I'm always trying to find a way to save money. And over the years I've discovered a few things, some of them on other blogs, and some on my own.
I use sponges to wash my dishes. I like the ones with a sponge on one side and a scrubby on the other side. The problem is that they aren't cheap anymore. A three-pack at Walmart is over $3 right now. I was going through one sponge a week, then having to toss it because it stunk no matter how well I rinsed it when I was done washing dishes.
I tried bleaching one of them, but Dawn has ammonia in it and my sponge melted! So, I tried putting it in the dishwasher and it worked like a charm! I put them on the top rack of the dishwasher and when it's run, not only do they get blasted with super hot water, but there's the cleaning agents in the dishwasher tabs added to that, plus the drying cycle. They look like brand new when they come out.
A sponge now lasts me a month or so, I honestly lose track. I keep two in circulation so I can wash a sponge every time the dishwasher is run (about every two days).
I found the most wonderful cleaner called Krud Kutter. You can buy it at Walmart or at Lowe's. This stuff will clean anything off of anything! Bob cleaned our four-wheeler with it and it looked like new when he was done. I've used it to deep clean my kitchen floor, clean baseboards, spot-treat stains on laundry, clean the cooked on crud off of my ceramic top stove, clean paint and primer off my floor... The list goes on and on.
The problem with this is that it's expensive for as much as I use it. Between $6-$7 per bottle. I love the stuff, and it's worth the price for all that it does, but I'm cheap and hate to spend that much $$ on a household cleaner.
My mother-in-law found an alternative!! The Dollar Tree sells a product called LA's Totally Awesome and it's the same exact thing as Krud Kutter. It works just as well and only costs $1!
Forget Windex! When cleaning windows or mirrors or even chrome fixtures, all you need is two micro fiber cloths. One wet, the other dry and in really good shape (never use fabric softener on them). Wet the window with your wet micro cloth and wipe it dry with the other. Keep wiping until all streaks are gone.
I learned this one from a friend of mine who cleans houses for a living.