Baking soda is more than just a baking ingredient! Baking soda is a natural and powerful cleaning and deodorizing agent for all around your home. And, since baking soda naturally soaks up odours, it’s a great and natural alternative to other types of odour neutralizers. And, it’s cheap! You can often buy a box for around $1.50 or so, sometimes even less. So…let’s get right to the cleaning tips…grab that handy box of baking soda and let’s go.
10 Ways to Use Baking Soda to Clean and Deodorize (Spring Cleaning Tips)
1. Baking Soda as a Scouring Powder (Scrubbing)
My favourite way to scrub surfaces like bathroom sinks and tubs is to grab my box of baking soda! Simple sprinkle the surface with baking soda, and then scrub away. Because baking soda is entirely natural, there’s no worry about nasty chemical residues left behind. (Our cat, for instance, loves to drink from our bathroom sink! So, I only ever use baking soda to clean the sink, knowing that my little buddy will be safe.) You can add more cleaning power by adding a squirt of natural liquid dish soap, too.
2. Use baking soda to scrub out pet dishes
Baking soda is an excellent way to clean out pet dishes! It has some mild scrubbing power to help remove stains and even some hard water residue. (Our other favourite natural cleaner – vinegar, can also help. If the hard water residue is stubborn, fill the dish with white vinegar and let it sit over night. In the morning, use baking soda to scrub that dish clean!) And, baking soda naturally removes odours, so the pet food dishes will be sparkling clean, and smell lovely, too.
3. Freshen Sour smelling sink drains with baking soda
Just a little sprinkle of baking soda down your drains, followed by running the hot water tap will freshen up those stinky drains! Just let the baking soda sit for about ten minutes or so before following up with the dose of hot water. (It can even help those drains move a bit better too!)
4. Scrub out the garbage cans with baking soda
Use the baking soda as a natural scouring powder – give the entire garbage can a good scrub with a baking soda and water paste. (Just add water into a small dish of baking soda until the consistency seems nice and paste-like.) Dip a moistened cleaning rag or sponge into the mix, and scrub away! Rinse away all the baking soda paste, and allow to dry naturally. Again – baking soda’s natural odour absorbing power will help keep the garbage cans smelling nicer, too. (If you like, you can sprinkle some extra baking powder on the bottom of the garbage can once in a while to absorb the stink, too.)
5. Clean the Microwave with Baking soda
Cleaning the microwave can seem like a painful job until you realize that steam power does all the work for you! Here’s my favourite microwave cleaning trick. Take a microwave-safe mug and fill nearly to the top with tap water. Add a teaspoon or two of baking soda, and if you have it – some fresh lemon juice, or a slice or two of lemon. Place the mug in the microwave, and set for about 3-5 minutes on high. (You’ll need to adjust this according to the power of your microwave. You basically want the water to get good and boiling hot, creating lots of steam.) The most important part is to let the mug sit in the microwave for at least 10 minutes without opening the microwave door. (I set my kitchen timer for this. If I have enough time to let the steam sit, I’ll let it sit as long as 30 minutes.) You’re trapping in all that glorious steam, which does all the hardest work for you! Then, open the microwave, and use an extra dose of baking soda and a cleaning sponge or scrubby to scrub that microwave clean. It should be left gleaming!
6. Clean your dishwasher with baking soda
Add about a cup of baking soda into the bottom of your dishwasher, and run the dishwasher empty. This will clean out the entire dishwasher, and the inner workings and leave it looking clean and smelling fresh. (Dishwashers are awful for getting that musty, sour smell. This will help with that, from the inside out.)
7. Clean countertops with baking soda
Sprinkle baking soda on your countertops to safely clean, and freshen your kitchen countertops. Alternatively, you can make a simple baking soda and essential oil spray to clean kitchen surfaces. Just add a teaspoon or two (depending on the size of your spray bottle) of baking soda into a spray bottle, add 10 drops of your favourite essential oil (I’d recommend lemon essential oil or orange essential oil) and fill with water. Give it a good shake to help dissolve the baking soda and distribute the essential oils. Use to clean your kitchen and bathroom surfaces – and it’ll smell so wonderful. Those citrus essential oils also help boost the cleaning power.
8. Scrub out stained coffee mugs and teacups
Baking soda is a great scrubbing agent. Use some on a wet dishcloth to scrub away some of the stains lingering inside your coffee mugs and tea cups. (Tea stains can be very hard to remove! If baking soda doesn’t do the trick, Barkeeper’s Friend powder cleanser ALWAYS works to remove the worst tea stains. Just sprinkle a bit on a moistened dish cloth or sponge, and scrub away. I always keep some of that cleaner on hand, specifically for this reason, because my husband loves very, very strong British tea.)
9. Clean carpets with baking soda
I only recommend this tip if you have an awesome vacuum cleaner that really sucks up everything from the carpets! Sprinkle baking soda lightly on carpets and let sit for about half an hour. Then, vacuum everything up. This really helps freshen the smell of your home’s carpets – especially useful if you have pets. Dogs, we are looking at you.
10. Clean fresh fruits and veggies with baking soda
Our final tip is one I use every week. (During coronavirus, we’ve been pretty careful wiping down our groceries when we bring them home.) While washing fresh produce, use a sprinkle of baking soda to get those fruits and veggies extra clean. Use this tip on hardy fruits and veggies – it’s perfect on apples, for instance, but not on more delicate fruit like berries. To clean berries using baking soda, put a few tablespoons of baking soda into a large bowl and fill with water. Pour the berries into the bowl, and gently swish around, allowing the baking soda water to clean up the berries. Drain and rinse off with water.
Undeniably, baking soda is incredibly useful to clean your home and many of the things in it. We all now need to stock up on that glorious, inexpensive powder!
ARM & HAMMER Baking Soda, For Baking, Cleaning and Deodorizing, 2-kg
2 kg box of Arm & Hammer baking soda – only $4.39