Do you know about the underground world of vinegar? It’s not just for salad dressing folks. Apparently it can be used to do just about anything — from cleaning counter tops to babysitting your children. Kidding on that last one, please don’t try it. The next time you run out of your favorite cleaning solution, try using vinegar. Here are directions for four useful concoctions:
All-purpose cleaner. Combine in a [recycled & cleaned] spray bottle 2 parts water to 1 part white vinegar and a couple of drops of dishwashing liquid. Use to clean counter tops, stove tops, sink basins, stainless steel, refrigerator doors, etc.
Laundry softener and miracle worker. Add 1 cup of white vinegar to your laundry’s rinse cycle in place of fabric softener or dryer sheets, kill off bacteria (helpful for cloth diapers), brighten whites or set the color of new fabrics.
Weed killer. A few years ago, the USDA confirmed that regular household vinegar, which is a 5% solution, is effective at keeping some of the typical garden weeds at bay. Higher concentrations (10% to 20%) were shown to be more effective at keeping persistent weeds away. Keep in mind that vinegar can kill all plants, so be sure to spray away from your precious flowers and veggies. For more detailed information on using vinegar in the garden, check out this article.
Animal ear cleaning solution. If you’re a dog or cat owner, you know first hand how dirty their ears can get. And, you also know how expensive ear cleaning solutions are at the vet’s office. Here’s an alternative: mix 2 parts white vinegar to 1 part water and apply on a soft cloth (like an old sock) to clean out yucky, smelly ears. This solution should not be used if your pet has an open cut or wound.
Photo by Walsh.