Posts tagged "bleach"

How can I reuse or recycle excess sterilising solution?

We’ve covered a wide range of things during our cleaning themed week here on Recycle This – bleach bottles, plug-in air fresheners, making dishcloth & pot scrubbers, and yesterday’s very interesting discussion on reducing plastic waste from cleaning – so I feel it’s fine for me to go off on a bit more of a tangent for this last one: sterilising fluid.

When I’m making jams & preserves, I use the hot soapy water then time in the oven approach for “sterilising” my glass jars – but that doesn’t work for John’s homebrew stuff. Some of it is plastic, some of it is just too big for the oven, and some of it is both plastic and too big. Instead, he uses sterilising solution – either bought as a concentrated liquid or made up from tablets. The stuff John uses is 2% sodium hypochlorite – weak bleach – so maybe this isn’t off on such a tangent after all ;)

Anyway, when he’s doing some homebrew, John mixes up a big vat of the sterilising fluid and uses it to sterilise this things – but since they’re hot-water-clean already, the liquid doesn’t get too messed up. I’d imagine people sterilising babies bottles would be in a similar position. It apparently has an effective life of about 24 hours so we can reuse it for other things – but what?

According to this forum on MoneySavingExpert, it’s a good halfway house for bleach – you can use it as a safer bleach for cleaning places you wouldn’t want to use full strength bleach (the microwave, tea cups, camping water bottles).

Does anyone have any other suggestions for things to do with it? I know some people use a weak bleach solution for cleaning plant pots before sowing seeds/delicate seedlings in them – would this be suitable for that?

How can I ‘repair’ a bleach stained t-shirt?

I suspect this is a lesson in why you shouldn’t clean wearing nice clothes and definitely why you shouldn’t use bleach, m’kay but I thought I’d ask anyway.

I managed to flick bleach all over one of my favourite t-shirts but I’m not quite ready to give up on it just yet. The shirt has a printed design on it so I can’t bleach and re-dye the whole shirt.

Googling around, I’ve seen some suggestions of disguising the pale dots with permanent marker – the shirt is brown though so I don’t know if I’ll find a pen to match.

The design is a bright cartoon design so I might get away with adding some “noise” to the picture with fabric paint or reverse/normal appliqué.

Failing all that, I guess I could make something else with the fabric/design or since it fits well, take it apart to make a pattern to use to make my own fitted t-shirts in the future. I’d really like to keep it as a tshirt though – any other suggestions?

How can I reduce the amount of bin bags I use?

garbage-bagThere is a lot of chatter in the US and the UK at the moment about putting a “tax” on plastic carrier bags to stop shops giving them out willy-nilly.

There is already a charge in place in Ireland and I read something the other day that explained while the amount of carrier bags given out by shops has dropped dramatically, the number of bin liners and garbage bags sold has increased because so many people used to reuse the carriers in the bin. That makes it feel like less of a victory – and it’s not exactly a huge victory to start with.

The thought of buying something to use to aid throwing stuff away seems really counter-intuitive to my brain but without using bin liners or the like, we’re constantly having to scrub out our kitchen bin with pretty harsh chemicals – we’re not big wasters, we compost as much as we can and most packaging we get is recyclable, so usually the only things that end up in there are pretty yacky.

So is there a line between disposable plastic bags and endless bleachy scrubbing? I thought about newspapers – a sheet as a throwaway liner would probably be fine for all but the wettest stuff – but since we don’t buy them either, that’s not an option really – what is?