10 Remarkable DIY Cleaning Solutions

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I don’t know about you, but I was feeling ready to start some serious spring cleaning.  This year, I decided to try some new (more effective) cleaning solutions using materials I already had (in true Picklee fashion of course!).   I couldn’t be happier with the outcome of my cleaning experiments.   From simple shower cleaners, to carpet stain removers, to wrinkle release spray, I found that not only were these DIY solutions much cheaper, but they worked SO MUCH BETTER too!  I couldn’t be more excited to share the next 10 Remarkable DIY Cleaning Solutions with you!

Here they are, 10 Remarkable DIY Cleaning Solutions:

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(cleaning solution sources include onegoodthingbyjille, bhg, livingsimple)

 

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167 thoughts on “10 Remarkable DIY Cleaning Solutions

  1. Another great tip I just found is: to clean out the inside of. bottle, use rice and shake with water!!! Just cleaned out the inside of my hummingbird feeder, worked great!

    • To clean faux wood blinds I would use a light solution like a warm water and dish soap mixture. Dish soap cuts grease and helps with stains so this should work well.

    • I used to own a cleaning business and to clean mini blinds we would take them off and outside, spray with amonia and hose down, hang them on a clothing line to dry and replace…

    • Another all purpose arm pit stain remover that I have used on 100% cotton and on mixed blend white fabrics with good results is one third milk, one third bleach and one third water. Mix and then soak the article of clothing before washing. I have soaked overnight without dammaging the shirts and had good results. I haven’t tried this on colored fabrics, tho, so cannot tell you how it would work for them.

      • What if you were to use the mixture you just listed above but instead of regular bleach you could use color safe bleach.. idk how well it would work butits a thought

    • We live in hot and humid south Texas by the coast. My husband perspires the minute he walks outside. I just used the underarm cleaner on one of his summer shirts made of 55% silk 45% cotten. It is cream colored and the mixture worked amazingly. Even cleaned the ring around the collar. I definitely recommend this solution.

  2. Which one of these would work best for cleaning the stains from around the collars of my dress shirts? The pit-stain or one of the others?

  3. Pingback: DIY Cleaning Solution Recipes To Conquer The Toughest Stains | Lifehacker Australia

    • What about pet urine stains?! My cat has been a little distressed lately since bringing in a stray dog. And he got upset and peed on the bed! Now what to do, we can’t even sleep there. We did put some baking powder to soak it up, but the smell is still there. Any advice?

      • Cara,
        I have used a product called “Earth Friendly Stain and Odor Remover” for pets. We have Rabbits–very similar to cat urine– and my kids relentlessly bring them into the house and sure enough they urinate in the carpet. I have used this product for even the kids when they would wet in bed during the night and for throw up and numerous other things. It works wonderfully. There are others on the market, and I’ve tried some. Some work, some don’t, but I know for a fact this one does a wonderful job. You just have to dab the area with a cloth to get up the excess urine, then put this on and let it dry. It’s fairly inexpensive…I buy extra when it is on sale. Google it or try your local grocery store if it has a nature products area. Hope this helps. Also, you may want to try Borax, mixing with water and letting it sit. Don’t know how effective it will be with cat odor, though.

        • white Vinegar works well for cat urine. My cat kept peeing on my laundry. I would ad a cuo of white vinegar to the bleach area of my washing machine and the smell would be gone. I am assuming spraying a vinegar/water mixture on it would work well. This also works great for deoderizing the cat box or any floor that has been peed on.

      • I use cloth diapers and from what understand is that baking soda can make the urine smell worse since they are both alkali (if I remember correctly), so vinegar would counteract that and take the smell out.

    • Dawn, (or any grease dissolving dish detergent) Zout, or maybe the newly released for laundry, Resolve. With Dawn, I have found that if I mix some in a spray bottle with hot water and soak the spots with the spray, that usually takes care of grease spots (food, usually). Zout also seems to work well. I mention Resolve because it has been the best carpet spot cleaner that I have ever used for anything, including grease, so I would imagine it would do a pretty good job on fabrics, but I haven’t tried it yet! Good luck!

  4. Skip the Purell and just use rubbing alcohol. Stick an old cloth behind the stained shirt, wet a cloth or cotton pad with rubbing alcohol and blot until its gone.

    A 1:1 mixture of hydrogen peroxide and water with a drop of dish soap will also deodorize almost anything from new plastic smell to skunk. But like anything with hydrogen peroxide, it has to be made fresh.

  5. For the diy better-than-oxyclean, how do you use it? I dilute oxyclean in water for a load of whites, so would I need to make much more, or do you dilute it? Thanks!

    • Nicole, for the “better oxy-cleaner” you would make it just as the image indicates and then just be sure to use it right away. It will lose it’s effectiveness if you store it.

      Good luck!

      • Sorry, I still don’t understand. I have a front loader washer & am wondering how I soak a load of stained clothes, most of them due to a baby learning to eat. Do I soak them in a bucket with the better than oxy clean solution & a bunch of water? Or do I put the solution directly on the stains & keep them in the washer over night?
        Thanks!

        • Hi Michelle,

          Sorry if it was a bit unclear! Yes, you would soak the clothes in the solution overnight. The recipe refers to one article of clothing, so increase the recipe and add more water based on how much you are soaking. This is one of my favorites, I cleaned a white sofa cover after years of stubborn stains, and it looked like new again =)

          Best,

          Jordan

        • Michelle, like you, I have a front load washer, when I need to soak something, I simply pause the machine for a few minutes, just long enough for the soak to work and then run the cycle normally. Good Luck!

  6. Is there any solution that will dissolve old grease spots on paintwork around a stove? I’ve tried a variety of commercial cleaners, from citrus to ammonia, and nothing seems to work.

  7. Hi, really nice ideas for cleaning. Living in Nothern Europe, I have not seen Dawn available. In case I can’t fing it, is there any other brand that could be used as a substitute or will normal generic discwashing liquid do the job?

  8. I have to side with Nicole in that I’m still not sure how to use the Better-Than-Oxyclean. I can’t imagine that I can soak a load of laundry in just 2 Cups of solution. am i adding this to a washer full of water to soak overnight? Thanks, loved the post.

    • Mike, if you were going to soak the laundry you would want to first add enough water to cover the clothes, then add you oxy cleaner mixture. You can also use the oxy cleaner blend to spot treat tough stains.

  9. Do you think the oven rack cleaner would also work on porcelain enameled grill grates? Ours are a mess and scraping them with those brushes just never works.

    Thanks!

    • Brooke, that’s a good question. I’ve never tried using it on porcelain enamel grill grates. I would think that it should work just as well, you could certainly give it a try! My only thought is that since grill build up is much tougher, you may want to use something more abrasive like steel wool to scrub the grates after they have soaked.

      Good luck, I’d love to hear how you make out!

    • Clayton, for the washing machine, first you want to make sure you arn’t using too much fabric softener, it sure smells good in the bottle but using too much can create a smelly film in your washing machine. Next, use a cleaning solution (such as the miracle solution above) to wipe down residue on the inside of the washer. Last, mix a solution of 1 cup baking soda and 1 cup white vinegar, add it to the washer and run a hot cycle. This should do the trick! For the smelly dryer, I would try simply wiping it down to remove old residue with the miracle solution too.

      Hope this helps, let me know how it works for you!

      • The oily buildup from dryer sheets on the inside of the dryer, but especially on the dryer screen, contributes to the smell, and also decreases the effectiveness of the dryer. You need to clean out the inside of the dryer as instructed above, but you also need to wash the screen in hot water, with an grease fighting detergent soap like Dawn, then rinse well and let dry before returning it to the dryer. If you use dryer sheets regularly, I am told this should be done about every 6 months.

        • Oh, and one additional hint (although Tammy has the best idea of using vinegar!), most of you will find that if you rip off just about an inch of the width of the dryer sheet you will get just as much softening benefit as if you used the entire sheet. This will decrease the amount of greasy build up in your dryer and on your clothing, sheets and towels. Plus, just think of the money it will save you!

    • If you wash towels.with vinegar and then dry them it will help with both smells. I just did this the other day and they smell great and the vinegar softens the towels and doesnt discolor them at all.

    • a cup of vinegar and let it go trough a cycle all alone — good to clean the washer and the pipes and hoses out. Or in place of fabric softner add vinegar each time much better and no build up will actually help to soften towles by stripping the buildup out and making them absorbant again and that also helps the washer and dryer

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  11. Any suggestions for how to clean off or disguise brown burn-stains from a too hot iron on a white shirt? – it happened this morning whilst I was ironing!
    Thanks!

      • This really works. Sprinkle salt on the stain. Wet with lemon juice and spread in the sun to dry. However, if the scorch is too severe, the fabric is damaged and cannot be repaired.

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  14. Hi, great tips – But I’m a bit confused about what Super Washing Soda and Drying sheets are as they dan’t call them those things in my country. Is the drying sheets the sheets you put into a dryer to stop static? Or something else? Thanks

    • Bjorn, thr super washing soda is like extra powerful baking soda, and yes the drying sheets are the ones that stop static =)

  15. Do you have any ideas on getting body oils off cherry wood furniture? My husband like to rest his arm and hand on the end tables. This leaves body oils on the furniture Pledge and cleaning wood furniture does not work.

    Thanks

    • Have that same problem. Except it is my kitchen dining table. A recently I have had a dryer sheet that was “accidently” left on the table over night.. I now have a spot on the table I can’t get out. Absolutely love my table but will never buy cherry furniture again. Any ideas?

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  18. Thanks for this post! I have a young daughter so i am always looking for homemade alternatives!!! Great to have them all in one place!

    • According to the instructions that came with my humidifier, you should only use very diluted bleach water to clean it, and then rinse well before using. By very diluted, I understood that to mean about 1 Tlb. of bleach per 1 gallon of water. The instructions specifically stated not to use any kind of soap or cleaner. I also noted these instructions came with my dehumidifier, too.

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  20. Don’t forget the towel for carpet stains! I once left my iron on the carpet and now there’s a melted spot. I wasn’t trying to remove a stain, though…

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  24. Hi! Your hints are awesome! I already knew about the wonderfulness that is white vinegar, that it can be used to remove most odors and refreshes and can be used as a fabric softener instead of the usual stuff that gunks up the machine and makes a oily residue cling to your clean clothes (revolting and difficult to remove)You can also clean this out of your machine with vinegar. It is also handy when you have rude pets who go on the floor and is said to discourage them from going there again as it breaks down the proteins in the urine making it difficult to smell, or something like that… It also removes limescale buildup in toilets and baths.

    I have a query though about deodorant stains on my bras. It’s not really a stain, but more of a build up in the lace of the cream stick antiperspirant I use. Normal washing doesn’t shift this, and seeing that bras are rather pricey items, I want to keep them looking good. Which of the above would serve to remove this without damaging the lace or the synthetic materials they are made of? I also see these marks on especially black t-shirts? is this bleached into the material or can I restore the black under the pits?

    Hope you can help me sort this out? THNX!

    • Try soaking them overnight before washing them. I had noticed the same thing on mine after just washing, but if you soak before washing it seems to loosen up the gunk.

  25. Hi– I love thee suggestions. I plan to use them all. My daughter has a dress that is white with large red and pink flowers all over. It is a very well made dress(expensive). The care tag said to wash in cold water and hang to dry. I did. The red color has bled into the white. Is there anything I can do to remove this? Thanks for any help you can provide.

  26. Great post! I just came across this on pinterest and can’t wait to make some of these! Do you think lemon ammonia would be ok for the miracle stain remover? It’s all my dollar store had. and does this mix work on colored clothes?

  27. Ok this may be a super silly question but … What do you mean by ‘part’ is that like a cup a tablespoon!? I just want to make it right lol !! Thanks ps these are freaking life savers!!

    • Juliette, if it’s one “part” soap and one “part” water it means equal parts…half and half. This can be any amount just as long as it’s equal.

  28. Love the post, but I wish each one was specifically labeled color-safe or not. I have 2 boys that are forever destroying their best clothes. The worst stain ever was metallic gold paint that the oldest got on a Burberry, yes, Burberry shirt. I finally had to just bite my lip and throw it away after my last-ditch effort, pure bleach soak failed.

    • For the ink remover from denim, if you use alcohol, just rubbing alcohol, put stained area over old towels and soak with the alcohol, rub with clean rags until ink has gone. You can color ck. alcohol on another old pair of jeans or the lining of the hem, but it shouldn’t alter the color at all.

      For the bras, I have used the equal parts bleach, milk and water safely, BUT haven’t tested it on lace. Imagine if the lace is polyester it shouldn’t be a problem, after all that is a component in most bras, but perhaps you might want to proceed with shorter soaking times, until you can confirm that the bra holds up well.

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  30. Hi!! I’ve got an awful oil stain on my new jeans, oil from riding a bicycle. I need to get it out…what should I use? I haven’t washed them yet. Thanks in advance.

    • Nicole, I guess I would try a grease desolving dish detergent first, in the sink with hot water, UNLESS they are white or a light colored jeans, in which case I am going to leave suggesstions to the other experts here….

  31. Thank you so much! I’m looking forward to trying them. I’m also looking for a DIY dish washing detergent. Do you know of any? Thanks again in advance!

    • I’m glad the shower or tub cleaner worked for you but it did absolutely nothing for me. I used a measuring cup to measure everything out perfectly. I sprayed it on and set a timer. When I went to go clean it off it was just as dirty as it was before. All of the soap scum was still there. All I did was waste my time. Not to mention the vinegar smell was way over powering in a room with the door wide open. My house smelled horrible.
      I won’t try again.

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  34. excited to make the super miracle stain remover but wow! I just mixed my dish soap + ammonia and stopped there…super fumie! I called Palmolive and the customer service rep was very cautionary in his remarks. Am I doing something wrong? There is no bleach in the dish soap. thanks!

    • Maybe bleach alternative? There are lots of different kinds of bleach, and if any chemical has chloride (chlorine), ammonia will react with it to produce chlorine gas–which is VERY DANGEROUS!!! I would double check your dish-washing fluid carefully, since a lot of new ones have bleach alternatives.

  35. I bought a foreclosed home and the bathtub and sink were soo bad with soap scum, mildew and rust.To make matters worse the house sat vacant for 6 months before I bought it so all that dust dirt and only God knows what else sat in there and adhered to all the scum. I have tried EVERYTHING from comet to commercial cleaners and decided to just have the bathtub and sink sanded and refinished if not replaced. (it was THAT bad) I found this dawn dishsoap and white vinagar solution on your site and figured I have nothing to lose…but a bathtub hehe, But I tried it and OMG it looks amazing. I wasnt sure if it was working at first or if i was just high from the vinegar fumes but I let it set for the two hours and scrubbed and could not believe my eyes! It was beautiful! I sat in the bathtub in tears because I couldnt believe a 5 dollar remedy would work when I was about to spend hundreds to refinish the tub. I regret not taking before pics but seriously i was embarassed at just how bad it was. But i can tell you all the streaks and dirt are gone!. I just have to find something to take off a real bad rust stain out of the sink by the drain. The porcelain is gorgeous! It looks brand new and this is an ORIGINAL TUB in a 1926 home. I’m so happy with the results and cant thank you enough! I was able to keep the old charm bathtub of the home of my dreams! Thank You So Very Much! Much Love

    • That’s amazing! I’m so happy to hear it worked so well for you…I just love that a $5 solution saved you from spending hundreds of dollars =)

    • For the rust stain you might try using Whink/sp? rust stain remover. It is not a natural or DIY cleaner, but it works quickly and wonderfully in removing rust stains!!! I used it on my bathroom sink drain and it now looks awesome!!

      • There is a product called “Rust Out” that I use for my disgusting iron water that leaves stains on EVERYTHING! They also make a spray which I have successfully used on my shower. (A word of caution–it smells terrible!)

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  39. I don’t have leather sofas but I have friends and family that do and I have seen marker, pen, polish stains on them, do you know how to take those stains of without damaging the leather? Thanks

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  41. Hi,
    These sound like great tips. The only problem I have is that I’m from the UK, living in New Zealand and am not sure what Dawn is. It looks from the pictures liked washing up liquid. Is that right?
    Thanks, and I’ll be trying some of these tips very soon, if I can get all the ingredients :-)

  42. Question about the miracle oxy cleaner – do you make the mix, put it in the washing machine with the clothing and start a cycle? If so, hot or warm water.
    Thankyou, I will be trying these “recipes”!

  43. I used the dawn/vinegar on my shower, worked AWESOME! Im making soaps today! I need to find a carpet cleaner to get out old coffee spills, do you know if you carpet cleaning solution/ with the iron will work for that? Thank you!

    • Julianna,

      That’s great! The carpet cleaner is amazing, I’ve used it on soda and coffee with great results.

      Happy cleaning!

  44. Pingback: 10 DIY cleaning tips and remedies

    • Put a cup of water in the microwave for 2-3min. Just the steam alone will soften most anything in there, then just wipe it down. I also sometimes use a little baking soda and lemon juice in the water for more suborn spills, also makes it smell great :)

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  46. The Miracle Stain Remover says to spray on, let rest a few minutes and then wash as usual. So, can I leave the stain untreated for a few days until laundry day? Does it matter if it’s an old stain like that or should it be more immediate?

    • Emily,

      I’ve let my clothes sit for a few days after spraying and I’ve had no issues. I have removed old stains in the past, but of course all stains are easier to remove with they are fresh =)

  47. What about mold on the inside of a wooden children’s toy? A friend gave us their old toy but didn’t realize there was mold under and inside it. I wiped it with Lysol antibacterial wipes, but it is my understanding mold will keep coming back if we can’t get rid of it. I really didn’t want to have to throw the toy out.

  48. on the super shower cleaner are u to add water it did not say I just used it without the water and it took my breath away lol got fans going and windows open now. I sure hope it works if this is the way u have to do it. I am unable to get on knees and scrub.

  49. It was well worth it Next time I will put on my respirator mask on shut bathroom door and open the bath window. It just wiped off so easy now the tub just shines white again (its an old tub)

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  52. These are great suggestions. I will be trying a couple. Does anyone have any suggestions on how to remove mildew type stains from the rubber around the fridge door? I tried a magic eraser but that didnt work. Thanks!

  53. Pingback: 10 Remarkable DIY Cleaning Solutions | Picklee | Effortless Organization

  54. Please help, Just used the miracle spot remover on my three shirts. One being my husband. Made up the mixture as posted. Sprayed on and let sit for one minute. Then washed and hanged dry. I am so upset, the spots did not come out and around it where I sprayed it lighter. This happened to all three shirts. They are colored shirts. Is there anything I can do to restore them. What went wrong? Afraid to tell my husband.

  55. Help! I just found crayon and marker all over my custom made table skirt in my guest room. (My son hangs out in there sometimes to have some quiet time away from his brothers). I wanted to try the miracle stain remover or the better oxy-cleaner to try to get the stains out, but was concerned the peroxide might leave bleach stains. Have you found these cleaners to be color safe?
    Thanks for the cleaning tips!

    Julie

  56. Anyone have any good suggestions for cleaning the grout on my Italian tike floor? I have used bleach and had to scrub the grout with steel wool but it’s very time consuming and a pain to do. I bought a steam cleaner but it didn’t clean the grout. Thank for any suggestions.

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  58. I tried the wrinkle release spray and it works but it is leaving spots on my clothes. I even used the mrs Meyers fabric softener. I have been adding a little more water to the mix because I thought maybe i had a concentrated fabric softener. Any thoughts?

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  61. I was wondering if any of these solutions would work on the stains left behind on countertops if a pan (cast iron) sets too long, especially on a wet area. It appears to be a rust stain, but I am unsure. Thanks!

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  64. this was probably the best thing i’ve found on pinterest! just tried the lemon and salt trick on my glass shower doors…worked like a freaking charm with in minutes. mind=blown! :) thank you for sharing these tips!! definitely trying out the rest!!

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  67. I have tan colored scale build-up on the inside of the bowl of my toilet. I’ve tried everything to remove it. Do you know of something I can try? Thanks I love all the other helpful tricks!

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  72. When making the miracle stain remover, how do you dissolve the baking soda? I’ve made a recipe using dawn, hydrogen peroxide and baking soda and eventually it just clogged up my sprayer (even though I shook it before using). This stain remover did not work for me so I am excited to try something else. Thanks!!

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  74. I’ve been looking all over the place for a solution to the following question and I hope you can help me. My washing machine seems to not really be cleaning my striped shirts and when they come out they have a brownish tinge to them. Is there anything you would suggest to add to my loads to help with this problem? I wear a lot of stripes, usually with white and another color.

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  77. I really want to print this off so that I have the information when I need it but seems very wasteful to print the whole thing in color with all the graphics included that I don’t need. My other option is to retype all of it. Guess that’s what I’ll do.

  78. Is the carpet stain removal good to remove pet stains from both cats and dog? Will it also help remove the smell? H

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