Cleaning Tips & Tricks

Whether you have a cleaner or not there is still some cleaning tasks that you just always have to do in between visits from United Home Services.

I hope these tips make it just a bit easier!

Please read all of the product or material instructions on or regarding the item before trying any of our tips.

We do not guarantee these tips or tricks will work for every product or material.

Air FreshenerCarpet---rectangle
Ants
Blood Stains
Canvas Cleaning
Chewing Gum
Chocolate Stains
Cleaning Products
Concrete Cleaning
Eucalyptus uses
Fly Repellant
Glass Cleaner
Grease on Fabric
Grease on Carpet
Ink Stains on Fabrichttp://www.dreamstime.com/stock-photography-front-shirts-isolated-image22157482
Natural Disinfectant
Pen Stains
Perspiration Stains
Pest Control
Pet Stains
Pet Urine on Carpet
Red Wine on Carpet
Spring Cleaning
Tea & Coffee Cup Stains
Tea & Coffee Stains on Fabric
Tile & Grout Stains
Vomit on Carpet
Water Wise Gardens
Washing Oversized Items

Cleaning/Carpet Cleaning Tips & Other Useful Tricks

Air Freshener

You can make your own air freshener by dissolving 1/2 a teaspoon of antiseptic essential oil in 1 teaspoon of methylated spirits. Mix with 500 mls distilled water and then store in a airtight glass bottle.

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Ants

Ants can be a problem. The biggest problem is that you don’t necessarily want to bombard antsthe poor fellows with chemicals, you just wish they would go elsewhere or around your house or through the garden just not in your kitchen.

Here are some of the old tried and true remedies.

Try sprinkling either talcum powder or borax (available from your local hardware or most supermarkets.

Another ant deterrent is a paste made of boiling two cups of sugar with one cup of water and two tablespoons of borax.

Possibly try spinkling a few crumbled bay leaves on windowsills each month.

Of course if the old faithfuls don’t work out contact the local extermination service.

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Blood Stains

Fresh blood stains can be treated with a saline solution.

Make a slaine solution with a teaspoon of salt and half a litre of cold water. Soak or sponge the stain as quickly as possible.

If the blood has dried, soak it for as long as possible and give the material a good old fashioned rub with your hands every once in a while and the old shaddow will break up.

Alternatively, place a paste of borax and water on the stain, leave till dry and brush off.

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Canvas Cleaning

Canvas sails and chairs can get badly stained if put away wet or dirty. Salt water is in fact the best cleanser. So take them to the beach if you can or scrub them with salt and water.

Tip – never use detergent on canvas unless the manufacturer recommends it.

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Chewing Gum

If the kids get gum on their clothes, put a block of ice on the gum or the garment in the freezer inside a plastic bag. It is relatively easy to scrape off once frozen.

Sponge with eucalyptus oil to remove any residue.

I found the eucalyptus oil worked on getting the gum off my dog’s fur too!

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Chocolate Stainsdreamstimefree_81834

Clean any chocolate stains with soap and cold water and then clean again with soap and hot water.

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Cleaning Products

Over the years I have spent an absolute fortune on cleaning products from the

Cleaning Services

supermarket. At around $5-$10, each they are an expensive item to add to your shopping cart. When you realise that in some cases the product is up to 80% water it’s a bit hard to swallow.

I have changed to buying my cleaning products in bulk and saved hundreds of dollars a year and a whole lot of time. In the last 8 months I have not once run out of any cleaning or laundry product. Buying in concentrates is another cost effective way of buying your products.

So what do I use? I have a preference for environmentally friendly products so I found a cirtis based cleaning range that suited my tastes. United Home Services recommend a citrus product range. If you want more information about this range, please email us at newsletter@unitedhomeservices.com.au . We guarantee you’ll love the products and we can definatley save you money.

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Concrete Cleaningdreamstimefree_229302

Concrete, driveways and paths build up dirt, grime, oil grease and all the possible stains of things we walk, ride or drive over the top of them. There are lots of ways to clean them from the unusual to the heavy duty…. This is a strange one but it really works!! Kitty litter will clean concrete. First wet down the concrete, spread the kitty litter and then scrub it down with a stiff yard broom.

For the realy hard to move stains, Tricleanium is a very strong chemical and must be handled with care and safety gear, but will remove most stains. Check the directions and follow closely.

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Eucalyptus Uses

eucalyptus oil

For stains of unknown origin, or stains which have dried, try a dab of eucalyptus. Eucalyptus is also good for removing some glue stains, chewing gum residue and sticky substances.

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Fly Repellent

Ah yes the good old blowey!Australia’s great summer partner. You can ward off blow flies by growing basil in pots nearby entrances. You can also try crushed garlic on your ledges.

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Glass Cleanerwindow cleaning

Shannon Lush, co-author of the Spotless book series, recommends cleaning windows and mirrors using equal parts of methylated spirits and water. You can also use equal parts of white vinegar and water in a spray bottle. Squirt on the surface and wipe using a lint-free-cloth, paper towel or newspaper. To prevent mould on windows that don’t receive much sun, add a few teaspoons of tea-tree oil per litre of water.

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Grease on Fabric

Apply a little baby oil to the stain with a cotton ball, rubbing in circles.Then soak in Napisan and hot water before washing as usual.

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Grease on Carpet

Grease is hard to remove, cover the stain with talcum powder. If there is any residue, try Carpet---rectanglethree layers of brown or absorbent paper and hold a hot iron over them. The paper absorbs the grease.

A mixture of talcum powder and a few drops of dry-cleaning fluid left to dry and then brushed off may do the trick.

If having trouble call us and we will have our carpet cleaner come over. Ring 1800 222 899.

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Ink Stains on Fabricink-stain

I know that this sounds odd, but the best way to remove ink stains is with curdled milk. Stand a carton of milk in the sun until solids form. Apply the solids to the stain. Leave until you can see the ink rising up, and then wash with detergent and water.

 

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Natural Disinfectant2010-essential-oils

You can make your own natural disinfectant. Dissolve 30 drops of disinfectant essential oil (try lemon or tee tree oil) in 1 teaspoon of methylated spirits. Mix in one litre of distilled water and store in an airtight glass bottle.

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Pen StainsIsolated pen

Marks caused by ball point pens can often be removed from material if you dab the stain with methylated spirits or equal part of methylated spirits and vinegar. On old or dries stains, mix talcum powder and calcium chloride in equal parts, make it into a paste with methylated spirits. Leave to dry on the stain, and then brush off.

On vinyl couches or chairs use hairspray.

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Perspiration Stains

Perspiration marks on work shirts or hats. Ever had underarm smell on washed clothes that just will not go? It is fixable! First, soak the item with a soaker product to get the whole garment fresh.

Then, sponge the area with white vinegar and apply a mixture of: 3 aspro clears plus the same amount of cream of tartar (get this from the cake cooking area at the supermarket). Leave this for 20 minutes before washing.

If all else fails, cloudy ammonia in water painted onto the area, leave it for 20 mins and then wash.

Note: try any of these remedies in an out of eyesight area first!

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Pest Control – Natural

BLOW FLIES – Try growing basil in the ground or in pots, near the areas the blowies are inhabiting. Crushed garlic is another one they are not too fond of.

CATS – My moggie loves the freshly turned soft earth to then use as her toilet. Not so nice when you get your hands right into your work! Sprinkling a little cloudy ammonia or kerosene on a cloth and leaving it on the spot to deters them. Cats really do not like orange peel so leave them around the area, cut side up.

GARDEN SPRAY – In a bucket of water, put a small packet of Epsom Salts and 1 teaspoon of Condies Crystals (you can get these from the chemists). Pour a few cupfuls of this Cut the Grassaround your plants every couple of weeks.

OR

There are various garlic sprays: Blend 4 chillies, 4 onions, 2 whole bulbs of garlic and cover this with water. Leave it for a day or so, strain it and add water to make up 4 litres.

POSSOMS – They love all the new shoots on your plants and trees. Quassia chip (get them from the plant nursery)put in tied up old stockings are harder to see and should deter them. They also hate naphthalene flakes and this can be put around the same way (Note: keep this away from your pets)

SLUGS – sink an old cup, can or saucer into the ground and fill with a bit of beer! The slugs vegie gardenwith drown, nice and happy!

NEMATODES (and insects) – You will not know this little parasite is there in the soil sucking the life out of your crops, it is microscopic. Your crop just will not do as well as it could or will die slowly for no reason. If you plant marigolds amongst your vegies (especially beans, spinach, tomatoes and celery), insects in general will avoid the area above the ground. The roots produce a chemical and leave it in the soil and this will kill the nematodes. (also see asparagus beetle)

BIRDS – Aluminium pie plates hanging by a bit of string on trees scare these away by the slight sounds or light reflection. Old Sheer curtains or mosquito nets frustrate them as well (tie a couple of rocks to one end of the material and throw it to get them over the top of taller trees)

EARWIGS – Young plants dying or vanishing overnight? Dampen a newspaper, roll it into a IMG_6031tight cylinder and place it near the poor plant. It should be full of the little critters in the morning. Burn this mini hotel or seal it well in a bag and place it in the bin. Continue doing this each night until the morning you find no earwigs.

ASPARAGUS BEETLE – This beetle hates tomato plants so planting them next to each other should do the trick. In return, the asparagus kills the nematodes parasite which attacks the tomato.

BEETLES (general) – to deter them, plant natural beetle repellents nearby: flax, horseradish, garlic, eggplant, snap beans, nightshade.

You could try handpicking the beetles and crushing the eggs.

Try dusting the tops of potato leaves with wheat bran. The beetles will eat it and bloat up until they die.

Or, ladybugs and toads eat beetles.

Lastly, spray your plant with basil water.

APPLE MAGGOT – Plant white clover, home to good beetles.

Hang fly-traps in trees from mid-December through the picking, baited with a mixture of molasses, water, and yeast on strips of old material.

CORN-EAR WORM – Sweet corn is protected by applying mineral oil with a medicine dropper into the silk at the tip of the ear. (about 1 dropper) after the silk turns brown.

Corn varieties with a tightly closed ear keep the corn borer away just that little bit better; attach clothes pegs to the ear tips to physically block out the worms.

Clip the silk every four days or plant marigolds near the corn.

CABBAGE WORM – Plant tomatoes, onions, garlic or sage around cabbage to deter the worm. If you plant strawberry plants next to the cabbage, Braconid wasps are attracted and love to eat these little worms!

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Pet Stains

Mop up excess moisture quickly. First sponge with white vinegar or soda water and then with Windex. If traces of the stain or smell remain have the carpets professionally cleaned by United Home Services Carpet Cleaning.

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Pet Urine on Carpet

If the stain is recent, sponge with white vinegar and spray with Windex. Keep sponging the area with a clean cloth. You can also finish off with a eucalyptus solution to remove any odour.

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Red Wine on Carpetcarpet-cleaning-red-wine-250x150

Cover the stain with bicarbonate of soda and stand for a few minutes. Vacuum then re-apply a lesser amount. Add a little vinegar and scrub with a nylon brush. Dry then vacuum. If all else fails, ring our 1800 222 899 to book in a United Home Services Approved Carpet Cleaner.

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Spring Cleaning

Spring Cleaning your home can be a chore and a bore! Let United Home Services take care springflowersof spring cleaning the house, the garden, the carpets, rugs and upholstery and the curtains while you relax. It can be quite a process spring cleaning your home. By the time you’ve gone through all the kitchen cupboards, the pantry, the wardrobes, the linen cupboard, the garage, and then begin to think of the garden its all becomes too much. Why not let United Home Services take care of all the gritty work and you just do the fun stuff.

United Home Services can provide spring cleaning of your home, spring cleanups out in the garden, spring clean the carpets, rugs and upholstery.

United Home Services franchisees provide free quotes are fully insured, police checked and give you a satisfaction guarantee.

You will be pleased you called us.

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Tea & Coffee Cup Ringsdreamstimefree_223222

 

This stain is easily removed by rubbing the inside quite firmly using your fingers with either plain salt or a lemon. If lemons are scarce, use salt and vinegar.

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Tea & Coffee Stains on Fabric

Apply glycerine with a cotton ball or makeup pad and then wash as you would usually with detergent and water.

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Tile & Grout Stains

Great homemade tile and grout cleaner that is safe for frequent use.

We can have your shower shining again!

1/2 cup of baking soda; 1/3 cup of ammonia; 1/7 cup of vinegar; 7 cups of water

Combine all the ingredients in a spray bottle and shake well. Simply spray it on and wipe off with a damp cloth or sponge, no rinsing required. Do not use in conjunction with bleach.

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Vomit on Carpet

With small children around this can often happen. Wipe the area with a cloth as soon as possible and then cold water. Try bi-carb of soda to lift any stubborn areas. Try a 600ml solution of water and bi-carb of soda. Don’t get the carpet too wet. Follow up by sponging with eucalyptus which will help to remove the odour.

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Water Wise Gardenswaterwise-garden_1

With water restrictions a fact of life now, consider replacing what’s left of your lawn with tough native grasses, mulch, paving or gravel.

Native grasses will naturally be tufty and will not give the smooth surface we associate with a lawn. However, they have the advantage of reducing ambient noise and improving biodiversity (the number and variety of beneficial animals and insects in your garden) as well as looking much more attractive than bare ground.

Gravel is a great alternative to lawn, and looks particularly effective spread through your garden beds as a water conservation mulch.

If you need a playing surface for children, consider artificial grass, paving or one of the commercial playground surface materials.

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Washing Oversized Itemsdoona_bgpink

If you need to wash large items such as doona’s, washable electric blankets, mattress protectors, woollen under blankets or large items read this article to help you. Before laundering a washable electric blanket, protect the plug by tucking it into the corner of the blanket and pinning it into place (make sure you check the instructions before attempting to wash). Before washing feather pillows repair weaknesses and holes, then put the pillow in cases. Fill the washing machine with water and push two pillows in until soaked. Use the gentle cycle, but halfway through turn the machine of and turn the pillows or item over. When done, put them in the dryer or squeeze in a thick towel. Hang in the sun to dry thoroughly. To wash down a sleeping bag, put it in the tub in warm water (check the washing instructions first) and add mild detergent. Let it soak abut 30 minutes, squeeze the suds through it, then rinse it 3 times. Avoid twisting the bag, let it drip dry over the tub or on a line for 1 hour, squeezing out as much water as you can. Put it in the dryer as long as the washing instructions say this is ok, on a low setting; add a clean pair of runners to help ensure it dries evenly.

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