When life gives you lemons...use them to clean (Part 1/2)


Lemons - Credit: Archant

Nature has its very own recipe for cleaning. Here are 14 tips for using a simple lemon to polish, disinfect and scrub your home to citric perfection.

Lemons have it all - citric acid, phytochemicals and anti-oxidants. What more could you want in a fruit?

As well as being rich in vitamin C, a way of generating electricity, practical for fermentation and a way of fighting a cold, they are also nature’s cleaning agent. If you opt to use lemon juice in certain cleaning tasks around the house, you could save a fortune on detergents and chemical products. Plus, you’re being environmentally friendly as well.

So what can you use a lemon to clean?

Out damn spot:

Lemon juice has a mild bleaching component to it, which means it can help rid hard surfaces of stains. If there are stubborn markings on kitchen counters, tables or tiles, fresh, neat lemon juice will help. It can also be used on rusted metal and chopping boards. A wooden chopping board rubbed with a lemon and left overnight, then watered down the following morning works wonders.

Fabric conditioner:

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Believe it or not, taking to your sofa, curtains and upholstering with lemon juice can help get rid of food spills, grass stains or blood.

Residue evil:

Do you live in a hard water area? Those that do are very aware that it’s a pain to maintain taps, shower screens and sinks due to the irritating build-up of mildew. Lemon juice works wonders at dissolving scum and lime scale, as well as soapy residue. It sharpens the shine on metals as well, on faucets and shower-heads that have to endure water flow, and is also good on grouting. Mix a paste of two parts bicarbonate of soda to one part lemon juice into a paste, apply with a damp cloth, leave for ten minutes and then rub off with a sponge or cloth.

From the branch to the wood:

Pairing lemon juice with olive oil (one cup of each) can create an excellently effective home-made furniture polish for hardwood floors or wooden furnishings. You only need a little bit on a cloth to give the room an extra shine. Be a little more generous with it to make your flooring positively sparkle. Rinsing isn’t necessary when using pure citric acid either.

Grease is(n’t) the word:

Greasy hobs or ovens aren’t pleasant. By mixing a quarter of a cup of lemon juice in a spray bottle and filling the rest of it up with tap water and giving it a vigorous shake, you’ll have a superb method for de-greasing, without having to spray your cooking appliances with harsh chemicals. No one enjoys bleach tainted lamb shank.

Do the dishes:

Accompanying lemon juice with baking soda and vinegar will form an excellent natural dish scrubbing tool. Take a lemon, slice it in half, sprinkle the soda and the vinegar over it and use it on the crockery. No more brillo pads.

Cook it:

By placing half a lemon in a three-quarters-full bowl of cold water and zapping it on high for three minutes in the microwave, the fresh citrus scent eradicates cooking odour. To make it easier to clean, the condensation from the steam loosens any grime, which will come away faultlessly with a cloth afterwards.

Tomorrow, we’ll be sharing another 7 tips - some of which will surprise you. Ever thought of doing your laundry with lemon juice? After tomorrow, you’ll be sure to ditch the Daz.