Clean dirty, greasy, gummy surfaces
The results of a simple surface cleaning with mineral spirits may amaze you. Polish buildup and the dirt embedded in it can muddy the finish, but will wipe away. Don't use stronger solvents; they might dissolve the finish.
Soak a coarse, absorbent, clean cloth with mineral spirits and wipe the finish. Keep applying and wiping until the cloth no longer picks up dirt. Then do a final wipe with a fresh, clean rag.
Tape a cardboard tube to the vacuum hose
Don't throw away the cardboard tube from wrapping paper! Tape the tube to the end of a vacuum cleaner wand to reach cobwebs in ceiling corners or dust on fans. Reach all the way under beds and furniture, or flatten the roll to vacuum narrow crevices. Make it a permanent dusting wand by wrapping it with duct tape, and it'll stand up to years of use.
Use a plastic spatula to scoop leaves
An old plastic spatula makes a great tool for cleaning debris from gutters. It doesn't scratch up the gutter, and you can cut it with snips to fit gutter contours. Grime wipes right off the spatula too, making cleanup a breeze.
Locate small parts easily with a flashlight
Here's a slick way to locate small parts that fall to the floor. Turn off the lights and shine a flashlight beam across the floor. When the part is struck by the light, its large shadow makes it easy to find.
Keep pages and plans from blowing away
If you like to use your workbench outside in nice weather, then you know that the slightest breeze sends your plans flying or turns the magazine page.