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10 brilliant ways to use vinegar that you didn’t know about

That bottle of vinegar in the back of your panty has a ton of uses you might not know about. So get ready to pull it out and put it to work. Vinegar contains acetic acid, which is a chemical found in some store-bought cleaners. And it’s the acidic nature of vinegar that makes it so useful in so many different ways. There are many types of vinegar. But white vinegar and apple cider vinegar lend themselves best to many uses. And with a few easy steps, that bottle of vinegar can become much, much more. It can even replace harsh chemical cleaners in some cases. Here are 10 great ways to use vinegar to clean your home.

Vinegar hair rinse

Over time, products can build up forming a residue on your hair that leaves it feeling greasy or heavy. It’s easy to use apple cider vinegar to make your own hair rinse. Use it in the shower to strip your hair of residue and buildup.

Apple cider vinegar (ACV) also helps to make your hair healthier by lowering its PH balance. Mix a couple of tablespoons of an ACV with 8 ounces of purified water in a squeeze bottle and shake. After shampooing and conditioning, pour the mixture over your hair. Make sure to rub it into your scalp. Then let it sit for a few minutes before rinsing it out. For best results, rinse with cold water.

And if you don’t like the smell of vinegar, add a few drops of essential oils like lemon or lavender.

Vinegar fabric softener

This is an effective and natural way to replace liquid fabric softeners and dryer sheets. And it couldn’t be easier. All you need to do is add a cup of white vinegar to your rinse cycle and watch it work. Vinegar in this way kills bacteria and breaks down detergent. It leaves your clothes cleaner and softer. The acid in vinegar also works to keep clothes free of static and lint.

Vinegar stain remover for clothes

Use white vinegar to remove food and other stains from clothing. It’s even effective at cleaning underarm stains that sweat and deodorant leave behind. Spray undiluted vinegar onto the stained area. Rub it in before tossing the garment in the wash. Stubborn stains? Soak the clothing overnight in a solution of three parts vinegar to one part cold water.

Vinegar kitchen appliance cleaner

You can use white vinegar to clean large and small appliances alike.

How to clean your microwave with vinegar

To steam-clean the microwave, fill a bowl with 1/4 cup vinegar and 1 cup water. Place it in the microwave and microwave it for five minutes. Remove the bowl and wipe the microwave clean with a microfiber cloth. The steam should soften any grease or residue enough to wipe clean. But for stubborn messes, dip the cloth in the vinegar mixture and wipe the mess away.

How to clean your coffee machine with vinegar

Clean your coffee maker and keep your morning cup tasting fresh with a vinegar rinse. Fill the pot with equal parts water and white vinegar. Pouring the mixture into the water chamber, the run the machine. Be sure to run clean water through it for one cycle after the vinegar and before brewing your next pot.

How to clean your dishwasher with vinegar

Clean your dishwasher by pouring one cup of white vinegar into the bottom of the machine. Run it through one full cycle without any dishes or detergent in it. Doing this every month or so will remove lime and soap buildup to keep your machine fresh and clean.

Vinegar drain unclogger and deodorizer

Vinegar and baking soda can replace corrosive, expensive drain cleaners and clog busters.

Pour 1/2 cup of baking soda into the drain, then 1 cup of vinegar. Wait for the bubbling and foaming reaction to settle. Then flush the drain by running hot water down it. Wait five minutes, then run cold water down the drain. This process can clear tough clogs and other blockages.

The vinegar and baking soda also eliminates bacteria that cause your drain to stink. So your drain will be both clear and fresh-smelling.

Vinegar scrub for pots and pans

You can use white vinegar to make an effective scrub for your pots and pans. It’s even safe enough to use on copper. To make this scrub, mix equal parts flour and salt. Then add as much white vinegar as you need to create a paste. Work the paste over the pan until clean. Rinse with warm water.

Vinegar-based all-purpose cleaner

You can use white vinegar to make a safe and effective all-purpose cleaner that can replace many of the toxic cleaners you may currently be using. Just mx together water, white vinegar, citrus peels, unscented liquid castile soap, and, optionally, lemon or any other citrus or peppermint essential oil you like. There are several versions of this type of cleaner out there, but I like this one from Wholefully.

 Vinegar stain remover for wood furniture

You can use vinegar to remove the stubborn white rings left by wet glasses on wood tables and other furniture. Vinegar by itself could strip the wood, so mix it with equal parts olive oil, dampen a soft cloth with the mixture and rub it on the stain, making sure to move with the grain of the wood. Wipe it a second time with another clean, soft cloth to get it extra clean and shiny.

Vinegar leather upholstery restorer

If your leather furniture or car seats appear dull or worn, you can use vinegar to restore some of their richness. Just mix equal parts white vinegar and boiled linseed oil in a reusable spray bottle and shake it up. Spray it on to the leather you want to treat and use a soft cloth to rub it in, making sure to apply it evenly over the surface. Wait a few minutes then wipe it clean with another clean, soft cloth.

Non-toxic vinegar weed killer

Replace toxic weed killers than can be harmful to animals with either white or apple cider vinegar. Spray it directly onto the weed, or if you want to make sure it doesn’t get on and kill any plants nearby that you want alive, rub the vinegar directly onto the leaves of the weed. The vinegar does need a few hours on a dry day to work in this way, so be sure to plan accordingly, and, if it does rain or get wet for any reason, you will need to reapply.