21 Clever Ways to Use Salt for Cleaning

Reading Time: 7 minutes

Salt, that oh-so-common seasoning and peppers’ better half, is a potent, abrasive antimicrobial that can give your home a mirror-like shine.

Salt is an effective, inexpensive, and non-toxic-friendly cleaning agent that you can use to freshen up stained clothing, unclog sinks, and much more!

Alongside lemon, vinegar, and baking soda, salt is the main factor for many nifty cleaning tricks in your household.

Continue reading to learn the top 21 clever ways to use salt for cleaning that you probably never heard of.

How to Clean With Salt

Salt acts as a powerful, albeit gentle, scrubbing agent. It also catalyzes other cleaning and deodorizing ingredients, such as vinegar and baking soda.

To make a salt cleaner, combine a good amount of salt with either baking soda or vinegar to make a paste. Then, you can use this paste mixture for cleaning appliances, varnish-coated surfaces, porcelain, glassware, and the like.

Additionally, below are some of the many clever uses of salt in the household:

1. Removing Cutting Board Stains

Generally speaking, cutting boards are among the most helpful kitchen toolkits and one of the easiest tools to get dirty. They’re handy for chopping, slicing, and dicing, but you can also use them to make a beautiful platter for your charcuterie!

Though, admit it or not, I know how challenging it is to clean this piece of wood.

So, do it by sprinkling salt on the board’s surface. Then, scrub fresh lemon sliced in half. Allow it to sit overnight before wiping it with a cloth and rinsing it with warm water the following day.

This also eliminates the stinky smell of onion or garlic and other strong odor ingredients.

2. Cleaning Cast-Iron Skillet

You should never use steel brushes in cleaning the caked-on food from cast iron as they will severely damage its surface. Salt, however, can provide abrasive cleaning performance without ruining your precious skillet.

Begin by reheating the skillet while dredging it with salt and water. Alternatively, a used spatula will make the job easier. Use it to stir and remove the food bits.

Finally, use a paper towel or a kitchen towel to dry the skillet and eliminate the remaining crusted stains. Dump off the salt and water, then wipe to dry the skillet.

3. Polishing Coffee Makers

If you’re a coffee lover, this trick is for you! Dissolve a tablespoon of salt in a cup of water and bring it to a boil. This will remove all the coffee residues and dirt from your machine.

In addition, a splash of lemon juice will make your coffee maker even better!

4. Get Rid of Shower Curtain Mildew

You can extend the lifespan of your shower curt by keeping mildew at bay. In this case, salt is your greatest weapon.

To clean shower curtains:

  1. Soak them in a tub with two cups of salt and warm water.
  2. Mix until the salts are fully dissolved.
  3. Soak the curtains for at least 30 minutes before letting them drip dry.

5. Deodorizes Your Fridge

Opening a foul-smelling fridge can be horrifying. We want to ensure that it smells fresh every time we open it for a quick bite.

To eliminate that unpleasant odor, dissolve a teaspoon of salt in a liter of water. This mixture will make a good deodorizer. Alternatively, lemon is also suitable for adding a bit of a citrus smell.

Afterward, spray it onto the washcloth or sponge to wipe the fridge down.

As such, you’ll have a white and fresh-smelling fridge once again.

6. Can Unclog Your Sink

No need to call the professionals! You can quickly unclog your sink just by using salt with the help of vinegar, baking soda, or warm water.

For clogs in the bath or kitchen sink, a mixture of salt and hot water can do the job. Usually, skin flakes, dirt, and hair clog your sink pipes. Just pour three tablespoons of salt into the drain and four cups of water, baking soda, or vinegar to clear the drain.

Then, run two more cups of your preferred liquid down the drain. You’ll see that salt breaks any sludge and clears out the pipes without requiring harsh chemicals, such as chlorine bleach.

7. Cleans Coffee Mug Stains

Frequent coffee breaks result in getting dark rings at the bottom of your favorite coffee mug. Fortunately, salt can save your cup from getting permanently stained.

Spritz the inside of the mug with water. Add a couple of teaspoons of salt and dish soap, then scrub like you usually do. Rinse thoroughly and let it dry.

Furthermore, you can make use of lemon slices to remove the stains.

8. Eliminates Sweat Stains From White Shirts

More often than not, your finest shirt can get sweat stains due to frequent use. However, four tablespoons of salt and a quart of soapy water make a superb sweat-stain remover.

Dissolve the salt in water, then brush the pit stains with a laundry brush dunked in the mixture. Continue brushing until the stains are gone. Allow the shirt to dry after rinsing it.

9. Wipe Out Water Rings

Watermarks are an inevitable byproduct of daily life. Fortunately, salt can effortlessly wipe out water rings and specks on your countertops and tables.

Make white watermarks disappear by wiping a thin paste of salt and oil using a sponge or cloth. Allow it to sit for a couple of minutes. Then, gently scrub the surface until it’s spotless.

10. Removes Rust

Some metals can develop rust when oxygen, moisture, and iron interact. Rust may continue to progress the longer it remains on the surface. With this, it’s best to get rid of it as soon as you discover a tiny spot of it.

Clear the rust by mixing half a cup of salt and baking soda. This should be enough to make a paste. Then, wipe off the stained item and dry it with a towel.

Additionally, you can apply the same technique with a salt and lemon mixture.

11. Great for Removing Wine Stains

When you stain your carpet with red wine, blot it as much as possible with a damp cloth. Then, sprinkle a fist of salt over the stain until you no longer see any more of it.

Allow the salt to penetrate for a couple of hours. Remove salt remains, then wash the carpet as usual. It’ll appear as if the mishap never occurred.

Finally, vacuum everything up afterward.

12. Prevents Cut Fruit From Browning

Enzymes are compounds that primarily cause fruit ripening and browning. Since salt has a low water concentration, it reduces the water amount on fruit surfaces through absorption, slowing down the browning.

The ideal way to reduce browning is to drench the cut fruit for 10 minutes in a saltwater solution (half a cup of salt to one cup of water). Then drain and keep it in the fridge until needed.

Remember to rinse the fruits with warm water before serving to lessen the salty flavor. What’s great about using salt is that browning is still significantly reduced even after rinsing.

13. Removing Fresh Blood Stains

Blood leaves a disgusting stain that is extremely difficult to remove, even with high-quality detergent.

Make the blood stain disappear by soaking the fabric in cold water. Leave it for at least 30 minutes. After which, make salt and water paste and scrub it onto the stain. Allow 15–20 minutes to absorb the solution fully.

Rinse it up with cold water before air-drying it.

Keep in mind that it’s easier to clean the blood stain while it’s fresh.

14. Clean Floors and Tiles

Salt’s abrasiveness can clean even the most challenging floor and tile gunk. However, don’t use salt on floors like marble since salt grains are too abrasive for marble’s sensitive properties.

To clean your floor, prepare a fistful of salt and dissolve it in one liter of warm water. Scrub the flooring, tiles, and other non-porous surfaces with this solution using a sponge or soft cloth.

For more stubborn dirt, you can also add baking soda.

15. Keeping Ants at Bay

Tossing salt near ants’ crannies and crevices will help keep them at bay. Generally, salt is one of the most affordable and effective natural ant repellents.

So, to get rid of ants, prepare a mixture of half a cup of salt and vinegar. Put them to a boil until the salt is fully dissolved.

Then, spray the mixture onto the ants’ entry points. Keep in mind that while this won’t kill the ants, it can keep them away from invading your house.

You may also spray it on your window sills and other spots where ants are known to hang out.

16. Can Humidify Rooms

Salt is the most effective natural DIY dehumidifier and is perfect for stopping mildew and mold growth.

To make a salt dehumidifier, you need a 1-liter empty plastic bottle (cut to the neck part) and seven ounces of salt. Fill the bottle with salt and place it in the most humid areas of your house.

The salt will absorb moisture in 3–4 days.

17. Brighten Colored Fabrics

Salt is an excellent stain remover and great for maintaining the bright colors of your clothes.

Here’s how you go about it: soak them in a basin with two tablespoons of salt and a cup of vinegar for one hour. Then, toss them in the washer with detergent and run the machine as usual.

Thoroughly rinse and dry.

You’ll be surprised it’ll look fresh and good as new!

18. Remove Nail Polish Spills

To remove freshly spilled nail polish, drizzle it generously with a handful of salt to soak up the wet polish without causing a greater mess.

After 10 minutes, wipe it up with a paper towel. Remember not to use a vacuum as the salt may clog it.

19. Cleans Egg Mess

Accidentally spilled egg on your carpet or sofa? Here’s what to do:

Mix a good amount of salt with warm water and scrub lightly using a cloth or sponge. As you may know, egg yolks are unlikely to stick to paper towels, rags, or sponges. So, the salt trick is your best bet.

However, if the egg stain remains visible, try rubbing it with a cloth dipped in a salt and vinegar solution. Sometimes, stubborn messes take a while to get rid of.

20. De-ice Your Windows and Windshields

Salt water’s low freeze point can instantly melt ice, making it an effective deicer spray.

So, to properly de-ice your windows and windshields, mix two scoops of salt in two cups of water. Then, spray the solution and use a plastic scraper to thaw off your windows.

Take extra care, as too much force, can scratch the glass.

21. Get Rid of Oven Spills

An oven is the backbone of every household kitchen. Thus, keeping it clean can make or break your signature dishes.

Remove tough oven spills by pouring dissolved salt on vinegar and spraying it on the affected area. Then, allow it to settle overnight.

Before scrubbing with a dry cloth, garnish salt for added abrasive power.


Indeed, salt can be used for more than cooking or seasoning your French fries. Thanks to its abrasive texture and eco-friendly approach!

Washing away stains and dirt such as grease, spills, wine, blood, soot, and mildew are some specific salt cleaning jobs. It’s also excellent for eliminating yellowing from shirts’ armpits and fruit browning.

Additionally, you can use salt to dehumidify, deodorize and sanitize rooms and appliances.

However, it’s important to note that some bacteria are salt resistant which salt alone can’t get rid of. Hence, depending on the application, mix salt with lemon, baking soda, water, or vinegar for better cleaning results.

Ultimately, when utilized wisely, these 21 clever ways to use salt for cleaning can be a great hack for keeping your home spotless and sparkling.

About Emily Leake

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