Save a bundle on stain removers, air fresheners, dishwashing products, and more by using citrus instead. Citrus is a natural product with many uses, and is available at a very affordable price.
We’ve provided 12 surprising household uses for this remarkable type of fruit. Use in the kitchen, bathroom, laundry room, and elsewhere at home.
Citrus fruits include lemon, lime, grapefruit, and oranges. Most of the uses for citrus below recommend lemons as the fruit of choice.
This is because lemons are the most versatile, and are believed to be the best at removing odors. However, note that in many cases, any of the other fruits can be substituted, although they may not work as effectively as a lemon.
Keep cats out of flower beds by placing various peels in and around them. Cats hate the smell of citrus and will head in the opposite direction.
Keep ants out of your home with a homemade ant repellent. Grind two whole lemons and mix with water in a spray bottle. Spray wherever ants can enter the home to keep them away.
Homemade Air Freshener
Slice two lemons or other citrus fruits, and place them on a foil-lined cookie sheet. Bake at 200°F for about an hour. The scent is invigorating, and will remove any foul kitchen odors.
For more tips and ideas to make your own natural air fresheners at home, check out our post.
Remove Stubborn Odors
Cutting boards absorb foul odors like nobody’s business. By rubbing them with a lemon cut in half, you can remove odors left behind by onions, garlic, and other smelly food items, and leave them smelling fresh and clean.
Clean Away Juice Stains
Rub a lemon on stains on countertops, and on cutting boards to remove juice stains. Whether you’re working with a fresh stain left behind by berries, or have a stain from a child’s drink, fresh lemon juice will help wipe it away.
Brighten the Wash
Soak dingy looking clothes in warm water and fresh lemon juice before washing. After about 30 minutes, check the clothes and add a bit of baking soda to extremely dirty garments. Wash as usual for brighter, cleaner clothes.
Remove Laundry Stains
Remove sweat stains, ink spots, and other fresh laundry stains with fresh lemon juice. Turn the garment inside out and rinse the stain from behind with cold water.
Slice a lemon in half and dab – don’t rub – the lemon directly on the garment. Let the lemon juice set for a few minutes and then wash in cold water.
No store-bought rinse agent will get dishes as sparkling clean as a lemon can. Place half a lemon in the dishwasher along with your regular detergent for the cleanest dishes you’ve ever seen.
Clean Copper Pots
Don’t spend a lot of money on specialty copper cleaners. Instead, slice a lemon in half, dip it in table salt, and rub the bottom of the pan. It won’t take long before your copper pots will be sparkling clean again.
Remove Buildup on Faucets, Stainless Steel Sinks, and Appliances
Sink faucets dull over time, and become coated with hard water stains, soap spots, and other residue. Slice a lemon in half and rub it on the faucet, sink, or stainless steel appliances to remove buildup and leave a sparkling shine.
Check out our post for more tips to keep your small kitchen appliances sparkling.
Add lemon, lime, orange, or grapefruit peels to your garbage disposal to get rid of smelly odors.
Keep dried peels by the fireplace and use them whenever you build a fire. This is one of the more unusual uses for citrus, but it works like a charm. Best of all, the burning citrus works as a subtle air freshener.
For a more detailed look at this subject, read our special report on the cleaning power of lemons.
What are your favorite tips for using citrus around the home? Let us know in the comments!
Photo credit: Shutterstock.
About Lynne Jaques
Lynne is a stay-at-home mother of two boys. As a former US military officer and the spouse of an active duty US military member, Lynne enjoys traveling the world (although not the moving part!) and finding new cuisine and methods of preparing food. She also has the habit of using parenthesis way too much!