5 Household Items That are Actually Secret Weapons! (Video)

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Apartment Bedroom Ceiling

Is there a home maintenance project that’s been lingering on your to-do list for way too long because you’re dreading the trip to the craft or hardware store? Don’t worry: Here are some DIY projects you can tackle with items that are probably already in your home.

  1. Vinegar: You most likely have a jug of vinegar in your pantry right now. You can soak household items and certain tools in vinegar to remove buildup of mineral deposits (like the ones in a clogged showerhead). You can also boil vinegar in your microwave to make items easier to clean and remove common odors.
  2. Soda: A can of Pepsi or Coke can be used to clean a number of surfaces, including your chrome fixtures, glass windows, or porcelain toilet. Still, do your homework before using cola on any metal surfaces, as it can sometimes be corrosive.
  3. Baking soda: Despite its name, this household mainstay might actually be more useful for DIY applications than it is for baking. A baking soda/vinegar paste is ideal for effectively cleaning bathrooms and kitchens. Baking soda also absorbs odors well.
  4. Butter knife: We’ve all misplaced a screwdriver at one time or another. If you can’t find a screwdriver when you need one, a butter knife—preferably an older one that you no longer need to set the table—can serve as a handy alternative to both flat- and Phillips-head screws.
  5. Toothpaste: Got an unsightly scratch on your bike or car? Fear not, because the grit in tartar-control toothpaste makes it an effective scratch remover. Clean the scratch first. Next, apply some toothpaste, let it sit for a few minutes, and buff it with a paper towel (another ultra-easy DIY item).