Rubbing alcohol can be a very useful thing to have around the house. Even though it is typically kept in a medicine cabinet and used to disinfect wounds and for similar uses, it can be quite a powerful cleaning product, too.

Alcohol is good at dissolving dirt and oils, which you can already see can be quite a useful function when cleaning. Cleaning experts at Modern Maids share some great ideas about what you can use rubbing alcohol for when cleaning your home.

Use Disclaimer

The term rubbing alcohol is not the scientific name of the solvent. Isopropyl alcohol and ethanol are two of the most common types of alcohol used in manufacturing the product we buy.

You should know that all alcohols evaporate and that their fumes are quite potent, something that is also true about rubbing alcohol. What’s more, both alcohol and its fumes are very flammable, so be careful to have the room properly ventilated and that there are no open sources of flame or excessive heat.

Disinfectant Better than Antibacterial Soap

Whereas antibacterial soaps are not generally frowned upon due to their tendency to create supergerms which can resist them, alcohol has very little similar complaints.

In fact, you should use it as a replacement for any anti-bacterial products you have been using. Simply dissolve it in water and put in a spray bottle. Spray the areas you want to clean. Alcohol evaporates almost immediately, so you don’t have to worry about children or pets coming in contact with it.

Antifreeze for Your Car Windows

Although technically not a part of home cleaning, this use is so generally stunning and new to me that I just had to share it.

Dissolve alcohol in some water and put in a spray bottle (as many cleaning professionals suggest, this is the best delivery method for alcohol-based cleaners). Spray all of your car windows from the outside, as well as the mirrors and watch the alcohol doing its magic.

You will probably have to do this once every week or two, but it sure is a whole lot better than scraping snow off your windshield every morning in the freezing cold.

Clean Metal Surfaces

A modern household has a lot of stainless steel elements, ranging from pots and pans to appliances, to a variety of kitchen cabinets and other parts of the kitchen; not to mention accessories and details in other parts of your house.

If you have ever had to clean large surfaces of stainless steel, you probably know that there are certain things you should never use on this surprisingly delicate surface.

However, applying rubbing alcohol on a soft cloth is a perfect way to clean those areas quickly and effectively. Everything from dirt to greasy fingerprints will easily dissolve and disappear when treated with rubbing alcohol.

Clean the Dry-Erase Board

If you have one of those dry-erase boards where you write down important things, you probably know that it is really hard to remove all of the marker with just the eraser you were given.

Just a bit of the magical water-rubbing alcohol in the spray bottle can get all of that marker residue off of the board. Even if you accidentally used the permanent marker, rubbing alcohol and a paper towel should be enough to get rid of it like it’s never been there.

As mentioned before, alcohol is a solvent, even more potent than water. This makes it a great cleaning compound. However, the smell of rubbing alcohol is what often dissuades people from using it.

If you can look past the smell, however, you get a really effective and inexpensive cleaner.