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Adopting Optimization: Alternative Uses of Household Appliances

Alternative Uses of Household Appliances
There are several household items that can be used for other things. Take the example of baking soda which has numerous different uses, so also are plastic bottles, egg cartons, etc. However, do we know of alternative uses of kitchen appliances?
Priya Johnson
Last Updated: Apr 22, 2018
Smart Gadget!
There's an interesting gadget out there called the SmartShopper that sits on your refrigerator and records the items you speak into it. It records the items, arranges them according to respective categories, and prints out your grocery list for the month! Talk about organized shopping!
We've flooded our houses with all kinds of household appliances, right from washing machines, irons, microwaves, etc. Household appliances are extremely useful, and in this time and age, it's difficult for us to imagine a life without our precious appliances. They not only simplify our lives, but also help get so many things done faster, than we would have imagined.

However, how many of us utilize our appliances to the fullest? How many of us have actually experimented and extended the use of these household appliances? Or are we still holding on the few functions that the salesman told us while purchasing them. Some of us leave appliances like waffle irons to collect dust in the kitchen cabinets for ages, because we use them to prepare waffles once or twice a year. Well, household appliances have some rare and unusual uses; some you may find useful, while some may sound outright absurd! Let's take a look!
Unusual Ways to Use Household Appliances
Disinfecting Kitchen Sponges
We mostly use the microwave to heat up our food; however, they have other strange uses as well. The microwave can be used to disinfect kitchen sponges. According to research, kitchen sponges are the most unhygienic items in the kitchen with most of the bacteria and germs thriving on and in them. However, this problem can be solved by microwaving the kitchen sponges for two minutes. The germs get killed, and the bad odor also goes away. But make sure you don't touch the sponge right away, because it will be extremely hot.
Sterilizing Soil
This may sound weird but the microwave can also be used to sterilize garden soil. No more purchasing sterilized soil for better growth of the seedlings. Place soil on a microwave-safe tray, and allow it to microwave for about 1½ minutes, or until the soil begins to start steaming. Your sterile soil is ready for gardening. In fact, the microwave can be used to sterilize clothes; however, the clothes must be damp because dry clothes can catch fire.
Hair Dryer
Removing Unwanted Stickers
Now you no longer have to battle with stubborn stickers that show no signs of coming off. The hair dryer comes to your rescue! The hot air from the hair dryer will dissolve the sticky glue, causing the labels to come loose. Just hold the hair dryer near the unwanted sticker and allow the hot air to work its magic for about a minute. Test by trying to peel away the sticker. Larger stickers will be more stubborn and mostly have to be worked part by part.
Removing Crayon Markings
Has your kid used his colorful crayons on everything other than his coloring book! Well, get out your hair dryer and hold it a few inches away from the crayon markings. The heat will melt the crayon, which you can wipe off using a cloth soaked in mild soap solution. No more ugly crayon marks on the walls!
Washing Machine
As an Icebox
Struggling to keep the bottles of beer chilled on a party night? Well, try keeping them cool in the washing machine. Fill the washing machine with ice cubes, and stash the bottles into it. Ask your guests to help themselves to chilled bottles of beer from your brand new ice box!
Preparing Ice Cream
You can also prepare ice cream in the washing machine. Several people have tried the washing machine Ziploc ice cream recipe and come up with great results. Ice cream ingredients like half and half, evaporated milk, sugar, vanilla extract and condensed milk are poured into a ziploc bag, which is then placed in another bag containing ice and rock salt. The whole package is again wrapped in a towel and sealed with tape, and then allowed to spin for 11 minutes in the washing machine. The spinning action of the washing machine is what gives the ice cream texture.
Steam Iron
Preparing Grilled Sandwiches
Who said the iron can only be used to iron clothes! Well, it so happens that your household iron can also be used to prepare lovely grilled ham and cheese sandwiches. Switch on your iron and let it heat up on the 'high setting.' Meanwhile, wrap the ham and cheese sandwich in aluminum foil. Once the steam starts coming out, place the hot iron on the sandwich for half a minute on each side. Your grilled sandwich is ready!
Fluffing up Carpet Dents
We use iron to flatten clothes and remove creases, but it can also be used to fluff up dents in carpets! Surprised? Dents in carpets caused by pieces of furniture can be cleared by using the steam iron. Just fluff up the fibers in the dent with your fingers, and place a damp cloth on it. Switch on the iron (medium setting), and once the steam starts coming, place it above the damp cloth. The steam will fluff up the carpet fibers.
Rice Cooker
To Steam Towels
We're all aware that although the name suggests 'rice cooker', this household appliance can be used to cook vegetables, mac and cheese, poached fruits, etc. In some, you can also make puddings, cakes, and certain breads. However, it can be used to steam towels as well, which can be used for your very own spa experience at home.
Reheating Food
If you don't have a microwave at home, there's another way out. Our dear rice cooker can be used to reheat food as well. Take out your leftovers from the refrigerator, and place it in the steamer basket. Pour some water into the cooker and place the steamer basket with food into it. Switch on the rice cooker, and enjoy evenly reheated food.
Hand Blender
Mixing Ingredients during Soap Making
We all know that hand blenders are used for smoothies, cold coffees, purees, etc. However, it's interesting to know that hand blenders can be used to mix ingredients in the soap making process as well.
Preparing Fluffy Scrambled Eggs
Hand blenders can also be used to prepare nice and fluffy scrambled eggs. Just combine the eggs with milk or cream, and give it a whiz with the hand blender. The blending action aerates the eggs, giving it volume which is certainly unachievable by hand. Moreover, it also saves on precious time.
Deep Freezer
Washing Denim Jeans
How often do you wash your pair of denim jeans? Living alone and have no time to get them washed? Well, no problem! Just fold your pair of jeans and place it in a large sealed bag. Stash this bag into the freezer for about a week. The low temperature of the freezer kills germs and sanitizes your denims. Now you can wear a clean pair of jeans without having to wash them!
Preserving Candles
Freezing candles before use is also known to prolong their life, because the freezing prevents them from melting quickly. So, if you don't want to lose your fancy candles too quickly, stash them in the freezer so that you use them for more occasions!
Waffle Iron
Preparing Cookies
You saw so many dreams of elaborate, yummy Sunday breakfasts with waffles, pancakes, sausages,
juice, etc. However, real life seems to be so busy that the waffle iron just seems to be collecting dust in the kitchen cupboard. Remove your waffle iron from the cupboard and make it a regular part of cooking. It's not just waffles that can be prepared in a waffle iron. You can easily make yummy cookies in the waffle iron by taking a little cookie dough and placing it in the waffle iron. In two minutes flat, your waffle cookies are ready.
Reheating Pizza
Waffle irons are also great to reheat pizzas; however, your pizza will have the checkered look. If you don't mind the look, go ahead and heat leftover pizza for a minute and enjoy them once again, warm and crisp. Waffle irons can also be used to prepare French toast, panini sandwiches, falafel, hash browns, and even burgers.
Coffee Maker
Preparing Poached Chicken
If you intend to continue making coffee in the coffee maker, it is advisable not to use it for anything else, because the odor will seep into your coffee. These tips are for those who don't drink coffee, but still own a coffee maker and don't know what to do with it. In such cases, use the coffee maker to boil eggs, make oatmeal, prepare poached chicken, etc.
Grilling Sandwiches
Besides the coffee pot, there are also unusual uses of the coffee pot burner. Remove the glass pot, and use the coffee maker burner to grill your cheese sandwich. If you don't have a toaster, you can toast your bread on this burner.
While these alternative uses of kitchen appliances are fascinating, be extremely careful while conducting any of these experiments. Safety measures have to be undertaken. Keeping safety in mind, try out some of your own experiments, and let us know what all can be done with various home appliances.