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Cleaning Spills & Shabbat

The Daily Halacha Moment - Cleaning Spills & Shabbat 🥤

״כל השונה הלכות בכל יום - מובטח לו שהוא בן העולם הבא״ (נידה עג ע״א, מגילה כח:)

“Anyone who studies Halachot every day is guaranteed that he is destined for the world-to-come” (Megilla 28b, Niddah 73a)


May one clean a spill with a paper towel or napkin if it will get colored as a result of cleaning the spill?


It is permitted to wipe a spill or something that will stain with a paper towel or similar disposable material, since any coloring that is done is of minimal benefit because the paper towel will be discarded after it is used. [1]

Similarly, One may place food or drink in a disposable plastic or paper plate or cup on Shabbat even though the plate or cup will become dyed. [2]

Furthermore, One may use diapers that have a strip or picture on them that changes colors or becomes erased when the child urinates. [3]


[1]. Shemirat Shabbat KeHilchatah 14:21; Halichot Shabbat, Malka, vol. 1, p. 427. See also in Halichot Olam, vol. 4, p. 204.

[2]. Yalkut Yosef, Shabbat, vol. 3, p. 377. Since this is not the normal way of dyeing something, and is a manner of staining.

[3]. Ohr LeTzion, vol. 2, 40:3; Shemirat Shabbat KeHilchatah 15:88; Chut Shani, Shabbat, vol. 4, p. 287; Orchot Shabbat 15:52.

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