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The Best Ways to Clean Up Every Shard of Broken Glass

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Cleaning up broken glass requires you to be thorough. And to be thorough enough, sometimes you need to get resourceful. Even if you have a broom on hand, you might want to try a different method—either the broom will fail to pick them up in the first place, or tiny shards get stuck in the broom bristles, spelling danger for your next sweeping session.

If you want to ensure you leave no glass left behind, all the best methods involve a little craftiness. Here are our non-broom hacks for cleaning up broken glass.

First things first: Clear the area

When the glass hits the floor, it’s time to get all kids, pets, and unhelpful family members out of the room. Before you begin picking up glass shards, make sure you’re wearing close-toed shoes.

Start by picking up all the major shards of glass. If you don’t have gloves, use tongs. Never kneel on areas where broken glass is located, since sharp pieces can easily poke through your pants and cut your knee.

After cleaning up what you can by hand, try out the following techniques to tackle all the sneaky, stubborn pieces of glass that remain.

Hack your vacuum cleaner

Vacuuming up broken glass can wreak havoc on the inside of your machine. If you do use a vacuum cleaner, cover the hose with sock or thin napkin. This barrier will catch all the small pieces of glass that get sucked up—just be careful when you dispose of the glass-covered cloth.

Use a damp paper towel

A disposable wet wipe or a folded, damp paper towel is a classic technique to pick up pieces of glass that a broom typically misses. For this approach, it’s important to wear gloves to protect yourself from glass shards that poke through the paper towel. Fold a damp paper towel in half.

Get crafty with your carbs

Two pantry items come in handy when it comes to glass clean-up. They are:

Forbidden toast

A slice of bread works as an effective tool to sponge up pieces of broken glass. It’s a great way to pick up small slivers, while also creating a staple of any deadly breakfast.

The mighty potato

The second-best food option for wiping up broken glass: the inside of a potato. Cut a potato in half and use the flesh to pick up stray glass slivers.

Use something sticky

Even after you’ve cleaned up most of the broken glass, there are sure to be little glass flecks that stick around. It’s wise to double-check the area by using duct tape, a lint roller, or any similar adhesive.

The best way to dispose of broken glass

Now that you’ve cleaned your floor of broken glass, make sure to dispose of it properly. Rather than dumping it straight into the trash (where it will be sure to tear the bag), wrap the glass shards in an old rag and then place that spiky bundle inside a paper bag and then a cardboard box. Be extra safe and label that outer container, so that anyone who comes in contact with it knows what they’re dealing with.

  


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