How to Keep a Sponge Clean

Often the dirtiest place in the kitchen isn’t the worktops or the chopping boards, but the sponges used to “clean” the surfaces. Sponges often are left wet, next to the sink covered in all kinds of germs and dirt. Bacteria thrives in damp locations and as a result can quickly grow to hazardous levels, meaning your sponges need to be chucked far too often if you’re to be safe. One of the best ways to be green is to reduce unnecessary waste; this article will explain methods you can easily use to keep sponges safe and the reduce the need to replace them.

Yellow Sponge Scourer
The Easiest Way to Clean a Sponge

This is easily my favourite way to clean a sponge as it requires almost no effort from me; I simply place my dirty sponges (along with any other used cloth) in the top tray of my dishwasher every time that I put a load on. The hot water combined with the soap are powerful enough to remove almost all bacteria, making the sponges ready to clean another load of dirty surfaces.

Soaking the Sponge

For those that don’t have a dishwasher you could try soaking your sponges in the sink to remove as much bacteria as possible. A solution of 1 part bleach to 10 parts water will work the best but it comes with small health risks and can’t be used if you have a septic tank. If you don’t/can’t use bleach try leaving them in anti-bacterial soap overnight. After the sponge has been cleaned allow to air dry completely between uses as a small amount of bacteria will die in a dried sponge. Since soaking is less effective than putting the sponges through a dishwasher, but better than nothing, it should only be used as a last resort.

Cleaning Sponges in the Microwave

You could also try putting your sponges wet in the microwave for a minute or so. This requires a little more effort as you’ll need to keep an eye on them in case they start to burn and you’ll also have to remember to leave them to cool down after they’ve been cleaned as they’ll be hot enough to burn. In my opinion it’s not worth the risk as there’s far safer and easier alternatives to keeping your sponges clean.

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2 Responses to How to Keep a Sponge Clean

  1. Chris Apple says:

    We use sponges for cleaning, and at home. A little Borax in hot water will also prevent having to clean mildew and mold from the sponge, and it also seems to keep the bugs from crawling on them.

  2. Cleaning Services Putney says:

    I wonder if soaking the sponge in a vinegar solution will also help..

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