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How to Make Your Own Cleaning Products

These mix-it-yourself cleaners use environmentally friendly ingredients — like baking soda and vinegar — and are cheap, cheap, cheap! So if you’ve run out of your favorite cleaning solution, don’t run to the store — try one of my standbys instead. If you’re not sure it’s right for the surface, test it on a small area first.

Heavy-Duty Scrub

• Half a lemon • 1/2 cup borax (a laundry booster; find it in the detergent aisle)

Great for: Rust stains on porcelain or enamel sinks and tubs

How to use: Dip lemon into borax and scrub surface; rinse. (Not safe for marble or granite.)

Grease Cleaner

• 1/2 cup sudsy ammonia mixed with enough water to fill a one-gallon container. (Sudsy ammonia, which has detergent in it, helps remove tough grime.)

Great for: Oven hoods, grills

How to use: Dip sponge or mop in solution and wipe over surface, then rinse area with clear water.