Home » 18 AWESOME Uses for Borax – Cheap Alternative, Plus Frugal Craft Ideas

Borax is known mostly used for boosting laundry, but did you know you can use in many different ways. In fact, I found 18 Awesome Uses for Borax.

18 AWESOME Uses for Borax

People have been using borax for over 100 years to clean their home and for use in their laundry. Known most commonly as Mule Team Borax, you can find this powder at most grocery stores, Wal-Mart and many online shops. It is relatively inexpensive which makes it a great choice for many household jobs. I put together a list on 18 Awesome Uses for Borax that I know you will love.

Borax also known as sodium borate; is white and consists of small tiny crystals. Is is a natural cleaner. By far Borax is very versatile and cheap. It is not harmful to the environment and is a house hold pantry staple of ours. I use Borax almost daily in my home and really you should be too.

First, let me start by stating that some of these uses are NOT endorsed by 20 Mule Team Borax, but I can attest that I have personally used Borax for everything mentioned below.   Please use common sense and caution – don’t ingest, put in eyes or any other area of body, beware of allergic reactions, etc.

Borax is a natural product, but so is arsenic, so again PLEASE be careful and read the warnings!  Have fun!

***Also, a quick note:  If  your Borax gets rock hard, throw some white rice in an old knee high and keep it in the box.  The moisture will go to the rice and your Borax will remain granular.


Uses for Borax

Flea & Pest Killer

Sprinkle on DRY carpets and in corners, letting it sit at least 7 hours and if possible, as long as a day.  The further you can get it into the carpet, the better.  A push broom might help really getting the powder down.  Vacuum thoroughly and repeat if pest problems persist.   Try to keep everyone off of the carpet while it sits. **Keep in mind that you will also need to wash clothes, sheets, etc. and treat animals.  Do NOT apply Borax directly to animals.

Carpet Freshener

Use the same way as #1

Urine/Mess Eliminator

Apply liberally to soiled area and let dry (soak up what you can with a paper towel prior).  Vacuum thoroughly.  This is especially helpful with dog or cat urine and you can barely spot it once it’s vacuumed.

Grout Cleaner

Make into a paste with warm water and equal part baking soda. You can also use Borax and distilled vinegar.  Both combos work well and leave grout looking new.  Use a scrub brush.

Laundry Additive

This acts as an oxidizing bleach and is gentle on clothes, thus it will lighten/brighten clothes.  Also, this raises the pH of the wash, so fatty/oily stains are also removed.

Cat Box Freshener

You do not want to use a lot, but sprinkle a tablespoon or two in the bottom.  This is also good if you have a flea infestation.

Mouse/Spider/Pest Deterrent 

Sprinkler around perimeters of garage, house, etc.  Pests will not like the feel (or it will kill insects) and will not try to enter the perimeter.

Dishwasher Additive

Sprinkle into your sponge to help get the tough, cooked-on junk off easier.

Weed killer 

Mix 1 ½ cups with a gallon of vinegar and mist on leaves of weeds.  This will kill ALL plants, so avoid the ones you don’t want to kill.  You can also sprinkle it dry where you’ve seen weeds. Spread the powder down heavily will prevent weeds from even popping up.


Put a cup or two in a small box or tin, poking holes in the top.  Leave in the refrigerator, closet, etc. and it will keep it smelling fresh.

Rust Removal

Mixing 1 cup of Borax with 2 cups of warm water and 1 tablespoon of lemon juice works wonders on rust leave on for 15 minute..  This works well on things other than dishes, too. You can use it to remove rust from appliances and virtually anything metal. Stubborn rust spots leave on additional 15 – 20 minutes.

Bouncy Balls

There are tons of recipes out there, but this is the easiest.  

Mattress Freshener

Not only does Borax kill bed bugs, but it can revive an old mattress.  Sprinkle on mattress, let it sit for 7 hours, and vacuum off.

Help Trees Grow

in small amounts, Borax can be a fertilizer.  Around the base of a tree sprinkle a tablespoon.  Only do this once a year.

Borax Crystals or Snowflakes

A kid friendly Science experiment, read more here. 

Laundry Detergent

I use borax when making my own laundry detergent., In fact it is one of the main ingredients. I did a three part series on how to make your own, Get started by reading part 1, Part 2 & part 3


Another amazing kids friendly craft. Cheap, fun and this activities keeps my kids entertained for hours. Be ware: Keep away from carpeted areas. From experience, (oops) doesn’t remove easily. See our recipe here.

Filter Cleaner for your Stove Hood

Take 1/4 cup Borax and fill sink with about a gallon of very hot water. Soak Hood Filter until clean. Just watch the grease come off.

Other Frugal Artciles

How To Clean Kitchen Cabinets And Degrease All Naturally

How to Freeze Fresh Eggs

Homemade carpet powder

The Do’s & Don’t to Thirft store shopping

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