22 Great and Versatile Ways to Use Vinegar for Cleaning

Clear and clean distilled white vinegar is an environmentally friendly product you can use all over the house. This cheap – though potent and highly acidic – stuff can kill bacteria, fungi and other germs.

You can purchase a gallon jug of white vinegar for nearly nothing, particularly if you select the generic or in-store brand.

Here are twenty-two practical ways you can use this ecologically safe compound all over the house:

Cleaning Up

Barbecue grills can be cleaned (after cooling) with a full-strength vinegar spray. Let vinegar sit for several minutes before scrubbing with a scouring pad, grill brush or wad of aluminum foil.

Bath and kitchen counter tops will glisten, if you wipe them with a soft cloth, soaked in full-strength vinegar.

Can openers will lose their stickiness, after you soak the gears in full-strength vinegar before wiping them clean.

Coffeemakers can be freshened by running an entire cycle with vinegar instead of coffee.

Dishwasher stains and soap scum will clean up, if you run the empty appliance through an entire cycle using a cup of vinegar instead of dishwasher soap.

Faucets will lose their calcium, lime or other mineral deposits after being soaked with vinegar. Spray full-strength vinegar directly on faucets, and allow it to sit for several minutes before scrubbing with an old toothbrush and wiping clean with a soft cloth.

Flower vases can be cleaned by filling them with vinegar and letting them stand for several hours before rinsing.

Garbage disposal stench will dissipate, if you grind up frozen vinegar cubes. Make these in a plastic ice cube tray, reserved just for this purpose!

Goblets and other glassware will lose that dingy and soapy appearance, once you wipe them with vinegar-soaked paper towels before rinsing. Try the same method with coffee mugs and teacups too! (Add a bit of baking soda to scrub ceramic or china items.)

Laundry will rinse cleaner after adding a cup of vinegar to the rinse cycle. Rub anti-perspirant stains on clothing with vinegar before laundering, and watch stains vanish.

Microwave odors will disappear, if you boil a bowlful of vinegar and water (equal parts). Wipe clean with a soft cloth.

Oven door grease stains will disappear. Open the door horizontally, and spray the inside with full-strength vinegar. Let it stand for at least 15 minutes before wiping it with a soft cloth.

Plastic food storage containers (and even school lunch boxes) may be freshened by wiping them with a soft cloth, soaked in full-strength vinegar.

Pots and pans will scrub clean easily after soaking filled with vinegar for at least half an hour.

Refrigerator stains will clear, after you wipe the interior with a mixture of vinegar and water (equal parts). Wipe down the top and sides of the fridge with a soft cloth, soaked in full-strength vinegar.

Steam irons will lose baked-on stains. Rub the ironing plate with full-strength vinegar while still slightly warm.

Whistling teakettles can be restored by boiling vinegar full-strength before rinsing well.

Wood floors will shine after mopping with vinegar and water. (Add 2 tablespoons of vinegar to a gallon of water.)

Your hands will smell fresh again, after cutting onions and other stinky foods, if you rub them with vinegar before washing with soap and water. This will also remove stains from blueberries, cranberries, strawberries or other fruit.

Prudent Pest Control

Ant and other insect infestation may be prevented, if you spray full-strength vinegar on thresholds, windowsills and other potential entry points.

Fruit flies will flee, once you place an open bowl or jar of vinegar on your kitchen counter top.

Patio weeds will wilt and vanish, if you spray full-strength vinegar directly on them. (I actually keep a gallon jug of vinegar in the garage, just for outdoor use.)

All over the house, simple white vinegar can be valuable and so versatile! Although most of these vital vinegar tips have been passed along through my family and friends, you can find nearly unlimited additional practical uses for vinegar at The Vinegar Institute, Do It Yourself, Frugal Fun, Tree Hugger, and similar sites.

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