11 solutions for the things in your home that are extremely hard to clean

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Few people truly enjoy cleaning house. Some parts of it aren't terrible, but for the most part it's kind of gross, a huge pain and you know it's all just going to get messy again anyway. But what if you could make some of those more disgusting cleaning-related chores less of a hassle?
Cleaning shouldn't take all of your time and energy. So instead of dreading this job, find ways to make cleaning easier and less of a time-suck. The tips below will help you take care of those harder to clean areas of your home with ease. Just a heads-up, though: you're going to need a lot of vinegar.
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1. Windows (h/t This Grandma is Fun)
Cleaning windows might be the absolute worst chore around the house. You spend so much time and work so carefully, yet still end up with streaks in the end. There's got to be a way to stop this madness! In fact, there is. Mix 1/2 gallon of warm water, 1 tablespoon of liquid Jet Dry and 3 tablespoons of dish soap in a bucket. Spray your windows with water and then wipe them down with your cleaning combination. Immediately spray them again and get a streak-free shine that works for both the inside and outside of your windows.
2. Microwave (h/t Practically Functional)
Cleaning your microwave can be a pain. There's food stuck to every surface in there and you have to bend your arm into awkward positions in order to do a thorough scrubbing. But there is a way to clean your microwave without all the hassle. Just put 2 cups of water and 2 tablespoons of vinegar in a microwave-safe bowl and microwave it for 5 minutes. After you remove the bowl, use a sponge to easily wipe out the left-over gunk. Or, if you have an Angry Mama microwave cleaner on hand, use it for the same purpose.
3. Bathroom grout (h/t Apartment Therapy)
A common element in most bathrooms is a tile floor. With this floor, comes the grout between the tiles. With this grout, comes all of the disgusting germs and mold that latches onto those hard-to-clean spaces. But before you start to consider installing flooring that doesn't include grout, try a simple cleaning method. Spray a vinegar/water mixture all over the floor and let it sit for 5 minutes before scrubbing with a grout brush. Then make a baking soda/water paste and use your brush to work it into the grout. Spray again with the vinegar/water combo, scrub and then rinse with warm water.
4. Shower doors (h/t Citywide Plumbing Pros)
If you have glass doors on your shower, then you know how difficult it is to remove hard water stains. One solution is to pour lemon juice on a sponge and scrub over the stains. Then dip your sponge into a vinegar/baking soda paste and scrub some more. Finally, spray the door with a vinegar/water mixture and squeegee off the excess moisture. If necessary, use a soft cloth to completely dry the door.
5. Stainless steel (h/t Dwell Beautiful)
Stainless steel appliances look awesome; until they get dirty. Then you discover that they're not the easiest items to clean. Fortunately, there is a fairly simple cleaning method that doesn't include purchasing any chemical-filled cleaners. Use a soft cloth to rub a vinegar/baking soda paste onto your appliances, leaving it to sit for about 10 minutes. Then wipe off the paste with a wet cloth, followed by a dry cloth to buff out any additional stains or smudges.
6. Toilets (h/t Wrapped in Rust)
While not especially hard to clean, toilets are still pretty gross and no one enjoys scrubbing them. (Unless, of course, you do. In which case, I have two that I will gladly let you take care of.) An unusual, but simple, method of toilet cleaning involves pouring lemon Kool-Aid powder into the water in your toilet. Let it sit and the acidic contents of the powder will get rid of any stains in the toilet, so you won't have to scrub as much when you do your regular cleaning.
7. Drip pans and stove burners (h/t Cute as a Fox)
There's a good chance that when you clean your kitchen you tend to forget about your drip pans and stove burners. They don't show as much grit and grime, so it's easy to ignore them. But when you want to give them a really good clean, all you have to do is put 1/4 cup of ammonia into a Ziploc bag and seal a drip pan or stove burner in the bag for 24 hours. When you open the bag, the gunk should easily wipe off of the pans and burners.
8. Keyboards and other technology (h/t Listotic)
If you need a quick, convenient way to clean the dust out from between your keyboard keys or any other hard-to-reach parts of your technology, grab your Shopvac and the lid from a ketchup bottle. Attaching the lid to the hose of the vacuum will allow you to get into all of those small nooks and crannies.
9. Garbage disposal (h/t Home Spot)
You've probably never seen the inside of your garbage disposal, but based on the things you drop in there, you can safely assume that it looks pretty gross. An easy way to clean it is to fill an ice cube tray with an 8:1 solution of water and vinegar, adding a piece of lemon rind for odor-control. Let this freeze into ice cubes and then drop them down the disposal. Turn it on and also run some water until the ice is completely ground up.
10. Top-loading washing machine (h/t One Good Thing)
Your washing machine is probably one of those appliances that you don't think about cleaning, since its job is to clean other things. But if you want your clothes to continue to look nice after a cycle in the washing machine, you're going to have to put in a little effort. To clean it, fill with hot water and add 1 quart of chlorine bleach. After the bleach step, fill the machine again with hot water, this time adding 1 quart of vinegar. Dip in a sponge and use it to wipe down the harder-to-reach areas and the outside of the machine. You'll run your machine through a cycle after each of these steps, so you'll be able to accomplish other tasks while your washing machine basically cleans itself.
11. Microfiber furniture (h/t 551 East)
Most people buy microfiber couches and chairs because they seem easy to clean. Well, this isn't necessarily true. In fact, light-colored microfiber can often show stains more easily. If you have some especially stubborn stains, put rubbing alcohol in a spray bottle and saturate the area of the stain. Use a sponge to scrub over the stain. After the area dries, use a bristle brush to "fluff" the fabric back to its original look.
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