Welcome to the second article of the green-cleaning trilogy!
Last time we talked about how to use lemon to clean your home, and today we’re going to show you how white vinegar is also magical with many household uses.
Vinegar is a multi-purpose solution. It works as an effective replacement for the following typically store-bought chemically inundated products:
- Disinfectant (for household appliances, toilets, kitchen and bathroom surfaces, etc.)
- Deodorant (to be sprayed in toilets, garbage cans)
- Anti-limestone agent (seals, taps, sinks, kettles, jugs, coffee makers, pots, toilets, washing machines, and dishwashers)
- Fabric softener
- Stain remover
- Mold remover
- Cleaner (windows, mirrors, copper, tiles, silverware, and baby toys)
- Weed killer
The uses of white vinegar are almost endless and will definitely surprise you.
It’s both cheap and ecological. Here we’ll explain everything about cleaning your home with white vinegar and the benefits of doing so.
Mr. Clean can finally retire!
How to Use White Vinegar to Clean the Kitchen
There are many useful vinegar cleaning hacks that you can employ in your kitchen. Let’s take a look.
Clean your cutting boards
Cutting boards are literally microbial nests and are often stained with food. The solution? White vinegar, of course!
It’s a disinfectant, so it eliminates germs, and its acidic and degreasing properties can also remove stains.
Just soak your cutting board for five or 10 minutes in white vinegar. Voilà! Your cutting board is like new again.
Degrease the dishwasher
Instead of using the chemical rinsing liquid, you can (and should!) opt for white vinegar.
A cup of white vinegar is a good degreaser for the machine.
Good to know—if you have particularly greasy or dirty dishes to put in the dishwasher, sprinkle them with white vinegar before throwing them in. Vinegar will help clean them better.
Remove old smells from food containers
If like me, you recycle old jars and containers to store food, you may have noticed that they tend to keep the smell of food.
For odorless jars, wash them with a cloth soaked in white vinegar diluted in hot water, then rinse them with water and leave them overnight in the refrigerator. I can guarantee you that the stench will disappear! Additionally, white vinegar removes any traces of fat that may be stuck on your boxes.
Give a new look to your sponges
Sponges get dirty quite fast, and they tend to stink—but, don’t throw them out right away. It’s possible to make them like new again with white vinegar.
Let them soak in a liter of warm water with a cup of white vinegar added for about 30 minutes, then wring them out.
If you have a microwave, it’s even more efficient. Just throw a mixture of two-thirds water and one-third white vinegar on your sponges and turn on the microwave for one to two minutes. Your sponges will be clean, and even your microwave will smell better.
Make silverware shine again
There is a simple way to polish and make your silverware shiny again. Instead of investing in potentially expensive and toxic products, try out white vinegar first.
Simply wipe your silverware with a soft cloth soaked in white vinegar. You can also wrap your silverware in a cloth soaked in white vinegar and let it work without rubbing. Your silverware will shine brighter than ever!
Pro tip—you can clean chrome, nickel, silver, and gold jewelry with the same method.
Save a burnt pot
Burning a pot happens to all of us, a minute of distraction and you end up with half your food burned and stuck to the bottom of the pot—and it’s so difficult to clean! I nearly lost an arm while scrubbing the last pot I burned.
To restore it to its original appearance without scrubbing too much, put a mixture of water and white vinegar in your pan or pot, cover it and bring it to boil for five minutes. Wait until it cools down and then you can easily remove the burnt pieces.
Your pan is saved and so is your arm. Hooray!
Descale kettles and coffee machines
White vinegar can also be used to descale kettles and coffee makers. To do this, you just need to boil white vinegar and a bit of water in your kettle. For the coffee machine, it’s also very easy—simply run your coffee maker with white vinegar and water.
I recommend you do two cycles for even greater efficiency.
Restore shine to your porcelain dishes
Porcelain dishes can look a little dull with age. White vinegar restores its full brilliance.
How? Just fill your sink with hot water, add one cup of white vinegar, rinse and let it dry. As with silverware, you can also wrap your dishes in a cloth soaked in white vinegar.
Good to know— crystal dishes too recover their brilliance with white vinegar.
How to Use White Vinegar to Clean the Bathroom
Moving right along to the bathroom, have a look at how effective vinegar is in here.
Unclog your sink
It can happen that sometimes the sink or the shower drain gets stuck. Mix baking soda and vinegar and pour the solution straight into the pipes. Wait for a bit, and it will be unblocked and deodorized as well.
Clean electric razors
Over time, electric razors get filthy because there’s still hair left in there after each use.
To make them all clean again, soak them overnight in white vinegar. They will be impeccably shiny and clean, and they’ll smell good too!
It’s the acidic properties of the white vinegar that help to dissolve the stuck hairs. However, be very careful not to soak the electrical components.
Soften towels and linen
White vinegar is a natural softener for laundry. In fact, it softens the water, and therefore the laundry is less rough. My grandma taught me this trick.
Pour two cups of white vinegar into the softener compartment of your washing machine. To avoid the smell of vinegar on wet clothes (which disappears on dry clothes), I usually add three drops of lavender, lemon, or orange essential oils to the mix.
Be careful, however, with brightly colored linen as vinegar could discolor them.
How to Use White Vinegar to Clean the Living Room
You may be surprised to learn that you can use vinegar to clean your living room, but it’s true!
Did you spill coffee or wine on your carpet or nice couch? Don’t worry—white vinegar will save the day!
Its acidity acts as a stain remover. It’s best to make a mixture with one part white vinegar with three parts water and spray it liberally onto the stain. Try it first on a small surface on colored fabrics—vinegar could damage the colors.
Pro tip—if your kid or your pet had an accident you can also use white vinegar to clean the stain and to remove the bad smell. White vinegar has the advantage of removing urine odors and being a disinfectant.
Clean your glasses… and your windows
My girlfriend is always asking me how I can possibly see through my glasses. Grease marks, finger traces, they’re often pretty gross.
I used to wash them with a chemical spray, but then I noticed a small rash on my hands right after, so I decided to try cleaning my glasses with white vinegar.
And guess what?
They’ve never been so shiny and crystal clear!
Put a drop of pure white vinegar on the glass and rub with cotton or a soft cloth. You will see a much brighter world!
Good to know—mix one part vinegar with five parts water, and you will get a most effective glass cleaner for sparkling windows and mirrors.
Remove glue or sticker residue
When you buy new things, there seems always to be this horrifyingly sticky tag that is so difficult to remove because it’s stuck with the world’s strongest glue.
Instead of rubbing and risking damaging the object, you can wipe the sticker with a damp cloth and white vinegar. It’s going to disappear in just minutes.
It also works with traces of glue left behind by a bandage or stickers on your car, for example. Gently wipe the area in question with a cloth dipped in pure white vinegar and rinse well with water.
Additional Tips on Using White Vinegar for Cleaning
- White vinegar can also be useful in the garden! To eliminate weeds, count one quart of white vinegar for half a quart of water. Spray the weeds at the end of the day.
- To discourage insects and ants from invading
your kitchenor floors, you can clean the surfaces with pure vinegar. The smell willkeep them away.
- To remove rust, allow items to soak in
pure vinegar. It’s the acidity of the vinegar that gives it this property. As strangeas it sounds; rusty objects do not resist white vinegar.
Wrapping It Up
You’ve got it by now—white vinegar is a very powerful disinfectant, degreaser, polisher, stain remover, and deodorant. It’s a healthy, non-toxic, cheap, and natural alternative to dangerous cleaning products filled with dubious ingredients.
And you? Have you tested any of these secret white vinegar cleaning tricks? What is your favorite tip for cleaning with white vinegar? Or maybe you have some new tips to share with our community?
Tell us in comments if white vinegar works well for you. We look forward to hearing from you!
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