When it comes to keeping your home clean, 3% hydrogen peroxide is a wonder product. Versatile and non-toxic, you can use it to clean virtually every surface in your house. You can use hydrogen peroxide on its own or combine it with other ingredients to make effective cleaners.
We have put together a list of ways for you to incorporate hydrogen peroxide into your cleaning routine. Read on to learn how to use it throughout your home.
1. Give Your Laundry a Boost of Cleaning Power
Laundry can feel like it is never done. You need to pay attention to how you wash different clothes, making sure that you use the right cleaning products to clean and keep them in good condition. If you are looking to streamline your laundry process, consider using hydrogen peroxide.
Hydrogen peroxide is a great addition to your laundry routine. It can be used for a variety of different laundry tasks, replacing several different products, and saving you time and money. Before you use it, though, test it out on a small section of your clothing. It is a bleaching agent and can cause stains on dark clothes, though not as badly as bleach.
Remove Stubborn Stains
Hydrogen peroxide is effective at removing all kinds of difficult stains, such as blood and red wine. Brightly colored stains fall into a category of oxidizable stains, meaning that bleaching products like hydrogen peroxide can dissolve the color causing chemicals in the stain.
How you use the hydrogen peroxide depends on what kind of stain you have:
- Blood: To remove blood stains, you need to act quickly. Apply full-strength hydrogen peroxide to the stain. It will fizz as it reacts to the blood. Once the fizzing stops, dab at the stain with a clean cloth. Keep doing this until the stain is gone, and then wash the garment.
- Wine, chocolate, and grass: To remove these stains, create a spot remover combining hydrogen peroxide with dish soap. Use a soft brush to apply it to the stain and let it sit. If the stain is set in, give it a good scrub. Rinse under cold water and repeat if necessary until the stain is gone.
- Armpit Stains: To remove stubborn underarm stains, mix together hydrogen peroxide, baking soda, and warm water. If your shirt has spandex, wet it with cold water before using the stain remover. Rub this into the stain with a soft brush and let it sit for at least 30 minutes. Scrub it again and then wash the shirt as normal.
Brighten Whites and Colors
If you like your clothes to be bright but feel nervous using bleach, hydrogen peroxide is a great substitute. It is a bleaching agent, but much milder than bleach, and it is also more environmentally friendly.
Clothes get dingy when body oils and sweat, dyes from other clothes, and laundry detergent residue get embedded in the fibers of your clothes. Hydrogen peroxide loosens all those contaminants in the wash, leaving your clothes looking much brighter.
Be Careful How You Used Hydrogen Peroxide to Brighten Clothing
When you are washing white clothes, you can add a cup of hydrogen peroxide directly to the washing machine drum before adding the clothes and water. You can also put it in the automatic bleach dispenser, and it will be dispensed during the wash.
Never use full-strength hydrogen peroxide on colored clothing. Use the bleach dispenser to add it during the wash cycle. If your machine does not have a bleach dispenser, make a 1 to 3 hydrogen peroxide to water solution and put it in the washer before adding clothes and water.
Clean and Disinfect Your Washing Machine
The washing machine is one of the most used household appliances, but try to think of the last time you cleaned it. If you’ve noticed your washing machine has developed a musty smell, it is time to clean it. The smell is mildew and mold from the detergent residue, and you don’t want that.
To clean your washing machine, add 2 cups of hydrogen peroxide directly to the drum. Run a hot water cycle, and the smell problem should be gone. To avoid this happening again, you should clean your washer once a month, especially if you live in a humid area.
Remove Unpleasant Odors
Hydrogen peroxide is also an effective odor remover. If you have stinky gym clothes or mildewy towels, you can use them to get rid of the smell. Mix hydrogen peroxide with enough water to cover the items. Leave them to soak for 15 to 30 minutes and then wash. If you have a whole washing machine’s worth of laundry, use 1 cup of hydrogen peroxide and let sit for 60 minutes.
You can use this deodorize regularly on clothes that you know are likely to get smelly again. This will eliminate the need for long deodorizing soaks and give you time to focus on other things.
2. Safely Clean and Sanitize Your Kitchen
The kitchen is the heart of your home, but it is also home to dirt and bacteria. Since you spend so much time in your kitchen and do food prep there, it is important to keep it clean and sanitized. Hydrogen peroxide has disinfectant properties that will help keep your surfaces clean of bacteria and viruses.
Disinfect Cutting Boards
Wooden cutting boards are especially prone to bacteria. The knife marks left behind after cutting meat or vegetables trap bacteria and can be hard to clean with a sponge and dish soap. Unlike plastic cutting boards, wood ones cannot go into the dishwasher.
To be sure that your cutting boards are free of bacteria and safe to use, disinfect them with hydrogen peroxide. For a quick clean, you can just wipe them down. For a deeper clean:
- Spray with white vinegar
- Let set for 5 minutes before wiping it down
- Next, pour hydrogen peroxide over the board, spread with a sponge
- Leave for 10 minutes
- Finally, sprinkle salt over the board and rub it in with half a lemon. This will help with any lingering smells. Leave it for at least 10 minutes, wipe it with a dry cloth and let air dry.
To keep your cutting boards looking good, regularly apply food-grade mineral oil to keep the wood hydrated and less porous.
Disinfect Your Kitchen Sponge Daily
Sponges are another kitchen tool that can harbor dangerous bacteria. To keep your sponge clean and to extend its useful life, disinfect them daily. Make a solution of half hydrogen peroxide and half water. Submerge the sponge for 5 minutes and then rinse it out with water.
Sanitize Your Refrigerator
Refrigerators are another appliance that doesn’t get cleaned as often as it should. Since it is often full of perishables, it’s a lot of work just to unload the fridge, let alone clean it. However, your fridge can also be full of bacteria from spills and spoiled food.
After you empty your fridge, spray down the inside with hydrogen peroxide and let it sit for a few minutes. Then you can wipe it down. This will kill any bacteria hiding in the corners and eliminate any lingering smells.
Give Your Dishwasher a Deep Clean
Every once in a while, your dishwasher might start to smell unpleasant, even after you’ve just run a cleaning cycle. Food particles are trapped inside and start to break down. Spray down the inside of your dishwasher regularly to disinfect and deodorize it.
Sometimes, however, you need to do a deep clean. You can do this by making homemade dishwasher cleaner bombs. Mix together:
- Baking soda,
- Hydrogen peroxide
- Essential oils
This will form a thick paste you can scoop out and let air dry overnight. Store these in a dark, dry area until you need them.
When it comes time to clean your dishwasher, fill a glass or ceramic bowl with white vinegar and a few drops of dish soap. Put it in the top rack of your dishwasher and put a soap bomb in the silverware rack. Run your dishwasher on the high heat setting, and you will have a clean, odor-free dishwasher.
Clean Fruits and Vegetables
Fruits and vegetables are an important part of a healthy diet but can make you sick if not cleaned. You can use soap and water to clean your fruits and vegetables, but to make sure they are free from nasty bacteria and pesticides, you should disinfect them. You can buy vegetable washes at the supermarket, but hydrogen peroxide is just as effective and more cost-effective.
Fill your sink with cold water and add a quarter of a cup of hydrogen peroxide. Let your fruits and veggies soak for a few minutes, and then rinse them well. They will then be safe to eat and cook.
Stains on Countertops
Stone countertops have been a popular decorating trend for quite a few years. Stone is a sturdy work surface, but it is porous and tends to get stained easily. This is especially true of light-colored stones. From watermarks on granite to food stains on marble, hydrogen peroxide is an effective way to clean them up. Its fizzing power gets deep into the stone to lift stains.
Rid Your Granite Countertops of Water Marks
Watermarks are a problem with granite countertops. Spilled water left on the counter will absorb into the stone, leaving dark marks. You should always wipe up water quickly, but if you miss it and are left with a stain, a solution of baking soda and hydrogen peroxide will wipe them away.
Mix baking soda with a few drops of hydrogen peroxide to make a paste. Spread that paste over the stained area and leave it for 5 to 10 minutes before wiping it off. If your stain is persistent, tape a sheet of plastic wrap over the paste and leave it overnight. In the morning, wash it off and dry it with a towel.
Food Stains Can Be a Pain to Remove From Marble
The quicker you address a food stain on a marble countertop, the better. Marble is a lighter stone than granite, and stains are much more obvious. Make a paste with flour and hydrogen peroxide. Apply it to the stain, seal with plastic wrap and leave it overnight. If the stain is not gone in the morning, repeat the process.
To prevent future staining, look at getting your marble countertops sealed. This is something that needs to be done regularly. A sign that it is time to seal your marble countertops is when water no longer beads on the surface. You can buy a sealant and do it yourself.
Cleaning Stained Dishes
Over time, dishes can become dingy and stained. If your dishes are in good shape except for the staining and you are not interested in replacing them, you can use hydrogen peroxide to remove the stains. There are two options:
- Add hydrogen peroxide to your dish soap to add a little extra cleaning power and gently remove stains.
- Make a paste of baking soda and hydrogen peroxide and apply it to your dishes. Let it sit and then wash it off.
Hydrogen peroxide is a good all-around kitchen cleaner that will kill bacteria and extend the life of your dishes and countertops. Incorporate it into your cleaning routine to keep your kitchen stain-free and safe to cook and eat in.
3. Make Your Bathroom Sparkle
Just like in your kitchen, hydrogen peroxide is a multi-purpose bathroom cleaner. Its disinfectant and bleaching properties make it perfect for cleaning all surfaces. In addition, if you are looking to swap out your toxic cleaning products, hydrogen peroxide is a good non-toxic alternative to many of those cleaners.
Clean Tile Grout
If you clean your bathroom regularly, but it feels dirty because the tile grout is stained, hydrogen peroxide is your solution. When it is mixed with sodium, it becomes oxygen bleach and is effective at lifting stains from grout. It will also kill any mildew that is living on the tiles and grout and cut through soap scum.
To clean the tiles and grout, mix together in a sealable container:
- Baking soda
- Hydrogen peroxide
- Dish soap
Close the container and shake it up together. Apply it to the tile and grout and leave it for 5 minutes. Use a brush to get the paste deep into the grout. Then rinse it off with clean water for sparkling tiles.
Glass and Mirror Cleaner
To remove annoying spots from glass and mirrors, hydrogen peroxide is an effective, non-toxic substitute to commercial glass cleaners. To clean your windows, shower doors, and mirrors, put hydrogen peroxide in a spray bottle, add a few drops of dish soap and fill the rest of the bottle with water. Shake to mix. Spray and leave for a few minutes, then wipe off.
Very few people like cleaning the toilet but unfortunately, it is one of those things that has to be done. To make your toilet cleaning easier:
- Half a cup of hydrogen peroxide into the toilet bowl
- Let stand 30 minutes
- Scrub the toilet bowl and flush
Keep your brush clean, by pouring a little hydrogen peroxide on the bristles. Let it air dry.
4. Bacteria Can Linger Anywhere
You have seen how hydrogen peroxide can disinfect and sanitize your kitchen, but you don’t need to limit it to that one room. Deploy it to clean all of your belongings that might need some extra attention.
Sanitize Personal Hygiene and Beauty Tools
When you go to a nail salon or hairdresser, you always expect the tools to be sanitized. Don’t forget to take care of your personal ones at home. Even if you are the only one using them, they can still be full of bacteria and dirt.
- Beauty and Manicure Tools: Put enough hydrogen peroxide in a bowl to cover your nail scissors, tweezers, eyelash curlers, and leave for 5 minutes. Rinse them off and let them dry completely before using.
- Dental Tools: Toothbrushes, mouth guards, and retainers can have a lot of bacteria on them as well as dried on toothpaste residue. Give them a good clean regularly by soaking them in hydrogen peroxide. Make sure to rinse thoroughly. Although hydrogen peroxide is non-toxic, it can still cause blistering and vomiting if ingested.
- Makeup Brushes: It’s important to keep your make-up brushes clean. The bristles collect makeup, skin cells, and oils, which can cause breakouts if used too much. Soak your synthetic brushes in one-part hydrogen peroxide and one part water solution, and then rinse clean. Let them dry completely before using.
Clean Children’s Toys
If you have children, you know how easily their toys can get dirty. You also know that, little children like putting things in their mouths. Keep their toys clean with a little hydrogen peroxide and reduce exposure to nasty germs. Spray the toys and let them sit for a few minutes before rinsing them off with water.
Keep Your Mattress Clean and Dust Mite Free
Using hydrogen peroxide to disinfect your mattress might be one of the most surprising uses for it, but one that everyone should be doing. While we sleep, we shed skin cells and hair as well as sweat and leave behind body odors. Dust mites love to eat all of that.
To clean the mattress, start by vacuuming it. Kill mites by spraying the mattress down with hydrogen peroxide and let it dry completely. If there are stains, use a solution of water and hydrogen peroxide on the stain, working it in with a brush. Wait 5 minutes and repeat if necessary. Do this twice a year, and you will sleep easier on your clean mattress.
5. Hydrogen Peroxide is an Effective Mold Killer
Since hydrogen peroxide is a type of bleaching product, it has the ability to kill mold and mildew. As we have seen, this is helpful when it comes to cleaning tile and grout, but you can use it for other places where mold may be growing. Hydrogen peroxide’s ability to fizz makes it especially effective on porous materials, like drywall and carpet.
For non-porous materials, you need to combine hydrogen peroxide with hot water. For rough surfaces, like concrete, rub the solution in with a stiff brush. Let it sit for 50 minutes and wipe dry. To clean porous materials, rub undiluted hydrogen peroxide into the moldy area and let it sit for 15 minutes. Rinse it clean and let it air dry over several days.
Before you use hydrogen peroxide on carpets and fabric, do a spot check to make sure it won’t bleach.
Keep Your Humidifier Mold Free
Some household products are more likely to grow mold than others are. Since humidifiers hold water, they can be a breeding ground for bacteria and mold. Clean the water tank regularly with a solution of water and hydrogen peroxide. Leave it in the tank for at least 30 minutes. Empty it and rinse completely and then let it air dry.
6. Get Rid of Rust
If you have tools or toys that are perfectly functional but have developed a coating of rust over the years, clean them up instead of buying new ones. Hydrogen peroxide is a powerful rust remover that will have your metal objects looking new again.
To remove rust, mix together cream of tartar and baking soda. Add a few drops of hydrogen peroxide to make a paste. Spread it on the rusty object and leave it for an hour. Rinse it off and dry. This method is also a good way to remove rust stains on your sink or bathtub.
7. Clean Up Outdoor Furniture
Outdoor furniture that is exposed to the weather can get dirty and grimy quickly. Use hydrogen peroxide to clean them up so you can enjoy your garden regularly. To clean your furniture quickly, you will want to get a garden sprayer. You can also use the sprayer to water your plants, so it is a multi-purpose tool.
Pour a gallon of warm water into your sprayer and add hydrogen peroxide, a few drops of dish soap, and a some borax. Mix them together and then spray onto the furniture, making sure not to miss any areas. Leave it for 15 minutes and then scrub it with a brush or sponge before rinsing off. Do this regularly to keep the dirt and grime off.
Make Your Own Cleaning Products
The cleaning power of hydrogen peroxide doesn’t last long when it’s exposed to air and sunlight, so it’s best to keep it in the opaque bottle it came in. Hydrogen peroxide cleaners are fast and easy to make, so if you want to prepare them ahead of time, store them in opaque spray bottles. Here are a few to know about:
- All-Purpose Cleaning Spray: For an all-purpose surface cleaning spray, add of hydrogen peroxide and distilled water to a spray bottle. Put in some lemon essential oils or lemon juice. The acid from the lemon will help break down soap scum.
- Floor Cleaner: Making an effective floor cleaner is easy. Simply mix equal parts hydrogen peroxide and water in a bucket and then mop. Let your floor air dry.
- Carpet Cleaner: Mix a lemon essential oil with hydrogen peroxide and water. Spray it onto the stained area of the carpet and let it sit for a few minutes before scrubbing with a brush. Blot with a clean cloth and repeat until the stain is gone.
- Daily Shower Spray: Using a daily shower spray will keep your shower cleaner longer between deep cleans. Make one by mixing together water with hydrogen peroxide and rubbing alcohol. Add dish detergent and dishwasher rinse aid. Spray after showering.
- Scrub Cleaner: Soft Scrub is a powerful cleaner that really targets set-in dirt and stains. To make a homemade scrub cleaner, mix baking soda with castile soap and of hydrogen peroxide. It can be stored for several months in a dark container. Leave extra space in the jar, as the product will expand.
Be Safe When Making Cleaning Products
Three percent hydrogen peroxide is a non-toxic product, though, as we said above, you should be careful not to ingest it. When you are making cleaning products, you should make sure to use tested recipes to avoid creating harmful chemicals and fumes. Always work in a well-ventilated room and use gloves.
You Can’t Go Wrong With Hydrogen Peroxide
As consumers become more informed about the ingredients in their cleaning products, there has been an increased interest in non-toxic cleaning alternatives. Hydrogen peroxide is something that most people have hanging around their house for first aid purposes, but as you now know, it is a great cleaning product.
If you want to stop using unhealthy cleaners and save some money, switching to hydrogen peroxide and making your own cleaning products is an easy step to take. You don’t need to radically change anything about your cleaning process, but you’ll see fantastic results.