Cola beverages are commonly consumed by people all around the world. Originally introduced in 1886 as a medicine, the sugary carbonated drink is now enjoyed as a refreshing beverage and is produced by several soft drink manufacturers.
Although colas are only intended to be consumed as a drink by the companies that make them, a number of surprising uses have been discovered by some industrious individuals. Turns out, a can of cola is a handy thing to have around. So much so, in fact, that it would be just as at home in your tool box as it would be in your refrigerator.
1. Remove Rust
Need to remove some rust on an old bicycle frame? Do you need to strip some rust off an old antique before refinishing it? Just pour a little cola on it and let the chemical reaction take care of it for you.
Cola contains phosphoric acid, an acid strong enough to eat through rust. Pouring cola directly on rust is enough to start the process, but for best results, it’s a good idea to simultaneously clean the surface with a wire brush.
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2. Unclog a Drain
Despite our best efforts, sometimes our drains get clogged. Food, hair, grease, soap, coffee grinds, and other things can slowly build up until one day the water pools instead of draining. What then? Grab a bottle of expensive (and dangerous) drain cleaner? You could. But you could also just use a can of cola.
The same phosphoric acid that is able to remove rust is also great for unclogging drains. Just pour a can of cola into your clogged sink and allow it to sit for a while. Repeat if necessary.
3. Clean Your Toilet
Nobody likes cleaning toilets. Scrubbing toilet bowls with a brush isn’t anybody’s idea of fun. But it’s still a necessary part of life. Or is it?
Another great use for cola is in the cleaning of your toilet bowl. Just pour a can into the bowl and allow it to sit for a while before flushing. The phosphoric acid removes the film that builds up, leaving a nice, clean bowl.
4. Loosen Stuck Bolts
Have you ever had a bolt you needed to loosen but it just wouldn’t budge? Instead of breaking out the WD-40 to lubricate it, you might want to consider pouring some cola on it instead.
If the reason the bolt is stuck is because of rust, the phosphoric acid in the cola will react with the rust and loosen the bolt enough to be turned with a wrench.
5. Clean Corroded Battery Terminals
A car that won’t start isn’t always caused by a dead battery. Sometimes the terminals are just corroded. If you pop the hood on your car and discover corroded terminals but you don’t have any way to clean them, you can just pour some cola on them.
Again, it’s all about the phosphoric acid. The acid reacts with the corrosion, removing a lot of the grime. This lets the terminal make a much better connection. This won’t solve the problem if your battery is truly dead, of course, but it can make a difference if you are mainly dealing with a terminal corrosion issue.
Is cola the perfect beverage? That’s debatable. But one thing is for certain – it really is a good idea to keep a can of cola around for those unexpected clogged drains, stuck bolts, and rusted antiques. Even if it’s not your favorite beverage, it just might become your favorite tool.