Friday, January 28, 2011

Top Ten Vinegar Uses - Cleaning

Vinegar Street by Mykal Shaw

Vinegar (white distilled vinegar - available by the bottle at the supermarket) is pretty cool. I use it in all my green cleaning recipes and clean my bathroom most weeks with nothing more than vinegar, water and elbow grease.

There's about 50,000 recipes that use vinegar, but it can be used on its own for so many different things. Try one of these next time the need arises:

1. Clean the microwave by mixing 1/2 cup vinegar and 1/2 cup water in a microwave-safe bowl. Bring it to a rolling boil inside the microwave and let it sit for a few minutes. The steam will soften any baked-on food and the vinegar gets rid of smells. Wipe clean with a damp cloth.

2. For stained/smelly plastic food containers, wipe them with a cloth dampened with white distilled vinegar.

3. Discourage ants by spraying straight vinegar outside doorways and windows.

4. To remove a sticky label or price tag, cover with a cloth soaked in vinegar. Leave overnight and the label should easily come away.

5. Clean grout by letting full-strength vinegar sit on it for a few minutes and scrubbing with an old toothbrush.

6. Kill germs around the bathroom with a spray of full-strength vinegar. Rinse and wipe clean with a damp cloth.

7. Remove wallpaper by using a paint roller to wet the surface very thoroughly with a solution of one part vinegar to one part hot water. Or spray on until saturated.

8. Clean hardened paint brushes by simmering them in a saucepan of vinegar. Soak first for an hour or so before bringing it to a simmer. Drain and rinse clean.

9. Clean vinyl baby books or board books by wiping with vinegar. Wipe clean with a damp cloth.

10. Clean scissors that have become sticky (eg. after cutting tape) with a cloth dipped in undiluted vinegar.

There's obviously many more uses in the laundry, garden and medicine cabinet, and I'll get around to those another time. But truly, vinegar, castile soap, borax and baking soda make up the vast, vast majority of all my cleaning solutions. Sparkly McGee!

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Merci! Ta! Xie xie!