Saturday, November 16, 2013

Vinegar is Amazing.

Me + Vinegar = BFF's for life.  I've recently discovered the amazing cleaning powers of vinegar.  Not only is it affordable, it's safe and natural to use around pets and wee ones.  Vinegar (and baking soda) is also a natural deodorizer, which will help take any lingering scents out of fabrics or rugs.  Oh, and it gets the job done.  Let's discuss, shall we?

My kitchen rug is something that I sought long and hard for; after weeks of searching for the perfect rug, I finally stumbled across this one at TJ-Maxx for only $25.  It was perfect pattern 'n hue.

And then one day my darling husband spilled an entire container of oil and vinegar dressing on it.  I tried my hardest to clean up the spill to avoid a stain, but it was too coveted rug was tarnished.

After a few weeks of feeling a rush of sadness and disappointment every time I looked at my once-flawless rug, I decided I needed to try to remove the stain.  Carpet cleaners and other stain-removing products aren't always affordable, and I'm pretty sure I've never found a product that actually does much to alleviate a stain, so I decided to take a different route: Vinegar.  I've heard all of the hoopla about the awesome cleaning powers of vinegar and baking soda, so why not give it a try on my rug?  I'm was sure the stain could get any worse, so it was worth a shot.  Here's what I did, and here are the results:

1. Gather your cleaning supplies.  I used white vinegar, baking soda, and a tooth brush.  That's it, folks.

2. Create a paste by adding a 'smidge of vinegar to a small bowl of baking soda.  The result will be foamy, fizzy goodness. #3rdgradescienceflashback

3. Generously apply the paste to the stain, using the toothbrush to work it in.

4. Allow the paste to dry completely.  I let mine dry for 24 hours.

5. Vacuum the rug to remove all of the dried paste.  This is where I was impressed.  The stain was practically gone!  It's not perfect, but it's definitely an improvement.  I've heard of people attacking a difficult stain more than once to remove it entirely, so I may go back at it one more time.  Check this out:

Since I was so impressed with the results, I decided to tackle another nasty job with some good 'ol fashioned vinegar: My nasty microwave.  Low and behold, vinegar came through again!

Here are some close-ups of my icky microwave before I cleaned it:

Oh hey, filthy microwave
 First of all, I have no shame in admitting how dirty the inside of my microwave was.  It's a microwave - messes happen.  But anyone who has ever cleaned a microwave knows how stubborn that baked-on grime can be.  I'm also not a huge fan of filling the inside of a food-friendly space with nasty chemicals...enter vinegar.  Here's how this trick works:

1. Combine 1 cup of hot water with 1 cup of white vinegar in a microwave-safe measuring cup.

(Prior to adding the cup of vinegar)
2. Place the mixture in the center of the microwave, microwaving it for 8 to 10 minutes (you want it to boil).  I only did 8 minutes and the mixture was boiling.

Apparently I measured slightly less than 2 cups...something I didn't realize until writing this post.
3. CAREFULLY remove the mixture using oven mitts or pot holders.  Chris commented on how the house smelled like "Easter eggs".  It did, but the smell dissipated within half an hour.

4. Using a damp rag, wipe the inside of microwave until it's clean.  I kid you not, this took me less than 5 minutes to do!  I washed the glass plate by hand in the sink, and the gunk came off of that really easily too.  Voila:

So fresh and so clean, clean.

And while I don't have photos of this, I also removed stains from my porcelain kitchen sink by filling the bottom with a couple inches of hot water and vinegar.  I let the mixture sit in the sink for about 15 minutes, then I drained the sink and the stains were gone!  I think this is the beginning of a beautiful friendship between me and vinegar...

So there you have it!  Three cleaning projects made EASY using a safe and cheap product.  As long as you don't mind your house smelling like "Easter eggs" for about 20 minutes, vinegar should work wonders on some of your toughest stains.  Good luck!

1 comment:

  1. Ok I didn't know that vinegar can do this as well, need to share it with oters so that they can also get benefit from it. Thank you for sharing it with us