Plastic is a synthetic or semi-synthetic material and it differs from most of the substances around us in many ways. Our forefathers never used it but now we are in a sea of plastic! Cleaning plastic is a little different from cleaning other substances, like say metals, wood etc. which have been around us for a long time and there is no dearth of traditional ways to keep those things clean and in a fit shape, but when it comes to plastic, it is different picture.
Cleaning can be defined as a deliberate act of removing substances from an object, which are harmful to the object, don’t make it look good, or don’t let it function properly. In this case, cleaning would mean removing dirt or stains from an object that is made of plastic.
Plastic is man-made and was invented only around 150 years ago but it didn’t become a ubiquitous substance immediately. It had to wait for its turn till the early 20th century. Although it is a relatively recent invention, cleaning it not as cumbersome a process as cleaning some other substances, like say wood.
We can set out by adding some detergent to the water in bucket, of course, unless we are cleaning a plastic washbasin or something of that kind. And then follow the following simple steps:
(1) Dampen a piece of cloth with the solution and begin removing dirt and grime from top to bottom.
(2) Spraying with detergent and water is also as good an option.
(3) If there are any stubborn areas, sponge or soft brushes can be used to scrub them.
(4) Care must be taken while rubbing the plastic surface as it could leave a scratched surface.
(5) Once the rubbing is done, one can either pour some clean water on the object or can gently press a cloth wetted in clean water.
(6) If there is still any cleaning solution left on the object, a dry cloth can be used to mop it.
(7) Rubbing it again with a clean dry cloth or a paper towel etc. restores the shine.
In case that doesn’t work, warm water can be put into use and the instead of a mild detergent a strong one can be used.
Cleaning some common but uneven surfaces:
Now, this may not apply to all or every object made of plastic, for example, bottles need to be cleaned in a slightly different way.
Baking soda with a mild solution of bleach is poured into the bottle and it is allowed to sit there for several hours. Then the bottle is shaken and then rinsed with water.
A PVC bottle should never be reused. Moreover, it may release harmful chemicals when in contact with hot water.
Furniture plastic is not exactly even, so a mild mopping may not do the job. In addition to the points written above, one should turn the furniture upside-down. This will expose the grime and the mildew that accumulates on the undersides. Don’t forget to clean it as well. Avoid using solvent cleaners. They could tarnish your furniture.
Plastic shower curtains:
Take the dirty curtains off and put them in a washing machine along with some towels.
Do not use the dryer of the washing machine. Take the curtains out and wash with a solution of baking soda, vinegar in warm water. Rinse the curtains and let them dry in the air.