Saturday, April 20, 2013

Cleaning a Bathroom On A Budget


With spring cleaning season right around the corner I thought it the perfect time for this post. First of all let me say that this post is meant to give you ideas while sharing how I clean my house, safely and cheaply. There are thousands of sites floating out there on the internet about natural housecleaning and I am simply sharing what works for my family, my house, my budget and my lifestyle. Work at developing what works for you. I use very few of the products pictures above. Even with coupons many of these products are simply unnecessary in my opinion. Most things in my house can be cleaned simply with natural things out of my own pantry and cupboard. 

The Bathroom

I'm going to start on the bathroom because it is probably one of the two rooms in the house that gets cleaned the most. The other is the kitchen. 



First thing is forget those expensive paper towels. Old rags are your friend.  


What do you clean your toilet with?  How's that for a question?



I clean mine with cheap SOAP!! Many people like to use bleach and such but I just don't think that is necessary. I buy cheap Walmart soap. A huge bottle costs a couple bucks. Many use a natural liquid soap like Dr. Bonners to clean their house. I'm not paying that much money for natural organic soap to flush down my toilet. 


I put my cheap soap into a recycled dish detergent bottle. Squirt a little in. Throw in a half a hand full of baking soda and swish around then I let it sit for about half an hour swish again and flush. Then I follow that up with a spray bottle full of 1/2 cup dish detergent and the rest straight vinegar. I spray that onto the bowl and let it sit until it is flushed the first time. I then clean the seat and toilet base with the same spray. 


For the shower I use that same vinegar and dish detergent spray. Spray on and wipe off with my old rags. That spray will disinfect and cut any soap buildup. If you do happen to get something that won't come off with that spray simply make a paste of a 1/4 cup baking soda and enough liquid dish detergent to make a paste consistency. Use like soft scrub then rinse. As you can see my shower is almost 10 years old and look at the shine on it still.     

  
How do I clean the glass in my bathroom? Years ago I bought these glass cleaning cloths. You simply wet them with plain water and wipe the mirror down with the yellow side.


 Then shine with the blue side. Then rinse the cloth and hang in the shower to dry. Fold and put back into the bottom drawer until next use. Absolutely no chemicals and I do this a couple times a week. Usually after my shower when the mirror is steamed up. 

 On the sink I also use my baking soda and dish detergent paste on and then I spray the counter with my vinegar and spray and wipe. 


 I then make sure that there is plenty homemade soap available for hand washing and showers. 



I then knock down any cobwebs with my homemade swiffer pads and go over the light fixtures over the mirror. 



Last thing I mop the floors with a vinegar and water solution and my homemade mop pads. 

And that is how I clean my bathroom. Now about twice a year I do wipe down my wood cabinets with Murphy's oil soap just as my own mother did. And atleast once a year I wipe down the painted walls with a vinegar solution also. 

Okay homemakers out there I want to hear what you do differently!


Blessings from The Holler

The Canned Quilter

22 comments:

  1. Awesome ideas there. I'm taking note as those cleaning chemicals are really getting to me...can't use them without opening a window. Even the dish detergent is a problem.

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  2. Right on target with what I use. Occasionally I use a little Pine Sol just for the smell.

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    1. I keep bleach because we bleach out flower pots after use to sterilize and wash off the front porch with it and occasionally use it in laundry! I keep ammonia to clean my oven racks, Pine Sol and Murphy's oil soap.

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  3. Please where did you get the cloths that you clean your mirrors with. Great idea's

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    Replies
    1. Ordered them years ago off QVC. I see similar ones advertised. Google microfiber glass cloths.

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  4. Very nice!! Thanks for sharing your routine!

    I use a mix of white vinegar, lemon juice, and water in a spray bottle for all my surfaces and toilet.. I still use a commercial tub cleaner (Scrubbing Bubbles) but I've been going to make a mix up that I've been reading about for about a year.. just havent run out of Bubbles yet.. I'll give yours a shot first.. I think it sounds great!

    Let me ask you... Do you dampen the shower/tub before you spray your cleaner on? Also, how often do you clean your tub?

    For my floors, I have a StarFiber mop http://www.amazon.com/Starfiber-Starpro-Microfiber-Version-Green/dp/B000QZ3DCQ/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1366473213&sr=8-2&keywords=starfiber+mopthat looks similar to yours and I have quite a few pads for it.. They dont go around it like yours does, it just sticks via velcro-like stickies. I can also just throw a kitchen towel down & it grabs that too. Most of the time I use plain ol hot water on my floor.. I've got ceramic tile and it cleans up beautifully. If I have some tough spots (rarely) I just spray some of my all purpose spray cleaner (lemon, vinegar, water) on it, let it sit for a few seconds and mop up.
    If an area is greasy or something like that, I just use more vinegar water spray and it takes care of it.
    I also use this mop to wipe down walls twice a year.. It sure makes it easy & fast.

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    1. I think dampening first helps to soften so I spray it with hot water from my shower.

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  5. My toilet is a five gallon bucket with rice-hulls to cover my... ahem.. "deposits." It is the classic humanure toilet ala Joe Jenkin's "Humanure Handbook."
    Despite the odd looks I get from people who visit, once they see it in action, they understand that it can be hygenic and more sensible to do it this way.

    So, to clean it I dump the contents on purpose built compost pile, spray the inside and any stains with a hose, then scrub it out with a toilet brush and some homemade soap if I have it handy, or cheap dish soap if I don't. The rinse goes on the pile and a year later it is ready to put on the garden.
    The floor I just sweep daily (usually-embarassed smile) and use a scrub rag and some water on the weekend or if people are coming over.

    Here in Japan we separate the toilets and shower/bath room. For the bath I use a natural palm fiber brush and baking soda. Elbow grease is the key. I tell my kids "It's not the power, it's the repetitions."
    For scrubbing the tub, we use a melamine sponge. Our tub gets hideous copper deposits on it. If we don't scrub it, it turns blue. I guess we should have bought a blue tub...

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    1. I Love it! Reminds me of my grandma's outhouse : ) She used the dishwater after she was done washing dishes to scrub the outhouse.. waste not want not ......

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  6. I use over-used fabric softener sheets to dust.

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    Replies
    1. These are also good on stainless steel for a sparkling shine!

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  7. Thank you , this is an awesome how to post. I'm switching to your plan to save money.

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  8. I keep a small bottle of regular Dawn that I use in the toilet, along with a combo of baking soda and borax (I premix and have a container of it). I also use the vinegar/Dawn spray (50/50) in the shower. Nothing beats it!! I am one that had a problem with Tilex one day. My bathroom did not have a window at the time and I had to rush outside wheezing. I don't have asthma either. Scared me, won't do it again. I do keep a Magic Eraser around for the tub, makes quick work on the ring.

    "I'm not paying that much money for natural organic soap to flush down my toilet. "

    Nooooooo!!! But but but you are exposing your septic tank to carcinogens, chemicals, and and and...... LOL!!! I always shake my head when someone insists on using it.

    And I nearly forgot. I keep another small bottle of Dawn in the laundry area for grease spots, food spots and anything else the husband deposits on his clothes.

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    1. Dawn is magic stuff even if it is a detergent.

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  9. Spot on. Dawn and vinegar is amazing. For my stubborn stuff I keep a cheese shaker of baking soda in the bathroom and after I spray with the vinegar and Dawn, I shake a little baking soda on top and scrub. I like to use a spray of hydrogen peroxide on the toilet, too.

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    Replies
    1. Great minds think alike...I keep a cheese shaker of baking soda by my kitchen sink : )

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  10. Awesome post! I find myself getting in a cleaning rut and its nice to see it all layed out there like you did! I've been using cheap shampoo for cleaning the toilet. But I do like your whole system. Definitely, I need to make some of those swiffer pads. Handy dandy!

    You have great posts and I find myself learning so much! I think they could teach an entire Consumer Science class (Home Economics) with just your blog alone! Kids truly are missing out when they don't have someone like you to learn from. I'm an old kid (46) but I'm loving what I'm learning here!

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  11. Amen Gina, I love your comment . if I need to know something around my house n homestead I check hickery holler blog first , then Google. she is definitely a home ec. teacher:)

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