Cleaning with vinegar
With my journey to find ways to live a greener life well on its way, I found myself at the grocery store investing in a few giant bottles of vinegar for cleaning.
From the look the clerk gave me, I think she had a few questions but was too afraid to ask.
I was hesitant to try the following vinegar uses because I was afraid someone would walk in my house and mistake it for a pickle-packing factory when hit in the face with a lingering vinegar aroma.
The good news is the vinegar smell disappears once it dries, though I can’t be responsible for any pickle cravings you encounter while cleaning with it.
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White vinegar is a great disinfecting tool. It can be used for disinfecting, deodorizing, cutting grease and wax build-up, and removing stains on carpet, countertops, pots, pans, and coffee carafes. This acidic wonder can wipe out tarnish, soap scum, mineral deposits, and more.
Distilled white vinegar creates an environment that inhibits the growth of mold, mildew, and some bacteria, such as E. coli and salmonella, says Jeffrey Hollender, author of Naturally Clean.
Vinegar is cheap
I purchased a gallon of the store brand vinegar for $2.79 at the grocery store. You can find it even cheaper at discount clubs if you are a member.
Use It to Clean Your…
Pour equal parts vinegar and water into the machine’s water chamber; then switch on the brew cycle. Halfway through, turn off the coffeemaker and let the solution sit for about an hour. Turn it on again to complete the cycle; then run several cycles with clean water. – My favorite use!!
To disinfect the interior of the machine, pour 1/2 cup vinegar into the reservoir and run an empty cycle, says Hunter. Or place a small bowl filled with vinegar on the bottom rack and run an empty cycle.
Clean drains―and the pipes they’re attached to―by pouring vinegar down them. After 30 minutes, flush with cold water. (Or use the vinegar/baking soda combination in this article.)
Add 1/4 cup vinegar to a bucket of warm water to clean almost any type of floor except marble (vinegar can scratch it) or wood (use more dilute mix – vinegar can strip wood).
Glassware: For spotless hand-washed glasses, add 1 cup vinegar to the rinse water.
Instead of fabric softeners that are full of synthetic fragrances, try adding a small amount of white vinegar to your machine’s rinse cycle. This will help to rinse out the detergent completely and leave your clothes feeling soft.
Spray vinegar on the affected areas. After about 15 minutes, rinse and let dry thoroughly.
To combat mineral deposits, pour vinegar into a plastic grocery bag and knot the handles over the neck of the showerhead, securing with rubber bands. Let soak overnight. Rinse with water in the morning.
To get rid of mineral deposits, fill the iron with equal parts vinegar and water; press the steam button. Turn off, let cool, empty, and rinse.
Mix 1/4 cup vinegar, 2 cups water, and a squirt of liquid Castile soap in a spray bottle. Spritz windows and wipe with a sheet of newspaper.
Mix a solution of 1 part water to 1 part vinegar in a new store bought spray bottle and you have a solution that will clean most areas of your home. Vinegar is a great natural cleaning product as well as a disinfectant and deodorizer. Always test on an inconspicuous area. It is safe to use on most surfaces and has the added bonus of being incredibly cheap.
- Improperly diluted vinegar is acidic and can eat away at tile grout.
- Never use vinegar on marble surfaces.
Special thanks to Marianne B. for providing information for this article.