Before chemical-laden commercial cleaners were available, homemakers still had to figure out how to clean and sanitize their homes. Today, most of us are having the wool pulled over our eyes by purchasing separate cleaners for everything! Those cleaners can really add up!
If you, or someone in your home, suffers from an allergy or sensitivity, you may feel as though you’re out of luck. However, white vinegar is an all-natural, biodegradable, safe to use alternative that is also environmentally friendly. It is even safe to use on stainless steel! Here are a few ways that you can use vinegar around your house to clean:
1. Cleaning Your Coffee Pot
Mix one part white vinegar to three parts water in your coffee pot. Run through one cycle in your coffee pot. After the vinegar-water has finished, dump into the sink and run at least two cycles of clear water through the coffee pot to get the vinegary taste out of your pot. If your coffee pot has never been cleaned, you may want to run an extra vinegar-water cycle through before moving on to the clear water stage. This will help to remove buildup in your coffee pot, and, as an added bonus, will make your coffee taste better!
2. Sanitizing Your Kitchen Surfaces
Mix 4 tablespoons of vinegar for every cup of water in a reusable spray bottle. After removing debris from counters, (such as flour left from cooking, vegetable scraps, etc), spray vinegar water onto all hard, nonporous surfaces and allow to sit for ten minutes before wiping up. Alternatively, you can spray it onto your surfaces and leave it to dry overnight.
3. As a Fabric Softener
Everyone loves a fluffy, soft bath towel or winter sweater. But not everyone loves heavily scented commercial fabric softeners! Add 1/4 cup of white vinegar into the last rinse cycle of your washing machine to soften clothes and help remove detergent buildup. It also helps with mildew and mold on old clothes, or clothes that were accidentally left wet somewhere.
4. To Shine Patent Leather
Using a soft rag, use a small amount of pure white vinegar to polish your purses and shoes. It will remove dirt and buildup without ruining the beautiful, shiny finish!
5. To Clean Your Microwave
Put a 50/50 vinegar-water solution into a bowl in the microwave. Microwave for 4-6 minutes to allow the steam to loosen the grime inside. After a few minutes, the microwave will be cool enough to wipe clean with a sponge.
6. To Clean Your Glasses
A few drops on each lens will clear them up much more effectively than a dry cloth or water.
7. To Clean Your Garbage Disposal
Freeze some vinegar in an ice-cube tray and run the cubes through your garbage disposal with water. The vinegar cubes will clean and sharpen the blades, and will help get rid of any smelly residue and germs left inside. Rinse with cold water afterward.
8. To Deodorize Your Refrigerator
Leave an open glass of vinegar in your refrigerator for at least 48 hours. It will kill any lingering smells in there!
9. Get Rid of that “Dog” Smell
The next time you wash your doggy, rinse him clean with a ratio of 1/2 cup of vinegar per gallon of water. The vinegar will take care of the bacteria making him stink!
10. To Aid in Cooking
– A tablespoon of vinegar in a pot while hard-boiling eggs will keep eggwhites from leaking all over if any of the eggs crack.
– A small splash of vinegar while boiling potatoes will keep them from going brown without affecting the flavor.
– Adding a few tablespoons of vinegar to your favorite meat marinade will break down connective tissue and make your meat very tender!