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ETpro's avatar

Which cleaning products can pinch hit for others?

Asked by ETpro (34208 points ) March 27th, 2011

The average home today has a bewildering array of specialized cleansers meant for this, that or the other typical personal hygiene or household cleaning task. There is certainly the original mainstay of cleaning, soap. Then there is dish liquid. There is one or more laundry detergent. Perhaps a body wash. Hair shampoo. Ajax™ or Bon Ami™ or some such abrasive cleanser. Drano™ or one of its fellow drain cleaners. Tooth paste. Mouthwash.

Clearly these products, while all meant for some form of cleaning, are not entirely interchangeable. Listerene™ won’t do much good in a clogged drain and one would certainly not want to gargle with Drano™. But many cleaning products can, when some other cleaner is not available, be put in to pinch hit. A pure bar soap like Ivory™, for instance, may not taste very good but it does a decent job of replacing toothpaste. However it leaves a film on fine crystal and clothing, and so doesn’t work well for dish liquid or clothing detergent. Which ones can pinch hit, and for which other products?

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12 Answers

TexasDude's avatar

Denatured alcohol will clean a ton of stuff. Stuff that isn’t in your body, of course.

Taciturnu's avatar

Vinegar. It can clean clothing, porous and non-porous surfaces and it’s even good to rinse your hair with.

optimisticpessimist's avatar

Baking soda is an awesome product with many uses. It can be used instead of toothpaste. It also replaces any scrubbing cleaners. Here is 60 Uses

Coca cola also has many uses. (After reading the list, you will wonder why you even drink the stuff.)

jca's avatar

before I hired a cleaning lady, I used to clean practically the whole bathroom with Windex.

DominicX's avatar

I use Windex for everything. It’s an omni-cleaner; it’s for much more than just cleaning windows. I use it as an all-purpose cleaner on all kinds of surfaces and it works wonders. :\

ETpro's avatar

@Fiddle_Playing_Creole_Bastard Thanks for that suggestion. But yeah, put it in your body and it’ll clean your clock.

@Taciturnu Really> That’s news to me. GA.

@optimisticpessimist Thanks. That is a long laundry list in your link.

@jca & @DominicX Thanks. I forget to even list Windex™.

TexasDude's avatar

@ETpro, I’ve cleaned glass, wood, and metal with it to good effect. It also works well as a solvent in ultrasonic cleaners.

ETpro's avatar

@Fiddle_Playing_Creole_Bastard I imagine it would be a great solvent for any organics in an ultrasonic cleaner. Thanks.

jca's avatar

Lestoil (available in supermarkets, it’s similar to Pine Sol) is good for taking out laundry stains. It’s a heavy duty floor cleaner/degreaser.

ETpro's avatar

@jca We have Pine-Sol® but I had not previously heard of Lestoil®. Is it better?

jca's avatar

I put this on another thread: someone asked how to get ballpoint ink out of fabric. I said that I had ballpoint ink on a tee shirt once, and I went to take the shirt to a dry cleaner, as it was new and I wanted to save it. When I went to the dry cleaner, the lady said to me “Why are you taking this here? You should just put Lestoil on it and throw it in the wash.” I bought Lestoil, followed her suggestion, and voila, no more ball point ink. Lestoil, is like an industrial strength degreaser that can be used for floor cleaning, probably washing walls, etc. I don’t know how it compares to Pine Sol since I don’t buy Pine Sol, but apparently Lestoil is good for removing ball point ink and probably other stains. Since reading the post about the ball point ink, I am going to buy myself a bottle of Lestoil and have it in the laundry room.

ETpro's avatar

@jca Thanks. I’ll try some.

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