With all of the choices available in the cleaning aisle these days, it's easy to get overwhelmed. How many times have you seen someone wandering through the aisle with a glazed look in their eye? Don't let that be you! The ph scale will tell you everything you need to know and guide you to the right cleaner every time.
You see, on the ph scale, plain water is neutral at 7 (why it's set up that way, I don't know).
However, if the soil you need to clean is mineral-based (such as limescale, calcium, or hard water) you need to reach for an acid cleaner. Vinegar registers at a 3 on the scale making it quite acidic. Usually, toilet bowl cleaners will fall on the acidic side too, since hard water is such a problem in toilet bowls.
Limescale under a microscope.
On the other hand, if your soil is oil, fat or protein-based (such as grease, blood, or grass stains), reach for an alkaline cleaner such as ammonia. Ammonia registers at a 12 on the ph scale making it highly alkaline. Other alkaline cleaners include sodium hydroxide (lye) and bleach.
kitchen grease under a microscope
NOTE - DON'T EVER MIX AMMONIA AND BLEACH. TOXIC CHLORINE GAS CAN RESULT AND IT CAN BE DEADLY!
So, next time you've got a mess to knock out, ask yourself, 'is my soil a mineral or an oil'?
Then pick the correct cleaner off of the shelf and you are well on your way to throwing a legit cleaning party.
Until next time,