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Everyday Cheapskate: Around the House, Borax Is as Good as Gold

Mary Hunt on


Dissolve 2 tablespoons borax in 3 cups warm water. Use as you would any liquid glass cleaner on mirrors, windows and glass surfaces. You'll be amazed at the spotless and streak-free results.


Dissolve 1/2 cup borax in 2 cups hot water. Rub this solution into the mildewed area on fabric or upholstery. Allow it to soak for several hours or until the stain disappears. Rinse well. Or soak the entire item in a solution of 2 cups borax in 2 quarts warm water overnight or until stains disappear.


Remove stubborn stains from rugs and carpets. Thoroughly dampen the area, and then rub in some borax. Let the area dry, and then vacuum or blot it with a solution of equal parts vinegar and soapy water, and let dry. Repeat if necessary. Don't forget to first test the procedure on an inconspicuous corner or closet or on a carpet scrap before applying it to the stain.


If your garbage disposal gets a little stinky now and then, you can freshen it and get rid of mold and bacteria with borax. Every couple of weeks, pour 3 tablespoons borax down the drain, and let it sit for 1 hour. Then turn on the disposal, and flush it with hot water from the tap.



Clean the toilet with borax and a stiff brush. Dampen the brush; sprinkle borax liberally onto the wet brush, and then scrub. Your toilet with glisten without a single toxic fume.


When applied around the foundation of your house, borax will keep ants and spiders from entering your home. Sprinkle it on the weeds and vegetation in driveway, walkway and sidewalk cracks. Caution: Borax is toxic to plants, so make sure you only sprinkle it on vegetation you want to kill.


Mary invites you to visit her at, where this column is archived complete with links and resources for all recommended products and services. Mary invites questions and comments at, "Ask Mary." Tips can be submitted at This column will answer questions of general interest, but letters cannot be answered individually. Mary Hunt is the founder of, a frugal living blog, and the author of the book "Debt-Proof Living."

Copyright 2021 Creators Syndicate Inc.



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