Have you ever been told to throw a lemon into your garbage disposal to freshen both it and your kitchen?
Proceed with caution!
Citric acid is a wonderful natural deodorizer, but it can corrode the metal in your disposal. Tough lemon peels can also damage the grinding components and clog your pipes. Next thing you know you’re calling the plumber.
The better way: Turn on the disposal and, while running cold water, dump in two or more trays of ice cubes. Though the noise is annoying, this method will safely dislodge buildup on the walls and the impellers which grind up the food. Then use vinegar to deodorize.
Now for the second dubious tip. Most dishwashers today come with a built-in dispenser for commercial rinse aids, plus a free sample to get you started. So now you’re addicted to spot-free glasses every time. The rinse aid is a regular item on your shopping list...and it costs almost $4 for 8 ounces!
The better way: Fill the rinse-aid dispenser with plain white vinegar. Seriously, try it.
Rinse aid does help dishes dry faster, which stops those annoying wet drips from top rack to bottom while you unload. But instead of spending the money, unload the bottom rack first while letting the top rack air dry.
And lastly, if you frequent Pinterest or Facebook, you might have been told to put dryer sheets in air vents for a sweet smell.
If you follow this popular hack, you’ll block the flow of air in your vents. Your HVAC system will have to work harder. Your energy costs go up. The blockage even can pose a fire risk when the furnace is pumping out hot air.
If fragrant air is what you’re after there are other options.
The better way: Give each room — or each day — a signature scent with all-natural scented candles, sprays, oils, and aromatherapy devices. If you’re seeking a scent to mask an offensive odor, however, it’s important to find and remove the source. Some stink culprits — like mold, mildew, sewage, and gas leaks — can carry health risks.
Dryer sheets can harm your dryer by coating the sensors. You might look into felted wool dryer balls to reduce static and decrease dryer time safely and naturally.
Here's hoping these tips help keep your house safer and save you a little money.
If you're interested in more ways to save money, read about new technologies that can help you with just that!