Did you know there is one item in your pantry that can do it all? This secret weapon can whiten your laundry whites, wash your windows and mirrors, drive out pests, eliminate odors, remove stains, and clean your surfaces. Let me introduce your secret weapon, vinegar. Here are 20 ways to use vinegar around your home that you probably never thought of.
1.Deodorize the Room – To remove unpleasant odors from carpets, rugs, and upholstery, fill a dish with half an inch of white vinegar and leave it out in the room until the smell dissipates.
2.Dissolve Rust – Clean sharp edges on knives or scissors without cutting yourself by pouring white vinegar over the blade. Then sprinkle with coarse salt and rub with a cork and rinse.
3.Keep Colors From Running – If you think that the colors may run in the wash: Prerinse using 2/3 cup vinegar for each gallon of cold water. Let the garments soak for up to 15 minutes, then wash and dry as normal.
4.Keep Your Whites White – Vinegar is naturally acidic, and will also whiten fabrics when added to the first rinse cycle. Be sure to add it to the first rinse so the vinegar can be washed out by the second rinse. Depending on the size of the load, use anywhere from 1/8 cup to 1/2 cup.
5.Remove Deposits on Faucets – Remove mineral deposits on your faucet with this trick. Soak a paper towel in full-strength white vinegar, then drape over the buildup. Leave for about an hour, then scrub deposits away.
6.Wash Your Windows and Mirrors – To give your reflective surfaces a streak-free shine. You can make your own cleaner by mixing one part vinegar and one part water.
7.Freshen Up Your Cup of Coffee – To clean your coffeemaker, fill the carafe with equal parts water and white vinegar. Pour into the reservoir and turn the machine on. When several cups have filled the carafe, turn it off and let it sit for an hour. Then turn it back on and rinse it out with a few cycles of fresh water before brewing a cup.
8.Sanitize Your Garbage Can – Your trash bin can harbor the worst odors in your home, but you can easily freshen it up. After rinsing with fresh water, use a long-handled brush to scrub the inside with a mixture of white vinegar and warm water. Rinse once more and let dry.
9.Remove Hard-Water Stains from Glass & Silverware – Use a clean rag to rub each piece with distilled white vinegar, to remove the calcium and magnesium buildup. (And don’t worry — the items won’t smell like vinegar once dried.)
10.Drive Away Bugs – Keep the ants away with equal amounts of water and white vinegar in a spray bottle. Shake to mix then spritz the solution in areas where ants tend to gather. You can also use the repellent outside to spray your patio, porch, or picnic table where you host gatherings.
11.Unclog the Showerhead – Fill a plastic bag with undiluted white vinegar and place the bag over the head so it is submerged; secure and seal the bag with a rubber band. Soak overnight and then scrub the face with a toothbrush.
12.Kill Weeds – Spray the offending foliage with vinegar instead. The weeds will likely shrivel in a day or so; resilient ones rarely withstand a second treatment.
13.Remove Carpet Stains – Blend white vinegar and water together in equal parts, and pour the solution over the stain. After a few minutes, wipe it away. Magic!
14.Clean Wood Floors – Vinegar works as an efficient cleaner for wood floors. If yours are really dirty, try mixing 1/8 cup liquid soap and 1/8 cup distilled white vinegar to 1 gallon water (add 10 drops essential oil for fragrance).
15.Clean Your Toilet – To remove a hard-water ring from inside the toilet, pour white vinegar into the bowl and let sit for an hour. Scrub clean and flush.
16.Clean Bath Toys – Wash bacteria and mildew from bath toys. Fill a bucket with warm water, add a 1/2 cup white vinegar per gallon of water. Soak toys for 10 minutes, then rub gently with a sponge and allow to dry.
17.Save Your Shoes – Rub shoes with a paper towel dampened with white vinegar. The white vinegar will dissolve the salt and stains that have damaged your leather or suade shoes.
18.Freshen Up Your Furniture – To remove musty smells from old wood furniture: Fill plastic containers with white vinegar; seal, and punch holes in the lids. Put one inside each drawer or cabinet overnight to absorb odors. For extreme cases, you can clean interiors with a vinegar-dampened cloth.
19.Shine the Silver – Silver is easily scratched and tarnished. Gently buff with vinegar and a soft cotton cloth. Finish by rinsing and drying the pieces with the cloth.
20.Get Rid of Fruit Flies – Set out a shallow dish of apple-cider vinegar. Cover the bowl in plastic wrap; using a needle, punch a half dozen holes in the surface at least a half inch in from the edge of the bowl. The fruit flies will fly in and get trapped.
These are just some of the many great uses of vinegar around your home. Have some great tips of your own? Feel free to share them!