Have you ever cleaned with white distilled vinegar? It’s a fantastic and eco-friendly solution that has been trusted for generations. Not only is it affordable, but it can also clean and deodorise various surfaces around your home. We’ve compiled a list of 32 ways to clean with vinegar to keep your living environment sparkling without using harsh chemicals.

I enjoy using vinegar and essential oils to clean my home without harsh chemicals. White vinegar is great for removing grease, grime, and stains, but it does not disinfect. You can mix essential oils like tea tree, lemon, and rosemary to add antibacterial properties to your natural cleaners.

Essential oils are derived from plants and offer several benefits for natural cleaning. They can be used to make antibacterial sprays, cut through grease, and purify the air of toxins.

My favourite essential oils to clean with are:

  • Lemon
  • Lavender
  • Tea tree
  • Eucalyptus
  • Rosemary
  • Peppermint

Want to learn more about natural cleaning? Read my detailed blog on natural cleaning 101 to get started!

Woman in her farmhouse home by a window.

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What is Cleaning Vinegar?

Do you know that cleaning vinegar is different from regular vinegar? The two types of vinegar are produced through ethanol fermentation, but their acidity levels differ, resulting in distinct uses.

Regular vinegar, like white or apple cider vinegar, has a 5% acidity level and is used for cooking, preserving food, and even as a condiment. It’s also used for some cleaning tasks around the house, but it may not be enough for heavy-duty cleaning.

Cleaning vinegar, also known as distilled or industrial vinegar, has a higher acidity level, usually ranging from 6% to 10%. This higher acidity level makes it an excellent cleaning agent that can dissolve tough stains, mineral deposits, and soap scum. That’s why it’s a popular choice for cleaning tasks that require a more robust solution.

32 Ways To Clean With Vinegar

1. All-Purpose Cleaner

Mix equal parts of water and white vinegar in a spray bottle to create a powerful all-purpose cleaner. It’s perfect for wiping down countertops, appliances, and other surfaces. You can add a few drops of lemon essential oils, which are antiseptic, antiviral, and anti-infective, perfect to add to cleaning solutions.

My go-to DIY natural homemade all-purpose cleaner.

Natural all purpose cleaner spray bottle with open essenital oil bottle

2. Glass Cleaner

For a flawless, crystal-clear finish on your windows and mirrors, mix 1 cup of water with 1/4 cup of white vinegar. This powerful solution will effectively remove streaks and leave your glass surfaces spotless. Give it a try and see the difference for yourself!

Check out my favourite homemade window cleaner with vinegar.

3. Deodorise the Fridge

Placing an open container of white vinegar inside is highly recommended to neutralise unpleasant odours in your refrigerator effectively. This simple trick helps eliminate unwanted smells and keeps your fridge smelling fresh and clean. For best results, make sure to replace the vinegar every month.

4. Remove Carpet Stains

If you spill something, it’s best to act fast. First, use a cloth to blot the area gently. Then, mix 1 tablespoon of vinegar with 1 tablespoon of dishwashing liquid and 2 cups of warm water to create a solution. Use this solution to gently dab at the stain and then blot the area again to ensure it’s all cleaned up. These steps should help eliminate any tough stains and keep your surfaces looking great!

5. Clean Microwave

I’ve got a handy trick for you if you’re struggling with some tough grime. Take a microwave-safe bowl and fill it with a cup of water and a cup of vinegar. Pop it in the microwave for about 5 minutes and let the magic happen! The steam that’s created will loosen up the dirt, making it super easy to wipe away. You’ll have a sparkling clean surface in no time!

6. Clean Dishwasher

If you’re noticing some soap scum or mineral build-up in your dishwasher, don’t worry, it’s an easy fix! Just run an empty cycle with a cup of vinegar, and it’ll do the trick. This simple method will help keep your dishwasher clean and working great.

Person loading plates into the dishwasher

7. Clean Cutting Boards

For an effective way to kill bacteria on your cutting boards, try spraying some white vinegar with lemon essential oils and letting them sit for a couple of minutes before rinsing. This simple trick can help keep your kitchen clean and sanitary.

8. Remove Hard Water Stains

If you have mineral build-up on your faucets and showerheads, soak them in white vinegar for a few hours and then use an old toothbrush to scrub away any leftover residue. Give them a good rinse, and voila!

9. Clean Grout

Want to keep your grout lines clean and free from dirt and grime? Here’s a simple solution: mix equal parts vinegar and water to create a cleaning solution. Apply the solution to the grout lines and scrub the area thoroughly with a brush. Once done, rinse the grout lines well to ensure no solution is left.

Try this homemade shower scrub cleaner with essential oils for another simple cleaning solution.

Glass jar filled with shower scrub cleaning paste. There is a bottle of lemon essential oils and a half cut lemon on the left behind the jar.

10. Clean Stainless Steel

If you struggle with fingerprints and smudges on your stainless-steel appliances, a simple solution is to use a cloth dampened with vinegar to wipe them clean. This method is effective and easy, leaving your appliances shiny and new.

11. Remove Mildew from Shower Curtains

Wash your shower curtain with a cup of vinegar in the washing machine to remove mildew and soap scum.

12. Shine Faucets and Fixtures

Apply vinegar to a cloth and buff faucets and fixtures to a brilliant shine.

13. Clean Coffee Maker

To keep your coffee maker in tip-top shape, try running a mixture of water and vinegar through it. This will help remove any mineral build-up. It’s a good idea to follow up with a few clean water cycles to ensure everything is thoroughly rinsed out.

14. Refresh Dishcloths and Sponges

A little tip for keeping your dishcloths and sponges smelling fresh and clean is to soak them in a mixture of equal parts water and vinegar. This will help eliminate any unwanted odours and kill bacteria lurking on them.

Sew your own reusable paper towels.

15. Clean Toys

A helpful cleaning tip for parents is to mix vinegar and water in a spray bottle and use it to clean their kids’ toys. This solution is both safe and effective for keeping toys clean and germ-free.

Toy box filled with lego

16. Remove Pet Odours

If you have pet odours on your carpet, try spraying vinegar and letting it sit for a few minutes. After that, blot it up and rinse it with some water.

17. Clean Trash Cans

Wipe down trash cans with a vinegar-soaked cloth to remove germs and odours.

18. Unclog Drains

To help unclog your drain, you can try this simple trick! Just pour a cup of baking soda down the drain, then add a cup of vinegar. Cover the drain for 5 minutes and then flush it with hot water.

19. Remove Sticky Residue

Dip a cloth in vinegar and rub it on adhesive residue from stickers and labels. It’ll break down the sticky substance.

20. Disinfect Toothbrushes

Soak toothbrushes in white vinegar to kill bacteria. Rinse thoroughly before using.

21. Clean Makeup Brushes

Did you know that soaking your makeup brushes in warm water and vinegar can effectively remove makeup residue and bacteria? It’s a simple and easy way to maintain the cleanliness of your brushes, which is important for keeping your skin healthy and glowing.

Makeup brushes in a container

22. Clean Refrigerator Seals

To keep your refrigerator clean and mould-free, use a cloth soaked in vinegar to wipe down the seals. This simple step can make a big difference in maintaining a healthy and fresh fridge.

23. Remove Ink Stains

If you ever get an ink stain on your clothes or fabric, don’t worry! Just dab some white vinegar on it and blot until the stain disappears. Then, wash it as you normally would.

24. Clean and Shine Wood Floors

Add 1/2 cup of vinegar to a gallon of warm water for a natural wood floor cleaner that leaves a shine.

25. Remove Rust

If you have rusted tools or objects, a quick and easy fix is to soak them in vinegar for a few hours. After soaking, simply scrub with a brush or steel wool. This should do the trick and have your tools looking as good as new in no time!

26. Clean and Deodorise Pet Urine Stains

Blot pet urine stains with a mixture of vinegar and water. Follow up with an enzymatic cleaner like hydrogen peroxide.

Dog with pet urine stain on carpet

27. Remove Smoke Odours

If you’re dealing with pesky smoke odours that won’t go away, try placing bowls of vinegar in the room. This simple trick can help neutralise the smell and leave your space smelling fresh and clean.

28. Clean and Deodorise Garbage Disposal

Pour vinegar down the garbage disposal and run it with cold water to eliminate odours and disinfect.

29. Remove Paint from Brushes

Soak paintbrushes in hot vinegar to soften and remove dried paint.

30. Clean and Deodorise Dishwasher Drain

If you want to keep your dishwasher odour-free and working well, try pouring some vinegar down the drain. It’s a simple and effective solution!

31. Clean Remote Controls and Keyboards

It’s always a good idea to keep your remote controls and keyboards clean and germ-free. One simple way to do this is by using a cloth soaked in vinegar to wipe them down. It’s an easy and effective way to remove dirt and germs and won’t harm your devices.

Person typing on keyboard

32. Remove Stickers from Glass

If you’ve got stickers stuck on glass surfaces, try soaking them in vinegar and then gently scrape them off with a razor blade. It should do the trick!

30+ Ways to Clean With Vinegar Conclusion

White distilled vinegar is a cleaning powerhouse that can tackle a wide range of cleaning tasks in your home. This natural and affordable solution is essential in any cleaning arsenal, from cleaning surfaces to removing stubborn stains and odours. These 32 ingenious ways to clean with white vinegar will save money and contribute to a healthier and greener living environment.

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