Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Wednesday's Cleaning: Using everyday items around the house; Part 1: Vinegar

As mentioned last week, for the next 5 weeks, I am going to be posting on ways to use everyday items around the house to clean. If you need to see the schedule, go here. This week, I will focus on the use of Vinegar around the home. 

Cleaning with Vinegar: 

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  1. Vinegar can be used by itself to clean quite a few objects. Just place a small amount on a paper towel or cloth and rub away at grease, dust, and dirt. Make sure to use it on non-porous surfaces, if you are using it by itself. NOTE: never use vinegar on marble. It will damage the marble. 
    • Refrigerator: wipe down the grease build up on top of the fridge; wipe down the shelves inside the fridge during your monthly deep cleaning. Do this in the evening, and leave it to dry overnight. 
    • Grout, grim, mildew, scum: clean with a vinegar-soaked towel or pour on directly. If cleaning the toilet, pour at least a cup of vinegar in the bowl and let it sit overnight before scrubbing with brush and then flushing. 
    • Making surfaces shiny: simply rub or soak with vinegar. Wipe dry. (A fun one for kids is to let pennies soak for a couple of hours. They will come out shiny!)
     2.  Vinegar can be used with a friend to clean so many things. Find a few spray bottles, a buddy to go with vinegar (mostly her two best friends water and baking soda), and a marker to clearly label what the concoction is and what it can be cleaned with it. 
  1. With water (W&V for future references): 1) boil 1/2 c. water and 1/2 c. of vinegar in a microwaveable bowl in the microwave. This will loosen up any food or grime to be wiped away later. 2) clean walls with 1/2 and 1/2 solution of W&V; 3) clean mini-blinds (yay! a solution!) with 1/2 and 1/2 W&V. Place on cloth and gently wipe away; 4) disinfect sponges and rags in water (cover the rags) and 1/4 c. vinegar; and 5) remove wallpaper by spraying (and even soaking) the wallpaper with 1/2 and 1/2 W&V solution. 
  2. With baking soda (V&BS): 1) cleaning sinks by mixing 1 cup of BS and then 1 cup hot vinegar. Let sit and then wash down drain. If you let it sit in your disposal a bit, this will deodorize as well! 2) cleaning the showerhead is fun with mixing 1/2 c BS and 1 c V into a plastic bag, tie it around the showerhead and let sit for a few minutes. 3) Mix 1 tsp BS and 1 Tbsp V and 1 c. water into a spray bottle and use as a freshener 4) Carpet stains can be removed by making a paste of 2 Tbsp of V and 1/4 c BS. Rub and let dry. Vacuum the next day. 
  3. With salt: mixing these two together to create a rub works great when trying to clean hard surfaces. 1) You can mix the two (1/4 c. vinegar and 1 tsp of salt) to scrub your oven, silver, copper, or other hard metal surfaces. 2) Remove soap buildup 1 part salt and 4 parts vinegar. 
Remember to use 1/2 cup vinegar in your laundry. Not only does this help remove smells, but it works as a natural fabric softener. I always keep a bottle next to the laundry detergent. Make sure you DON'T mix vinegar and bleach. This can cause harmful fumes. Otherwise, add away! 

Next week's topic: Cleaning with Citrus

Sources used to compile my list: 
  1. http://www.cleaningwithvinegar.com/
  2. http://www.thenewhomemaker.com/vinegar
  3. http://www.vinegartips.com/Scripts/pageViewSec.asp?id=7
  4. Tara Norman: http://organizedsahm.wordpress.com/
  5. Parade Magazine's article: "Vinegar Can be Used for WHAT?" (August 7, 2011) ...This article talked more about how to use it for health reasons, but it gave me some ideas to research. 

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