Common Household Stains & How to Clean Them

Even the best cleaning services aren't in your home all the time, so how do you handle those stains that appear mid-week and glare at you from your carpet or coffee table? There are several stains you might encounter, and thankfully, there are great, easy ways to banish them.

Coffee, Tea, or Sauce Stains in your cups or dishes. From the coffee-colored stain on the bottom of your favorite cups to the orange ring around the spaghetti dish, there are some foods that leave behind seemingly unremovable marks.

Try this: Denture cleaning tablets. Use just as if you were going to soak dentures in the container--a soak and a quick rub later, and your dishes will be stain free.

Crayons on the Wall in your kids' rooms or office area tend may feel impossible to remove without taking off some paint; you might even be tempted to just paint over the marks, but even that's harder than it sounds.

Try this: Grab your hair dryer, put it on low, and point it at the crayon marks.

After a couple of minutes, try gently wiping them off with a warm, damp cloth. Crayons are made of wax, and when the crayon gets hot, it will melt and come off more easily!

Carpet Stains from an unexpected spill can be frustrating. It's easy to accidentally spread the stain until it looks like there's no way to ever get it off.

Try this: If you can, start blotting with a clean, dry piece of cloth as soon as the spill happens. Work in a circular motion from the outside of the stain toward the center. If you don't catch it while it's still wet, you can use the same technique using a carpet cleaner, but it will take a little more effort.

Stuck-on Food on your dinner dishes is a source of dishwashing hatred everywhere. When scrubbing, prying, and scraping are the only way we know to clean off that stuck-on meatloaf, it seems like too great of a hassle to even attempt!

Try this: Spread baking soda over the offending dish and let sit for a little while. When you come back, the baking soda will have worked some loosening magic, and the stuck-on food should come off a lot more easily.

Cup Rings on Wood Furniture from guests--or kids--without coasters leave your coffee or end tables looking a little marked up, and dusting isn't enough to get them off.

Try this: Dip a cloth in mixture of equal parts water and baking soda, then gently buff the rings out. It sounds too good to be true, but it is!

The best way to prevent stains is to start with a clean house--you're more likely to see the stain and get to it sooner if it isn't hidden in a messy room. Don't be afraid to hire a maid service if time and responsibilities keep you from being able to give your house the attention it deserves.

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