10 reasons I love white vinegar
Anyone who has been in my kitchen recently will have noticed the growing crowd of empty vinegar bottles waiting to be taken out for recycling. I go through this stuff like nobody’s business; I love it. And it’s only about 50p for half a litre, which is a lot cheaper than many of the things you can substitute it for! Here are ten ways you can use white vinegar around the house:
  1. Use instead of fabric softener: it will make nappies and towels fluffier and more absorbent. If you still want to use fabric softener you can mix it half-and-half. The softener will still leave your clothes smelling nice, but a bottle will last twice as long. The vinegar is also really good for cleaning away limescale build-up inside your machine.
  2. Boil in the kettle: I live in an area with very “hard” water, so my kettle is forever getting fuzzed up, and my cups of coffee end up with bits of floating limescale in them. Not good. Boiling some white vinegar in the kettle, and then cleaning it thoroughly (nobody wants vinegar-flavoured coffee) will remove the limescale and allow your kettle to live for longer.
  3. General cleaning: you know all those expensive cleaning products you can buy for your kitchen, bathroom, floor, whatever else? They’re nice colours and smell of pine or lemon and make you feel like everything is clean… Next time one of them runs out, re-fill it with half water, half white vinegar. It works just as well, costs less, and involves spraying fewer random chemicals around your house. If you would rather have the lemony-fresh smell, add a few drops of essential oil to the mixture.
  4. Windows and mirrors: window cleaning products are a great big con. Have you ever seen a professional window cleaner using any of these brands? No? Me either. Get the bottle you made for point 3 above, and spray it onto the window/mirror. If it’s really dirty, remove the worst of the dirt first with some washing up liquid (seriously, what are you doing to your windows, though!). Buff the glass with a page of old newspaper (the only good reason to buy the Daily Mail, if you ask me), and you will find you have the cleanest, shiniest windows the world has ever seen. Probably.
  5. Stinky, slow-draining sinks: pour a cup of bicarbonate of soda into the offending drain, and follow with a cup of white vinegar. It will fizz up out of the plug hole in a most gratifying fashion. Leave it half an hour, and then pour some hot water down to rinse it through. This will get rid of most of the built-up gunk that makes its home in a drain, and make your sink smell much better.
  6. Draining boards: my draining board always gets scaled up and dirty, because I’m so lazy about drying up. On the rare occasion the draining board is clear of wet crockery, I mix bicarbonate of soda with white vinegar (more fizzing! What fun!) and pour it over the offending area. Left for a few minutes, it will usually loosen the scale, and you can just wipe it down!
  7. Ovens: next time you use the oven, wait for it to cool down a little, and while it’s still warm, run a vinegar-soaked cloth around in there. Magic. If the oven is really grimy, you can loosen the muck by putting a bowl of water and lemon juice in the oven and heating it until it boils almost dry, and then use the vinegar.
  8. Microwaves: please tell me I’m not the only person with a magical capability to explode everything that goes into the microwave! Seriously, sometimes it’s like a science experiment in there. Every now and then I fill a bowl with white vinegar and microwave for a couple of minutes until it’s bubbling, and then leave it in there (door closed) to cool down. The steam from it loosens the gunk, and then you just wipe it out.
  9. Bathrooms: you can use white vinegar to clean most parts of your bathroom. Limescale in the loo? leave it to soak with white vinegar. Streaky tiles? Wipe with white vinegar. Fuzzed up shower head? Take it off and leave it to soak in some white vinegar mixed with bicarbonate of soda.
  10. Air freshener: I don’t like to have smelly rooms, but I also don’t much like the smell of those chemical-laden synthetic sprays and plug-ins you can get. With rooms that aren’t in daily use, they often just smell a bit stale from the air not circulating. A couple of bowls of vinegar left in the corners of the room for a few hours usually make it smell better (but not like a fish and chip shop, weirdly).
Now, off you go to the shops and buy some white vinegar! You know you want to!

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Vicky is a mother, a blogger, a podcaster and a social media trainer. She writes about life as a single mother, parenting and lifestyle type things.

1 Comment

Lysa @ Welcome To My Circus · 04/12/2014 at 07:38

What great cleaning tips to help with your budget. I never knew you could use white vinegar for so many things. Thanks for sharing.

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