7 Surprising Things You Can Clean with Seltzer

updated Apr 30, 2019
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(Image credit: Joe Lingeman)

I learned the true magic of cleaning with seltzer last year at a Hanukkah party. After we feasted on latkes, everyone gathered around the living room (wine glasses in hand) to play board games and keep the party going. As you might expect, someone’s Cab was sent sailing straight for the white carpet. (And by “someone,” I mean “my.”) Before anyone panicked, my friend grabbed a liter of seltzer, attacked the stain with a few glugs, and in the blink of an eye (okay and with some blotting, too) the stain was gone.

From that day forward, I wondered what else I could clean with a few bottles of my favorite bubbly water. (If I don’t drink it all first!) Here are seven of the best cleaning uses for seltzer.

1. Remove stains from textiles.

Beyond the wine mentioned above, seltzer will work on other stains and other fabrics (like your shirt when you’re out at dinner). Try rubbing seltzer water on your favorite shirt to make the stain less glaringly obvious. The carbonation will bring the stain to the surface, so blot with clean towels until the stain is finito.

2. Clean glass windows.

Instead of using chemical-based cleaning agents, try spritzing your window with seltzer water. The fizz helps to remove stubborn or sticky stains. Wipe with a dry cloth for a non-streaky finish.

(Image credit: The Kitchn)

3. Remove rust.

Use seltzer water on rusty screws and nails to get rid of that gritty crud. The carbonation will dissolve minor rust spots. Just be sure to completely dry the surface to prevent future rust from forming.

4. Wash your face.

Before you write this tip off, just know that beauty experts in Japan, Korea, and now the U.S. have recently popularized the “fizzy face cleanse.” The bubbles break up dirt and oil in your pores, which means a deeper clean than what you’d get with regular tap water.

5. Eliminate stains in your mug.

Anyone who has left their coffee mug on their desk for a little too long knows the dreaded ring that can form inside the mug. Did you know that seltzer can lift the residue, making it easier to scrub off? Pour some in and let it soak.

6. Clean up pet accidents.

Even if your pet knows not to go in the house, accidents can happen. Douse the area with seltzer, so it bubbles up, and wait until the fizz dies down. Then blot, blot, blot! And repeat.

7. Degrease dirty pans.

If you just slow-roasted anything and theres some sticky residue on the pan, just add seltzer! Pour some onto the still-warm baking sheet, let it sit for a few minutes, and then wash as usual.

Do you have any other uses to add? Leave your suggestions in the comments below!