7 Unusual Tricks for Your Cleanest Floors Ever
There's no way around it. Whether you've hardwood, tile or carpet, all floors need to be cleaned of dirt and debris brought in from the outside. But this traditional task doesn't have to be so... boring. Check out our favorite unconventional tricks to get your floors cleaner than ever.
Cloth diapers are both soft and absorbent - if you think about it, their main function depends on it. These properties also make them great for buffing up after a thorough cleaning of your hardwood. So when you're not wrapping them around your babies' bottoms, save a few of these (clean!) cloth diaper liners and cloth inserts to use around the house for wiping up.
1. Iron out dents in the hardwood
Like stiff wrinkles in clothing, dents in your hardwood floor can be ironed out with a little steam. Simply place a damp cloth or paper towel on the dent and move the iron (on high heat) in a circular motion over the area for a few minutes. Don't use this method on waxed floors or you'll get a white halo around the spot. Always test an inconspicuous area first.
2. Hide scratches with tea
Lighter scratches in your hardwood floors, on the other hand, can be concealed with a strong infusion of tea. Place a black tea bag in a cup and steep it in just a few tablespoons of water; the longer you wait, the darker the finish can become. Then apply the brew to your scratches with a cotton swab, using a few more dabs for dark floors, and let the stain dry.
3. Wipe away scratches with a tennis ball
Maintenance crews in commercial buildings have been using this trick for years: Say goodbye to black scratches on your floors by erasing them with a tennis ball. If these types of scratches are a regular problem for you, cut a slit in the tennis ball and stick it on the end of a broom handle or mop. Store your new, double-used tool in the broom closet.
4. Remove pet hair from carpets
Don't let pet hair in your carpets drive you crazy. If even the best vacuums can't suck up the matted or fine fur, run a squeegee over your carpets instead. You'll be surprised - and perhaps disgusted - at how much hair you collect this way.
5. Polish your grout lines with shoes
Cleaning grout is a perennial challenge. If you've tried all the usual methods and your grout still doesn't look as white as you'd like, fake it with a little white shoe polish (the liquid version in the bottle with the sponge attachment is the easiest to use). Apply the polish and let it sit overnight. In the morning, wipe the polish off the tiles and your grout will appear like new.
6. Vacuum the safe way
When vacuuming under furniture and in other areas you can't see well, stretch a piece of nylon pantyhose over your hardwood attachment. Dust and dirt will be sucked up and held by this netting, but Lego pieces and loose change won't.
7. Use diapers for a change
Cloth diapers are both soft and absorbent - if you think about it, their main purpose depends on it. These properties also make them great for buffing up after a thorough cleaning of your hardwood. So when you're not wrapping them around your babies' bottoms, save a few of these (clean!) cloth diaper liners and cloth inserts to use around the house for wiping up.