Vinegar is extremely versatile product that you already have in your home! Check out these ingenious household uses for vinegar from cleaning to freshening and so much more.
Household Uses for Vinegar
Have you started your Spring Cleaning this year? I actually haven’t yet, but I have plans to soon! Can’t wait to air the house out after a long, crazy winter! And one of my favorite cleaners for all times of year is vinegar. There are so many household uses for vinegar! Vinegar is a great cleaner, yummy in foods, and is one of the most versatile products you have in your house. I buy white distilled vinegar by the gallon because we use it for so many things.
So to get you started, here are 52 easy household uses for vinegar. You’ll get just as addicted to it as I am!
52 Household Uses for Vinegar
1. Homemade Window Cleaner – You can make your own DIY window cleaner using vinegar, ammonia, water, and cornstarch. Find the full Homemade Window Cleaner recipe here.
2. Dishwasher Rinse Agent – Instead of paying big bucks for store-bought rinse agent, pour vinegar into the rinse compartment on your dishwasher. Vinegar will cut through grease, remove soap scum, and prevent water spots.
3. Remove Pet Odor – Being acidic, vinegar will neutralize pet odors left on furniture or carpets. It will also eliminate urine odors from pet accidents, which is particularly useful during house training so that your pet does not smell the urine and go repeatedly in the same place.
4. Remove Mildew Smell from Towels and Laundry – Towels smelling a little funky? Left the laundry in the washer too long? Pour a 1/2 cup vinegar into the wash to remove mildew smells.
5. Carpet Stain Remover – To remove carpet stains, mix together 1/2 cup vinegar with 2 tablespoons salt. Rub the mixture into the carpet with a clean cloth. Allow to dry, then vacuum up the remaining. For tougher stains, add 2 tablespoons Borax to the mixture.
6. Remove Wax and Furniture Polish Build Up – Mix 1/2 cup vinegar with 1 cup water and wipe down wood furniture to remove waxy residue from dusting agents and built up furniture polish.
7. Toilet Cleaner – Pour 2 cups vinegar into your toilet and allow to soak overnight before flushing. Doing this weekly will help disinfect the toilet and keep away water rings that may appear.
8. Stops Static Cling – Put a 1/2 cup vinegar in with the wash to reduce static cling and prevent lint from sticking to clothes.
9. Bathroom Cleaner – Use vinegar as a multi-purpose cleaner in the bathroom for the tub, toilet, sink, floors, and more. Mix in a 1:1 solution (1 cup vinegar, 1 cup water) in a spray bottle. Then spray surfaces and wipe down with a damp cloth. Let sit for a minute or two for an extra disinfecting effect.
10. Remove Coffee and Tea Stains – Brighten your coffee and tea mugs by cleaning them with equal parts vinegar and baking soda or salt. Gently scrub, then rinse.
11. Make Old Socks Bright Again – Wash your whites with 1/2 cup vinegar to brighten and whiten.
12. Weed Killer – Kill unwanted weeds on the patio, driveway, or garden by spraying with vinegar. It works best if you do it on a sunny day when there’s still plenty of daylight left for the vinegar to absorb into the weed. Be aware that vinegar is a non-selective vegetation killer, so don’t spray it on or near plants that you want, as it will get rid of those too.
13. Make Manicures Last Longer – Before applying nail polish to your nails, soak a cotton ball in vinegar, and wipe down each nail. This will provide a nice, clean, grease-free surface for the nail polish to stick to and prevent peeling and chips.
14. Clean the Litter Box – If your cat’s litter box has an odor that won’t go away, neutralize it with vinegar. Clean out the litter box, then fill the bottom with about 1-inch of vinegar. Fill the rest with hot water and allow to soak. Rinse and wash with gentle soap, refill with litter, and replace for a fresh scent-free litter box.
15. Keep Car Windows Free from Frost – To save yourself time during the cold months from scraping frost off the windows, mix together 1 cup vinegar with 1/3 cup water and wipe or spray the car windows to prevent frost.
16. Meat Tenderizer – To tenderize meat, including steaks and roasts, add a tablespoon of vinegar to marinade, refrigerate, and allow to soak overnight.
17. All Purpose Cleaner – Mix together 1 cup vinegar and 1 cup of water to use as an all-purpose cleaner in every room of the house. Vinegar cuts grease, eliminates odors, and disinfects, making it the optimal all-purpose cleaning solution.
18. Fruit Cleaner – You can more fully remove pesticides and bacteria from fresh produce by adding a tablespoon or two of vinegar to the water when washing. Rinse and pat dry when done.
19. Cures Yeast – From yeast diaper rashes to athlete’s foot, vinegar is a powerful anti-fungal. Apply vinegar to a cotton ball and rub over the affected area. Allow to fully dry.
20. Brighten Your Hair – Rinse your hair with vinegar to remove any soap or product build up and leave it feeling soft and shiny.
21. Freshen Fabrics – Use it to remove odor from curtains, couches, chairs, decorative pillows and more. Mix 1 cup vinegar with 1 cup of water in a spray bottle. Spray over intended area and allow to air dry for full odor removal.
22. Clean the Dishwasher – Reduce food and odor build up by filling your empty dishwasher with 1 cup vinegar once per month and letting it run a full cycle.
23. Removes Crayon Markings – If you have little artists making masterpieces on your walls, you can easily remove the crayon markings by scrubbing it with a toothbrush dipped in vinegar.
24. Clean the Coffee Pot – Keep your coffee maker fresh, by pouring in a cup of vinegar once per month and letting it run a full cycle. Run an additional cycle, if you wish to make sure all the vinegar is cleared out. You can also remove build up in the carafe by wiping it down with vinegar.
25. Clean the Shower Head – Clean your shower head and restore water pressure by soaking it in 4 cups hot water and 1/2 cup vinegar.
26. Unclog Drains – To unclog drains more naturally, pour 1 cup baking soda down the drain, followed by 1 cup vinegar. Allow to bubble and foam. Then pour a pot of boiling water down the drain to clear the pipes.
27. Get Rid of Dandruff – Keep dandruff away by pouring 1 cup apple cider vinegar over your scalp weekly and allowing it to sit for 15 minutes before rinsing.
28. Remove Water Marks from Wood – If someone forgot to use a coaster and ended up leaving a ring on your wood table, you can use vinegar to make it less noticeable. Mix together 1 tablespoon olive oil and 1 tablespoon vinegar, and rub the mixture into the furniture with a soft cloth, rubbing in the same direction as the wood grain. Use a separate, clean soft cloth to wipe up any remaining mixture.
29. Soften Calluses – To remove calluses and soften your hands or feet, soak them in 2 cups warm water and 1 cup vinegar for 20 minutes daily. This will remove dead skin and leave you feeling soft and smooth.
30. Clean the Microwave – If your microwave is starting to smell a bit funky, fill a microwave safe bowl with 1/2 cup vinegar and 1/2 cup hot water. Microwave on high for 5 minutes, then wipe down the microwave when it’s done. The steam will loosen any stuck-on parts, and the vinegar will disinfect and fight the grease.
31. Deodorize the Kitchen Drain – To keep your kitchen draining fresh, pour 1 cup of vinegar down the drain every week and allow to sit for 30 minutes before using or rinsing.
32. Clean and Disinfect Cutting Boards – Since vinegar works as a disinfectant, wiping cutting boards down with vinegar after use is a great way to keep them hygienic and fresh.
33. Keep Ants Away – Cleaning the counters and cabinets is known to temporarily keep ants away. Wipe down with vinegar frequently to keep the ants at bay.
34. Clean Stainless Steel – Wipe down stainless steel appliances or counters with vinegar and a soft cloth for a streak-free clean.
35. Keep Flowers Fresh Longer – Add 2 tablespoons sugar and 2 tablespoons vinegar to 4 cups (1 quart) water to keep flowers looking fresh for longer. Be sure to change water and trim stems every 5-6 days.
36. Keep Ticks and Fleas Off of Pets – Add 1/8 teaspoon vinegar to 1 cup of your pet’s water to keep pests like fleas and ticks away from your animal.
37. Polish Furniture – Mix together 1/4 vinegar and 1/4 cup olive oil and apply lightly to wood furniture with a soft cloth.
38. Remove Bumper Stickers – To remove unwanted bumper stickers, saturate the edges of the sticker with undiluted vinegar and allow to sit for 10-15 minutes. Then use an old credit card or gift card to scrape it off. If any glue remains, you can scrub it off with a rag soaked in vinegar.
39. Paint Brush Softener – Soak paintbrushes in vinegar to remove paint build up and make them soft again. (Also works for make-up brushes!) Or for super dirty brushes, add enough vinegar in a pot to cover the brush. Allow to soak for at least an hour. Then bring the vinegar to a simmer. Rinse and dry off the brushes when finished.
40. Cook Better Fish – Soak fish in vinegar before cooking for sweeter, more tender, and flakier fish.
41. Boil Eggs Effectively – Don’t you hate when your eggs crack and you end up making poached eggs instead of hard boiled? Add a teaspoon of vinegar into the boiling water to keep egg whites from coming out of eggs, even if they crack.
42. Keep Potatoes White – To keep peeled potatoes white, store them in water mixed with 1-3 teaspoons of vinegar in the refrigerator.
43. Freshen Your Lunchbox – To get rid of that stale smell that often frequents the lunchbox, wipe down the inside with vinegar.
44. Make Fluffier Rice – Add a teaspoon of vinegar to boiling water before adding rice for rice that is fluffier and less sticky.
45. Relieve Sunburns – Apply vinegar to a washcloth and gently rub over sunburn to help it heal faster and reduce pain.
46. Relieve Itching – Make a paste with vinegar and baking soda and apply mixture over the itchy area to relieve itching.
47. Remove Warts – To remove warts, soak the affected area in vinegar for 20 minutes daily until the wart comes off.
48. Remove Skunk Odor – If your pet gets sprayed by a skunk, you can remove the odor by adding 1 cup vinegar into the bath water to wash.
49. Remove Soap Residue from Laundry – Towels not as absorbent as they used to be? Clothes not so soft? Add 1/2 cup vinegar into the normal wash to remove the excess soap build up that’s causing it.
50. Freshen Vegetables – Perk up slightly wilted vegetables by soaking them in 2 cups cold water mixed with 2 tablespoons vinegar.
51. Jewelry Cleaner – Brighten and clean gold jewelry by scrubbing with a soft toothbrush and vinegar. Rinse and dry when finished.
52. Make a Buttermilk Substitute – When a recipe calls for buttermilk but you don’t have any on hand, you can make a simple buttermilk substitute by mixing milk and vinegar. Get the full tutorial here.
Did I get them all? What’s your favorite household use for vinegar?
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