7 Cleaning Myths That Don’t Actually Work

By Kailey Walters on August 20, 2019

This article is brought to you by CORT Furniture Rental. We take the hassle out of furnishing your new place so you can do more important things like read this article. Learn more about why furniture rental is the best way to get a great looking apartment.

Let’s face it: just like many other people, you’re probably enamored with all the life hacks out there that promise to make everyday chores and responsibilities easier and quicker. Admittedly, those promises are alluring — especially if they’re meant to help you manage the most mundane parts of your life, such as cleaning. After all, most people don’t like to clean. It’s time-consuming, laborious, and boring, which is why so many people jump to accept any and all cleaning advice that appears on the internet. However, it pays to be cautious when accepting information about cleaning so that you’re truly smart and efficient with your time. Below are some misconceptions about cleaning that you should take some time to clear up.


1. Using hot water to kill germs

This piece of advice probably sounds reasonable, especially because there is some truth to it. However, hot water has to be 212 degrees Fahrenheit before it’s actually able to kill any germs, and the contaminated area must be exposed for at least a few minutes. Seeing as most hot water heaters in homes are set around 120 degrees Fahrenheit, you won’t be able to kill any germs that way. Instead, a better solution might be to use a disinfectant such as chlorine bleach, pine oil, or Lysol. 

2. Using more detergent to make your laundry cleaner

If you think more is better, adding more detergent sounds like it would make sense, right? However, that is not the case. Using more detergent often makes it more difficult to remove sticky residue from the fabrics you’ve just washed.

Instead, think along the lines of “Quality, not quantity.” To get the most out of your detergent, do your homework to figure out which one out there offers the best value. Then you can use an appropriate amount to clean your clothes.

3. Cleaning sponges in the microwave

When it comes to sticking things in the microwave, you definitely want to be careful. If food can go up in flames after being in the microwave for too long, the same thing might happen to your poor kitchen sponge. The amount of heat from the microwave surely won’t be enough to kill all the bacteria on the sponge without first destroying the sponge. That being said, instead of a sponge, you’ll be better off using disposable wipes, cotton, or microfiber cloths that you can wash after each use.

Side note: If you do happen to make a mess of your microwave, here’s a cleaning hack that actually does work. Fill a bowl with water and vinegar, place it in your microwave, and let it run for several minutes (depending on your microwave’s wattage) or until the water evaporates. Then you can use a paper towel to easily wipe away the stains on the inner walls.

4. Using hairspray to remove an ink stain

You may have heard of this one before, but unfortunately, it doesn’t work so well. That’s because most hairsprays today no longer contain alcohol, which is the main component for a successful cleaning. As a result, using hairspray to remove an ink stain on your fabric probably will do more harm than good. Instead, you’ll want to find a high-quality stain remover so that you won’t damage any of your fabrics.

5. Placing a magic eraser in the toilet to remove stains

This is another very common misconception when it comes to cleaning. While magic erasers certainly are useful in many situations, they won’t amount to much if they’re simply sitting in the toilet bowl doing nothing. If you really are determined to put your magic eraser to use, start scrubbing with it to remove grime from your bathtub and shower walls.

6. Removing stains with Coca-Cola

While in some instances Coca-Cola can be used as a cleaning product, it shouldn’t be your go-top option. After all, even if Coca-Cola successfully removes that stain on your sofa, would you want the sticky brown residue all over your furniture? It’s not a good look, it’s impractical, and it would probably lead to more problems (i.e., greater bacteria growth) than solutions. Instead, just stick to standard cleaning products.

7. Putting a dryer sheet over the air vents to make your home smell good

This is yet another common cleaning “hack” that doesn’t actually work. In reality, putting a dryer sheet over the air vent will just end up blocking the vent, which could be harmful to the heating system in your home. If you really want to make your place smell nice, there are many other ways to go about it, such as burning some pleasant-smelling candles, diffusing some essential oils, or even spraying Febreeze.

When it comes to cleaning your place, pay attention to the hacks that really work so you can be successful in your cleaning endeavors!

Looking for an easy way to furnish your off-campus apartment? Renting furniture from CORT saves you time and money. See how easy it is to get great looking furniture without breaking the bank.

Follow Uloop

Apply to Write for Uloop News

Join the Uloop News Team

Discuss This Article

Get Top Stories Delivered Weekly

Back to Top

Log In

Contact Us

Upload An Image

Please select an image to upload
Note: must be in .png, .gif or .jpg format
Provide URL where image can be downloaded
Note: must be in .png, .gif or .jpg format

By clicking this button,
you agree to the terms of use

By clicking "Create Alert" I agree to the Uloop Terms of Use.

Image not available.

Add a Photo

Please select a photo to upload
Note: must be in .png, .gif or .jpg format