In the modern world we live in there’s an answer on Google for almost all the problems we come across.
Pub quizzes are ruined, conversations cut short, and everyone has access to the same information.
So, are we really better off?
Plenty of research suggests that ‘screen time’ isn’t harmful, but then plenty of articles are against it. That’s the problem, isn’t it? With all this information, who’s right and who’s wrong?
We appreciate the irony of saying this right before we give you some advice and then post it on the internet, but we want to help cut through the confusion. We’ve taken the best internet advice, our expertise, and that of others who are trusted in the industry, and found 11 cleaning tips that really don’t work, despite what the web and old wives’ tales might lead you to believe.
Hot water kills all germs
Even boiling hot water isn’t enough to kill all germs. Using hot water alone (without a detergent or antibacterial cleaner) won’t always clear away dirt and grime that could later lead to infections and disease.Research shows that even hand washing can be more effective with soap than hot water, according to The Conversation.
Using more detergent will give you cleaner laundry
Ah… this is a very common misconception - and simply not true. Got some really ground-in stains? Think adding more detergent will help?Think again. Adding more might actually cause more harm to the clothes or linen than removing the stain. It’s how you treat the stain that counts.
Some people even think that the recommended amount you need is purely designed to get you to use more product. Ooh, those naughty manufacturers! Some people believe even the standard amount might be too much and that you should test using less detergent. Try it and let us know how you get on?
Coca-cola in the toilet?
Legend has it that Coca-cola used to clean their truck engines with the stuff, so it’s bound to be able to deal with an old and stained toilet pan, right? Well, although Coke might rot a tooth overnight and clean a penny, it’s not actually the best for cleaning your toilet. A normal detergent is better than Coca-cola for cleaning your pan and Coca-colaadvise against it, too!
Microwaving your sponges
An interesting one this, and a very common internet tip.Microwaving your sponge sounds like it might work. With the high temperatures your microwave is capable of, it must be able to kill germs?
Well, yes it can, but not before it destroys your sponge or cloth! The temperature needed to kill the germs far outweighs the tolerance of your cleaning cloth or sponge. Microwaving your sponge doesn’t kill the germs like you think it does. Give it a miss.
Remove ink stains with hairspray
OK, this used to work. Back in the 50s and 60s when hairspray was all the rage (and very VERY strong) this trick would work. Back then, hairspray was 100% alcohol (and presumably a fire risk to your hair and head) and so it was great for removing ink. Modern day hairspray isn’t anywhere near this though and has a mixture of different acrylics instead. So don’t bother trying that one or you could make your stain worse.
White wine removes red wine
We quashed this rumour on our blog recently and declared that white wine doesn’t remove red wine stains and in fact just wastes white wine! We can never condone that sort of activity! White wine doesn’t remove red wine stains at all and actually in the worst-case scenario simply dabbing it with a clean cloth or covering the stain with saltworks far better.
Never rub it in. And stop chucking perfectly good sauvignon at it!
Lemons wash everything
Lemons are great and they do have a really good smell and a cleaning ability that many old wives’ tales will talk about. But the fact is, modern day cleaners are better than lemon juice and you’re better off putting that lemon in a G&T to celebrate a clean house instead!
Lemons are not much better in a dishwasher either. So again, go for the recommended cleaner, salt, and rinse aid for the best results (and smells).
Buff your windows with newspaper
Remember this one? Every good house clean involves the windows being cleaned and the humble newspaper was the perfect buffing tool for the best finish. Have you ever held newspaper for a long time? The residue left on your hands is really not something you want on your window and newspapers aren’t made like they used to be, so this hack has probably gone off over time. Buff them with a clean, dry cloth instead.
Tomato ketchup on the silver (and the dog)
Ketchup has vinegar as one of the main ingredients and this has some cleaning prowess in the kitchen and home. Particularly on glass. But using ketchup to clean silver doesn’t work, and it just leaves a mess on your silver.
Oh… and if your dog rolls in poo, ketchup just makes them red! you’re better off with the specially designed Fox PooShampoo instead as it also protects and nourishes the animal’s fur and skin at the same time. And they are less likely to smell like a combination of fox and tomato.
Polishing leather sofas with Mr Sheen
It would make sense to use a polish to polish, right? That old leather sofa needs a shine on it and you’re already dusting the shelves so…why not!? Well the can of Mr Sheen polish will actually damage your leather sofa and take the protective layer off it, so don’t do it! You’re recommend to– you guessed it – use the correct polish and treatment for your leather furniture.
Using washing up liquid on your car
When you were a child, you were probably given the job of cleaning your parents’ car (this was before the days of hand carwashes which are very reasonable and more effective). One of the things you will have been taught was that you need soapy water to remove the dirt and of course not to wipe it off before the dirt breaks and falls off as this would cause swirls and scratches.
But using washing up liquid to clean a car is a big no-no.These aren’t designed to work with your car’s body work and might strip off the protective wax! Stick to the recommended products that are made for cars.
Experts know best…
We find that when you need help, ask the experts – not the internet.
A manufacturer or an expert in the field (like a dry cleaners, car body shop, or window cleaner) will know the best products to use and as times have really moved on since those old wives’ tales were created.
We think you’ll find that many of them don’t work any more, as the products and the items being cleaned have changed so much. It’s a bit of a shame, but things change and times have moved on.
We’re also always happy to help you, so please do contact us if we can help your home cleaning work better for you.