Disinfecting with commercial cleaning products might make you feel that your home is more protected and germ-free over stronger products formulated in labs compared to those made in your kitchen. However, the right combination of natural ingredients like vinegar that you probably have at your disposal can surprise you in how well vinegar cleaning solutions can also clean, disinfect, keep your lungs breathing healthier fumes, and save money at the same time.
Though it is true that commercial cleaning products may be somewhat stronger than white vinegar and baking soda to sanitize, vinegar for cleaning also can do an amazing job of disinfecting the home of bacteria, fungi to the polio virus, tuberculosis and common viruses–if not even better especially when in combination with soap and water.
Vinegar has a 5% acidity for disinfecting surfaces that works by dissolving the cell’s structure. The reason it may sanitize better is because of continued rubbing and scrubbing that further breaks the bacteria, fungi and viruses for killing more of the germs potentially in greater numbers than an instant larger first strike cleaning using a commercial cleaning product.
Today, I want to share a few more vinegar DIY cleaning tips. Earlier I gave you my recipe for DIY Multi-Purpose Green Cleaning Spray, here is another one that I found very helpful to avoid inhaling those nasty fumes. Instead of smelling vinegar as you normally would, I have a trick for giving the cleaner a fresh orange, lemon or lime scent for leaving a more pleasant aroma that helps.
What I do before making this orange-scented natural cleaning spray is peel a few oranges or other citruses (you can add more peels if you want) to soak for about a week and a half in the vinegar I’ll be using. This amount of time seems to be enough to scent the vinegar when you’re ready to whip it up for your plastic spritz bottles.
DIY Vinegar Orange-Scented Cleaning Spray
3/4 cup white vinegar
3-1/2 cups of water
11 drops of tea tree oil
peels from two oranges or two lemons or two limes
Add the peels from your oranges, lemons, limes or grapefruits to the vinegar. Keep the mixture in a sealed container and allow it to sit for about a week and a half.
After this wait time, you can add the water and tea tree oil to the treated vinegar.
Pour into your plastic spritz bottles for use.
Vinegar DIY cleaning solutions also come in handy for window cleaning and restoring stainless steel. For window cleaning, just make a mix of half white vinegar to the same amount of water. All you need is another clean plastic spritz bottle and pour equal amounts of each and you’re ready to go.
Vinegar is also handy for cleaning stainless steel. What I do is to dab some vinegar on a soft cloth and wipe down the surface. Once I finish, I take a small dab of olive oil on another soft cloth and rub following the pattern in the grain of the steel. Using less is better because you just want the steel to shine. Too much and it will look dirty.
If a clogged drain is giving you grief, here’s a handy natural way to unclog your problem. Boil up a pot of water to throw down the drain followed by one-half cup of baking soda. Give this a minute or two before depositing one cup of white vinegar along with one cup of hot water as a chaser. As soon as the vinegar and water are poured in, this starts a chemical acid-base reaction in the pipes.
In the past, I never covered the drain once I added the vinegar and water, only relying on the bubbling action of that chemical reaction to break down the clog followed by more boiling water. However, I later found out that this natural DIY drain unclogging recipe works better by plugging up the drain for about five minutes before flushing again with another pot of boiling water.
Commercial cleaning products may be more convenient, but vinegar DIY cleaning solutions are safer, healthier alternatives that you might want to take advantage of.