I am not sure why I shined a light into the old stainless steel thermos after a recent hunt, but I did. To put it bluntly, it was beyond gross! The thermos has emotional attachment to me, as it belonged to my Dad and is quite old. It became my charge to get it clean. Soaking with baking soda did some good. Scrubbing with a brush also made some progress, but not enough for my liking. I finally decided to try some denture cleaning tablets. I figured if they were good enough for Grandpa’s tobacco stained false teeth why not a thermos?
Filling the thermos nearly to the brim with warm water, I then dropped in four tablets, put the stopper in and gave it a shake. Word to the wise: Don’t put the thermos stopper back in or shake it like I did. A short time after I did that I heard a loud “POP” immediately followed by a “WHACK” as the stopper hit the ceiling. The gasses from the tablets built up enough pressure to create a stopper projectile.
After letting the bubbling action of the tablets work for about four hours, I dumped the contents of the thermos into the sink. What came out was amazing (and gross). At one point I was expecting to see Jimmy Hoffa’s body come pouring out. After several rinses with cold water the interior was clean and shiny–good as new. I suspect this would also work for that coffee-stained favorite cup as well.
Editor’s Note: Please use caution and for goodness sake, don’t cap or shake the thermos! Rinse all items well and follow the directions and cautions on the package.