Easy hints for cleaning wastebaskets

The details of cleaning wastebaskets vary according to the materials they're made of, but the beginning is always the same: Remove the waste.  Here are a few easy hints for proceeding beyond that point.

Easy hints for cleaning wastebaskets

1. Vacuum natural material basket

  • To clean a wastebasket made of a natural material — such as cardboard, paper, wicker, straw or wood — use a vacuum cleaner with the upholstery brush attachment.
  • If the basket becomes soiled, wipe it with a damp cloth or sponge.
  • Don't use harsh cleaners.

2. Plastic or metal wastebasket

  • Wash it with a solution of 50 ml (1/4 cup) of baking soda or borax (available from the laundry section of supermarkets) in 4 litres (4 quarts) of warm water.
  • Use a cloth, a sponge or, for more challenging dirt, a stiff brush.
  • Rinse and then dry with a soft cloth.

3. Two for one

  • Clean the kitchen trash can at the same time you're mopping the kitchen floor, just by mixing up your cleaner-and-water solution in the wastebasket itself instead of in a bucket.
  • During the 10–15 minutes it takes to mop the floor, the dirt in the wastebasket will be loosening.
  • When you pour out the mop water, give the interior of the wastebasket a once-over with a stiff brush, rinse with running water and then dry with a cloth.

4. Line the basket

  • Using a liner makes cleaning a wastebasket so much easier. But buying new plastic bags is completely unnecessary when households are usually awash in perfectly reusable plastic and paper bags from supermarkets and stores.
  • Nor is it necessary to change the liner each time the basket is emptied, unless the garbage is food or anything moist and sloppy.
  • For dry garbage, just empty the liner into the main garbage bin, then put it back in the wastebasket.
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