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Mum know's best

Community Veteran
Posts: 7,153
Thanks: 54
Fixes: 2
Registered: 30-08-2007

Mum know's best

With Mrs P's enforced (and permanent) disabilities I find myself as head cook and bottlewasher and cleaner. Because we're in a very hard water area the bathroom sink after a period of time develops an unsightly tide mark/scum line whatever you like to call it, this is spite of rinsing the sink round after each use.
I have tried I think nearly all of the propriety cleaners available of the Cillet Bang variety, none of which really ever shifted it entirely.
I was scrubbing away at the mark the other day, and exclaimed "this damned mark will not go" (edited for the sensitive) Mrs P asked tentatively from the safety of bed "wazzamatter" I explained, and she said why not try Ajax? Ajax I thought the memory of my mum scouring everything in sight with that mildly abrasive powder.
So I went in search of some Ajax, fully expecting it to be unobtainable nowadays. And indeed locally I couldn't find any (I didn't try the major supermarkets) but did locate a pack of Vim, which I deduced as much the same stuff.
And indeed, five minutes of hard scrubbing had the sink shining like new.
So perhaps our mothers and grandmothers did know best.
Experience; is something you gain, just after you needed it most.

When faced with two choices, simply toss a coin. It works not because it settles the question for you. But because in that brief moment while the coin is in the air. You suddenly know what you are hoping for.
26 REPLIES
Community Veteran
Posts: 16,848
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Registered: 06-11-2007

Re: Mum know's best

You`ll be wanting to find some OXYDOL soap powder , soon, then...  Cheesy
Community Veteran
Posts: 7,153
Thanks: 54
Fixes: 2
Registered: 30-08-2007

Re: Mum know's best

Is carbolic soap still available?
Experience; is something you gain, just after you needed it most.

When faced with two choices, simply toss a coin. It works not because it settles the question for you. But because in that brief moment while the coin is in the air. You suddenly know what you are hoping for.
Community Veteran
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Registered: 01-08-2007

Re: Mum know's best

We're also in a hard water area - so bad that a couple of years ago our hot water pipe was completely blocked and despite a new pipe its getting there again now!
We've also got a water softener under the sink but I've heard that these are bad for your health. Anyone know why?
I need a new signature... i'm bored of the old one!
Community Veteran
Posts: 7,153
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Registered: 30-08-2007

Re: Mum know's best

The softening medium is salt <assuming you keep it topped up> in mechanically softened water (excluding naturally soft water) and excess salt is seen as unhealthy. The general advice given was when I had any contact with them was to have an un-softened tap for drinking water and use the softened water only for cleaning, washing machines, dishwashers etc. where they will reduce your use of cleaning agent markedly. If you are on a water softener you don't need to keep the dishwasher built-in salt container filled, so ignore the warning light if it has one.
Experience; is something you gain, just after you needed it most.

When faced with two choices, simply toss a coin. It works not because it settles the question for you. But because in that brief moment while the coin is in the air. You suddenly know what you are hoping for.
pierre_pierre
Grafter
Posts: 19,757
Registered: 30-07-2007

Re: Mum know's best

got some Wrights Coal Tar soap from our 10 mile out of town Tesco  on Tuesday,  no chance in the three so called large ones around my town
edit
just had  look at the packet,  it a traditional soap with loads of grotty name stuff in it, plus the smell of Coal Tar
alanb
Grafter
Posts: 459
Registered: 24-05-2007

Re: Mum know's best

Very true Petlew, the old remedies can often be much better than expensive cleaners.
Lemon juice or distilled vinegar are good for descaling kettles and coffee-makers, so should work on taps too. Don't boil malt vinegar in a kettle, I did that once and regretted it.
Meths is fantatic for cleaning windows and mirrors, also handy for spectacles, and seems to last forever. Make sure you do use meths and not a proprietary paintbrush cleaner which will usually contain solvents that damage plastics.
Community Veteran
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Registered: 12-08-2007

Re: Mum know's best

@Petlew, I also live in a hard water area and suffer the same problem.  Will have to look out for some Ajax.  Your comments about keeping an un-softened tap for drinking was also the advice my plumber gave me when I talked to him about a water softener.
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Re: Mum know's best

We had one of those 'under the sink' water softeners installed when we bought a new house in 2002. We also had the separate drinking water tap (a fair bit of added expense)  which was a good decision.
My parents, who bought a property oppsite a few months earlier, just had the softener for all taps and their water tastes so salty - even worse as it gets close to needing the filter changing.

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Courage is resistance to fear, mastery of fear, not absence of fear - Mark Twain
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Midnight_Caller
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Registered: 15-04-2007

Re: Mum know's best

Warning do not use Ajax Vim on a plastic bath or plastic sink.
[Edit]
Want some Carbolic soap ?  3 x 125g - £3.99 Amazon
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Re: Mum know's best

I'm glad I live in a soft water area Smiley
I've sampled London water and it's flat and tasteless  Tongue
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Community Veteran
Posts: 18,547
Thanks: 193
Registered: 12-08-2007

Re: Mum know's best

How about some of the uses that Coca Cola can be put to around the house:
Coca Cola
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Registered: 21-03-2011

Re: Mum know's best

There's some hardness in the local water here which mostly shows as scale in the toilet pan. Such scale is easily removed by a couple of glops of Spirit of Salts (Hydrochloric acid) in the water for 30 mins then brush out and flush. Used at 1:20 dilution in water is pretty good at removing scale around a bath or inside a slow cooker bowl. Wear rubber gloves and eye protection when using this stuff though. Most plumbers merchants sell it for around £1:50 for 500 mls or so.
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Community Veteran
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Registered: 10-04-2007

Re: Mum know's best

Another old tip. If you have a stainless steel teapot that is well coated brown inside try putting a tablespoon of washing soda and filling with boiling water. Leave for a couple of hours then empty and rinse well. If it's really bad it might take a couple of goes and a little bit of scrubbing.
DO NOT TRY THIS ON ALUMINIUM TEAPOTS!
jelv (a.k.a Spoon Whittler)
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annerimmington
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Registered: 27-01-2012

Re: Mum know's best

Best cleaning products (and no chemicals) are white vinegar and bicarbonate of soda.    They will clean and disinfect anything - bicarb is great for cleaning the inside of the microwave and getting rid of odours, likewise with fridges.    A few weeks ago I scratched the inside of our new toilet while using a metal toilet brush Shocked    Nothing I tried would shift it until I read about Barkeeper`s Friend..........a product from the US which is the most amazing cleaner...........a non-scratch powder made from rhubarb leaves and it shifted the scratch with just a few rubs.    I would highly recommend it - you can use it on virtually any surface.      Hard to get hold of but I got mine from Amazon.