How to Clean with Vinegar and Avoid Costly Cleaning Products!

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When I was pregnant for the first time, I could not stand the strong odor of cleaning products. After researching alternatives to store bought cleaning products, I learned how to clean with vinegar. I started using a vinegar solution to clean just about everything in my home at that time!

Yes, vinegar does have an odor itself, but it is nothing compared to the strong smell of some store bought cleaners. Even after I had my son, I continued to use vinegar. I feel better about using it around my kids, then having them inhale the fumes from cleaning products.

Vinegar is relatively inexpensive and most stores carry a store brand version that will work just fine.

Vinegar and Water Cleaning Solution

  • 3 parts distilled water
  • 1 part vinegar
  • squirt bottle

Fill squirt bottle 3/4 full with distilled water (you can just use a water bottle) and 1/4 part vinegar to the squirt bottle. Shake together and store with cleaning supplies.

  1. Glass and Mirror Cleaner

You can clean windows and mirrors with this vinegar solution. Just spray the vinegar and water solution on the glass or mirror and wipe clean. To keep the glass from streaking, wipe the entire mirror or window horizontally and vertically.

Normally, I use a microfiber cloth to clean my windows, but if I’m in a pinch, I’ll use my vinegar and water solution.

I haven’t bought glass cleaner in years! 

2. All-Purpose Cleaner

Do you go through wet wipes or Clorox wipes faster than your kids can make a mess?! If so, it is time for you to save some money by using a homemade all-purpose cleaner! The same one part vinegar and three parts water solution for cleaning glass can also be used as an all-purpose cleaner.

Basically, anything that you use wet wipes for can also be cleaned with this  solution. I use this vinegar solution to wipe down my kitchen and bathroom counters and sinks, outside of the toilets, the refrigerator shelves and drawers, cabinet shelves, car seats, anything with a sticky mess, ect.

Instead of using disposable wipes or paper towels, I have some cheap white rags that I use for cleaning up with the vinegar and water all-purpose cleaner. When I am done using the rags, I throw them in the wash, and they are ready to be used again!

If you’d rather use an all-purpose cleaner with a different odor, here is another homemade all-purpose cleaner made out of water and castile soap.

White rags are great for cleaning because you can bleach them!

3. Stainless Steel

This solution also works well on finger prints that are often left on stainless steel appliances. For my evening routine, I spray down the refrigerator, stove, and microwave with the vinegar and water solution and wipe the appliances with a clean rag.

It never leaves streaks and gets all of the fingerprints and other yuck cleaned up. This is so much cheaper than buying specific stainless steel cleaning solutions.

Keep you kitchen counter clear even in a small kitchen.

4. Dishwasher

When we moved into our home, it was the first time I had ever had a dishwasher of my very own. I was so excited to have one, except that my dishes kept coming out cloudy.

If you have the same problem, add about 1/2 to 1 cup of vinegar to the bottom of your dishwasher before running the cleaning cycle.

It will cut up the salt deposit that is causing the white film on your dishes. I wrote a more extensive post about getting rid of the white film on dishes that you might want to check out.

Add vinegar to bottom of dishwasher

5. Washing Machine

Your washing machine cleans your clothes, but it also needs cleaned out in order to function effectively. You can do a quick clean out of your washing machine by adding a cup of vinegar to an empty washing machine. Run your washing machine on the biggest and hottest levels.

6. Coffee Pot

It is a good idea to clean your coffee pot about once a month or every other month.

Simply fill your coffee pot about 1/4 to 1/2 full of vinegar and the rest of the way with water. Then pour into your coffee maker. If your pot has a cleaning cycle run that, otherwise just turn on your pot.

After it has gone through one cycle, dump the hot vinegar and water down your kitchen drain. (This will help clean out your kitchen drain too!) Next, use a clean rag to wipe out the interior and exterior of the pot along with the rest of the coffee maker.

Finally, fill your coffee maker with a full pot of water. Turn on your coffee maker one last time to rid it of any vinegar flavor. Throw out the water and filter. Now you are ready to make a pot of coffee with your clean coffee pot!

Here’s an in depth tutorial with pictures to clean your coffee maker with vinegar.

Overwhelmed at home? Get ahead on the housework with the Free Motivated Homemaker Checklist!

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