DEAR SUN SPOTS: Is there any place that accepts used (working condition) lighting, ceiling fans, etc., to be recycled to use in a home? — Joanne, [email protected]

ANSWER: Sun Spots is so glad you asked. The Buildings Material Exchange is a terrific way to reduce, reuse and recycle. You can find them at 102 Lisbon Road, Lisbon, ME 04250, 636-7670,

The exchange accepts new and reusable materials and then resells them. Anyone is welcome to shop there, with low- and moderate-income individuals and families receiving a significant discount. There is a $10 yearly membership fee.

Those who want to apply for the discount need to bring in proof of income (a copy of your most recent tax return is best). To find out if you qualify, click on BME Income Guidelines at

DEAR SUN SPOTS: In response to the Jan. 29 inquiry about metal recycling, I wanted to offer a reminder of our “Sweet Dreams Recycling for Good” program. We donate our time and truck to haul away unwanted metal and appliances for recycling and donate 100 percent of the proceeds evenly between Androscoggin Habitat for Humanity and Relay for Life/The American Cancer Society.

Donors do not share in the proceeds — every penny received goes to those two organizations. The Sweet Dreams Team does not take anything for its time or truck use. We offer this service to local residents as a way to spread good cheer by helping others.

We can accept all metal and appliances except items containing refrigerants (such as air conditioners and refrigerators) or electronics (such as computers and televisions).

Anyone interested in talking advantage of this program can contact either Lisa, Rick or Jenn at 783-3033 or check out our Sweet Dreams website for more information at Thank you. — Jennifer Buschmann, [email protected]

DEAR SUN SPOTS: Does anyone have a way of getting the luster back on laminate flooring. I have tried soap, vinegar to no avail the floor still looks dull although it is clean. Any help would be appreciated. — Paul Dorion, [email protected]

ANSWER: At, the following advice is offered:

“Not all cleaning products are compatible with laminate floors. Don’t use any type of soap-based cleaners, “mop-and-shine’ products or wax on the floor as this will only cause buildup and result in dull, streaky floors (most manufacturers stress this in their literature on laminate flooring care). Also avoid cleaners that contain any oils as this will have the same effect.

“A lot of information on the Web regarding laminate flooring care involves frustrations associated with streaky and dull floors. Some solutions to the problem include using a vinegar and water solution or using glass-cleaning products like Windex to clean the laminate.

“Again, just be careful and be aware of what the manufacturer of your laminate floor recommends. Some manufacturers (Shaw Laminates) do not recommend use of strongly ammoniated products. In contrast, the Pergo website discussing maintenance of the laminate floor allows the use of ammonia.

“One cleaning method that appears to work well in the quest for streak-free floors is the use of microfiber pads or cloths to clean the floor. Their success lies with their efficiency in picking up the dirt and liquids. Some manufacturers, actually recommend using microfiber cloths and include them in their cleaning kit.

“Dull streaks on the floor are usually the result of residue left behind after the floor is wiped. It could be an oil residue from the cleaning solution, smeared dirt or even deposits that precipitate out of the water (mineral deposits from hard water, for example). The more effectively and quickly you can get these deposits off the floor (clean and dry) the better chance you have of a clean and streak-free surface.”

This column is for you, our readers. It is for your questions and comments. There are only two rules: You must write to the column and sign your name (we won’t use it if you ask us not to). Please include your phone number. Letters will not be returned or answered by mail, and telephone calls will not be accepted. Your letters will appear as quickly as space allows. Address them to Sun Spots, P.O. Box 4400, Lewiston, ME 04243-4400. Inquiries can also be e-mailed to [email protected]

Only subscribers are eligible to post comments. Please subscribe or to participate in the conversation. Here’s why.

Use the form below to reset your password. When you've submitted your account email, we will send an email with a reset code.