This is a subject I don’t post about very often, basic household cleaning. However, I do come across a tip from time to time that works so well I just have to share. Today is such an occasion. This tip relates to cleaning the microwave.
I don’t like harsh cleaners. I use them to clean apartments between tenants because they are quick and effective for thoroughly cleaning unknown crud. But at home, I prefer mild soaps and hot water. In my bathroom I do use a bleach cleaner in the toilet. For the sinks and tub though, I use a powder without bleach, perfume, phosphorus, or dye called Bon Ami (works just as well as Comet or Ajax but without all the harsh ingredients). Usually just a wet cloth is enough to clean the counters. In the kitchen I use a bleach cleaner occasionally inside the refrigerator to keep away mold, but usually just warm water.
I use regular dish soap on my dishes, but not bleach or antibacterial. I can understand the need to bleach dishes in a commercial setting such as a daycare or restaurant when you don’t know what kinds of germs are on them. At home, I know who’s sick and with what. The germs are in the air and from coming into contact with the person most of the day. Chances are if one of us will catch it, the dishes aren’t the most likely reason.
Also, recent studies have shown that children in homes where antibacterial products are used (including dish and hand soaps), the chances of getting asthma and other respiratory illness increases. The homes are actually too clean so that the kids can’t build up immunity. Plus, the small percentage of germs left become super germs resistant to antibiotics and therefore are more dangerous. So anyway, that’s why in a nutshell I don’t use them.
A side note here since it’s flue season. Along with regular cleaning, vacuum more often when someone is sick. A recent study shown that germs are killed as you vacuum due to the harsh action, especially upright ones.
Still, I like a clean kitchen. After washing the dishes, I use the rinse water to wash my counters and stove. Sometimes I have to let water sit on a stubborn spot for a few minutes, (especially applesauce or oatmeal) but it will eventually rinse off. A friend occasionally washes my counters. She smears dish soap on the rag then washes them. Unfortunately, she doesn’t rinse them, so we have soap residue left on the counters. Ugh. She does the same at her house only she uses the antibacterial soap.
Often I forget to wash inside the microwave, or only do a quick wipe to the tray. Especially since we don’t use it very often other than heating water to make bread. On Saturdays, I try to do an extra good job cleaning the house. Today that included cleaning the microwave. While the bottom tray was clean, there was a lot of bits of dried on food stuck to the sides and top. (It’s amazing how many people never clean the sides and top inside.) A hard wiping with a wet dish rag got off about half of it. Now, I can’t exactly soak the sides or top like I do the table to get off the stuck on bits.
Instead, I filled a shallow dish about half full of water then turned the microwave on high for 5 minutes. This got the water to boil for awhile and filled the inside with steam. After a few minutes, I opened the door and wiped it clean including around the bottom edge under the tray. Finally, I left the door open for it to dry. Easy and clean with no harsh cleaners.
Filed under: around the home, Health & fitness | Tagged: antibacterial cleaners, cleaning, cooking, kitchen, microwave | 7 Comments »