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13 Smart Uses for White Vinegar Around the Home

white vinegar bottle_focal point_Shutterstock

White vinegar is probably one of the most versatile ingredients you can have sitting around your home. You can do so many things with this substance. It can take the place of multiple cleaners and other household essentials. Plus, it is surprisingly effective at many of these jobs—even more so than commercial cleaners.

However, if you don’t know how to use white vinegar around your home, then it is obviously not going to be extremely useful. Here is a list of some of our favorite uses you may not have known about:

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The 13 Uses for White Vinegar Around the Home

1. Rinsing

dishwasher in the kitchen_onlynoodle_Pixabay
Image By: onlynoodle, Pixabay

Most dishwashers have a small compartment for a drying aid. However, instead of purchasing a drying aid at the store, you can simply pour in some white vinegar. It is extremely effective at keeping your dishes from getting cloudy—even more so than commercials drying aids out there.

2. Clean Glass

Vinegar is surprisingly useful for cleaning glass. You can use it to spruce up your windows and mirrors. All you need to do is spray the white vinegar and then wipe it off with a lint-free cloth. This should leave the glass streak-free and extremely clean.

3. Soften Towels

Green Towels_Denny Müller_Unsplash
Image Credit: Denny Muller, Unsplash

No one likes it when their once-soft towel becomes incredibly scrunchy. Often, this is caused by detergent build-up. To fix this problem, all you have to do is soak your towels in soda crystals and hot water for an hour. Then, wash them like you normally would but substitute your usual fabric softener for vinegar.

4. Shower Heads and Taps

Hard water buildup can be a problem for shower heads and pretty much anywhere that water comes out of. Luckily, you can remove much of this build-up without a serious problem by applying white vinegar. Often, it works best to fill a plastic bag with vinegar and fasten it around your shower head (with an elastic band). In the end, this should dissolve any buildup on your shower head.

5. Pet Accidents

wet cardboard
Image Credit: speedphoto, Shutterstock

If you own a dog or a cat, the odds are that they’ve had an accident at least once (or even multiple times). You can easily clean up after them by utilizing vinegar. Not only does this make the spot smell better to our nose, but it also discourages the dog from marking there again. You can use it alongside dish soap for an even more powerful clean.

6. Renew Appliances

You can remove limescale from many appliances by utilizing white vinegar. Simply spray white vinegar onto the surface and then let it sit for about 10 minutes. You can do the same for appliances with glass, as well. You can even clean things like your iron with white vinegar.

7. Everyday Cleaning

Cleaning door knob_DG FotoStock_Shutterstock
Image Credit: DG FotoStock, Shutterstock

Whether you’re wiping down the counter or shining doorknobs, white vinegar can be utilized for all these purposes. You can spray it onto the countertop directly and then wipe it with a clean cloth. However, you can also dip a towel into diluted vinegar, wring it dry, and then wipe down a variety of surfaces with it.

Vinegar is completely safe on most surfaces. However, you shouldn’t use it on frosted glass, as it can remove the etching. It cleans a bit too well, in this case. Natural stone and marble also shouldn’t be sprayed with vinegar, except in the case that the stone is sealed (as is the case with most countertops).

You should also avoid using it on metal surfaces, as well, in case they are already peeling. This may damage the metal further, which can cause problems.

However, vinegar is completely safe for all other surfaces and quite good at providing a complete clean without using harsh chemicals.

8. Fabric Conditioner

White vinegar also works as a fabric conditioner that won’t build up on your towels or clothes. Simply add some to the dispenser before you wash your clothes and the vinegar will help keep them very soft. Plus, thanks to the low concentration, there will not be a vinegar smell, either.

In fact, when used in this way, the vinegar really doesn’t make the clothes smell like anything.

9. Remove Stains

Stains on fabric_C Aphirak_Shutterstock
Image Credit: C Aphial, Shutterstock

You can also use vinegar to remove stains. It can remove dirt and stains from upholstery, though it works best on organic stains. You can also use it on color-safe fabrics of all sorts. Simply spray it on the affected area and wipe it clean with a damp cloth. Plus, it works well as a pre-wash stain treatment for shirts.

White vinegar is extremely helpful in the laundry room.

10. Deodorizer

Because vinegar kills bacteria, it can also reduce smells in the air and on upholstery. Spray it onto rugs, carpets, and other areas with bad smells. The vinegar will work on the smells, but it should be safe for most fabrics.

Alternatively, you can use a cup of vinegar out in a room to deodorize smells that way. This works well if you’ve removed the underlying cause of the smell but are still struggling with the smell.

11. Remove Rust

Rust Scissor_nicolagiordano_Pixabay
Image Credit: nicolagiordano, Pixabay

White vinegar can actually dissolve rust when left on the surface for an extended period. Therefore, small items like scissors can easily be soaked in vinegar to remove the rust. Coarse salt and a cork can also be used to remove rust when used alongside vinegar.

Simply dip the item into the vinegar, sprinkle on the salt, and rub it with the cork. This method works faster than soaking and allows for easier spot-cleaning.

When you’re done, be sure to rinse well and dry completely to prevent more rust from forming.

12. Sanitizing

White vinegar is great for sanitizing. It is safe for most items and kills bacteria. Therefore, you can use it to sanitize just about anything around your home, especially hard-to-reach places that may be difficult to clean with other methods.

For instance, white vinegar is great for sanitizing your garbage disposal. Simply pour hot vinegar down your garbage disposal and rinse well. You can also clean your sink by allowing the vinegar to sit in them for a while.

13. Pest Control

bed bug infestation pest control
Image Credit: whitejellybeans, Shutterstock

Many pests do not like vinegar. Therefore, you can use it to prevent ants and other pests from entering your home. To do this, simply dilute the vinegar at a 1:1 ratio and spray it where the ants were spotted. Make sure to get any small crevices where the ants might enter.

If you host dinner outside, you can also spray down your table or porch with this mixture to keep the ants away.

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White vinegar can be utilized for many different purposes. You can use it to clean just about anything around your home, as it kills bacteria. It can even be utilized to handle most organic odors and stains. For instance, it can clean up after mildew and pet accidents.

It can also perform many jobs in your laundry room. Vinegar works to keep your colors bright and is naturally acidic, so it can whiten your whites, as well.

Plus, pests don’t like vinegar, either. Therefore, you can safely use it to keep ants out of certain areas and even care for your garden.

Featured Image Credit: focal point, Shutterstock


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