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Unusual Uses For Alka-Seltzer

Filed Under: Essential Skills, Know-How

Alka SeltzerRedfx, Alamy

These fizzy little pills will help you unclog the sink, polish jewelry and more.

Alka-Seltzer tablets and their generic equivalents are useful for more than just relief from indigestion and heartburn. From cleaning your toilet to attracting fish, these little pills pack big power when used in other ways.

Clean Your Toilet

Drop two tablets in the toilet, wait 20 minutes for the citric acid to loosen the grime, scrub and flush. Your toilet will look as clean as it would had you used conventional cleaners.

Unclog the Sink

A great natural solution for unclogging the drain! Drop 3 tablets down the drain, followed by a 1/2 cup of vinegar. Let the hot water run for 5 minutes and you'll have a clear drain. This will also work to deodorize the drain.

Clean Burnt Food Off Glass Cookware

Burnt the casserole again? Even with a good scrub, sometimes the food seems to stay. Enter Alka-Seltzer. Drop 5 tablets in a sink full of hot water, soak your cookware for an hour and the burnt food will come off with ease.

Clean a Glass Jar, Vase or Thermos

For difficult to clean vessels with intricate design and hard to reach places, a wash cloth or scrub brush just won't do. Instead, drop two Alka-Seltzer tablets in, add hot water and swish it around until the tablets are dissolved and let it sit for an hour. Rinse, and the glass jar, vase or Thermos will be as clean as new.

Polish Jewelry

Drop two tablets in a bowl of warm water. Let your jewelry soak for about 20 minutes. It will look new again! (Note: This is not safe for pearls or opals.)

Clean a Coffee Percolator
Fill the water chamber and drop in two tablets, then run a cycle. This will clean out all the internal components. Run through another plain water cycle before using the machine again for coffee.

Go Fishing
Fish love bubbles, and dissolving Alka-Seltzer is very bubbly. Put a tablet inside your tube jig and cast off. The fish won't be able to resist the stream of bubbles.

Soothe Insect Bites
Drop two tablets in warm water, then soak a cotton ball in the solution. Apply it to the infected area for 30 minutes for relief from the insect bites.

Aside from these great Home Ec. solutions, Alka-Seltzer tablets have been attributed medicinal benefits beyond those listed on the box. Here are two of the rumored benefits:

Manage Nicotine Addiction
Take two Alka-Seltzer tablets three times daily to relieve nicotine withdrawal symptoms and curb cravings.

Cure Urinary Tract Infections
Take two tablets in a glass of water as soon as you notice symptoms. Results are almost immediate. Keep in mind that Aspirin is a main ingredient in Alka-Seltzer so those with Aspirin allergies shouldn't use it.

Have you tried any of these methods? What other household items have you found unusual uses for?

  • gerard

    great now my drains are all cleared but my teeth are filthy!

  • christie

    I hope you're not using Alka Seltzer to clean your teeth! What do you use PoliDent for?

  • JimAlgood

    Try brushing with Baking Soda, put it on your brush, then toothpaste for flavor.

  • gerard

    well the arm and hammer toothpaste never caught on with my appeal.. something salty about it or something.. hmm.. but okay I'll try it :)

  • TOM


  • zoseph

    I do not care to have fish in my toilet. Thank you for the new learning anyway.

  • Bob O.

    How does a DO It Yourselfer keep squirrels off bird-feeders. Both my late wife and myself
    enjoyed watching the various species of birds with our morning coffee until the "buggers"
    monopolized the feeder. Please help this Senior Citizen out----short of joining the NRA !!!!

  • mddg

    mix cayenne pepper with the bird seed. The squirrels don't like it and it doesn't bother the birds.

  • Bob O.

    tyvm mddq for your response I shall try the cayenne pepper tomorrow morning----Bob O

  • Jeanie

    Put crisco ( the solid kind), on the pole that your bird feeder hangs from, the squirrels will slide down
    It does have to be reapplied regularly, depending on use

  • Rainmist2

    I had the same problem and decided to just join them......I started feeding the squirls on the ground. Buy some sunflower seeds and put it under the bird feeder for them to eat, they will leave the food in the feeder alone and the birds will get some too. Besides, squirls are not that bad.

  • john

    a BB Gun works wonders

  • Kim

    Add powdered red pepper( Cayenne) to the bird seed, the birds won't taste it , but the "buggers" will.... ammals have taste buds, birds don't.

  • Joyce

    feed them alka seltzer!

  • KD_was_here

    Here's what you do, buy a shot gun.

  • GARY


  • Mel

    ah,..they just trying to get people to buy alka selzer....!!!!

  • Richard

    How true, how true. For an upset stomach, I do take Alka-Seltzer. But for slow running drains I use baking soda. Good ole Arm and Hammer. Available at the 99 cent store.

    Using vinegar as well enhances the chances of actually physically breaking up the clog. Vinegar is an acid and baking soda is an alkali. Mix the two together and watch the foaming.

    Oh yes. That's what we used to do for lava flows with our paper-mache volcanos in Jr. High.

  • Richard

    bull sh*t... all of it. Ridiculous crap.

  • Mrs. Clean

    Excuse me Richard.......have you tried any of these helpful hints? I have tried quite a few and find them very practical.

    If you don't like them, them butt out and keep your negative comments to yourself.


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