Have you ever climbed on a stool, stood on your counter and stared at the gorgeous glass pitchers and decanters above your kitchen cabinets, only to clamber back down again because you realized they’d be too difficult to clean if you actually used them? Or put a coffee mug immediately back in the dishwasher because that unsightly brown stain at the bottom corner just won’t come out?
Let’s face it, some stains and residue are just a pain to clean. Sometimes traditional cleaning methods just don’t seem to work, and sometimes you just can’t access the spot that needs to get cleaned. And putting everything in the dishwasher isn’t always an option, especially for bulky items and delicate antique pieces.
Unfortunately, glasses, mugs, kettles, and pitchers are handy to have available every single day – whether you’re cozying up with a TV show on a fall Friday night, or hosting a get-together with family and friends.
How to Clean Glass or Crystal Decanters
Glass and crystal look best when they are sparkling and clear, but too often they develop a cloudy, gray look – making them appear old and unappealing. When this happens, there are a few quick ways to remove the white haze (or red wine stains) from the inside of your favorite pieces:
Rinse Decanters Immediately After Use
This is more of a preventative measure, but if you are disciplined with rinsing your decanter or pitcher right after using it, you’ll see less residue on the glass later. You can rinse it immediately after use with warm water.
Soak in Vinegar and Rinse With Water
To remove more difficult stains or residue, you can fill the decanter with a solution of distilled white vinegar and water and let it soak. You should notice any residue or staining fade away fairly quickly. Afterwards, rinse it well with more warm water to remove any lingering vinegar smells.
Use a Light Abrasive
If more gentle approaches are not working, try using a very light abrasive technique. Some techniques recommended by wine industry professionals include combining salt and ice, vinegar and rice, or else using stainless steel decanting beads, which are specifically designed to clean wine decanters.
How to Clean a Glass Pitcher With a Narrow Neck
A beautiful pitcher looks great on your Sunday morning brunch table, but not if there are unsightly stains inside! These pieces can be difficult to clean when you can’t get your hand through the narrow opening to reach the bottom. Here are the easiest ways to clean pitchers or bottles with a narrow neck or tricky opening:
Use a Brush or Sponge Wand
To reach the bottom of a pitcher, the easiest thing to do is to use a brush or a wand. These are handy tools that can help you clean even the most awkwardly shaped pitchers after use. For extra narrow openings, a baby bottle brush is a fantastic alternative.
No Brush? Try Combining Coarse Salt and Baking Soda
If you don’t have a brush or sponge wand, or your brush won’t fit into your pitcher, you can still get your pitcher clean. Combine a handful of coarse salt along with a spoonful of baking soda and just enough warm (but not hot) water to begin to dissolve the two together. Pour the homemade solution into the pitcher, then swirl the combination around until no visible residue remains inside your pitcher. Then, rinse with warm water until clean.
How to Clean the Outside of a Burnt Tea Kettle
There’s nothing more beautiful than a brand new tea kettle sitting pretty on top of your stove. But that sparkling finish doesn’t always last long, especially when the exterior is made of enamel. No matter what material your kettle is made of, here are some tips for cleaning off those inevitable burn marks before your next picture-perfect night in:
Everyday Cleaning For Your Tea Kettle
To keep your favorite water-boiler looking shiny and new, it’s best to wash it every day with mild soap and water along with your other dishes. This helps prevent long-term staining on the outside as well as any build up on the inside. It can be tempting to let this common task go – but stick to a routine, and you’ll thank yourself later!
Removing Burn Marks and Stains From an Enamel Kettle
Sometimes, all it takes is a little hot water, some good dish soap, and a clean sponge to remove burn marks. But if that’s not working, you can use a classic combination of vinegar and hot water. Place the kettle into a larger pot, and fill the pot with equal parts hot water and white vinegar. Let it soak, then scrub the burn marks with a dish sponge until they are gone.
Cleaning a Burnt Metal Tea Kettle
Metal kettles can take a bit more abrasion than enamel. To remove burn marks from your metal tea kettle, combine baking soda and lemon juice into a thick paste and spread it on your kettle. Make sure you leave plenty of time for your kettle to cool completely, if you used it recently. Place the kettle inside a larger pot and fill it with white vinegar until the burn marks are completely covered. Then, scrub them away with a fine metal wool sponge.
How to Clean Coffee Stains and Residue From Your Favorite Mugs
Once you’ve finished your coffee and composted your grounds, it’s time to clean up that mug. Most people put their coffee mugs in the dishwasher because it’s quick and easy – but dedicated java aficionados know that this won’t always leave your favorite mug looking clean. These are the most simple, effective ways to remove coffee stains and residue from even your best-loved coffee mugs:
Removing Brown Residue From Ceramic Coffee Mugs
Of course, you could spend the time scrubbing your favorite diner mug with dish soap and a sponge – but we’ve got an easier way to remove coffee residue. Add a sprinkle of baking soda to the inside of your mug and just a small bit of water. Now, wipe it down with a clean cloth and ta-da! Good as new!
Cleaning Your Travel Coffee Mug Lid
This trick cleans not only coffee, but also lipstick stains from your coffee mug lid. While a dishwasher gets hot enough to sanitize anything that goes through a cycle in it, it’s not always going to be quite enough to remove all stains. To remove unsightly stains from your coffee mug lids, the best thing to do is take them apart as much as possible. Then, create a solution of baking soda and vinegar in a medium sized bowl. Drop the pieces of your lid into the bowl and let them soak. When ready, wipe them down with your sponge and rinse them off.
Be Careful With Custom Printed Mugs!
Your favorite coffee mug may have sweet photos of your children or a beautiful design printed on it. Be cautious with these mugs, as running them through the dishwasher can cause the photos on the outside to fade! Instead, use mild dish soap and a sponge dampened with warm water, and be sure to dry them thoroughly right away.
Let Sweeping Dimensions Take Tedious Cleaning Tasks Off Your Hands!
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Ready to set up a routine green cleaning for your Chicago home? Looking for a one-time deep cleaning, or service before a special event? We’re here for you. Reach out today for your free service estimate!