WARNING: Never mix cleaning products containing bleach and ammonia as dangerous fumes will result.
GENERAL CLEANER: dissolve 4 tablespoons of baking soda in 1 quart of warm water.
GENERAL-PURPOSE CLEANER: combine 1 teaspoon borax, 1/2 teaspoon washing soda, 2 teaspoons vinegar, 1/4 teaspoon dishwashing liquid and 2 cups hot water. If you don't have washing soda (generally found in the laundry section of supermarkets), use 1 teaspoon baking soda instead. For a more pleasant smell, use lemon juice instead of vinegar. Be sure to label the bottle accordingly.
SURFACE CLEANER: mix together vinegar and salt. Apply and rinse with water.
EASY SCRUB: combine 3/4 cup baking soda with 1/4 cup borax dishwashing liquid. Mix in enough dishwashing liquid to make a smooth paste. If you prefer a pleasant smell, add 1/4 teaspoon lemon juice to the paste.
HEAVY-DUTY DISINFECTANT CLEANER: slowly stir together 1/4 cup powdered laundry detergent with 1 tablespoon borax into 3/4 cup hot water until dissolved. Add 1/4 cup pine oil (available at hardware stores and supermarkets), or pine-based cleaner, and mix well. For bathroom cleaning, use the mixture full strength. In the kitchen, dilute it with water.
TOILET CLEANER: combine 1 cup borax with 1/4 cup vinegar or lemon juice to make a paste. Apply it to the inside of the toilet bowl; let sit for 1 to 2 hours, and scrub.
MILDEW REMOVER: in a pail, combine 1 tablespoon powdered laundry detergent with 1 quart chlorine bleach and 2 quarts water. Wearing rubber gloves, wash off the mildew.
GLASS CLEANER: Combine 2 tablespoons ammonia, 1/2 cup alcohol, 1/4 teaspoon dishwashing liquid and a few drops blue food coloring water. Then add enough water to make 1 quart. If you prefer a nonammoniated cleaner, substitute 3 tablespoons vinegar or lemon juice for the ammonia.