housekeeping tips

Just another Monday in paradise…

The toilet has a ways to go before it looks like that again…

Do you ever get an urge to tackle random cleaning projects? Sometimes it happens to me. Like, for instance, my urge to clean the oven door a couple of weeks ago. I spent a few hours on that, scrubbing with baking soda and Reynold’s Wrap, trying to remove the baked on gunk on the door. Today, I’ve been tackling the upstairs toilet, which is covered with hard water limestone deposits. Germany has very hard water. Wiesbaden is especially bad. There’s a never ending battle against the chalky gunk that builds up because of the mineral filled water.

I got tired of looking at the lime on our commode, so I grabbed a bottle of vinegar detergent, which is widely available here. I’ve gotten some of the limestone to go, but there’s still more work to do. I may have to break out some steel wool.

Using vinegar on hard water stains is just one handy household trick I’ve learned since we moved back to Germany. There are certain things we have to deal with here that we don’t in the States. I do remember my parents’ house in Virginia, circa 1980, had a septic tank. Our water came from a well, smelled of rotten eggs, and had a lot of rust in it. It was the same when we lived in Georgia. Our house there, and the one in North Carolina, had septic tanks. We had no water bills, but the water was pretty nasty. The toilets in the Georgia house had tons of rust in them. I found a miracle cleaner to get rid of a lot the rust. It really was amazing.

I wish I could find something as effective as Whink Rust Stain Remover to rid the toilets of lime. So far, all of the DIY sites recommend vinegar or fresh squeezed lemon juice. While I appreciate the non-toxic effects of these remedies, they still require plenty of elbow grease. Somehow, I’m going to have to clean the new shower head, too. It’s starting to get lime deposits. That will mean breaking out the stepladder, because I’m too short to reach the shower head.

Sorry… I know this is a boring topic. There are certainly things I could write about, but it occurred to me that a lot of my posts are kind of negative and depressing. Every once in awhile, I like to write things that are helpful or even positive. I have, at least, managed to get rid of some of the lime scale, anyway. And I just ordered some citric acid and pumice stone to try to get the rest of it gone.

I don’t know why I get spurred on to do certain things at odd times. I’ve always been like this. I’ll let things go for a long time, then suddenly go into cleaning mode. Sometimes I’ll clean everything. Sometimes, I just tackle certain annoying projects. The toilet has had lime scale on it for a long time, but I saw a picture of it when we first moved in. It was brand new, and obviously recently installed. There was no lime build up to speak of. And that just made me feel like going into cleaning mode. Monday is a good day of the week for that, since I don’t usually plan specific chores for Mondays.

I do have a topic in mind that is a bit more substantial than this toilet cleaning saga is… but I’m not quite ready to put it down yet. Maybe I’ll get to it tomorrow… after I clean the bathrooms.

For those of you in the United States with a rust problem. Whink Rust Stain Remover is truly amazing stuff. I am an Amazon Associate, so I get a small commission from Amazon on sales made through my site.


10 thoughts on “Just another Monday in paradise…

  1. My cousin lives in a town in California that has hydrogen sulfide in its water. Someone decided that the best fix was to heavily chlorinate it. It now smells and tastes like both chlorine AND rotten eggs. my cousin and his wife use entirely bottled water for drinking and cooking, but it’s too expensive to use it for anything else.

  2. German tap water is perfectly fine for drinking. Germans don’t drink it, though. They buy it in bottles. Most of them like “sparkling water” or Spruedel. I prefer the sparkling water myself. The town we live in now is near natural mineral springs. We had pretty bad lime in Stuttgart, too, but it’s really bad here.

  3. Do people ever use water softeners? They can be quite effective against minerals. Long ago I used to make my own fizzy water with CO2 and an old fashioned seltzer bottle. It was way cheaper than buying sparkling water. I was on a very tight budget back then.

    • I don’t think water softeners are commonly used. I do know one person who has one, but she is the only one.

      We had a “Penguin” in the US. We didn’t bring it with us. We could get another, I guess. We just never bothered to. We’re always buying beer, anyway, so it’s no big deal to buy water. We return the bottles and get money back.

  4. Thomas Wikman says:

    I did not know that Germany had a lot of hard water. I worked one summer in Konstanz, close to the Swiss border, but I stayed at a hotel. Northern Sweden has some hard water too but not that bad and I don’t remember ever having to clean out limestone deposits. Sweden has very clean drinking water. Texas has hard water as well and we did have to clean out one toilet.

    • Hi Thomas! Konstanz is beautiful!

      I remember as a kid in rural Virginia, the water was pretty bad. Our glasses had residue all over them. But our well water wasn’t as terrible as Gloucester Courthouse water, which smelled and tasted like rotten eggs. My parents had to hook into the county water system later, and that drastically improved our water on many levels, but cost them a lot of money!

      The water in Germany is very clean, tastes fine, and is actually touted for health benefits. Wiesbaden has a great spa modeled after the Friedrichsbad in Baden Baden. But the water is definitely full of minerals.

  5. Thomas Wikman says:

    Wow that was a quick reply. I hadn’t even left the page yet. That is interesting information. Thank you very much Jenny.

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