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20+ Cleaning Hacks You’ll Wish You Knew Sooner

Did you know you can clean a cheese grater with lemon? How about using ice to freshen the garbage disposal? We found crafty cleaning hacks that will have your kitchen sparkling!

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Someone turning the tap on to wash their hands at a kitchen sink.Catherine Falls Commercial/Getty Images

Use Vinegar to Clean the Gunk Around a Faucet

Hard water minerals and other gunk can build up around the base of your kitchen faucet. To remove it, soak a cloth in vinegar and place it directly on the faucet base. Let it sit for a couple of hours, then use the same cloth to wipe away the stains.

And don’t put away the vinegar yet! It’s a powerful and safe cleaning product to use around the house.

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Empty electric oven with grill stainless steel grate for barbecue_ultraforma_/Getty Images Plus

Use Salt to Clean a Messy Oven

Did your latest casserole bubble over while baking? Clean up the mess on the bottom of the oven by sprinkling a handful of salt on the spill while it’s still hot. The salt will help form a crust, making the mess much easier to clean once cooled.

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Fresh juicy lemons on a cutting board on a rustic woodenEkaterina Kondratova/Shutterstock

Clean a Cutting Board with Lemon

Is your wooden cutting board stained or smelling like onions? Sprinkle some salt on it, then scrub with the cut side of half a lemon. Rinse, then repeat if needed. Your board will be refreshed and ready to use.

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Baked on food residue; baking greese on pan; Burnt food on baking sheetTaste of Home

Revive a Grimy Baking Sheet

To bring a grimy baking sheet back to life: sprinkle some baking soda on the baking sheet, then pour on some hydrogen peroxide, followed by another sprinkling of baking soda. Let it sit for a couple of hours, then use a rag or sponge to wipe away the homemade cleaner.

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Stainless steal kitchen sink with water dropsBill Oxford/Getty Images Plus

Clean Your Garbage Disposal with Ice

If you notice an unpleasant smell coming from your garbage disposal, try this quick hack to clean it. Put a handful of ice down the drain, and turn on your disposal. The ice shards help to clean any gunk off of the blades. Turn on the faucet to give it one final rinse as the ice melts away.

Need some deodorizing power? Check out our Test Kitchen’s favorite garbage disposal cleaner.

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New luxurious kitchen interiorzstockphotos/Getty Images

Olive Oil Hack for Stainless Steel

It may sound counterintuitive, but you can remove oil with oil. For your stainless steel appliances, use a little bit of olive oil on a paper towel or cloth. Wipe in the same direction of the grain of the stainless steel, then use a soft cloth to buff it all away.

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Taste of Home

Use a Dryer Sheet to Clean a Casserole Dish

The conditioning ingredients in an unused dryer sheet can help remove baked-on food buildup from a baking dish. Fill the dish with hot water and drop in a dryer sheet. Let it soak for about 15 minutes, then dump out the water and dryer sheet. The stains should now be easy to scrub away with a sponge! Wash again with dish soap and water to remove any residue from the dryer sheet.

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Full frame of Grater utensilDouglas Sacha/Getty Images

Use a Lemon to Clean the Cheese Grater

Save sponges from getting shredded by wiping graters with lemon before washing. The lemon juice and flesh will loosen up any debris stuck in the small crevices. To finish, give it a thorough rinse.

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Conceptual of how to making drip coffee by herself.Boy_Anupong/Getty Images

Deodorize Your Refrigerator with Coffee

Coffee not only smells good when it’s brewing; it can deodorize your refrigerator. Simply place dry ground coffee in a bowl, and place in the fridge. The coffee grounds will absorb any foul odors.

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Close up of potatoesJamie Grill/Getty Images

Use a Potato to Scrub Cast Iron

Sure, you can cook potatoes in your cast-iron skillet, but did you know you can also use a potato to clean it? Sprinkle a handful of salt into the skillet, then use a potato half (flat side down) to scrub the salt around the pan in a circular motion. Rinse with water and pat dry.

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asian housekeeper in apron dusting the bookshelf by feather duster taking up the picture frame carefully cleaning in living room at home. young wife in rubber gloves doing housework.PRImageFactory/Getty Images

Clean from Top to Bottom

Here’s a time-saving hack that is all about cleaning in the right order. The secret? Work from top to bottom. Clear away dishes and wipe down all surfaces first, and save the floor for last. That way, any crumbs that fall on the floor will be swept up at the end.

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Using a toothbrush to clean groutThe Family Handyman

Use an Electric Toothbrush (in the Kitchen!)

Use an old electric toothbrush to scrub hard-to-reach places in the kitchen. This method is especially great for cleaning the grout of your tiled backsplash. Mix up baking soda and a little bit of water, apply it to the toothbrush and go to town!

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Kitchen in newly constructed houseDavid Sacks/Getty Images

Use a Vent to Reach Under the Fridge and Stove

The space between your fridge and the floor is a magnet for pet hair, dust, food crumbs and other small trinkets. To clean, use a dryer vent brush, to drag out all the debris. It won’t leave scratches on the floor and can reach further than a vacuum cleaner attachment.

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Trash canmrcmos/Shutterstock

Clean the Trash Can with…

Use a liquid toilet bowl cleaner to wash the inside of a dirty trash can! It will cling to the sides, making it easy to scrub away the grime with a sponge or scrub brush. Rinse well for a clean can.

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Electric stovetop with frying pangan chaonan/Getty Images

Grab a Razor Blade for Your Glass Stovetop

To remove those hard-to-clean spills or burned-on messes from a glass stovetop—try this hack. Gently scrape the stain with a single-edge razor blade at a 45-degree angle. The blade will get under the spill and scrape away the mess without scratching the surface.

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Clean a Can Opener with Wax PaperThe Family Handyman

Clean a Can Opener with Waxed Paper

Here’s a crazy cleaning tip for your manual can opener. Fold a sheet of waxed paper a few times; then clamp the can opener onto an edge of the waxed paper and turn the handle several times. The stiff sheet will break off bits of food and grime from the wheels of the can opener, and the wax residue will lightly lubricate the parts at the same time for smoother operation.

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Cleaning bathroom titles and grout.Dave Endsor/Getty Images

Clear Floor Grout with Toilet Cleaner

Toilet cleaner works surprisingly well on floor grout! Apply the cleaner to grout lines (the small nozzle is the perfect size to squeeze onto thin lines). Let it sit for about 30 minutes, then scrub with an old toothbrush. Rinse thoroughly.

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Open oven in industrial kitchenmoodboard/Getty Images

Clean the Oven with Citrus

For a quick way to clean your oven, add the juice of two lemons and 1/3 cup water to a baking dish, place it in the oven, and bake at 250º for 30 minutes. When heated, the lemons will emit vapors that can loosen up stubborn food stains. Once the oven has cooled down, remove any additional remnants with a scrub pad or firm spatula.

Just another reason to love cleaning with lemon—here are more!

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Young woman is cleaning the kitchen in home.Agnieszka Marcinska / EyeEm/Getty Images

Use Coconut Oil as Polish

Your wooden kitchen chairs and tables can be polished to like-new status with coconut oil. Wipe the wood with a damp cloth, then rub some coconut oil on the wood with a clean cloth in a circular motion. Let the wood absorb the oil for about 15 minutes, then wipe it away with a clean cloth.

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Black coffee machine in modern kitchen from side view. Soft colors, less post-processing. Blue glass plate in the background. Soft grain. Large copy space!StockImages_AT/Getty Images

Pour Vinegar in Your Coffee Maker

You only need one ingredient to clean your coffee maker: vinegar! Fill the water chamber with equal amounts of water and vinegar, and run the machine like you’re making coffee. Then, flush the system by running the machine with just water. Repeat until only clean water comes through.

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Close up of a slow cooker working on kitchen shelf; Shutterstock ID 310888622Devrim PINAR/Shutterstock

Deep Clean Your Slow Cooker

Fill the slow cooker insert with water, add 1/2 cup of baking soda and 1/2 cup of vinegar. Then turn it on low for an hour. When the time is up, discard the cleaning mixture and give the inside a quick rinse. It’s really that easy!

If you need more slow cooker cleaning tips, check these out.

Erica Young
Erica is a freelance lifestyle writer with a bachelor's degree in Journalism. Her favorite recipes are quick, easy and something her kids will actually eat. When she's not writing you'll find her organizing a closet, roaming the aisles at Target or nursing her third Diet Coke of the day.

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