10 Popular Cleaning Hacks That Just Don’t Work

Most of us would love to find a cleaning hack that would just help us get the house spotless faster, without having to get exposed to a ton of chemicals or spend a fortune on them! However, the reality is harsher than we all intended and unfortunately, no miracle hack will make cleaning the house easier.

There are a lot of traditional ways of cleaning that are marketed as smart or eco-friendly because they don’t contain harsh chemicals, but they do not work as well as advertised. If anything, they are advertised as frugal since they use everyday items, but they actually end up costing you more: not only will you waste good everyday items you could have used for something else, but you will also end up buying the cleaning solutions you were avoiding in the first place.

That’s why we gathered and analyzed all these popular cleaning hacks and found out if they really work or not, so you wouldn’t have to waste more time trying them out and getting disappointed! If anything, some of these, despite being quite well known, don’t make much sense, to begin with. But there are still people who swear by them!

Let us know if you have any other hacks that people try to convince you to try out!

cleaning car
Image By thananit_s From Envato Elements

Dishwashing Detergent for Cleaner Cars

We all know that we should wash the car with some sort of soap-based detergent, in order to make sure that the grease and grime that could accumulate on the car is erased. However, dishwashing detergent is not the cleaning hack many make it out to be. Do not get us wrong, it will clean up your car well enough, yet you may end up washing more than you desire.

Washing detergent that is made for dishes and made to remove all the grime off plates and fight off different types of grease than the ones for cars. Your dish detergent will end up removing everything on the surface of the car, including polymers that are included in the car’s paint. If you frequently wash your car with dishwashing detergent, you are speeding up the oxidation process and “helping” your car rust faster.

Make sure you get a car wash cleaner that is made specifically for interacting with car paint. Generally, they have a gentler composition and will not eat away at your car in time.

Dryer Sheets For Clean Air

If years ago your mothers also told you to put dryer sheets in your air vents, then we hope you did not listen to her. It’s good to take the advice of our parents, but these cleaning hacks that do not work come from old times and they have not been contested since. This one is an example of a piece of advice that you should not take into consideration.

Dryer sheets only belong in the laundry, but they are definitely not for the air vent. Not only should you not mess with the HVAC system in your house, but the sheets can end up causing blockages in the airflow and even spread synthetic chemicals through your whole house. This will not only ruin your vents but also not bring in clean air.

We suggest you get some essential oil diffusers, or you can schedule changing the furnace filters, or you can deodorize your soft surfaces frequently to have your house smell fresher.

cleaning wine
Image By New Africa From Shutterstock

Fight Wine Stains with Wine

For some reason, there is a hack that keeps getting mentioned that doesn’t make so much sense. It goes like this: next time you accidentally spill red wine all over your shirt, you should open a bottle of white wine and pour it over. Unknown to any of us, this hack has been something accepted by some in society, yet all it will do is waste more wine and time.

It will not work and frankly is unimaginable that some would think it would. The best you could do is immediately rinse the spot with cold water which will make the shirt less stained when it dries, but since most of us cannot afford to get naked the moment that happens, you have to deal with it after. It is recommended to use a bit of hydrogen peroxide on the stain or use a stain remover.

Wood Polish For All Wood Furniture

Raw-wood furniture needs to be polished, to keep the surface shiny and the material healthy. However, if you have new furniture, you should avoid doing this. Old wood furniture is coated in a finish that will end up looking duller if you polish it, due to how it is formulated. Shellac, varnish, urethane, and polyurethane finishes are all derived from plastic, so you do not need to polish them, but rather clean them.

If you do not want to use too many chemicals on your furniture, you can always clean it with a little white vinegar and a microfiber rag. You may have to deal with the smell after though…

cleaning vinegar and baking soda
Image By focal point From Shutterstock

Vinegar and Baking Soda =  Cleaning Miracle

Let’s be honest, these two can make for some great cleaning products. However, that is on their own. If you want to mix them in order to clean a surface, you will be disappointed in the end, as it is not the cleaning miracle we were told it is. The fizz happens when you combine the two because vinegar is an acid and baking soda is a base, and together they neutralize each other: the end product is water.

The combination won’t help you clean anything, if anything it just creates a mess that you can easily avoid by just using normal cleaning products.

Filter Coffee Duster

Maybe it seems like it’s a cheaper alternative to getting a duster, but in reality, you are not doing much by using coffee filters to dust your furniture. It just moves dust around. It will not collect it. Fluffy dusters produce static that attracts dust particles, while others such as microfiber cloths work on the same idea.

You can even use a soft, damp cloth (the moisture will retain the dust) or even a vacuum with a nozzle attachment. Let the coffee filters do what they were designed to do: make coffee.

cleaning chalkboard
Image By Mint_Images From Envato Elements

Soda For Chalkboard

Popular wisdom says that you can make a chalkboard full of smudges look brand new if you use soda to clean it. However, it has been proven that the sugar in the soda will just cling to the surface of the chalkboard and leave behind a sticky mess. So while it seems like it is working, it will just do more damage.

If you DO want to get rid of those smudges, a better choice is to mix equal parts of water with everyone’s favorite, vinegar, then to spray the mixture on the board and wipe it down with a cloth. Easy and effective, and you can drink the soda afterward.

Salt Soak for Vibrant Colors

This one is quite well known, and many swear by it: if you soak your colored clothes in a salt mixture, they will be more vibrant and not bleed when they are washed. This trick will not help at all with the color running, and that is because the fabric itself is not properly finished. This means that no matter what you soak the clothes in, they will continue to bleed color and ruin the rest of the clothes you have in the washer with them.

cleaning wax paper
Image By Denis Val From Shutterstock

Wax Paper versus Dust

There are a lot of people who say that if you rub wax paper on the baseboards in your house, they will stop collecting so much dust. Wrong! Much like the rest of these cleaning hacks on our list, it’s not only not going to work, but rather creates more problems for you in the future.

Wax paper will leave a residue behind if you rub them on the baseboard. A sticky one full of chemicals, which is definitely going to attract dust and dirt until you realize it needs to be wiped. Instead of cleaner baseboards, you will end up with dirtier ones, so skip this one. Unfortunately, there isn’t any way to make the baseboard not attract so much dust, but you can always wipe them off with a dry microfiber cloth after you vacuum.

Vinegar and Dish Soap = Pet Odor Repellant 

Vinegar is our common household pantry staple that is a great cleaning agent as well: it helps with removing stains like a pro! However, it won’t work with all types of stains and especially with the ones caused by pets. Sure, it will help get the stains out of your light-colored tea towels, but if your precious furry friend got sick on the carpet or peed there, it will not do anything. The same goes for dish soap.

Both urine and vomit from animals will leave behind a specific stain and smell, and it can also make the pet think it is okay to go number 1 there. That’s why you should leave behind these old-fashioned solutions (that do not work) and get an enzyme cleaner, that will break down the proteins in the stain, leaving your textile materials looking spotless and getting rid of the smell.

Speaking of cleaning, are you sure you are cleaning everything you should be correctly? Find out about the items in your house that need more of your attention here!

Stephen

Content Writter

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