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Everyday Cheapskate: When Batteries Are Just Faking It

Mary Hunt on

Just when I think I've heard every possible way to save time and money every day, I open my mail to find new and clever ideas I'd never thought of. No doubt about it, I have the smartest readers in the world (good-looking, too!).


I learned this tip by accident, and it has saved me a bundle. If your kids are constantly in and out of the refrigerator, eating the food faster than you can replenish it, remove the light bulb. If they are really hungry, they will take the time to search. Otherwise, it won't be worth the bother. -- Leslie


Sometimes, when batteries stop working, they're only faking death. We had a cheap travel clock that stopped working. Rather than throwing it out or replacing the batteries, I turned them around, and it has worked perfectly for two more years. The television remote control has two AA batteries that frequently act as if they need to be replaced. But I turn them over and/or around and usually get three to six more months of life out of them. -- Liz



Instead of buying expensive skin and facial scrubs from the department store, I use plain old sugar. I have it in a covered shaker container in my shower. I sprinkle some into my hand and gently scrub my face and neck with it. Then, I rinse it off. Works just as well as the store-bought scrubs, and I won't run out because I always have it in the house. I also don't have to worry about fragrance in my sugar scrub, which can be a problem with my asthma. -- Maryann


I save empty toilet paper rolls and keep them by my dryer. I stuff dryer lint inside the cardboard roll and fold down the ends when they're full of lint (like a roll of coins). These make great fire starters for the fireplace, and for campfires, too. -- Vicki



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