We might keep a tub of car wax in our garage to give it a shine when needed, but it’s great to use around the house. Here are 10 brilliant uses for car wax that will give everything from stainless steel to patio furniture a new life!
1. Prolong the Life Of Patio Furniture
The secret to keeping your patio furniture looking like new: car wax! Simply apply a light coat to clean plastic or metal chairs and tables before setting them out. The slick substance will keep dirt, pollen, and tree sap from sticking to the furniture, making it a cinch to clean. Plus, the wax will protect against sun damage and repel water to outsmart rust.
2. Repel Dust From Ceiling Fans
A genius way to cut back on the number of times you have to climb up on a chair to clean a ceiling fan? Just apply a thin layer of car wax to the top and bottom of each blade. The wax will create a barrier that keeps dust from settling in this hard-to-reach spot. Problem solved!
3. Nix Sticky Grime On a Range Hood
Ugh! That layer of grease that sticks to your range hood after cooking is so tough to remove. A genius workaround to prevent the hassle: Wash the hood with soap and water as usual, then use a clean cloth to coat the surface with a layer of car wax. The wax prevents grease from clinging to the hood’s surface with even the messiest of stovetop meals.
4. Make Dog Tags Easy to Read
Buster’s last set of ID tags got so rusty within just a few months that you could hardly read his name and your phone number! To protect his new ones from the corrosive effects of moisture, use a soft cloth to apply a thin coat of car wax to the metal and let dry before reattaching to his collar. Then simply reapply the wax every few months or so as needed — you’ll keep the tags looking new and easily readable for years to come!
5. Squirrel-Proof a Bird Feeder
Nothing brightens your day like seeing colorful birds at your feeder — if only pesky squirrels didn’t get to the birdseed first! To keep them away, grease the pole with car wax. The furry thieves won’t be able to get a purchase on the slippery surface, leaving the seeds to your feathered friends.
6. Quiet a Noisy Dresser Drawer
Argh! Every time you open the sock drawer on your dresser, it gets stuck and makes an awful screeching sound. The solution: Rub a bit of car wax on the tracks. The slick stuff will lubricate the drawer so it can glide smoothly — and quietly.
7. Effortlessly Change Outdoor Light Bulbs
Your patio bulbs are prone to rust, making them impossible to remove. The fix: Rub 1 tsp. of car wax over the bulbs’ metal threads before screwing them into place. The wax stops water from seeping in and causing rust, and the bulbs will twist out with ease.
8. Prevent Smudges On Stainless Steel
You love your gleaming stainless steel appliances, but not so much the smudges and fingerprints they seem to attract. To outsmart the problem, first clean away the marks. Then use a microfiber cloth to buff a thin layer of car wax onto the surface, moving in the same direction as the appliance’s grain. This will leave behind an invisible shield that keeps fingerprints from building up, plus add a nice shine to your fridge or toaster!
9. Cut Down On Toilet Scrubbing
Here’s a trick that’ll enable you to go twice as long between toilet-bowl cleanings. To do: First, turn off the water supply at the back of the toilet, then flush until the bowl is empty. When the bowl is dry, apply a thin layer of car wax inside. Let sit for 10 minutes before turning the water back on. The wax will ensure stains slide right off rather than settling into the porcelain. Your toilet will stay sparkling clean for up to three weeks!
10. Keep Yard Tools Ready to Garden
The secret to keeping shears and other garden tools in tip-top shape so they’re ready to snip whenever you’re inspired? Car wax! Use a soft cloth to buff wax onto hinges and blades. The wax will lubricate the metal, creating a slick surface that repels sap, dirt and other sticky yard debris.
A version of this article originally appeared in our print magazine, First For Women.