Have you ever thought of cleaning with bicarbonate of soda? It truly is magical stuff!
Here are some magical ways you can use the humble bicarb soda (sodium bicarbonate, baking soda) to clean and deodorise your house!
What Actually is Bicarbonate of Soda?
Bicarbonate of Soda is also known as Baking Soda or Sodium Bicarbonate and it is a common cleaning powder that is available at most Supermarkets or Hardware Stores. It comes in the form of white powder and is a type of salt.
Bicarbonate of Soda can be used for so many cleaning tasks around the home – and the great thing about it is that it is cheap, environmentally friendly, easily available and natural. It can also be used instead of yeast to make your dough or biscuits rise.
Bicarb has some disinfectant properties and is also a fungicide.
More Reading: Where to Buy Bicarbonate of Soda in Bulk
How to Use Bicarbonate of Soda Around the Home
1. Use Bicarbonate of Soda to Clean your chopping boards
Wooden and plastic chopping boards can be refreshed by giving them a scrub with a paste of a tablespoon each of bicarb, salt and water. Rinse the boards well with fresh water afterwards.
2. It Can Clean your Dishes
If you run out of dishwashing liquid but have a few dishes to wash, Bicarbonate of Soda is to the rescue. Just add a couple of tablespoons to the sink of hot water and mix well to combine. It doesn’t soap up but will clean your dishes beautifully. Just make sure you rinse the dishes with clean water afterwards or you will get white marks.
You can also add Bicarbonate of Soda to your dishwasher with your normal tablet or powder to cut through grease and grime. Deodorise your dishwasher by sprinkling some bicarb in the bottom between washes.
3. Removes stains from your Kitchen Benchtop
If you have stains on your benchtop and don’t want to use bleach, Bicarb is a gentle and effective replacement. Make a paste of 2 parts bicarb to 1 part water and apply to stains on your benchtops, gently rubbing in a circular motion, then wipe clean. If the stain remains, repeat the process.
4. It Deodorises your Fridge and Pantry
Just sit an open box of bicarb or some in an open jar in the fridge or pantry for up to 6 months to absorb food odours. Discard it down the sink to give the drain a quick clean and freshen up.
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5. Deodorises your Garbage and Recycling bin
Wipe the inside of your bin with a damp cloth sprinkled with bicarb, then rinse. Once dry, you can sprinkle a little bicarb in the bottom to keep it smelling fresh.
6. Cleans Dirty saucepans and Tupperware
A sprinkle of bicarb, topped with hot water and an overnight soak will get burnt food off saucepans and funky smells and stains off plastics. A sprinkle of bicarb, topped with hot water and an overnight soak will get burnt food off saucepans and funky smells and stains off plastics.
7. Makes a Stainless Steel Sink Sparkle
To get your sink shiny and beauty, wet your sink, sprinkle baking soda over the surface, scrub, and then rinse before lining the sink with a vinegar-soaked paper towel for 20mins. Use a soft toothbrush with a bicarb paste to scrub sink rim and caulk. Your sink will sparkle.
8. Removes Coffee and Tea Stains from Coffee Cups
Put teapots, coffee plungers, pots and mugs in sink with 1 part bicarb to 4 parts water. Soak for 15 minutes and rinse.
9. Polishes silverware (and jewellery)
Make a paste by mixing bicarb with a little water and dip with a soft toothbrush and polish the silver or jewellery gently before rinsing clean.
10. Boosts your laundry detergent
For whiter whites and brighter colours, add ½ cup (top loader) or ¼ cup (front loader) bicarb to your wash, you may also need less detergent as bicarb softens the water.
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11. Room Deodouriser
Instead of using air freshener, grab a dish or jar (decorate if you like) fill with ½ cup bicarb and a few drops of essential oil and sit it near the toilet. Replace every three months, tip it down the sink to give the drain a quick clean and freshen up.
12. Whiten your Tile Grout
Make a paste of equal parts lemon juice, vinegar and bicarb and scrub grout with a soft toothbrush then rinse.
13. Clean the toilet
Sprinkle the bowl of your toilet with ½ cup bicarb, let sit for 30 minutes, spray with vinegar to moisten, then scrub and flush.
14. Clean Dull Baby Bottles
Just add 3 tablespoons to a full pot of boiling water. Boil bottles for 3 minutes.
15. Takes out the smell in shoes
Sprinkle some bicarb inside each shoe and leave overnight. Shake out the excess powder in the morning and the smell will be gone.
16. Cleans stuffed animals
Sprinkle bicarb onto stuffed animals. Let it sit for 15 minutes then dust off.
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17. Deodorises sock/underwear drawers
Put bicarb and a few drops of your favourite essential oil in a muslin cloth and secure with an elastic band. Your draws will smell lovely for months.
18. Removes crayon on the walls
Remove by sprinkling a wet sponge with bicarb and wiping walls.
19. Removes odours from the sofa
Sprinkle stinky couch with bicarb, leave for a few hours and vacuum out.
20. Deodorises your pets and their environment
Litter trays just need a sprinkle of bicarb to absorb odours. Stinky animals just need a sprinkle with bicarb then brush out their fur.
21. Use Bicarbonate of Soda to Treat Heartburn
If you are having a bit of heartburn after a hearty curry, dissolve a teaspoon of bicarbonate of soda in a glass of water and sip it slowly. This neutralizes the stomach acid and will ease the symptoms. If the heartburn is still there after one glass, make sure you seek medical advice.
22. Use Bicarbonate of Soda to Whiten Your Teeth
Yes, Bicarb works great as a teeth whitener! Make a paste of bicarb and a little bit of water and use your toothbrush to gently brush your teeth. You see bicarb is slightly abrasive so it scrubs off all the stains. Don’t use it too often though!
23. Bicarbonate of Soda Makes a Great Deodorant
Run out of Rexona? Pat some bicarb under your pits, it absorbs sweat and odour.
24. Relieves Sunburn
There is nothing worse than painful sunburn. But if you run a warm bath and add a cup or two of bicarb to the water, it can ease the pain! Soak for 30 – 45 minutes.
25. Stops the Itch from Mosquito Bites
If you are itchy from mozzies – make a paste of bicarb and water and apply to the bite. It will take away the itch right away!
26. Naturally Clean Your Fruit and Vegetables
When you bring fruit and veggies home, pop them in a sink of cold water with a cup of bicarbonate of soda – wipe gently and then store. It will remove any wax or insecticides that may be lingering on the skin.
27. Homemade Weed Killer
Because Bicarbonate of Soda is salt-based, it makes for a terrific weed killer especially for those pesky weeds that grow in the cracks on pathways. To use, just sprinkle the bicarb directly into the cracks. Just make sure you don’t spread it where other plants are located as it will kill them too!
28. Non-Toxic Oven Cleaner
Make a paste of bicarbonate of soda and water and apply the mixture to a cold oven. Allow it to sit for an hour, then using a clean cloth and water, wash it all away. Just be careful you don’t get the mixture on the element.
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29. Meat Tenderizer
Rather than using MSG which is bad bad bad, sprinkle a little bicarbonate of soda onto meats that require some tenderising. Rub it in and cook as usual.
30. Make Homemade Self Raising Flour
If you have run out of Self Raising Flour at home, you can make some more using Bicarbonate of Soda. Just add 1/2 teaspoon of bicarb and 1 teaspoon of Cream of Tartar to every one cup of flour and mix well.
31. Remove Body Odour from the Arm Pit of Shirts
If you notice that there is embedded body odour on the under-arms of men’s shirts (and ladies but mainly men’s) – make a paste of bicarb and water and apply it to the yellowed area. Then allow it to dry before popping it in the wash as normal. It will remove the yellowing and the odour.
32. To Stop Body Odour Setting Into Laundry
Prevention is better than cure. To prevent body odour from setting into your laundry, add 1/2 cup of bicarbonate of soda to every wash.
33. Remove Grease and Oil Stains from Driveways
Sprinkle bicarbonate of soda onto the oily spot, then pour a little boiling water over the top and scrub it with a brush.
34. Drain Cleaner
If your sink is getting a bit slow – it means there is a blockage or grease build up in the pipes. Just add a cup or two of bicarbonate of soda straight onto the drain and pour 500ml of white vinegar over the top. It will bubble and will dislodge any greasy buildup in the pipes.
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35. Grout Whitener
Grout looking a bit less than sparkling white? Make a paste of bicarbonate of soda and water and apply it to the grout. Then use an old toothbrush to scrub the mixture into the grout and rinse. They will be whiter and brighter!
36. Make Your Cut Flowers Last Longer
Make your beautiful cut flowers last longer! Just trim the end of all of the cut flowers at an angle, then fill the vase full of water and add a teaspoon of bicarbonate of soda to the water and mix well to combine. Place the flowers back into the mixture!
37. Anti-Dandruff Treatment
If your shoulders look like lamingtons, you can treat your dandruff by dissolving a tablespoon of bicarbonate of soda into two litres of water and pouring it over your scalp and massaging it in before washing. Repeat this a few times per week until you notice a difference.
38. Use Bicarbonate of Soda as Dry Shampoo
Sprinkle a bit of bicarb onto your scalp and massage in for a great natural dry shampoo.
What do you use bicarb for around your home?