Whether you're into Coke Zero, Diet Coke, Classic or any of the other exciting, new flavors — few would argue that Coca-Cola is anything less than refreshing. But if Coke is only quenching your thirst, then these 10 Coca-Cola hacks are about to change the way you solve problems around the house. Coke contains a variety of acerbic chemical agents like citric, carbonic and phosphoric acids that make it effective at loosening and dissolving a number of other organic compounds like blood, ice and even rust. Plus, its low pH and high sugar content makes Coca-Cola unique among its rivals — at least when it comes to cleaning!
Unfortunately, the workday doesn't stop when winter weather inconvieniences us with iced-over windshields before a morning commute. When you're in a rush to get to work, but don't have an extra 10 minutes to chisel ice from your car windows, try pouring Coca-Cola over your windshield. Coke has a pH of 2.0-2.5, which chemists regard as mildly corrosive. When this acerbic agent is applied to ice, the resulting chemical reaction leaves a clear window without much scraping. Instructions: Drizzle Coca-Cola along an iced-over windshield and allow a few seconds to loosen. Repeat for thicker layers of ice.
Clean Mold From Grout
The only thing more unpleasant than staring at mold in the shower is spending a Saturday afternoon scrubbing it clean with pricey solvents. You can save time and money by using Coca-Cola to loosen up moldy tile grout. It's even rumored that some cleaning staff actually spray down moldy tile with a solution of water and Coke. Chemically, the same phosphoric acids in Coca-Cola are also common ingredients in many commercial mold removers. Instructions: Dip an old toothbrush or a fine-bristled scrubber into Coca-Cola before scrubbing away tile grout. You can also mist deeper mold stains with cola, and let it set before cleaning.
Remove Stubborn Toilet Bowl Stains
The phosphoric acid in Coca-Cola can also tackle the unsightly stains in toilet bowls. The best part about this Coke cleaning hack is that you'll rarely have to scrub away hard water and organic debris stains. They'll basically break down when soaked for long enough. Instructions: Depending on the severity of the stain, pour anywhere from 8-32 ounces of Coca-Cola into the toilet, making sure that the staining is submerged beneath the cola. Allow several hours to soak before flushing.
Dissolve Blood Stains
Fun fact: The television show Myth Busters confirmed that Coke is, in fact, an effective bloodstain remover. Instructions: Dab Coca-Cola around the entire surface of the blood stain on both sides of the fabric. Rub the cola into the stain and allow 15 minutes to set before washing the stain clean in a standard laundry cycle.
Remove Greasy Stains on Clothing
The same citric acids in Coca-Cola that lift stubborn blood stains also make quick work of their greasy counterparts. The next time you've run out of stain treatment, reach for a can of Coke in a pinch! Instructions: Rub Coca-Cola into any grease-based clothing stain. Allow cola to penetrate for 15 minutes before washing the stain clean with a standard laundry cycle.
Baked-on grime can really cover ovenware after only several uses. When you're not diligent about scrubbing cookie sheets and pans, you can find yourself with hours of scrubbing to remove burn stains. But a can of Coke can remove most of the staining with very little scrubbing. Instructions: Cover surface of stained area with Coca-Cola and let it sit overnight. The cooked-on stains should come off with only a few seconds of scrubbing. Repeat the process for particularly stubborn stains.
Clean Sticky Messes
If you've ever wondered why sticky messes are often more difficult to clean than average spills, it's because sticky substances form long chains of molecules that form bonds with every surface they come into contact with. Whether it's gum on your shoe or honey on a butter knife, the acids in Coca-Cola are the ideal pH level to break those bonds without damaging the surfaces they've attached themselves to. Translation: Use Coke to clean up sticky messes!
Erase Marker and Scuffs
When the young Picasso in your life leaves you another masterpiece to clean up, give them a high-five and then reach for a can of Coca-Cola! The acerbic qualities that are responsible for Coke being so delicious also erase marker stains from walls and scuff marks from wood surfaces. Instructions: Coat a cloth with a generous amount of Coca-Cola and buff out stains and surfaces. Warm, flat cola typically works best because heat and exposure to air typically dissipate the carbonic acids in Coke, leaving just the phosphoric acids to work their magic.
Loosen and Remove Rust
Coca-Cola has an acidic pH level that is more inline with battery acid than it is with other sodas. It's this unique combination of low pH level and carbonic and phosphoric acids that not only make Coke an effective cleaning solution, but a uniquely efficient rust remover. Instructions: Rub lightly-rusted tools with a cloth and Coca-Cola until the oxidation wipes clean. However, exceptionally-rusted tools will require soaking in a 2-1 solution of Coke and water from an hour to two weeks, depending on the severity of the rust.
Composting is more of an art than a science — however, there is a lot of science that goes into it. One of the biggest challenges gardeners face is getting organic debris to decompose and break down into soil. It turns out, Coca-Cola is an age-old gardening hack to jumpstart the composting process. The sugars in cola attract the necessary microorganisms, while the acids assist with decay. Instructions: Saturate the top layer of compost with 8-32 ounces of Coca-Cola once per week. The amount of cola really depends on the size of your compost heap.
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