sink strainer

A mesh strainer placed over your sink drain — or the kind that suctions shut so you can fill the sink — protects the pipes. Just don’t forget to clean the thing regularly.

CHEAP CLEAN: We scrub our kitchen sinks, we wash dish cloths, we replace sponges … and still, studies show the kitchen sink is often the germiest place in the home.

Now take a look at your sink strainer: When was the last time it was cleaned? And we don’t mean “there’s no food stuck to it and the holes aren’t clogged.” We mean: cleaned.

Don’t forget to disinfect the strainer, or every time you wash something in your “clean” sink, you’re just floating the strainer’s germs.

If upon closer inspection your sink strainer seems beyond redemption, spring for a new one. You can find them in grocery stores for literally a couple bucks, or you can spring for a cute silicone strainer that matches your decor. Either way, it’s one of the more affordable kitchen gadgets — with one of the biggest potential paybacks — you can buy.

Price: About $2.

Where seen: Weis Markets.