Make your own cleaning products

What you need to know:

Cleaning can be an exhausting and time-consuming chore. It gets worse when it comes to cleaning food stains, sauces, old grease and grime stains that are difficult to remove.Before spending on pricy, commercial cleaning products, these pantry ingredients may save the day. They comprise of baking soda, vinegar, citrus fruit and salt and are effective in cleaning kitchen appliances.

Stainless steel vacuum flasks Pour half a cup of vinegar, a tablespoon of baking soda and some hot water into stainless steel vacuum flasks and leave it in overnight. The next day, clean with a bottle brush and soap before rinsing thoroughly.

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Wooden chopping boards

After washing wooden chopping boards with soap and water, disinfect them by sprinkling them with salt and then rubbing them all over with half a lemon. Rinse well and allow the chopping boards to dry completely before storing them.

White enamel sinks

White enamel sinks look beautiful, but tend to stain easily. They can however, be effectively cleaned with baking soda, hydrogen peroxide, lemon and a non-scratch scrubbing pad. Start by rinsing the sink and then wiping it dry with paper towels or a clean cloth. Next, cover the surface with baking soda and sprinkle a few drops of hydrogen peroxide. Apply a little hydrogen peroxide to a non-scratch scrubbing pad, scrub the bottom and sides of the sink. Remove any stubborn stains, by rubbing vigourously with half a lemon that has been sprinkled with baking soda. Squeeze the lemon juice down the drain a give the sink a thorough rinse.

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Stainless steel sinks

If ordinary soap and hot water does not remove food stains from a stainless steel sink, sprinkle the damp sink with baking soda and use a non-scratch scrubbing pad or cloth to tackle the stains. Rinse the sink thoroughly.
Microwave ovens

You need 2-3 citrus fruits (lemon, lime, orange or grapefruit) cut into slices; 250ml (¼ litre) vinegar; water and a large microwave-safe bowl. Slice the citrus fruit and put it in the microwave-safe bowl with the vinegar and enough water to just cover the fruit. Turn the microwave on high for 20 minutes or until the solution starts boiling and the window gets steamy. Wait for 15 minutes before opening the door and then remove the bowl and wipe the inside of the oven with a damp cloth. Clean the rubber gasket around the door as well. Use the citrus and vinegar solution to wipe the window clean if it is still a bit greasy.

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