Monday, August 16, 2010

Cleaning Naturally With Vinegar: Day 1

To be honest, I was hesitant to start this experiment.  My husband was even more hesitant.  If he even sees the vinegar bottle on the counter, he makes a sour face.  I don't blame him.  Vinegar isn't exactly pleasant in smell, but after finding a great deal at Costco, I knew it was time to see if I was capable of making the switch.  My Costco sells a two-pack of vinegar, each container is 1 gallon, for only $3.48.  That is pretty awesome.  A 24 oz bottle of the most popular kitchen and bathroom cleaners can easily set you back $5.  And to top it off, they market each one separately so that we think we need separate cleaners for each area and task in our home.

Vinegar is a one-stop cleaner.  It can be used on floors, on counters, in sinks to get rid of clogs, in the microwave, the bathtub, to clean grills, for gardening, on the carpet, as a bee sting remedy, to cure hiccups, fight dandruff, and in laundry.  And that's a condensed list!

Go here for a complete list.

I want to use vinegar instead of harsh chemicals, but my goal is to start slowly.  Yesterday, I ran vinegar through our coffee pot, followed by two loads of water.  My coffee pot lost all of it's coffee-tinged stains and I can see through it again.  Yay!
I also cleaned our kitchen counters with it.  I soaked a wash cloth in vinegar and gave them a quick once over.  I was surprised at how clean the counters seemed.   I could not see a difference from when I use a chemical-based cleaner and when I use vinegar.  Then I mopped our kitchen floor using vinegar.  I was super nervous about doing this because it is 90 degrees outside during the day and we do not have an AC.  I imagined our little apartment hot and smelling like vinegar.  Definitely not a pretty thought.  But I went for it anyway.  I mixed one part vinegar with two parts warm water and went to work.  It did smell like vinegar at first, but was nothing a quick spray of febreeze couldn't fix.

It's been about two hours since I did the cleaning and I can't smell any vinegar.  I'm pretty impressed with the results and am a little anxious to see what I can do with it tomorrow.

I'd love to abandon all of the harsh and chemical-ridden cleaners for something natural and safe.  It's a little scary to know that I have a cabinet in my house that contains deadly toxins.  I'd never want little Nate to find his way into that cabinet when I have my back turned.

I'll let you know how the rest of the vinegar experiments go.  So far it's not so bad.

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