dutch oven and place upside down in the oven (425 degrees) for an hour.
  4. Repeat the seasoning process one or two more times. 
  5. When finished heating, turn off the heat and allow the Dutch oven to cool inside the oven, ideally overnight. 

Why is My Dutch Oven Sticky and Gummy? 

If your cast iron Dutch oven is sticky or gummy after the seasoning process, it’s because you either used too much oil, or didn’t heat it long enough. Fortunately, there is an easy solution: stick it back in the oven for another hour or so, or until the stickiness is gone. 

Remember, you want a smooth, non-stick, beautifully black surface after the seasoning process is complete. You may see a little smoke in the oven during the process. This is normal.

Why Does My Cast Iron Dutch Oven Look Dull and Burnt?

This is likely because you heated the Dutch oven without any oil, or it wasn’t properly oiled before the heating process. You can fix this by reseasoning the pan. Keep reseasoning the Dutch oven until it has that beautiful, shiny black sheen. 

Cleaning an Enameled Cast Iron Dutch Oven

Cleaning a stained, crusty or dirty Dutch oven doesn’t have to be a nightmare. Let us spare you the scrubbing. If you have some common household items available, you can let the cleaning tools work for you, and save all that elbow grease for another day. 

What do I need to clean my enameled cast iron Dutch oven?

  • Hot water
  • Mild dish soap
  • Baking soda
  • Non-abrasive dish scrubber or sponge (NO steel wool)
  • Dish towel or drying rack

This is a general list of cleaning materials you’ll use. As we explore specific cleaning techniques for the enameled cast iron Dutch oven, you’ll see you may also want to include other cleaning supplies such as salt, lemons, or toothpaste to name a couple. Let’s look at a few common cleaning techniques for the enameled cast iron Dutch oven. 

Can I Use Soap On My Enameled Cast Iron Dutch Oven?

Yes! One of the main differences between cast iron Dutch ovens and enameled cast iron Dutch ovens is that the enameled Dutch ovens can handle regular hand washing with warm water and a mild dish soap. This can dull the brightness of the enamel over time, but with the techniques we lay out below, you can learn how to restore that original brightness. 

Dish soap is safe on this type of Dutch oven because the enamel coat over the cast iron acts as the non-stick surface you create from seasoning a traditional cast iron Dutch oven and therefore can’t be stripped away with the use of dish soap. 

Baking soda and water

One of the most common ways to clean your Dutch oven – or simply restore an old-looking one – is with regular baking soda and boiling water. Fill your Dutch oven with enough water to cover the burnt-on bits of food. Bring the water to a steady boil. Once you’ve got a nice boil going, slowly add a few teaspoons of baking soda to the water and boil until the bubbles work off the grit and burnt areas. You may need to use a spatula or a wooden spoon to scrape off any stubborn bits. 

Once the pot is mostly clean, dump out the dirty water and run your Dutch oven under warm water. You can use a minimally abrasive dish sponge (no steel wool!) and a mild dish soap to get your Dutch oven looking good as new. 

If you’re still seeing some burnt food on the bottom of the Dutch oven, repeat the process. You can also make a paste of mild dish soap and baking soda and let the paste sit overnight (or for a few hours). Scrape the burnt areas off in the morning and wash the Dutch oven with warm water and soap. 

Baking soda and hydrogen peroxide

This effective technique combines baking soda and hydrogen peroxide together to chemically remove any stubborn stains and scorched food on your enamel Dutch oven. 

To start, fill your Dutch oven with about ½ inch of hydrogen peroxide and then add ¼ cup of baking soda. Bring this mixture to a boil until foamy. Use a wooden spoon or a spatula to help scrape off any problem spots in the pan. Once the mixture is foaming, remove from the heat and let rest for about 10 minutes. You may use the wooden spoon to do a final scrape of the bottom of the pan. 

After the rest period, dump the dirty water and wash with mild soap and warm water. Repeat if necessary. This technique will help to restore the original brightness to your enamel Dutch oven. 

Lemon juice and salt

You’ve just enjoyed a delicious meal and now you’re dreading cleaning up the glorious mess? Look no further than a lemon and some regular table salt to help expedite the task. 

Once your Dutch oven has cooled, pour a couple of tablespoons of salt into the bottom of the pan, trying your best to spread the salt evenly. Then slice a lemon in half and dip one side of the citrus into a small dish of salt. Use the lemon to scrub the pan. You may repeat with the other half of the lemon if necessary. 

For particularly stubborn scorches, try scraping off the burnt areas with a wooden spoon and some warm water in addition to the lemon and salt. Rinse with water and optional light soap afterward. 

Toothpaste

If you find yourself with a mess in your Dutch oven, but no baking soda, you can try toothpaste. Spread a thin layer of toothpaste on the bottom of your Dutch oven and let it sit for at least two hours, up to overnight. When you’re ready to start scrubbing, grab an old toothbrush or a minimally abrasive cleaning pad (like ScotchBrite) and scrub off the dirty areas. 

Finish off this cleaning method by rinsing off the Dutch oven with soap and water. Repeat the process if necessary. This is a great method for restoring your Dutch oven enamel’s original brightness. 

Bar Keepers Friend

Though less common, Bar Keepers Friend is an efficient way to clean the inside of your Dutch oven. 

Begin by wiping or lightly scraping as much of the food residue as possible. Don’t worry about getting it all off  – that’s what the Bar Keepers Friend is for. After a quick wipe-down, sprinkle the Bar Keepers Friend in the bottom of the Dutch oven to cover the stained areas. Use a scrub brush or sponge to scrub the pan clean. You may apply a paste of water and Bar Keepers Friend for especially dirty areas – try letting it sit for a while before scrubbing it out. 

After the scrubbing rinse your Dutch oven out with warm water and a mild dish soap. Good as new and ready for your next kitchen creation!

As long as you follow these simple steps for keeping your Dutch oven clean, you’ll be able to use this popular kitchen tool for years, and even generations to come.