The Worst Cleaning Advice We’ve Ever Heard

Read time: 7 mins

The internet is an incredible tool, but unfortunately, loaded with false information and terrible advice. Cleaning is no exception. Before you try a cleaning process, watch out for some of the worst cleaning advice we have ever heard: 

Use White Vinegar to Clean Stone – NOPE!

Think you should use white vinegar to clean your granite countertops? Don’t do it. This is not the right product to clean granite, marble or other stone. While vinegar works well to dissolve mineral deposits around water fixtures, it could damage granite, marble, or other stone. White vinegar is acidic and can mar the surface. Damaged countertops? Call COIT to restore them with our professional honing, cleaning, and sealing.

Soak Spills on Carpet – DON’T DO IT!

The last thing you want to do is soak down a spill of wine, coffee, or other staining substance. To correctly clean up spills, work from the outside in with a clean, dry cloth to soak up the liquid. Soaking it down will drive the stain deeper into the carpet fibers. Blot, blot, blot, and then spray with cleaner or water, and blot some more. Can’t get the stain removed? Call COIT to restore your carpets with our truck-mounted extraction system that pulls out all dust, dirt, stains, allergens, and those nasty pet odors, leaving your carpets looking simply perfect.

Use Bleach on Rust – Uh Oh, WRONG!

If you have rusty areas, bleach is not the answer -- in fact, it will cause rust to spread. To remove rust stains, use a brush and elbow grease, along with an abrasive product on some surfaces.

Nail Polish Remover is Good for Sticky Gunk from Labels – NO, NO, NO!

Nail polish remover is made from acetone and will damage surface finish. If you have a sticky residue left from a label on a new appliance, remove it with warm soapy water or you may be left with a marred surface forever. 

Clean Pet Hair from Furniture with a Dryer Sheet – Uh, NO!

Dryer sheets are made with a fabric softener and using a dryer sheet to clean pet hair will add this substance to the surface of your furniture, which will attract dust and dirt and make your furniture much dirtier over time. To remove pet hair, use the vacuum cleaner or a soft, clean cloth with a little water to lift pet hair rapidly. For deep cleaning to remove pet stains and odors, trust the COIT technicians to do a thorough cleaning that won’t damage the fabric.

Stop with the Vinegar on Wood!

Never clean wood surfaces with a vinegar/water or vinegar/oil mixture. Vinegar can eat away the finish, and the oil leaves a residue. To clean wood tables and chairs, the manufacturer typically offers advice that matches the type of wood and finish. Follow these instructions. For a simple fix, use warm water with a tiny amount of clear dish soap. You are far better served to use a product developed to protect the surface and type of wood, so find out, and follow those directions.

Tea as a Cleaner? Bad Advice!

Some DIY posters recommend using tea bags to clean. Never, never try it. Tea is a staining substance and you will be very unhappy with the result. Don’t use wet tea bags on wood, fabric, or any other surface. However, having a hot cup of tea for yourself is always a good idea – particularly when you turn your cleaning tasks over to the COIT team, so you can sit back, relax, and enjoy the day. Take a spa day and let us get the job done right. That’s good advice!

Use an Abrasive Cleanser on Bathroom Fixtures – AVOID!

Rather than using an abrasive cleanser, use a spray product to loosen tough stains. Over time, the use of abrasives will damage the smooth, shiny, surface, and they will dirty more quickly, eventually needing to be refinished. Keep them shiny, smooth, and gleaming with spray cleaners. Let it soak for a minute or two, and wipe with warm water and a cloth. They’ll last longer and look better.

Use Scrubby Sponges for Appliances – NO.

The green abrasive surface on cleaning sponges can damage the smooth surface on your appliances or cooktop. These sponges are used to scrub the bottom of pots, not appliances!

More Cleaning Product is Better – WRONG.

Using more cleaning product doesn’t make clean better. In fact, it can leave an ugly residue or a sticky buildup that attracts more dirt and dust. Follow the directions on any cleaning product, including soaps, detergents, and sprays. 

Always Use Furniture Oil on Wood Furniture – DON’T DO IT!

Older pieces of furniture may need an occasional treatment with oil, but modern furniture has a finish. Adding oil will create a gummy, sticky surface to your furniture. Use a LIGHTLY dampened microfiber cloth with clean, warm water, and wipe away dust and dirt, moving with the grain. You want the cloth to have very little water to avoid damaging the surface, and no water should be left after wiping.

Use Hydrogen Peroxide for Carpet Stains – NOPE.

Hydrogen peroxide is the wrong way to clean any stain from carpet. It is a bleaching agent and could leave lighter spots on your carpet that will damage it forever. This advice is found all over the internet and it is a mystery why anyone would advise it. If you have heavy stains, you are better served by having your carpets professionally cleaned by COIT. Your carpet manufacturer advises the type of spray spot cleaner to use, so follow directions. Google the manufacturer and study up before using any cleaning substance on the carpet. Every fiber is different, and the last thing you want to do is damage your investment. 

Clean Pet Urine Stains and Odors with Spray Carpet Cleaner – IT WON’T WORK!

If your furry friend has done a bad, bad thing, you will be living with the odor for a long, long time. The urine soaks deep into carpet fibers, padding, and sometimes into the wood. As pet urine contains uric acid, it can seriously damage carpet fibers. Blot the area as quickly as possible. If it has already soaked in or dried, call the COIT technicians. We have a process that thoroughly removes pet stains and odors. Sprays just mask the odors, and not very well. The combination of perfume and pet urine is not pleasant. Just get the job done right by our professional team. 

Clean Leather Furniture with an All-Purpose Cleaner, Oil, or Baby Wipes. YIKES – WRONG!

Your leather furniture has a professional finish to keep the leather smooth and supple. All-purpose cleaners are alkaline and will damage the leather surface. The same is true with baby wipes. Oils, even those that are commonly advised in DIY blogs, can actually make the leather brittle and more likely to crack. Read the furniture manufacturer’s directions for cleaning your leather pieces. Most often, a specific brand of leather cleaner and conditioner will be advised. Use that – and nothing else other than a clean cloth to correctly care for leather and make it last.

Use Baking Soda on Carpet Spills – UGH. IT'S-A MESS.

Baking soda can harm your carpets. In fact, our COIT team has been called time and time again to remove baking soda that has become ingrained into the fibers. It will stick to the carpet backing and isn’t going anywhere. The baking soda particles are very small and sink deep within the carpet fibers. Not only will it damage your carpet, it can destroy your vacuum cleaner. One way many homeowners protect carpets is to ask COIT to apply COITGard protection, so the stain-resistant quality of the carpet is maintained. 

Why Call COIT?

We applaud homeowners who use DIY methods to keep the home clean and fresh! When you use the right products and processes, it works. Even the most diligent homeowner will eventually need help, and that’s when COIT comes in. We can deep clean and restore your home, including carpeting, area rugs, tile and grout, granite, marble and other natural stone, wood floors, upholstery, drapes, blinds, and even concrete. We have over sixty years in the cleaning industry and are responsible for developing a wide range of superior cleaning processes. Add a professional cleaning to your home maintenance program, and you will have a cleaner, fresher home -- every day. Connect with our team to find out more about our state-of-the-art cleaning systems. We literally do it all, and we offer a 100% customer satisfaction guarantee – call now.

ShareShare this