Vinegar is an inexpensive and easily accessible option for cleaning many surfaces throughout your home. It also has the benefit of being a nontoxic option! White vinegar is the most popular choice for cleaning purposes due to its higher acidity. You can also find vinegar specifically labeled as “cleaning vinegar”, which is more acidic than white vinegar. Because of the acidity, vinegar does not work well as a cleaning agent for some surfaces, as it can cause damage. To help you make the best use of vinegar around your home, we’ve compiled some dos and don’ts for cleaning with vinegar.
Countertops: DO use vinegar for spills and stains, to deodorize countertops, and even help deter ants. DON’T use vinegar on natural stone, like granite or marble, as the acid can damage the finish of the stone. Do not rely only on vinegar for disinfecting – while it can kill many germs, vinegar is not effective against certain bacteria, like salmonella.
Dishwasher: DO add 1 cup of vinegar to the rinse compartment of the dishwasher and run a cycle to cut through soap scum.
Floors: DO combine water and vinegar as a floor cleaner for no-wax linoleum. DON’T use vinegar to clean hardwood or natural stone floors, as it can dissolve or damage the finish.
Bathroom: DO spray vinegar over the tub and shower walls, let sit a few minutes, scrub, and rinse to combat soap scum and mildew. Add 2-3 cups to the toilet bowl and let sit for up to 3 hours, then scrub and flush to clean rings and deodorize. DON’T use on natural stone tiles, as it can damage the stone.
Laundry: DO add 1 cup of vinegar to the wash cycle to help remove stains and musty odors from fabrics. DON’T mix vinegar and bleach, as it creates a toxic gas.
We found most of these tips on healthline.com, but a quick online search can bring up many more recommendations. Happy cleaning!