Cheap Cleaning Tricks from The Tightwad Gazette

Searching through the pages of Amy Dacyczyn’s The Tightwad Gazette, I found many ways that we all can cut costs on our everyday household cleaning. I have spent too much money and energy trying to find just the right cleaner for various jobs. Then, I realized that you can use simple things like ammonia and vinegar. The funny thing is, I’ve found that expensive cleaning aids really don’t get the job done any better than old-fashioned remedies. Listed below are a few of my favorite tips:

Tip #1: No need to buy the latest Wonder Cleaner from the store, just use this tried and true recipe for cleaning all over your house. This cleaner is perfect for scrubbing bathrooms and mopping floors, and is safe enough for kitchen counters. Not only will this cleaner save you money, but you also won’t have to worry about breathing in harsh chemicals.

Multi-Purpose Cleaning Solution:
1/3 cup vinegar
1/2 cup ammonia
2 Tbsp baking soda
1 gallon water

Tip #2: Did you know that in general liquid laundry detergent costs about twice as much per load than the powdered variety? I always used liquid (without a good reason) and I immediately switched when I found this out. Really, I suppose I should have paid more attention all along.

Tip #3: To get stains out, add one cup each powdered Cascade and Clorox II to a bucket of super hot water. Soak as many pieces of clothing that will fit. Leave them overnight and wash as usual the next day. Do not use this method for fabrics that are not color-fast or are delicate. (I would guess this method would work for other brands of cleaners as well.)

Note: Do your research before mixing your own concoction of chemicals. Certain chemicals, like ammonia and bleach, can produce harmful or fatal fumes when mixed.

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