Borax has been around for years and was originally discovered in Tibet in dry lake beds. It was commonly used during the 19th century for laundry and other cleaning purposes. Also known as sodium borate, Borax today is still used for many cleaning purposes as well as many other tasks. You can use it to make homemade laundry detergent, add a cleaning boost to any other detergent and even keep ants and other pests away.
Known most commonly as Mule Team Borax, you can find this powder at most grocery stores, Wal-Mart and many online shops. It is relatively inexpensive which makes it a great choice for many household jobs. The great part is that it takes very little Borax to get the job done. It has awesome cleaning properties and you can use it in so many different DIY recipes. We have a great collection of some of these cleaning purposes for you that are easy to make and will really make your life a little easier.
1 Keep Pests Away
Borax is very effective at keeping cockroaches, ants, water bugs and a few other household pests at bay. You just have to mix equal parts of borax with regular sugar. The sugar helps to draw the bugs in and the borax takes them away – permanently. Take care that you do not leave this out where pets or small children can reach it. Mule Team Borax actually recommends that you keep it away from your pets so keep the bug treatment somewhere that pets cannot reach.
Good places are under stoves, refrigerators or sinks. These are areas that are normally infested the most anyway so they are good places to begin treating your home for pests. Borax also works well on mice. You just have to sprinkle it in areas where you think mice may be hiding and it will work wonders to get rid of those bothersome pests. You can also sprinkle it on carpet and vacuum to remove fleas or sprinkle on your mattress to rid your bed of bed bugs.
2. Get Rid of Rust
Mixing 1 cup of Borax with 2 cups of warm water and 1 tablespoon of lemon juice works wonders on rust. If you have old pots and pans that are rusted, you can add this solution, which should be like a paste, and let them sit for about 15 minutes. Rinse and then just scrub the rust away.
This works well on things other than dishes, too. You can use it to remove rust from appliances and virtually anything metal. Imagine the work that you can do to old patio furniture. Just remove the rust and paint. If you find that the rust is a bit stubborn, leave a second coating on to sit for another 15 to 20 minutes and it should lift right off with a scrubbing sponge.
3. Make an All-Purpose Cleaner
Mixing just 2 tablespoons of Borax with 2 cups of hot water makes a wonderful all-purpose cleaner. Just mix the solution together in a spray bottle and use it to clean kitchens and bathrooms or just anywhere you need a little extra boost for your cleaning. This is a very inexpensive cleaner, when compared to other all-purpose cleaners on the market, and the Borax is great for getting really stubborn stains off.
You can use it to remove crayon and pencil marks from your walls – test a spot first to make sure that the paint doesn’t come off. It makes a great degreaser for stoves and countertops and your bathtub will really sparkle when you clean it with Borax.
4. Make a Floor Cleaner
1 teaspoon of dish detergent mixed with 1/3 cup of Borax, 1 tablespoon of ammonia and a gallon of hot water makes a wonderful floor cleaner. The Borax will help to get stubborn stains from the floor and you can use it on tile, linoleum or hardwood flooring.
Scuff marks from the kids’ shoes will come up easily due to the scrubbing power of Borax. Note that if you are not really a fan of ammonia, you can use lemon juice instead if you want. It gives a much better aroma and still helps you to get your floors sparkling clean. Just spray on your floors or add to your mop bucket and mop away. The mixture of cleaners along with the cleaning power of Borax will remove virtually any stain from your floors, even if they’ve been there for a while.
5. Make Your Own Liquid Plumber
Just ½ cup of Borax poured down your drain will unclog it when you follow with a couple of cups of boiling water. Add the Borax followed by the boiling water and leave for at least 15 minutes. Then just run your tap water until it is all flushed out.
The Borax helps to break down gunk and stuff that gets stuck in your drain and the boiling water helps to flush it all away. Not only will this remove that gunk and unclog your sink drain, it will also clean and disinfect it so it will smell much better when you are finished.
Who says you have to pay a fortune for drain treatments? Borax is much cheaper and works just as well as the best drain cleaners on the market. You can also add it to your garbage disposal to clean and disinfect it and to keep it from clogging.