Composed of boron, sodium, and oxygen, borax is a naturally-occurring mineral that is used in households over 100 years.
Borax is highly alkaline (pH of borax is 9.3). Due to its alkaline nature, borax has potent stellar cleaning, disinfection, freshening, and deodorizing properties. Residential water is pegged at a pH of between 6.6 and 8.6. So, adding detergents in the washing machine means that the water pH is not neutral.
In other words, too alkaline or too acidic water will not clean your clothing as it should. What is worse, it can even damage the fibers. Add a half cup of borax to your washing cycle together with your regular laundry detergent. Borax is completely natural and safe to bleach.
So, let’s find out more uses of Borax!
- Remove clothing stains
If you want to eliminate grease, oil, and protein stains, mix half cup of borax for each gallon of warm water and soak your clothes for half an hour before adding laundry detergent and running the wash through as usual.
- All-purpose cleaner
Sprinkle some borax on a damp cloth and scrub away at sinks, faucets, tiles, countertops, grout, toilets, tubs, cookware for shiny and clean surfaces. Then, rinse the surface. To clean and disinfect the toilet bowl, pour some borax into it and scour with a scrub brush.
- Boost dishwasher detergent
Borax not only increases the cleaning power of your dishwasher detergent, but it cleans and disinfects the interior of the dishwasher as well. Just sprinkle 1-2 cups of borax into the basin of the dishwasher. Then, add detergent and run the dishes through as regular.
- Neutralize odors
To prepare a spray that will neutralize odors, dissolve a half cup of borax with 1 ½ cups of warm water. Transfer to a spray bottle. To create a fresh fragrance, add 5-10 drops of your favorite essential oil.
- Treat boron deficiencies in the garden
Pears, carrots, alfalfa, corn, apples, broccoli, onions, and cabbage are particularly hungry for boron. They do well with a foliar spray of 5 tablespoons of borax in 5 gallons of water with several drops of dish soap. Just spray the leaves and stems on the affected plants.
- Pest control
The boron in borax is fatal to insects such as fleas, beetles, silverfish, cockroaches, and ants. You should apply borax to the affected parts of your home. However, you can also prepare an insect bait paste. Just mix borax with honey or corn syrup.
- Rust remover
Mix borax and lemon juice to prepare a paste. You should apply this mixture to rusty objects and let it work for half an hour then scour with a scrub brush. If necessary, you can repeat these steps. When finished, make sure to rinse with water.
- Unclog drains
Pour a half cup of borax down the drain together with 2 cups of boiling water. Let it act for 15 minutes then flush with hot water.
- Shine windows and mirrors
Mix 3 cups of warm water with 2 tablespoons of borax and let it dissolve completely. Dip a clean cloth into the mixture and wipe down mirrors, windows, and sliding glass doors.
- Kill weeds
Combine 2 ½ gallons of water and 1 ¼ cups of water. Transfer to a weed sprayer. Carefully douse the leaves of unwanted plants in the yard and make sure to avoid the ones you wish you to keep. Spray only the foliage, never the soil!
- Eliminate black mold and mildew
Mix 1 cup of borax and 1 gallon of water if you want to treat areas affected with mold and mildew. You should spray the solution on the affected area, and use an old toothbrush to scrub thoroughly. When done, don’t rinse the solution. Even after the first treatment, borax will continue to disinfect and inhibit fungal growth.
- Remove adhesive residue
Forget about the commercial products like Goo Gone, and start using borax whenever you want to take an old label off a glass or remove a pesky price sticker. In ¼ cup of warm water, dissolve half cup of borax to remove glue, tar, gum, and other sticky spots.
- Clean & spot treat carpets
If you use a steam cleaner on your carpets, add a half cup of borax for each gallon of hot water. If you don’t have a steam cleaner, sprinkle borax on the rugs and carpets, let it act for half an hour then vacuum it up. For stubborn stains, mix 2 cups of warm water and half cup of borax. Use a cloth to blot the stain.
- Preserve fresh flowers
Take an airtight container. Prepare a mixture of one part borax to two parts cornmeal. Add some of this mix to the container then put your flowers in it. Cover them with the rest of the mixture. Cover and keep it in a cool, dry place for 2 weeks.
- Better homemade candle wicks
Try bathing heavy twine in a solution of 2 tablespoons of borax, 1 tablespoon of salt, and 1 cup of boiling water for better homemade candle wicks that reduce smoke and ash when burned. Let it soak for 24 hours. Hang wicks to dry for 2 days before use.