10,000 Year Old Remedy – Vinegar
Vinegar can be made by adding oxygen to wine. Or it can be made by adding oxygen to a distilled (and fermented) mixture of corn and sugar (corn liquor). Just about any consumable alcohol can be used to make acetic acid. In each case alcohol is oxidized (exposed to oxygen) and becomes acetic acid. A singe whiff of full-strength acetic acid can burn the tissue in both nostrils in a split second. To make white vinegar one need only mix 5 parts acetic acid to 95 parts water and add a little salt. From corn or grapes to alcohol to acetic acid to vinegar. Or, if you’re like most, you can simply pick up a bottle of white vinegar at your local grocery store.
Vinegar is an acid therefore it is great for cleaning anything alkaline – such as calcium or lime deposits. That said, vinegar has thousands of uses. Here are but a few:
- Discourage a cat from sitting on a certain windowsill or other surface, or from scratching upholstery, by spraying white distilled vinegar on the item. Test first on an unnoticeable area to be sure there won’t be a discoloration.
- Get rid of hard water stains on your car with a rinse made from 3 parts soft water to one part white distilled vinegar.
- To make cleaning the grill easier, spray a solution of half water and half white distilled vinegar on the cooking surface.
- Before painting old concrete, clean with full-strength white distilled vinegar. Let it air dry.
- Clean hardened paint brushes by simmering them in a pot with white distilled vinegar. Soak them first for an hour before bringing the white distilled vinegar to a simmer. Drain and rinse clean.
- To shine chrome sink fixtures that have a lime buildup, use a paste made of 2 tablespoons salt and 1 teaspoon white distilled vinegar.
- Make your own scouring cleanser by combining 1/4 cup baking soda with 1 tablespoon liquid detergent. Add just enough white distilled vinegar to give it a thick but creamy texture.
- Clean counter tops and make them smell sweet again with a cloth soaked in undiluted white distilled vinegar.
- Clean and deodorize a drain by pouring in 1 cup baking soda, then one cup hot white distilled vinegar. Let this sit for 5 minutes or so, and then run hot water down the drain.
- Deodorize the garbage disposal by pouring in 1/2 cup baking soda and 1/2 cup hot white distilled vinegar. Let sit for 5 minutes then run hot water down the disposal.
- Clean the microwave by mixing 1/2 cup white distilled vinegar and 1/2 cup water in a microwave-safe bowl. Bring it to a rolling boil inside the microwave. Baked-on food will be loosened, and odors will disappear. Wipe clean.
- To clean a grease splattered oven door window, saturate it with full-strength white distilled vinegar. Keep the door open for 10 to 15 minutes before wiping with a sponge.
- Remove soap buildup and odors from the dishwasher by pouring a cup of white distilled vinegar inside the empty machine and running it through a whole cycle. Do monthly.
- To prevent good glassware from getting etched by minerals, wash then spray with full-strength white distilled vinegar. Give the glasses a hot water rinse before letting them dry or drying them with a towel.
- For cloudy glassware, soak paper towels or a cloth in full-strength white distilled vinegar and wrap around the inside and outside of the glass. Let sit awhile before rinsing clean.
- Get rid of lime deposits in a tea kettle by adding 1/2 cup white distilled vinegar to the water and letting it sit overnight. If more drastic action is needed, boil full-strength white distilled vinegar in the kettle a few minutes, let cool and rinse with plain water.
- Remove mineral deposits from coffee makers with white distilled vinegar. Fill the water reservoir with 1 cup or more of white distilled vinegar and run it through a whole cycle. Run it once or twice more with plain water to rinse clean. (Check the owners’ manual first.)
- Remove stains from coffee and teacups by scrubbing them gently with equal parts of salt (or baking soda) and white distilled vinegar. Rinse clean.
- Easily clean your mini blinds by wearing pair of white cotton gloves. Dip gloved fingers into a solution of equal parts white vinegar and warm tap water, and run your fingers across both sides of each blind.
- To clean tarnished brass, copper, and pewter, use a paste with equal amounts of white distilled vinegar and table salt.
- Make a metal cleanser by adding enough white distilled vinegar to 2 tablespoons of cream of tartar to make a paste. Rub it on and let it dry on the surface. Wash it off and dry with a soft cloth.
- Polish brass and copper with a mixture of 2 tablespoons of ketchup and 1 tablespoon white distilled vinegar. Rub it on with a clean cloth until dry and shiny.
- Remove dark stains on an aluminum pot by boiling a mixture of 1 cup white distilled vinegar and 1 cup hot water.
- Get rid of fruit flies by setting out a small dish of undiluted white distilled vinegar.
- To remove a label, decal, or price tag, cover with a cloth soaked in white distilled vinegar. Leave the cloth on overnight and the label should slide off.
- Get rid of calcium deposits on faucets by soaking a cloth or paper towel in white distilled vinegar and wrapping the area tightly. Let this sit for a couple of hours or overnight.
- Rid a shower head of lime deposits by tying a plastic bag containing 1/2 to 1/3 cup of white distilled vinegar around it and leaving it there over night.
- Shine colored porcelain sinks by scouring them with undiluted white distilled vinegar.
- Clean grout by letting full-strength white distilled vinegar sit on it for a few minutes and scrubbing it with an old toothbrush.
- Clean shower door tracks by filling them with white distilled vinegar and letting it sit for a few hours. Pour hot water into the tracks and wash and scrub away the scum with a toothbrush.
- Freshen air in the bathroom by spraying into the air a solution of 1 teaspoon baking soda, 1 tablespoon white distilled vinegar, and 1 cup water.
- Shine pennies by soaking them for a couple of hours or overnight in a glass or bowl of undiluted white distilled vinegar. This list seems about two times too long. What about including just half that tips as a tease and inviting readers to our website for the FULL LIST of uses?
Better check your pantry to see if you have enough white vinegar on hand.