Using vinegar to clean your home is not only good for you and your family; it's also good for the environment. Cleaning with vinegar is inexpensive and natural and works just as well as chemical based cleaners. The average cost of a 32 ounce container of vinegar is $2.00. Additionally, vinegar can be purchased in bulk from warehouse club stores for even greater savings.
Cleaning with vinegar is as simple as filling up a bucket or spray bottle with vinegar and water. An important note of caution: Do not mix vinegar with bleach or ammonia as it can create toxic fumes. Many household cleaners contain bleach or ammonia, so it's best not to use them together.
Vinegar Cleaning Tips:
For decades, hardwood floor installers have recommended vinegar for cleaning hardwood floors. Mix equal amounts of water and vinegar in a bucket. Dampen a rag or cloth and wipe the floors. For linoleum, vinyl no-wax floors and ceramic tile, mix equal amounts of water and vinegar in a bucket and mop the floor.
Vinegar is great for spot cleaning carpets and rugs. Use a sponge to spot clean any stains. Add some baking soda for additional stain removal help. Do not aggressively rub the stain as the baking soda could leave a mark. Vinegar is especially good for removing pet urine as well as preventing pets from making future mistakes. The vinegar actually discourages pets from returning to an area where they had a mistake. To remove stains with odors (such as pet urine) scrub the area with a wet sponge of water and vinegar. Place a paper towel over the area, step on it and remove. Repeat the process until the vinegar cleaning solution has been removed.
Sinks and Drains
Vinegar can clean your drains and unclog a plugged drain. To clean and deodorize a sink drain, simply pour two cups of vinegar down the drain. In order for the vinegar to do it's best deodorizing, don't use the drain for 20 minutes. To unclog the drain, pour one cup of baking soda and one cup vinegar down the drain. You'll notice a foamy substance- this is normal. Wait 20 minutes and rinse with hot water.
For glass shower doors, vinegar is the most effective method for removing spots. The vinegar will soak away water spots and lime deposits almost instantly. Spray or pour the vinegar (directly from the bottle) onto the shower doors. Let sit 5-10 minutes and rinse with clean water. For stubborn water spots, let sit for 20 minutes.
Showerheads and Faucets
Vinegar can remove mineral deposits from showerheads and faucets. Remove the showerhead or faucet and soak it in one quart of very hot water with 1/2 cup of vinegar for 10 minutes.
Mold and Mildew Stains
You can clean mold and mildew stains with Â¼ cup vinegar mixed with 1 teaspoon of Borax and 2 cups of hot water. Apply to the mixture to stains in your shower or tub area and allow it to sit. Rinse after 15- 20 minutes. Additionally, soak cotton balls in vinegar and place into the corners of the tub or other areas where there is mold. Let sit for half an hour and remove. The mold should be gone.
If you are accustomed to using chemical based cleaners, switching over to vinegar may be a hard switch. Start by using vinegar for some of your cleaning tasks. Once you get more used to it, make the switch over for all your cleaning.
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