box containing tools and baking soda
Photo: Reuters/Corbis
Everyone knows this kitchen staple fights odors in the fridge. What we didn't know is just how darn useful it is everywhere else in the house

1. Remove tape residue. Make a thick paste of baking soda and water. Rub the paste onto bits of tape stuck to windows, then wipe clean.

2. Douse flames. Keep a box of baking soda in your workshop or kitchen to sprinkle on a fire if one breaks out.

3. Zap roaches. Set out a shallow dish or bowl containing equal parts sugar and baking soda. Roaches are attracted to the sugar, but the mixture is deadly to them.

4. Spot-clean a rug. Sprinkle baking soda on greasy spots and let sit for about an hour. Scrub gently with a damp sponge or brush, then vacuum to remove any leftover grime.

5. Absorb moisture. Keep an open box of baking soda in your tool cabinet to fend off moisture that could rust saws or other equipment.

6. Keep drains clear. Once a week, pour a cup of baking soda and a cup of vinegar down your kitchen sink. It’ll help keep your pipes clog-free.

7. Clean a shower door. Pour some baking soda on a damp sponge, wipe the door, and rinse with warm water.

8. Uncrust your grill. Sprinkle baking soda directly on an indoor or outdoor grill. Let sit overnight, then slough off the grime with a wire brush and warm water.

9. Scrub your paws. Rubbing your hands with warm water and a palmful of baking soda will remove stubborn odors.

10. Banish book odors. Seal musty-smelling books for a few weeks in a plastic bag with baking soda sprinkled inside to eliminate mildew and odors.
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