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La Jolla Mom - Baking Soda Can Help Clean Wood Cabinetry and Furniture

Clean Wood Cabinetry And Furniture Stains With Baking Soda

baking soda for household cleaning

baking soda for household cleaning

Ok, I might as well add more tips for keeping your home clean today and discuss how baking soda has helped us around the house recently. Also, see my post today regarding the Crayola stain guide.

We’ve had this bizarre problem now that the sun is out. I’ve never actually seen it occur, but there were weird, greasy streaks on our doors and wood cabinetry at exactly La Jolla Girl’s height. Finally, I linked it to her sunscreen. We use California Baby and it definitely works for her. I have no guilt about using it since it’s natural. The marks kept appearing with more and more frequency, so even La Jolla Dad declared that we need to explore other sunscreen options. The stains seem to go deep into the wood finish because they can’t be wiped off even with wood cleaners like Murphy’s Oil.

I Googled until I stumbled on a website that suggested baking soda as method for cleaning stains off wood products. I made a small paste with water, rubbed it on and it was like magic when they disappeared. Sometimes I had to apply the baking soda twice, but I was so relieved.

My family is messy. My cleaning supply cabinet is way too cluttered with specialty cleaners. In fact, today a pile of them came crashing down as I tried to reach into the very back to get a new sponge. So, I’m interested in consolidating, especially with green cleaners.

Simple Ways To Clean With Baking Soda

1.  I ran out of stainless steel cleaner so I sprinkled baking soda on my stove, wiped it and, voila, it was nice and shiny.  Same with my stainless steel fridge.

2.  Grease fires can be put out by using baking soda. I put a box in a cabinet by the stove for easy access.

3.  Use baking soda to clean burned food off the bottom of pots. This happens all the time in my house. I normally use Barkeepers Friend which I ran out of, so I tried baking soda. It worked with some elbow grease.

4.  It cleans the kiddie pool. La Jolla Girl has a huge Little Tikes pool that we struggle with keeping clean in the summer. It wasn’t used for a few days and grew some green funk in it. I used a few sprinkles of baking soda, a sponge and a hose to get rid of it. Easy.

5.  Use equal baking soda and white toothpaste to remove water stains on wood coffee tables. I haven’t tried it but baking soda apparently will remove alcohol stains. We get a lot of the latter in our house since we have a dark wooden coffee table. On our table, I can’t differentiate between what is water and alcohol so I just cleaned all of the rings simultaneously.

6.  Crayon marks on painted walls can be wiped off with a sponge and baking soda. Though Magic Eraser works pretty well!

7. I haven’t tried this yet, but it supposedly brightens clothes if you use it in your laundry.

We all know the obvious—baking soda is non-toxic, multi-purpose and really cheap. This is an excellent option for those trying to go green around the house.

I went to the Arm and Hammer website and they allow you to register for special offers, though it takes 8 weeks to process. And, no, they didn’t in any way prompt me to write this post.

How do you use baking soda?  Leave your housekeeping tips and tricks.

  • website - January 22, 2015

    I am definitely going to try a couple of these once I run out of the cleaners I currently have. I buy the all-natural stuff, but this is even better, and probably cheaper (and more fun!). :)

    Best regards!
    St Paul’s Carpet Cleaners Ltd.

  • moran - March 7, 2013

    You can use baking soda to get stains off of your fridge. All you need to do is make a sorta paste just mix baking soda with a little water and it will get all the stains off.

    You can also use coconut oil for body cream, hair shampoo, wood cleaner,

  • mario@bathroom illuminated mirrors - October 14, 2009

    It’s been two years now that I clean my sinks only with baking soda to avoid spreading chlorine in the environment and I must say that the sponge I use to do this is much cleaner than if I used it with a commercial scouring powder.

    The same goes with washing floors with vinegar. First it smells much better (french fries), and second the mop and pail are much easier to clean afterwards. So the whole procedure is much faster.
    .-= mario@bathroom illuminated mirrors´s last blog ..Bathroom Mirror Medicine Cabinet =-.

  • Ms. Mama - September 7, 2009

    And toothpaste mixed with salt! Amazing stuff actually.

    Stopping by from SITS.
    .-= Ms. Mama´s last blog ..Family Camping =-.

  • vigrx - September 1, 2009

    Particular utilitarian dispatch but there are some point where I wish not agree. But overall its altogether good.

  • Kristin - August 28, 2009

    Awesome tip. Great for cleaning stainless steel sinks too I’m told!

    • moran - March 7, 2013

      Yes, I used baking soda on my stainless steel sink and it mad it look great!

  • A H.I.T. - August 27, 2009

    What great tips! My mom used baking soda on a mattress to get rid of stale odors. Works like a charm! I’ve taken the same technique and use it to freshen up a rug.
    .-= A H.I.T.´s last blog ..Making Amends =-.

  • Joy - August 27, 2009

    Great tips! Belated congrats on your SITS day!
    .-= Joy´s last blog to the blog’s stampers’ sampler magazine giveaway! =-.

  • Rhiannon - August 27, 2009

    I brush my teeth with it hehehe but this is a very innovative list :) hehe

  • Éimí (Amy in Gaelic) - August 27, 2009

    I think the only time I’ve ever used baking soda is in cookie recipes…I might have to expand that horizon…Happy SITS day!
    .-= Éimí (Amy in Gaelic)´s last blog ..Photo shoot 07aug09 =-.

  • The Redhead Riter - August 26, 2009

    I LOVE BAKING SODA. I have brushed my teeth with it weekly for as long as I can remember.

    HIGH FIVE SITS girl!
    .-= The Redhead Riter´s last blog ..My Blog Is Pregnant With Multiples =-.

  • Tiaras & Tantrums - August 26, 2009

    borex works just about the same way
    .-= Tiaras & Tantrums´s last blog ..Wordless Wednesday =-.

  • Leah - August 26, 2009

    You can also brush your teeth with it, if you run out of toothpaste!
    .-= Leah´s last blog ..If You Can’t Judge a Book By Its Cover… =-.

  • elizabeth - August 26, 2009

    Hi! stopping by from SITS a day late. great helpful hints!

  • The Dapper Darling - August 25, 2009

    GOOOOD TIPS…I am now a follower!

    xooxo Grazie

  • greedygrace - August 25, 2009

    Baking soda is used for making cookies… and that’s about it!

  • Lenora - August 25, 2009

    Wow I never ever though of all the uses that baking soda has! I have been trying to go more natural in all my cleaners as the chemical based ones tend to give me really massive migraines and I am SO glad that I saw this in the sits blog! YAY!
    And googling this… how neat! Gotta try to see if I can’t find other natural cleaners. I already make our own laundry detergent, using ivory for now but will soon be using my own soaps!

  • Jessica - This Is Worthwhile - August 25, 2009

    I never even thought of Googling something like this! I have white rings on my dark kitchen table and I just figured I’d have to live with them for the rest of my life haha. I’m definitely going to try baking soda!
    .-= Jessica – This Is Worthwhile´s last blog ..2:50 pm =-.

  • Karen MEG - August 25, 2009

    great tips, and very natural and green, good idea for a post!
    .-= Karen MEG´s last blog ..Musical Musings =-.

  • Visiting from SITS! Thanks for the great tips – and I learned about Barkeepers Friend! I also have some Baking Soda eco-friendly tips too you might like

  • Nicole- Chasing Blue - August 25, 2009

    Besides for baking, we use baking soda to clean up around the house. I like to use it to make a paste and then scrub the tub. We don’t have a bathroom window so I hate using chemicals in there.

    Great tips!
    .-= Nicole- Chasing Blue´s last blog ..Chasing fresh starts… =-.

  • Amanda - August 25, 2009

    I’ve used baking powder and vinegar to unblock drains and also sprinkled it baking powder on carpet to rid it of smells or into a paste to remove stains.

    It’s great stuff!!
    .-= Amanda´s last blog ..The House That Jack Built….. =-.

  • Sarah - August 25, 2009

    Wow, I should try some of these! Thanks for the tips!! Happy SITS day!
    .-= Sarah´s last blog ..IT’S OFFICIAL!!! =-.

  • Simply Mommy - August 25, 2009

    Happy SITS Day!!! What great ideas. I hate using all the cleaners with strong chemicals. Thanks, I just might try them all.
    .-= Simply Mommy´s last blog ..How has Motherhood Changed Me? =-.

  • Emily - August 25, 2009

    We use baking soda a lot. In particular we use it (combined with vinegar) as a fabric softener. In the wash we put the normal washing powder and then 1/4 cup of baking soda. We set the cycle to have no spin. Then when that is done we put 1/4 cup of vinegar in and set to rinse and spin. I was cynical at first (my husband is working towards us using all green cleaning products) but it works really well.

    My maternal health nurse also told me that making a paste of baking soda is good for removing cradle cap on babies. I’ve been doing it for my 10-week-old and it is definitely loosening it up. You put it on the head about 10 mins before a bath!
    .-= Emily´s last blog ..Portable UV Dummy Sterilizer =-.

  • The Mom @ Babes in Hairland - August 25, 2009

    I’m going to have to try this for sure. I recently found that if you make a paste of it you can put it in your hair if there is hair spray buildup. Having 3 girls that has started being a problem now & then! Enjoy your day in the SITS spotlight!
    .-= The Mom @ Babes in Hairland´s last blog ..Thought for Thursday =-.

  • Missy - August 25, 2009

    I love baking soda. I too am working on twiddling down my huge supply of cleaning products because you can clean just about anything with baking soda and vinegar.
    BTW, I have tried the baking soda in the wash and it does work.

    Happy SITS day!!!
    .-= Missy´s last blog ..Camping fun =-.

  • Lani - August 25, 2009

    Great tips, thank you so much!
    Happy Sits Day!
    .-= Lani´s last blog ..And the Winner Is… =-.

  • Kristin - August 25, 2009

    Great info! I use baking soda instead of “barkeeper’s friend”. If the cooking spray doesn’t come off of a pan, making a paste of b.s. and water gently “scratches” it off. My favorite is to mix it with vinegar for cleaning. Pour some b.s. down your sinks/tubs, follow up with vinegar, and when it’s done fizzling follow up with some hot water. No more spending a ton of money on Draino anymore! Also… we fill an empty Parmesan cheese shaker with b.s. Walk around and sprinkle it all over the carpet, let it set overnight and vacuum up the next day – goodbye stinky floors!

  • Unknown Mami - August 25, 2009

    I use it as a carpet freshner.
    .-= Unknown Mami´s last blog ..Guess Where I’m Taking You? =-.

  • ttjenkins - August 25, 2009

    thanks for the tips! over from SITS!
    .-= ttjenkins´s last blog ..Why can’t I figure this stuff out by now? =-.

  • Maureen - August 25, 2009

    Thanks for including the list of ideas. I really need to have more than one box on hand. Baking Soda is such a versatile product!
    .-= Maureen´s last blog ..Scrapbooking as an Educational Tool Part2 =-.

  • GReedyGirl1 - August 25, 2009

    Stopping by from SITS these are great ticks. We just discarded a burned out pan because nothing was working, but now I know for the future
    .-= GReedyGirl1´s last blog ..Drinks on Us: Low-Calorie Cocktails =-.

  • Nadirah - August 25, 2009

    I love natural cleaning products. I use baking soda for deodorant. happy SITS day
    .-= Nadirah´s last blog ..Stubborn Baby Stains? =-.

  • Alma - August 25, 2009

    I will definitely be trying these when I get home tonight!! I have a couple of the things on your list that need to be taken care of. :)

    .-= Alma´s last blog ..oink, oink =-.

  • Viv - August 25, 2009

    We live in FL, and my Mom used to always make a baking soda paste with water to put on mosquito bites. Takes the stinging out, cools and reduces the swelling!
    .-= Viv´s last blog ..Talking Up the Weight of Silence =-.

  • Rachel - August 25, 2009

    I was just wondering last night what to do about a spot on my dresser. I’m so glad to find this post! I’ll have to give some baking soda paste a try. Thanks!
    .-= Rachel´s last blog ..Outdoor Flower Pot Gardening =-.

  • Holly Noelle @ Domestic Dork - August 25, 2009

    I like to mix baking soda with honey and wash my face with it. It’s amazing!
    .-= Holly Noelle @ Domestic Dork´s last blog ..SITScation ‘09 Contest! I Need YOUR Help! =-.

  • Daphne - August 25, 2009

    Baking soda has to be one of the greatest inventions with the most unintended uses of all time! Great stuff here, popping by from SITS.

  • Daphne - August 25, 2009

    Baking soda has to be one of the best inventions with the most unintended uses of all time. Great stuff here, popping by from SITS!
    .-= Daphne´s last blog ..little-pp001.jpg =-.

  • Michelle - August 25, 2009

    I haven’t used it much except occasional recipe or to freshen fridge or freezer. I would love to incorporate it more into my cleaning.
    .-= Michelle´s last blog ..Wedding Blunders =-.

  • Leslie - August 25, 2009

    I’m a huge fan of baking soda! Stopping by from SITS.
    .-= Leslie´s last blog ..FROM COW TO WOW! =-.

  • zeemaid - August 25, 2009

    wow great tips. i knew most of those but did not know about the rings on the tables. I have a few of those… one is from a hot cup. I wonder if it will work the same?

    Happy SITS day!
    .-= zeemaid´s last blog ..A Mixed up Kind of Day – Warning =-.

  • Rhonda - August 25, 2009

    good to know but it always freaks me out when I find out something that is put into food can be used to clean things!
    .-= Rhonda´s last blog ..MckLinky Blog Hop: Time To Laugh =-.

  • Pam - August 25, 2009

    Who knew baking soda was so versatile? I think some of the “old-fashioned” ideas about cleaning really are the best.
    .-= Pam´s last blog ..Me? A French Chef? =-.

  • Melissa - August 25, 2009

    I actually use it in my fridge and freezer too to cut down on odors. Baking soda really is a girl’s best friend, huh?
    .-= Melissa´s last blog ..TOS Crew: Web Design for Kids (…And Curious Grown-Ups!) =-.

  • Rita - August 25, 2009

    Great – I wasn’t sure what I was going to do with that pool!
    .-= Rita´s last blog ..I wish someone had told me that… =-.

  • Sassy Chic - August 25, 2009

    Thanks for sharing your secrets….
    I too heart baking soda for cleaning!!

    Sassy Chica
    .-= Sassy Chic´s last blog ..Your HOT =-.

  • Lisa - August 25, 2009

    I also love baking soda! I pour some in the bathtub when my kids have rashes. It really helps to soothe the skin!!
    .-= Lisa´s last blog ..Mother of the Year Award =-.

  • Cynthia at A Shimmy In My Spirit - August 25, 2009

    I knew it was a useful product….but who knew just how usedful! It’s on my shopping list.
    .-= Cynthia at A Shimmy In My Spirit´s last blog ..I’m A SITS Featured Blogger! =-.

  • Sarah - August 25, 2009

    Very helpful :)

    Stopping by from SITS
    .-= Sarah´s last blog ..Ten…. Eleven Guilty Pleasures =-.

  • Pricilla - August 25, 2009

    Thanks for all the great tips
    Happy SITS day!
    .-= Pricilla´s last blog ..Down in the Valley =-.

  • Robin G - August 25, 2009

    Yup, baking soda is awesome! I try and use only natural cleaners in every part of my cleaning routines, and baking soda is the natural cleaner king! I use it cleaning the tub, the kitchen sink, armpits in clothes, porous wood, and my favorite, cat boxes!
    Happy cleaning!

    .-= Robin G´s last blog .."Listen with your Eyes" @ Solstice Cafe 8/7 Opening =-.

  • Tricia - August 25, 2009

    I use baking soda for all sorts of cleaning projects. Great post!!
    .-= Tricia´s last blog ..Meet Thailand’s cute and cuddly baby panda girl, Linping!! =-.

  • Kara - August 25, 2009

    I love using baking soda as a cleaner. These are some great tips. I use it to clean my tile shower floor in place of cleansers like Comet. It also works great to take odors out of coolers and water jugs. I just make a paste and scour the insides, then rinse really well. No more water that tastes like homemade rootbeer, apple juice or punch. :)
    .-= Kara´s last blog ..Decorating with Old Calendars =-.

  • Michelle - August 25, 2009

    I use it for laundry…not sure how much good it does.

  • Are You There Mom - August 25, 2009

    Oh I just LOVE tips! Awesome!

  • Lorie Shewbridge - August 25, 2009

    I use baking soda in the laundry and it is great to help get rid of the smell in towels especially during the humid days of summer here in Florida.
    I also don’t use shampoo on my hair at all, I just use water and some conditioner every few days. But I do use baking soda to wash my hair after I’ve been swimming in a clorinated pool or salt-water. It works really good without stripping the natural oils in your hair.
    I’ll have to try some of the other cleaning tips.
    .-= Lorie Shewbridge´s last blog ..Self Portrait Sunday =-.

  • Meg - August 25, 2009

    The powers of baking soda! I keep meaning to try cleaning with it myself, but I haven’t gotten around to it yet.
    .-= Meg´s last blog ..To Prove My Point… =-.

  • Claire - August 25, 2009

    Great tips, thanks!
    .-= Claire´s last blog ..Parties are funnn… =-.

  • Reluctant Housewife - August 25, 2009

    I use baking soda, too! I use it to take coffee stains out of the sink in the kitchen. It’s great on counter tops, too. It gets crayon off of my kids’ plastic table like nothing else. Love it.

  • Robin - August 25, 2009

    I have also used it for scrubbing pots and coffee pot
    .-= Robin´s last blog ..The Storm =-.

  • Sandy - August 25, 2009

    Baking soda is fantastic! I actually have used it in my laundry and it works great!
    .-= Sandy´s last blog ..There’s Nothing Better… =-.

  • Laura Day - August 25, 2009

    I’ve had to use baking soda for a grease fire once. That stuff works on everything.
    .-= Laura Day´s last blog ..Reflections of Mississippi =-.

  • Tonya - August 25, 2009

    I will have to print this out so I can remember all the good uses for baking soda!
    .-= Tonya´s last blog ..End Of Summer =-.

  • Teri - August 25, 2009

    Baking soda rocks! I didn’t think to try it on stainless, I will have to give that a whirl!!
    .-= Teri´s last blog good side =-.

  • the mrs. - August 25, 2009

    Great tips! Not only are my children walking slobs but like you my cleaning collection is getting out of control.
    .-= the mrs.´s last blog ..who’s your best girl? and a side rant =-.

  • Kristen - August 25, 2009

    I’m bookmarking this one!! Happy SITS day!
    .-= Kristen´s last blog ..Crazy Dog T-Shirts Review and Giveaway =-.

  • Amy - August 25, 2009

    Amazing! I think baking soda just became my new favorite cleaner! Thank you so much. My grandmother always said it was good if you were out of toothpaste. just wet your brush, stick some on, and voila! Sparkley shiney teeth!

    Happy SITS day!
    .-= Amy´s last blog ..The Parental Curse =-.

  • Jackie - August 25, 2009

    Love this post!! I use baking soda for so many things as well! It is what I use to clean our bathtub every week – it’s great and gets rid of all the soap scum!
    .-= Jackie´s last blog ..How I Want to Wash Cloth Diapers =-.

  • Allison - August 25, 2009

    Baking soda works wonders. Happy SITS day!
    .-= Allison´s last blog ..Week-end, it’s over right?? =-.

  • Amanda @ Serenity Now - August 25, 2009

    I love to use baking soda to clean my stainless steel sink. It also makes my brownies turn out so much better. :) Good tips!

    Stopping by from SITS!
    .-= Amanda @ Serenity Now´s last blog ..Tasty Tuesday: One Last Summer Hurrah =-.

  • Life of a Stepmama - August 25, 2009

    Great post I had no idea!! I am going to try that at my house, I have a similiar problem!! Thanks so much for the tip, Happy SITS day!!
    .-= Life of a Stepmama´s last blog ..Denied =-.

  • Mom of Three - August 25, 2009

    I’m a big fan of baking soda for cleaning as well.
    For your bathroom sink, try a little baking soda + water paste.
    You can make a homemade cleaning solution with some baking soda made into a paste with a little vinegar and 1 or 2 drops of citrus essential oil. Great “green” cleaner.

  • Jill - August 25, 2009

    I think I’ll try this on my stainless steel sink.
    .-= Jill´s last blog ..Monday =-.

  • C. Beth - August 25, 2009

    Great advice! I’ve used it recently to clean the griddle portion of my stove.
    .-= C. Beth´s last blog ..Today’s Writing Prompt: Computer =-.

  • LiveLaughLoveCj - August 25, 2009

    Baking soda in the fridge and freezer to keep things fresh and smelling good.
    I use it for many of the same things you do. It’s a great natural product!

    I’ll have to go to their website – hadn’t ever thought to do that (duh)…

    Happy SITS day! :)
    .-= LiveLaughLoveCj´s last blog ..Monday Mingle – 3rd Edition =-.

  • Jeanette - August 25, 2009

    Love learning about new “green” ways to clean! Thank you.
    Saying hello from SITS!
    .-= Jeanette´s last blog ..Fall Extravaganza =-.

  • Jen - August 25, 2009

    I’m a definite Green Cleaner. Who would have know that everyday items such as baking soda and vinegar has so much power.
    .-= Jen´s last blog ..One Hour Parties =-.

  • JennyMac - August 25, 2009

    Baking soda is fantastic. Great post.
    .-= JennyMac´s last blog ..Me love you long time =-.

  • Flory - August 25, 2009

    I don’t usually use baking soda for cleaning, but I’m going to try it on my dishwasher.
    .-= Flory´s last blog ..My Husband’s Heart Attack =-.

  • Kim - August 25, 2009

    I didn’t know there were some many uses for baking soda. I knew it kept refrigerator odors at bay…but cleaning pots and pans? News to me. I’m going to remember that (and hope I never have to use it)!
    .-= Kim´s last blog ..Rave Reviews: Velveeta Shells & Cheese Cups =-.

  • ck - August 25, 2009

    Those are great ideas. Especially #1, #3 and the cabinets, of course. (can you tell we make a mess at our house?)

    Happy SITS day!
    .-= ck´s last blog ..the M files – in case of emergency =-.

  • Type A Mommy - August 25, 2009

    This is awesome! My son keeps splattering milk on my wood furniture, and if I don’t catch it immediately, it makes a stain, so I’m going to have to give the old baking soda trick a whirl. Thank you!!!

  • Karen & Gerard Zemek - August 25, 2009

    Thanks for the tips–I never knew baking soda could be so useful! I’m going to share about this on my Friday “Things I Learned This Week” post at with a link back here.

    Visiting from SITS–first time visitor here.
    .-= Karen & Gerard Zemek´s last blog ..11 Medical Madness Hassles =-.

  • Yaya - August 25, 2009

    Wow! Good ideas!
    .-= Yaya´s last blog ..Monday’s Muse-Family =-.

  • La Belle Mere - August 25, 2009

    Great Tip!! I don’t have any Baking Soda tips to share I’m afraid. In fact I am about as domesticated as a 14 year old boy. But I love anything that makes life easier and that sounds like it does!

    The only tip I have is never eat yellow snow. You can have that one! ;-)

    Congrats on making FB!

    LBM xxxxx
    .-= La Belle Mere´s last blog ..Camping it up….. =-.

  • SonyaAnn - July 17, 2009

    I’m going to try #7. We have terrible water and all the whites turn orange. Glad that I found you.

  • Cat - July 16, 2009

    I love baking soda! I put it in the bath tub for sunburns, or bug bites, or even diaper rashes for my boys. Helps take the sting out… at least it has for me :)

    • La Jolla Mom - July 17, 2009

      Sunburns, that’s a good one. I’ll remember that!!!

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I'm Katie Dillon, a freelance luxury travel writer who lives in seaside La Jolla, CA. This is where I document my recent trips around the world, the latest San Diego happenings and other fun lifestyle topics. Thanks for stopping by!

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