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More Tips for the Home

© Annie Berthold-Bond

The following is one in an ongoing series of columns entitled Care2 Ask Annie by Annie Berthold-Bond . View all columns in series

FIBERGLASS BATHTUB CLEANER
Q: I wonder if you have a formula for easy cleaning of a fiberglass bathtub. I use scouring power, but it does not do an acceptable job. Any information would be greatly appreciated. Many thanks. --Theresa, MO

A: Use my homemade softscrubber, it works beautifully on fiberglass. Place about 1/2 cup of baking soda in a bowl (DON"T substitute washing soda, as that can scratch fiberglass), and add enough liquid soap until the texture is like frosting.

MAKING HOMEMADE HERBAL WATER
Q:I like to put lavender water in my iron when I am ironing bed linen. However, it costs a fortune and I would like to know how to make it myself. Can you help? Thanks -- Luci, United Kingdom

A: I am so glad you asked because making herbal infusions—herbs steeped in herbal water - is very easy, satisfying and cheap. Herbal infusions result in herb water, and are a time-honored way of extracting the powerful nutritional and medicinal value of herbs. To make a basic infusion, put a heaping handful of leaves and flowers (about one ounce of herbs, and in your case use lavender) in the bottom of a mason jar, and add boiling water to cover, seal the jar tightly, and let is set overnight or for at least 4 hours. Strain, and discard the herbs.
Shelf life: A few weeks, refrigerated

WINTER WEATHERIZING
Q: What is a safe caulk to use for weatherizing? –Shirley, NY

A: It might be hard to imagine that something as simple as caulk can cause indoor air pollution, but the fumes from some caulk can contaminate indoor air for months. The safest caulk to buy is 100 percent silicone, available in most hardware stores. Rope caulk made of 100 percent silicone is good for weatherproofing. When 100 percent silicone caulks dry they are inert. Avoid products labeled "for use in kitchens and bathrooms," due to the addition of pesticides, including fungicides. A key for avoiding high-VOC caulk (that is, a caulk without volatile organic chemicals such as petroleum-based solvents) is to read labels.


Annie Berthold-Bond is the Green Lifestyle Channels Producer for Care2, the largest global community of environmentally conscious consumers on the Web, and has authored several books including Better Basics for the Home and Clean & Green. "Care2 Ask Annie" is brought to you by Care2.

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About The Author
For nearly twenty years - in books, articles, and as an editor - Annie Berthold-Bond has been researching and writing about the connections between the environment, personal health and well-being, and has become a leading authority. She is the author of several books...more
 
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