Thursday, May 27, 2010

Behold the power of Vinegar

When I was growing up we used to mop the kitchen hard wood floors with a water/vinegar mixture. I hated the job, it smelled like vinegar (duh) plus I just hated mopping. Still do. Lately I've been reading a lot about household cleaners that can replace all of the products you buy in the store. I've noticed several times vinegar and baking soda are said can clean everything.

Fast forward to this past Saturday. We have had some major carpet stains all over our front rooms beige carpet. I've been procrastinating cleaning them because I thought I would have to use a real carpet cleaner to get the carpet clean again. Boy was I wrong. I was sick of the spots last Saturday and decided to look up a home remedy, I was ready to scrub my little heart out until these spots were gone. It ended up only taking about 15 minutes to clean every spot from my carpet. I just mixed a bowl of one part vinegar to one part water and dabbed each spot. I was amazed to see the spots disappear before my eyes, but I was even more surprised the next day when our apartment smelled nothing like vinegar. I was already prepared to live in a pickle just to make my floors clean, but it didn't take that at all. I'm looking at my carpet right now amazed at how it turned out. Caution: you are supposed to test on an area out of the way to make sure it doesn't harm the carpet. I didn't do that of course, glad it didn't ruin my carpet.

After that amazing experience I decided to try a few more vinegar related cleaning. I just poured vinegar in the "Rinse Aid" spot in my dishwasher and it got rid of my gross foggy white glasses. Without making my clean dishes smell like vinegar. I have now started just pouring vinegar on everything. I probably shouldn't do that because it's bound to ruin something.

Here is a list of a few more favorite uses for vinegar. All of these come from the website Vinegar they lists 1001 ideas to use with vinegar so check there if you want more.  What do you use vinegar for? Have you tried any of these?
  • To clean and disinfect baby toys add a good-sized splash of white distilled vinegar to soapy water.
  • Fabric softener and static cling reducer - use as you would liquid fabric softener.
  • Absorb unpleasant odors by setting a container (shallow bowl) of vinegar throughout the house.
  • Conditions dry hair. Shampoo, then rinse hair with a mixture of one cup apple cider vinegar and two cups water. Vinegar adds highlights to brunette hair, restores the acid mantel, and removes soap film and sebum oil.
  • Soothe sunburn with a spray of white distilled vinegar, repeating as often as you like. Ice-cold white distilled vinegar will feel even better, and may prevent blistering and peeling.
  • Create your own window cleaning solution by combining 1/2 cup non-sudsy ammonia, 1 cup white distilled vinegar, and 2 tablespoons cornstarch in a gallon of water.
  • To remove a label, decal, or price tag, cover with a cloth soaked in white distilled vinegar. Leave the cloth on overnight and the label should slide off.
  • For stained and smelly plastic food containers, wipe them with a cloth dampened with white distilled vinegar.
  • Get stained white socks and dingy dishcloths white again. Add 1 cup white distilled vinegar to a large pot of water, bring it to a rolling boil and drop in the articles. Let soak overnight.
  • Remove perspiration odor and stains on clothing, as well as those left by deodorants, by spraying full-strength white distilled vinegar on underarm and collar areas before tossing them into the washing machine.
  • Get cleaner laundry! Add about 1/4 cup white distilled vinegar to the last rinse. The acid in white distilled vinegar is too mild to harm fabrics, yet strong enough to dissolve the alkalies in soaps and detergents. Besides removing soap, white distilled vinegar prevents yellowing, acts as a fabric softener and static cling reducer, and attacks mold and mildew.
  • Kill weeds and grass growing in unwanted places by pouring full-strength white distilled vinegar on them. This works especially well in crevices and cracks of walkways and driveways.
  • Preserve cut flowers and liven droopy ones by adding 2 tablespoons white distilled vinegar and 1 teaspoon sugar to a quart of water in a vase.
  • Wash fresh vegetables with a mixture of 1 tablespoon of white distilled vinegar in 1 ½ quarts of water.
  • Stop insect stings and bites from itching by dabbing them with a cotton ball saturated with undiluted white distilled vinegar.
  • Get rid of foot odor by washing feet well with antiseptic soap daily, then soaking them in undiluted cider vinegar for 10 minutes or so. Remember that cotton socks aid odor control more effectively than wool ones.
  • Make nail polish last longer. Wipe fingernails with cotton balls dipped in white distilled vinegar before putting on nail polish.
  • Keep car windows frost-free overnight in winter by coating them with a solution of 3 parts white distilled vinegar to 1 part water.
  • Loosen chewing gum stuck to carpeting or upholstery by soaking it in white distilled vinegar
  • Remove pet odors. After cleaning, cover the area with baking soda. Let it stand overnight. The next day vacuum up the baking soda and wash the area with white distilled vinegar. Rinse and let dry.
  • Remove skunk odors by wiping down the animal with a 50-50 solution of white distilled vinegar and water, followed by a plain-water rinse. Repeat if necessary.
  • Make onion odors disappear from your hands by rubbing with white distilled vinegar.
  • Add moistness and taste to any chocolate cake—homemade or from a box—with a spoonful of white distilled vinegar.
  • If you’ve added too much salt to a recipe, add a spoonful of white distilled vinegar and sugar to try correcting the taste.
And so many more. I'm going to start buying it in bulk.
This is linked to Works for me Wednesday. 


Sonora said...

This is a great post! I'm also in Utah. I saw your link over on the SITS site and I had to know what you had to say about vinegar. I am definitely going to try this. Our carpet is a disaster. Thanks for the tips!!

Sonora said...

Alright, either I am completely missing something or I can't find any way to follow you. Have you thought about adding google friend connect? I'd love to follow you.

Katie said...

Thank you so much for the comment and idea, I've added the follow option to my blog!

Mhel said...

ive been using vinegar to remove stains and odors. You can add a tsp of it in boiling water when poaching eggs. And yeah, before feminine wash, diluted vinegar was recommended especially for pregnant women with fungal or ph imbalance.... Great post! Stopping by from SITS! said...

I use a vinegar/water mix for most of my general cleaning. I have a one year old and it is good to know that if I accidentally leave this cleaner out it won't hurt him if he drinks it.

Thanks for listing all those tips. I definately will try the one about the deodorant stains on shirts.

Brandi said...

Yep,I am a huge fan of vinegar and all things natural!! I have used a lot of these ideas, but I'd like to give the weed thing a try. I hate that my hubby uses regular weed killer. Thanks!

Sue Heimer said...

I love these ideas. Great tips. This post make me want to clean:)

Rachel said...

Great tips! Just today my two year old daughter was squirting herself and the dog with the bottle that we keep of water/vinegar solution. We use it for everything! I thought my house would be smelling like eau de pickle, but it isn't too bad! :)


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