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DIY

5 Easy DIY Tips You Really Need To Try

A roundup of great DIY questions we've answered in recent editions of the BuzzFeed DIY newsletter.

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1. How to Get Rid of Bad Smells

Jenny Chang / BuzzFeed

My basement suite does not have a kitchen hood or fan. How do I get rid of lingering food smells? —Cathleen G.

To get rid of bad smells, soak a piece of bread in vinegar and place it inside whatever stinks — a lunchbox, trash can, microwave, etc. If the smell covers a larger area, like an entire room, you can also fill a bowl or pan with vinegar and set it in the middle of the room for a couple of hours. The vinegar will cut other odors (like smoke, food, sweat, and more) and the smell of the vinegar itself will dissipate quickly!

2. Learn Some New Uses For All Those Old CDs

Jenny Chang / BuzzFeed

Hey BuzzFeed, what can I do with a healthy stack of old CDs? Thanks! —Roger S., Liberty, SC

1. Print an oversize photo, then cut it down to fit inside CD jewel cases and hang them on the wall as one mural.

2. If you only have a few CDs laying around, use them as a bike reflector.

3.Carefully break the CDs into pieces and use them like disco tiles to update a worn pair of shoes.

4.If you have a ton of CDs, give them a new life (while improving yours) by turning them into dumbbells.

5.Brighten up the dark corners all those CDs were stacked in with a lamp made of their parts.

3. How To Get Your Toaster Totally Clean

Jenny Chang / BuzzFeed

How can I clean my toaster? —Mary M., Sarasota, Florida

The hardest part about cleaning a toaster is actually remembering to do it! The first step is to see if your toaster has removable crumb trays at the bottom. If it does, dump them and wipe them clean. Either way, it's also a good idea to turn your toaster upside down and shake it to get all the crumbs out. Then, use a pastry brush or a clean/new paintbrush to sweep the crumbs from the inside, behind the knobs, and in between any cracks. If your toaster is stainless steel, use a cloth dipped in vinegar to clean and shine the outside. Otherwise, just a damp cloth will do the trick.

4. The Best Way To Clean Your Bathroom

Jenny Chang / BuzzFeed

How do I get alligator scale off shower glass? I've tried everything. Lemon juice, vinegar, CLR, rubbing alcohol, various glass cleaners. Doesn't budge. —Cindy B.

What some people call "alligator scale" (because of its tough and scaly appearance) is actually a buildup of soap scum and is one of the hardest things to clean, especially on glass shower doors. If you have hard water where you live, it can seem like you just can't ever get things clean enough. But our favorite trick for cleaning those hard-to-clean hard water stains: Barkeepers Friend! It works like Ajax or other powder cleaners, but gets these "alligator scale" stains off even better. You can usually find it in the hardware store or cleaning aisle shelved with the kitchen cleaners, but it works just as well in the bathroom as it does cleaning pots and pans. Just be sure to wear gloves: The chemicals are strong on stains and also on your skin.

5. How To Clean Tarnished Jewelry

Jenny Chang / BuzzFeed

I received a beautiful silver necklace for X-mas but after wearing it, it tarnished. It's too delicate to wear all the time so i can't wait for it to "self polish." I'd love to learn some quick DIY, non-toxic jewelry cleaning techniques if you have any! —Jordanna, Sydney

For this easy DIY, you won't even need to scrub! Start by lining a bowl or pan with aluminum foil — shiny side up. Place the jewelry flat on the foil. Mix together 1 cup of boiling water, 1 Tbsp. of salt, and 1 tbsp. of baking soda and pour it over the jewelry into the dish. Then, slowly add 1/2 cup of vinegar. Watch it bubble and clean! Let it sit for 20-30 minutes, then rinse off your jewelry, and you're good to go!

Note: this nontoxic cleaner is great for gold and silver, but don't use it on diamonds, gems, or pearls.