Jim: I would like to read some of your tips on keeping my home clean. With all the
products on the market one gets very confused and concerned about what to bring into our
homes and what works. Any tips would be most help full. Thanks for being here to help us!
~ Mary T.
A. I have written several articles that should
help you. If you visit my web site and click on "Year around Home Maintenance" you can find more home
tips. However, here are several that are not mentioned.
Cleaning Shower Heads:
If your shower heads are not flowing like they use try soaking them in
vinegar and watch how well they work after 20 minutes of soaking. Other cleaning products
you can use are CLR-calcium, lime and rust remover and Lime-Away. They work
well on scale in toilets, tubs and fixtures. Watch out for spilling anything on real
Marble floors that are acid base products. Acid base products can strip the sheen right
off polished stones. Read the labels well before applying off the shelf products.
Sink faucet cleaning:
For better sink faucet water flow, remove the screens and rinse clean.
One simple way to tell if your sink faucet screens are dirty, turn on the water at your
tub. If the water pressure out of the tub faucet is not close to the same pressure as your
sink faucet pressure, then clean the sink faucet screens. Tub faucet doesnt have
How about bad breath coming from your garbage disposal? This is a
simple cleaning process. Cut up about 2 lemons or limes and drop them in your disposal.
Run the disposal for about 30 seconds the then drop in a hand full of ice cubes. Repeat
this process until your unit smells fresh. Always run the disposal for about 20 seconds
longer after all foods are removed to help flush the excess out of your drain lines. This
tip might keep you from having to call a plumber one day for a clogged drain line. Always
remember when leaving town for a while to really flush your disposal well so you
dont leave waste in the unit. And dont forget if youre leaving town,
remove any left over coffee grains in the coffee filter. If you forget, you might be
growing penicillin by-products inside your coffee pot when you return.
Im from the mold and mildew capital of the world Houston, Texas
and this stuff is really bad for your health. Heres some cost saving tips for mold
and mildew removal. Make your own mold and mildew killer with simple household bleach and
Mix 1/4 bleach to 3/4 water added to a pump-up sprayer and spray your
siding, decks, brick walls, driveway to kill mold and mildew. Heres the mistake most
people make and why it seems to never really kill the mold and mildew. As soon as you
spray the infected areas you will notice it turning white, (by the way thats how you
can tell if its mold or mildew) most think its just been killed. Wrong.
It takes keeping the infected areas moist for about 20 to 30 minutes by
refreshing the area with the pump-up sprayer solution. The bad news is mold spores are in
the air all the time and can come back quickly in the Houston area so having an
inexpensive home solution helps you keep it under control. Use the same mixture for mold
around your tub or inside your shower.
If you feel there's mold on your siding be sure to treat the problem
before you start to paint. Use the this same solution to kill the mold and mildew then
come back with a pressure washer to remove all the dirt and loose paint before you start
painting. Also TSP which is in Cascade dishwashing soap is another good cleaner, mixed one
cup to gallon of water, works well to scrub the hard to clean areas on your siding.
Using the Bleach Solution On Stucco:
You want to always color test at an outside corner. My experience is
that it can remove the color. However, after a while one has to do something with
off-colored stucco and the mold and mildew problems.
I tell people to plan on repainting their stucco one day and also plan on filling in the
hair-line cracks as well. Clean, using the Bleach mix and a soft plastic brush. I would
not allow pressure washing stucco with someone who does not know what they are doing.
Fill in your hair-line cracks with paint caulking and paint the stucco with the latest
flexible paint on the market like one called "Duration." This paint is like a
coating and not just a paint and lasts many years longer than paint.
Never mix other products with bleach like Ammonia, this mixture can be
lethal. Another tip; if youre working with bleach inside your home or any household
cleaners, open several windows and doors. The fumes can be toxic and really do harm. Wear
gloves and again lots of ventilation while working with any toxic products.
I suggest that you keep all household cleaners stored in the garage or
outside. If you have to keep them inside consider wrapping them in a plastic bag and seal
tight to prevent any out-gassing into your room.