Kiss Hard Water Stains Goodbye With This Essential Pantry Item

No matter how diligently you clean your kitchen sink and bathroom, you might still notice those frustrating hazy white spots tarnishing the surfaces, making them appear dirty. These are hard water stains. Fortunately, you don't need to spend a lot on expensive chemical-laden cleaning tools. You can remove these mineral stains using a pantry item staple: salt.

The nature of your water, whether hard or soft, largely depends on your location. This distinction is based on the concentration of minerals, such as calcium and magnesium, which the water scoops up on its journey to your kitchen sink or bathtub.Once the water evaporates, the mineral deposits combined with the fatty oils in soap create soap suds that stick to surfaces like glass, bathtubs, sinks, tiles, kitchen platforms, and shower heads. You're left with a crusty layer of stubborn grimy white spots that can be challenging to remove and that affect the appearance and cleanliness of these surfaces.

Use salt to remove hard water stains

Aside from making surfaces look dirty and ugly, the mineral sedimentation can result in clogged showers, drains, and pipes. Over time, the residue can create chemical reactions, making them harder to clean and remove.

The coarse nature of salt makes it a great abrasive and scrubbing agent, making it ideal for cleaning stuck-on messes and stubborn water stains. To use salt to scrub off mineral deposits, get a one-fourth cup of salt and mix just enough water to create a paste. Make sure it's not too watery so the mixture can easily stick to the stain. Spread the mixture on all the stains and leave it there for half an hour or more. After, you can take a soft, clean cloth, brush, or sponge to scrub the stain in a circular motion. Once done, thoroughly rinse the surface to get rid of the saltwater residue.

Other pantry items to get rid of water stains

To improve its effectiveness, you can combine other pantry items in your saltwater paste. Mixing in other natural ingredients can help easily remove hard water stains; you may want to add something acidic, like vinegar and lemon juice, to help boost salt's effectiveness as a cleaning agent.

If salt isn't your preference, lemon juice alone can be a potent alternative for tackling water stains. Simply squeeze some lemon into a spray bottle and apply the fresh juice directly onto the stains. Vinegar is another effective substitute. Mix it with equal parts water, transfer it to a spray bottle, and apply it to the affected area. Let the solution sit for about an hour before scrubbing the surface with a towel, brush, or cloth. 

Should the combination of salt, vinegar, and lemon juice still fall short in removing stubborn stains, consider adding baking soda to the mix. Baking soda has acidic properties and acts as a mild abrasive, especially when it's not fully dissolved. This can provide the extra cleaning power needed for particularly tough stains. For example, a combination of baking soda, vinegar, lemon juice, and dish soap is sure to remove hard water from your bathroom fixtures.