Fun and Clever Ways to Use This for That

Recently as I was half way out the door, car keys in hand and on the way to the home improvement center, I remembered that I might already have what I needed. Cooking spray! That’s it. I’d heard that it just might work. It did, and quite perfectly, too. No more squeaks and I saved a trip and purchase, too.

Got a squeaky door or sticky drawer? Spritz a little cooking spray on the hinges or drawer slides then work it back and forth to distribute the “lubricant.” Wipe away any drips with a paper towel.

Use mayonnaise to get rid of white water rings on wood furniture. Make sure the area is completely dry then spread enough full-fat mayonnaise on the spot. Let it sit for several hours, even overnight. Now wipe it clean, and buff with a soft clean cloth. Magical, isn’t it. 

Don’t toss out that spare eyeglasses case. It can be used to protect your jewelry in your suitcase. Or how about that collection of crochet hooks that are rolling around in a drawer? They’ll fit nicely into that case. It can also make for a dandy manicure kit or emergency first aid or sewing kit. Kinda’ makes you wish you had several cases, doesn’t it. Here’s one more: Storage bin for those rascally ear buds.

If you buy yeast packets in bulk, some of them could be too old to use by the time you need them. To extend their life by months, store them in the refrigerator or freezer rather than in your kitchen pantry. Zip them in a plastic bag while they’re in cold storage. When you’re ready to use a yeast packet, let it warm up to room temperature first.

Got an old shower curtain? Even if it’s no longer good enough for its original purpose, there are several ways to extend its useful life: Use it to cover your patio furniture or barbecue next winter. Connect it with bungee cords. Or keep it in the truck of your car as a tarp for roadside emergencies in the event you need to sit on the ground, change a tire or make a quick underbody repair.

Look for Rain-X in the automotive aisle of your favorite discount store. It’s sold as a product to keep windshields free of water spots and help rain to sheet off windows. It works great on tub and shower walls to keep hard water stains from building up.

Got an annoying stripped out screw that you need to remove? Easy! To get a better rip, trap one side of a wide rubber band (use one that you saved from that last bundle of fresh broccoli) between the screwdriver and the screw head. Now give it a try.

Got a squeaky door or sticky drawer? Spritz a little cooking spray on the hinges or drawer slides then work it back and forth to distribute the “lubricant.” Wipe away any drips with a paper towel.

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13 replies
  1. Ron 'n Loni Oliver
    Ron 'n Loni Oliver says:

    Empty dental floss containers make great containers for necklaces/bracelets! You can wrap or twist the necklace around the little post in the middle to prevent tangling. The only draw back is that you can’t tell what’s inside.

  2. L. Ann
    L. Ann says:

    I like to throw all those nearly gone lip balm sticks in my toolbag and the kitchen junk drawer. Great for a quick non-toxic lube on squeaky doors, balky drawers and windows, etc. They’re usable to the last bit with the help of a toothpick or swab. Try it – you’ll never be without one.

  3. lynda
    lynda says:

    I have applied RainX to my new clear shower door. It is a process rubbing it in, letting it sit, then polishing it in. BUT IT WORKS. The only whitish area is at the bottom of the door where I am guessing I did a lesser job applying it. Before doing it I had gone to the RainX website and they have a note NOT to use it on PVC/Plastics/fiberglass like so many showers surrounds are made of.

  4. ABC
    ABC says:

    I wish I had NEVER put Rain-X on my windshield….it repels water fairly well, but it leaves a white film every time the wipers go across it, and severely obstructs my vision….I have cleaned and cleaned with all kinds of things but have not been able to get it off, and neither has it worn off! I searched the internet and found such suggestions as WD-40, lighter fluid, etc., none of which I want to use near my car. One suggestion was to have the windshield glass polished….who has time or money for that? Argh!

  5. dholcomb1
    dholcomb1 says:

    You should really use a silicone-based spray for a lubricant on metal parts such as hinges, drawer slides, and especially locks of any kind. Cooking spray may work, but it shouldn’t be used. It will gunk up. It’s designed for food use, not use on metal parts.


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