Friday, June 01, 2007

Sherri's Helpful Hints

Cleaning Household Surfaces, Con't

How to Clean Hardwood Flooring

Use: A few drops of dish-washing liquid or all-purpose cleanser and warm water.
Tools: A well-wrung-out cloth, sponge, or mop.
Tips: Sweep or vacuum frequently to remove grit. Don't wet-mop; water will damage the finish. Don't apply wax to a floor coated with urethane or polyurethane. Don't apply sprays or oils meant for wood furniture; they will make floors slippery.
Tough Stains: Scrub gently with a nylon pad dampened with dishwashing liquid.

How to Clean Marble

Use: A few drops of dishwashing liquid and warm water.
Tools: A cloth, sponge, or mop.
Tips: Sweep or vacuum floors regularly. Wipe up spills with a clean, soft cloth. Apply a penetrating sealer, available at stone dealers and home centers, every year to prevent deep stains. As with limestone, don't use abrasive cleansers, vinegar, and lemon-based cleansers.
Tough Stains: Use a ready-made poultice, available at stone dealers.

How to Clean Mirrors

Use: Plain water.
Tools: A microfiber cloth.
Tips: For extremely dirty mirrors, make a solution of one part vinegar to one part warm water and use a squeegee. Keep water or the vinegar solution away from the edge of a mirror; moisture can seep behind the glass and cause damage.
Tough Stains: Rub tough streaks with crumpled newspaper and the vinegar solution.

How to Clean Plastic-Laminate Countertops and Cabinets

Use: A few drops or a spray of all-purpose cleanser.
Tools: A dampened sponge, cloth, or soft nylon pad or brush.
Tips: Rinse with a clean, damp cloth after wiping with all-purpose cleanser. Don't use a dripping-wet cloth near seams. Don't use abrasive cleansers, steel wool, or stiff brushes, which can scratch the finish.
Tough Stains: Apply undiluted all-purpose cleanser, let stand, then blot with a dampened cloth.

How to Clean Plastic-Laminate Flooring

Use: One cup of vinegar per gallon of water.
Tools: A well-wrung-out cloth or mop.
Tips: Sweep or vacuum frequently. Don't wet-mop; water can seep into the seams and cause buckling. Don't use soap-based detergents, wax-based products, or mop-and-shine products, which leave a dull film. Don't use abrasive cleansers, which can scratch the finish.
Tough Stains: Rub gently with isopropyl alcohol and a cloth. For greasy stains, use ammonia and a damp cloth.

How to Clean Porcelain and Enameled Cast Iron

Use: A few drops of dishwashing liquid and warm water.
Tools: A soft cloth or sponge.
Tips: Don't use abrasive pads, abrasive cleansers, or wire brushes; dirt can settle into the scratches they make. Tough Stains: Scrub with a soft nylon brush and undiluted all-purpose cleanser or a paste of baking soda and water.

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