I have a concrete carport with a brick trim, and it doesn’t drain well and sometimes has leaves on it, meaning there’s a decent build-up of green mold and some black stuff that’s probably mold or some other fungus. What’s a good cleaner or other stuff to use to eliminate it, without a ton of scrubbing or causing some kind of major environmental damage to my yard?
Hi, AskMe! I recently received a refrigerator that was kept outside (through rain, in particular) for some time. The bulk of the mess is gone – trays and the interior are quite clean, though – but I'm concerned about everything we can't see. Will a little more in-depth cleaning of the gaskets and such help, or will it always be a food safety risk? Picture inside. [more inside]
my family of four is in the process of moving out of our junior 4 in manhattan to our very own house in the suburbs. what are your best house and home life tips? [more inside]
I recently bought two white t-shirts from jcrew factory. They claim to be 100% cotton on the tag. I have worn each twice now and I swear that half way through the day I smell TERRIBLE. Think onion cheese. (sorry) What the heck is going on? [more inside]
My down jacket was stored with rotting sausage for a while. Not touching it, but in the same closet. It smells. How do I fix that? It's a lot of puffy down under a nylon/poly outer layer.
I made a Poor Life Choice and now have oil/tar from road construction on a bunch of clothing (cotton and leather). Help me remove it? [more inside]
My efficiency apartment can get stuffy and stale, especially in the seasons between heating when it’s too cool to open the windows, but the heat isn’t on yet. What can I do to make it nice to walk into after a day away? [more inside]
How can I remove a film on the inside of my windshield and keep it clear ? [more inside]
My partner and I keep a large generic squirt bottle of 20% bleach solution in the kitchen, and use it to wipe down countertops after cooking and to "pre-clean" dishes in the sink if they've been sitting for a while. Lately, I'm picking up on a severely bad odor that might be traceable back to the bleach, if it's possible the bleach is getting stale. It smells like bad breath has been marinating in a basement gymnasium. It is stale and wretched. What exactly is happening here? [more inside]
Our previous owner had a popcorn machine stored in the basement that leaked butter or oil. What would be the best product/approach to attack this mess? Photo
House-cleaners in Longmont, CO? [more inside]
I am thinking about replacing and refreshing a lot of things in my home, and I would really like to start my research with an eye towards ease of keeping stuff clean. What kind of product features, materials, etc. do you find make them easier to clean (and keep clean) than other products in the same category? [more inside]
How can I clean my luggage without ruining it? Recommendations for "nondetergent soap" have not helped me find the right product. [more inside]
My dog and I were in Missouri last week and I didn't even think about pest control as we do not need it in Colorado where I am. He became covered in tiny (what I think are) dog ticks and few dear ticks. I was driving back to colorado and didn't know what to do. So I put advantix on him. Now what? [more inside]
I've been wondering why my walls are getting SO scuffed, and it turns out that this is a feature of low/no VOC paint. How do I clean my walls without making the situation worse? [more inside]
My water pressure is very strong, and as a result, the drain cannot keep up. This makes it very difficult to keep it clean. Any suggestions? [more inside]
Mrs. Lattiboy and I just purchased a house. The previous owner has had the hardwood floors carpeted in 1986. We're getting rid of the carpet and would like advice on what to do to restore them without breaking the bank or breaking my back. [more inside]
I have a Pendleton wool blanket that over the course of a year has served as actual bedding, trunk liner for a cross country move, and bed to several cats. More than a year ago I dry cleaned it, and beat it up outside at some point. My girlfriend is skeptical of dry cleaning it as she doesn't think it will do anything. Will it, though? Is there a better way? Can't leave it outside.
Just uncovered some old wood parquet flooring. What should I use to clean the floors and make them look nice?
In a few weeks, I'll be moving into a house with a very dirty unfinished basement. I want to hire a company to really, really clean it, but I haven't been able to get any good responses from the local companies I tried. It seems like there is dust and grime everywhere. After everything is moved out, what kind of company would do this sort of clean up? [more inside]
I recently graduated from college, and will be finding a place to rent within the next month or two, likely in either the SF Bay Area or NYC (so the market will be rather competitive). While in college, due to being five young guys who were apathetic about cleaning, we didn't leave our apartment in the best condition, and incurred significant cleaning fees (~$450), much more than our landlord usually charged. (Not that we literally destroyed anything, though.) How badly would this affect our rental applications in the near future, and what should I say if asked? [more inside]
I hired a housekeeper for the first time to help me with a move-out clean. She did an amazing job in a fraction of the time it takes for me to clean. How can I learn to clean this quickly and effectively? [more inside]
I have a new cast iron pan. Long story short, I tried deglazing with white wine vinegar because I don't really know what I'm doing in the kitchen. Now there's a stain on the pan where the vinegar was. Is this fixable? I've tried scrubbing with my cleaner brush but I don't think it's helping. [more inside]
Harmonica hygiene filter: A few years ago I was given a beautiful Hohner Chromonica 280C. Stories of fungus buildup in reeds (and later becoming aware of certain facts about previous owners) led to doubts which always prevented me from using it. So, how hygienic is it actually? [more inside]
My laundry stinks. I can't tell if it's the powder Seventh Generation detergent, our old washing machine, or just my own personal stench. Is there another (eco-friendly) detergent I should be using, or is there something else I can be doing to get my clothes cleaner and less putrid?
Generally I avoid white clothing, but I recently acquired a few nice blouses--plain white, white with dots, white with stripes--and I'd like to keep them nice. But all I know to do with white things is bleach them. How do you keep your white clothes white, particularly if they're not all white (i.e. patterned)? What actually works? [more inside]
What is the best cordless vacuum money can buy? I hate vacuuming so much and am totally overwhelmed by the market for cleaning machines. Which one will help me tolerate the most loathsome household chore since mopping? [more inside]
No, that's not a euphemism for crying. It really is very dusty in my house. Is running the HVAC fan 24 x 7 a smart way to reduce dust? [more inside]
You have a reusable thing* that has hugely improved your quality of life at home: the kind of thing that regularly makes you feel like past-you did current-you an awesome favor by procuring it. It isn't necessarily fancy or expensive, but it can be -- a $5 silicone garlic peeler tube works, but a floor-cleaning robot does, too. What is the thing, and what does it help you do? Bonus points if it's related to cooking, cleaning, or other routine drudgery. [more inside]
I have an Epson V500 scanner and have trouble with faint streaks left behind on the glass after cleaning. I used some lens cleaner that I sprayed onto a microfiber cloth to wipe the glass. The lens cleaner contains water, isopropyl alcohol and detergent. Any ideas on how to clean scanner glass where I don't leave any little streaks behind? All I know is that I shouldn't use anything abrasive or anything containing ammonia.
Best Cat Ever lost a cancer fight recently. In his last couple of months, he was regularly urinating and sometimes defecating on various parts of my floor. (He had struggled with serious constipation at times, so when this happened, it was enough of an exciting development that I didn't really attempt to stop him.) I did my best with enzyme cleaners, but I wasn't able to keep up with it, and now the whole apartment stinks. What do I do? [more inside]
Me and baniak are moving into a really nice new apartment. With a SUPER nice new kitchen. How do we not let it turn into a greasy trash fire? [more inside]
I swear, every mop I've ever owned has turned me into a hapless klutz from the "before" section of an infomercial. There's got to be a better way! [more inside]
After my last question on the subject of allergen removal I would like to have some way to follow up on the results of the cleaning. [more inside]
I've been depressed and my apartment has gotten totally disgusting. If it were just floors, toilet, oven, etc. I'd hire a regular cleaning company. But I have piles of dishes, rotting food in the refrigerator, dried cat pee on the floor, stuff like that. I just cannot deal and I need someone to help. What kind of person/service am I looking for? [more inside]
Do you know of anything that's like FlyLady but isn't FlyLady? As in, an app/service/website that gives you a daily schedule of cleaning and neatening your habitat so that you take baby steps from having a messy apartment to one that's hopefully less so? [more inside]
I use OxiClean to remove stains (especially pit stains) from shirts made from cellulose or synthetic fibers (so cotton, linen, rayon, poly, etc.). The instructions say not to use it on silk or wool, but they don't say why. What adverse effects will result if I use OxiClean on protein fibers?
My new partner is deadly allergic to cats, and after rehoming my cat I want to make sure she can be in my home without, you know, dying. What do I need to make sure I do and how effective will it be? [more inside]
My husband is tall and we need a mop and broom that doesn't hurt his back. I've only found 1 option, I'm hoping for more. [more inside]
I'm from the US and living in Europe at the moment. I'm used to being able to buy hydrogen peroxide at the local CVS at home, but here it can only be bought in a pharmacy. When I bought some the other day, the clerk seemed to be saying that I could only buy a limited quantity, and gave rather specific instructions for diluting it. Now I'm nervous about using it because I don't want any skin injury or anything from using it. Can someone give me some guidance? [more inside]
I recently came upon my grandfather's WWII US Navy Canvas Dufflebag. It's gotten a little musty over years and years in the attic and needs to be cleaned. I'm concerned about washing his name off by just throwing it in a regular wash, but money's always a little tight and I try not to dry clean stuff unless it's absolutely necessary. Does anyone have any thoughts? Here's a couple pictures.
After a sewage line back-up disaster in the house were renting, is there any way for me to sanitize the riser I built for our screening room? [more inside]
I went away for a moth. Now I'm back and my whole apartment smells like a melange of food that's been left in the garbage for weeks. How can I find the source of the smell and repair the situation? [more inside]
Pretty self-explanatory. When home cleaning, what are some some of the things that could stand to be cleaned that might not be common knowledge or things that people might generally forget? Examples: cleaning the shower rod, dust on top of the fridge, dirt or fingerprints on light/power switches, things of that nature
If you hire help for housecleaning, I'd like your advice on dividing the cleaning work with your helper. I have someone come in to clean the house every three weeks. Most of what she does is "fluff" the house. That would be great right before hosting a party, but I'm beginning to feel like it's not the best use of her time. [more inside]
I think I might have misused the cleaning solution for my electric kettle, and need it confirmed that I didn't because I'm a very, very special snowflake. [more inside]
I tried some free-sample of underarm deodorant and it had a freakishly strong scent that I just can't get out of two pieces of wool clothing I wore during the trial. I've tried Eucalan soak, regular wash with a natural, gentle detergent and I can still smell the stuff. I've read that dry-cleaning wool doesn't necessarily remove odors--any other suggestions would be appreciated.
A few years ago we adopted an older dog. She's now an elderly dog. She has a kidney condition that makes her drink massive amounts of water, and she goes through periods where she'll pee in the house. [more inside]
My wife's silver jewelry is really tarnished, and needs a good cleaning. In order of importance: the cleaning method shouldn't damage the jewelry (some of it has sentimental value), it should actually work, it should be cheap, and it should be easy. What has worked for you to clean silver jewelry? [more inside]
In a moment of desperation I put some cast iron stove grates in a dishwasher. They're done washing. What do I do now? I'm kind of terrified that I've ruined them. Please explain to me like I'm five. And scared.