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How to choose the right sponge (and make the harness less painful)



Most of us do not think about sponges. But if you hate doing the dishes (who are not) a good sponge will make the task a little less painful. Better yet, with the right sponge you can save time and avoid damage to your harness.

Here you will find instructions for every type of sponge and how you can choose the right sponge for your needs.

Common sponge types

Take a look at this list of sponge types that you probably met. Most are synthetic, although some are derived from plant cellulose. There are also natural sponges that have been used for millennia as a cleaning agent.

Cellulose

These sponges are made from recycled vegetable fibers. Sources are pulp and cotton. They are inexpensive and very absorbent.

Heavy-duty

Sponges that are marked as heavy-duty are highly abrasive. Use it to remove stubborn, stuck residue from stainless steel pots and pans. Do not use it for non-stick cookware.

Natural
The sponge is a simple aquatic animal, to which all artificial sponges owe their name. Their porous, fibrous skeletons are soft and absorb a lot of fluid. Throughout history, marine sponges have been harvested for these properties.

Nonscratch

Sponges with this label are safe on non-stick pots and pans. Nor do they scratch the surfaces of ceramic bakeware.

A sponge can clean many different surfaces around the house.


Chris Monroe / CNET

Other cleaning tools

Plastic washer

These round or rectangular cleaning tools are made of woven plastic fibers. They are not usually scratch-resistant and can be used on non-stick and ceramic cookware.

Scouring Pads

These flat fabric squares are much thinner than a sponge and come in a scratch-resistant and durable design. Use them to rub stubborn stains and dirt from countertops, cookware, and baking pans and in the bathroom.

Steel wool

The big rifles of house cleaning, steel wool cushions are abrasive in extreme cases. Only use them on surfaces that could be misused by them, such as: As pots, pans and baking trays made of stainless steel.

The right sponge for the job

Plate

There are many ways to wash dirty dishes by hand. If they are fragile or bulky, use a sponge-tipped tool. Otherwise, go with cellulosic sponges.

This type of sponge is relatively inexpensive and easily absorbs liquid and soap. They also tend to collect food leftovers over time. This means that bacteria, not to mention funky smells, can develop in them.

To combat this, you should sterilize your sponge weekly and throw it away on signs of erosion.

When washing glassware, using a regular shaped sponge can be uncomfortable.


Josh Miller

Pots and pans

Stainless steel saucepans, baking trays and other sturdy dishes are very dirty. To get rid of these deposits, use a sponge that is just as hard.

Abrasive sponges are typically rough on one of their sides. Use this surface to drive through encrusted grit and clinging food particles. They occur in both synthetic and celluloses.

Do not scrub your non-stick pots and pans with an abrasive sponge. You will probably scratch and damage your Teflon coating. It's best to use a non-abrasive sponge like the O-Cedar Scrunge. And a little elbow grease.

The same applies to ceramic cookware. Abrasive sponges scratch and damage the enamel. First soak these pans in water and then wash them with a soft cellulose or a synthetic sponge. Hard scourers will also damage copper pots and pans.

For stubborn copper stains, pre-treat pans with salt and lemon juice (or vinegar). Then rub with a rag or a non-abrasive sponge.


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Glassware

To clean fragile glassware such as stemware and even water glasses, an abrasive sponge is too much. Choose something soft and not to scratch, such as a microfiber or nonabrasive cellulose sponge.

The shape of a glass sponge is also important. For long, narrow glasses, sponges with thin heads and long handles work best.

Windows and Cars

Details your car like a pro. Grab a microfiber or natural sponge that is non-abrasive and absorbs a lot of water and soap.

You will not damage car paints, window glass or metal. In addition, oils and fats can be removed well and leaves a sparkling clean shine.


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