My homemade all-purpose cleaner started as a recipe for Toilet Cleaner Fizzies I never could get to fizz. The failed cleaner works great for toilet bowls, but it also makes an awesome cleaner for other surfaces, including carpets and upholstery.
My original recipe called for placing in a silicone ice cube tray or forming mounds with a spoon and letting dry. The powder wouldn’t form, even after adding more liquid, giving me crumbling lumps. I put the mess in a container and scooped the powder out to use in the toilets. While it looked like a mess, it did a great job of cleaning, and the smell was amazing.
A couple of weeks later when I was scrubbing a fiberglass shower, I had one of those “ah ha” moments. You know, those times when you think, ‘I wonder if this would work.’
Fiberglass is so hard to clean because the soap scum literally adheres to the surface. I crushed the remaining toilet fizzies, added water and used on the shower. OMG, not only did I love cleaning with it because it smells so good, but this cleaner removed the ugly gunk without much scrubbing
That “ah ha” moment led to an all-purpose scrub and cleaner that works great for toilets and much more.
When using on carpet or upholstery, always test in an inconspicuous area for colorfastness.
Homemade All-Purpose Cleaner
- 2 cups baking soda
- 3/4 cups citric acid Found in canning section
- 4 tablespoons hydrogen peroxide
- 3 teaspoons white vinegar
- 12-20 drops lemon essential oil
In a medium-size bowl, add the baking soda and citric acid powder. Mix together until well combined.
Mix in hydrogen peroxide.
Lightly sprinkle the white vinegar, a teaspoon at a time, across the surface of the mixture then stir in. It is important to add the vinegar slowly, otherwise the baking soda will fizz.
Add lemon essential oil and mix well. Your cleaner should resemble a damp, crumbly mix.
Place in plastic or glass container with a lid. Do not use metal.
You can use other citrus oils, like lime, orange, or tangerine, however I believe lemon gives a fresher scent.
To Use Cleaner:
Sinks and tubs: Sprinkle mixture over area, add water and scrub with a sponge. Rinse well.
Toilets: Flush stool and sprinkle cleaner around the inside of the bowl. Scrub with toilet brush and let set for 5-10 minutes to deodorize and remove water stains. Scrub with toilet brush again and flush.
Countertops: To 2-quarts water add 1 tablespoon cleaner; mix well. Pour liquid in a sprayer bottle and spray on countertops. Wipe with a clean cloth. To freshen the garbage disposal, pour remaining liquid down the disposal.
Carpet and Upholstery: Sprinkle cleaner over pet stains and other spots. Using a stiff brush, scrub cleaner into fabric, spraying with water if necessary. Let dry and vacuum. Repeat if needed.
This cleaner works great on microfiber. However, make sure your furniture pieces are safe with water cleaning. Some microfiber only tolerates chemical cleaning. Look at the furniture tag or check with the manufacturer.
Always test for colorfastness in an inconspicuous area.