6 Ways To Clean With Vinegar

Heinz Vinegar
Flickr | JeepersMedia

I hate chemicals, so I have a surplus of vinegar and lemon juice in my house (apple cider vinegar and lemon juice to drink daily, and white vinegar and lemon juice for cleaning).

We’ve told you about the wonders of vinegar before, and here are a few reasons you should be, too. After all, you can use it to clean your office (like the windows), home (like the showerhead),  and for cooking (like when poaching eggs).

Then, there are certain times you should never use vinegar, like on your computer monitor or smartphone.

But, overall, it makes for a wonderful cleaning agent, and here are 6 things you should be using it for when cleaning.

1. Clean Glass And Mirrors

mirror photo
Photo by gothick_matt

Some people, like my grandma, only use vinegar to clean glass windows, tables, and mirrors, but others dilute the vinegar with water.

Top Cleaning Secrets has a good formula—four parts water to one part white vinegar. They also recommend cleaning with a squeegee versus a paper towel (due to the latter shedding and leaving streak marks). Smart!

2. Unclog A Drain

drain photo
Photo by mauxditty

I use vinegar and baking soda all the time to unclog drains, mine as well as friends’. It’s so easy (not to mention chemical-free) and here’s one of my favorite how-tos via the SFGate.

A ½ cup each of vinegar and water is all you need. It’ll be like you’re in science class again when the two mix and create a fizzy reaction.

The SFGate says to put a stopper on the drain afterwards, though I’ve done it without and it still works. They recommend leaving it be for at least a half-hour, though I say, the longer, the better.

Then, hot or boiling tap water is the last thing you need. The SFGate uses a plunger, too, but I skip that step.

3. Oil & Vinegar To Clean & Revive Wood

Miss Mustard Seed

Yes, oil and vinegar—and not just for your food! Miss Mustard Seed tested this theory out on old croquet mallets… and it worked! The amazing result is pictured above.

MORE: How to clean wood floors with vinegar

4. Cutting Boards

cutting board photo
Photo by qnsagetyrtle

Sure, you can use hot water and soap to clean your cutting board, but how often do you disinfect it? Once again, vinegar to the rescue!

Spray or wipe vinegar onto the cutting board (you can also use a vinegar-water mixture), and leave it on for about 10 minutes. Then, rinse and dry it. Simple!

5. Spray Your Mattress

bed mattress photo
Photo by mark.groves

Once again, baking soda becomes vinegar’s BFF when it comes to cleaning your mattress. If you need to remove a pesky odor from it, first vacuum the mattress, then dab with a vinegar-soaked rag or cloth. Blot dry.

MrsClean says to first use vinegar, though before adding the baking soda. Once the vinegar has dried—and if the mattress is still stinky, add the baking soda.

6. Remove Pet Odors

cats photo
Photo by aymen_bet

Need to get rid of a pet (or non-pet) odor in the carpet? Try one part of each, and experiment—and increase the amount of vinegar if need be.

Cleaning & Organization, Home

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About the Author
Natalia Lusinski
In addition to Simplemost, Natalia is an ongoing writer for Bustle (sex, dating, relationships, and money), HelloGiggles (pop culture and news), The Delite (feel-good stories), and Don’t Waste Your Money (yep, money issues!). You can also find her writing in the L.A. Times, the Chicago Tribune's RedEye, xoJane, Elite Daily, Scary Mommy, Elephant Journal, and Chicken Soup for the Soul anthologies, among other publications. She has a Ph.D. in couch-surfing, having spent four years sleeping on over 200 L.A.-area love seats and sectionals, all in an effort to whittle down her student loan debt. She still loves couch-surfing in other cities, too (hint, hint).

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