April 4, 2011
The lemon is one of my favorite fruits – it’s perfect for beverages, great in desserts, and even yummy in main dishes. I’ve recently discovered many more uses for the lemon, especially around the house! I gave all of these ideas a try this week – find out which methods worked, and which ones to pass on!
Garbage disposal freshener
Slice up a whole lemon, place into disposal, run water and turn on disposal. Drain will now smell fresh and clean.
The verdict: This really works! While I prefer using a clementine, the lemon greatly improved the smell of our garbage disposal, naturally.
Apply lemon juice to windows or shower door with a sponge. Use crumpled-up newspapers to dry.
The verdict: I noticed a remarkable difference in the clarity of my windows after cleaning with lemon juice. I would say it cleaned as well as vinegar window cleaner, but smells nicer. Drying with newspaper is the key.
Cut a lemon in half; sprinkle with course salt. Supposedly removes stains even from laminate countertops with scrubbing. Rinse and dry.
The verdict: This did not work for me. It removed stains on my countertop only as well as regular water does – nothing special here.
Place a few lemon slices in a bowl of water, microwaving on high for one minute.
The verdict: This works great if you really scrub the inside of the microwave afterward. Using chemical cleaners in the microwave is really not a good idea since we cook our food in it, but the steam from the water loosens grime, while the lemon gives the microwave a fresh scent. Good for getting rid of that burnt popcorn smell. (tip: if even the lemon juice doesn’t get rid of bad smells, try microwaving a bowl of vinegar on high for 2-3 minutes.)
Clean a stainless steel sink
Rub with the cut side of half a lemon. Rinse, and buff with a cloth.
The verdict: I also thought this method was so-so. While it did remove much of the grime in my sink, I don’t think it did a much better job than hot water and sponge. It was good enough though, with a good enough shine; not the method I would do for my big Spring cleaning, but maybe for touch-ups.
There are many more uses for lemons out there – here are a few more ideas:
DIY furniture polish: mix juice from one lemon, 1 tsp olive oil, and 1 tsp water. Rub a thin coat onto wood furniture, and buff to shine.
Remove tea kettle mineral deposits: thinly slice a lemon peel, place into kettle. Fill with water, and bring to a boil; remove from heat. Let set for one hour, drain, and rinse.
Freshen a cutting board: After washing a cutting board with soap and hot water, rub with half a lemon, let set in juice, and rinse.
Keep your brown sugar soft: wash and scrub wax off lemon peel, and try to remove as much pith from the peel as possible. Add to brown sugar supply – it helps retain moisture.
Have you tried any of these methods? How did they work for you? Do you have any other clever uses for lemons?