Uses for Vinegar

by Rae Osenbaugh


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I found this list of uses for vinegar on one of the discussion lists I participate in....you may recognize some of them, and others may be new to you (there were a few new ones for me!). So, break out those gallons of vinegar! (thanks for the ideas to Sarah in KY!)

  1. Kill grass on walks and driveways.

  2. Kill weeds. Spray full strength on growth until plants have starved.

  3. Increase soil acidity. In hard water: one gallon of tap water for watering rhododendrums, gardenias, or azaleas.

  4. Deter ants. Spray vinegar around doors, appliances, and along other areas where ants are known.
    • Polish car chrome. Apply full strength.

    • Remove skunk odor from a dog. Rub fur with full strength vinegar; rinse.

    • Keep cats away. Sprinkle vinegar on areas you don't want the cat walking, sleeping, or scratching on.

    • Keep dogs from scratching his ears. Use a clean, soft cloth dipped in diluted vinegar.

    • Keep chickens from pecking each other. Put a little in their drinking water.

    • Tenderize meat. Soak in vinegar over night.

    • Freshen vegetables. Soak wilted vegetables in 2 cups of water and a tablespoon of vinegar.

    • Boil better eggs. Add 2 tablespoons to water before boiling eggs. Keeps them from cracking.

    • Soothe a bee or jellyfish sting. Dot the irritation with vinegar and relieve itching.

    • Relieve sunburn. Lightly rub white vinegar; you may have to reapply.

    • Condition hair. Add a tablespoon of vinegar to dissolve sticky residue left by shampoo.

    • Relieve dry and itchy skin. Add 2 tablespoons to bath water.

    • Fight dandruff. After shampooing, rinse with vinegar and 2 cups of warm water.

    • Soothe a sore throat. Put a teaspoon of vinegar in a glass of water. Gargle and then swallow.

    • Treat sinus infections and chest colds. Add 1/4 cup or more vinegar to the vaporizer.

    • Feel good. A teaspoon of apple cider vinegar in a glass of water, with a bit of honey added for flavor, will take the edge off your appetite and give you an overall healthy feeling.

    • Deodorize the kitchen drain. Pour a cup down the drain once a week. Let stand 30 minutes and then flush with cold water.

    • Eliminate onion odor. Rub on your fingers before and after slicing.

    • Clean and disinfect wood cutting boards. Wipe with full strength vinegar.

    • Remove fruit stains from hands. Rub with vinegar.

    • Cut grease and odor on dishes. Add a tablespoon of vinegar to hot soapy water.

    • Clean a teapot. Boil a mixture of water and vinegar in the teapot. Wipe away the grime.

    • Freshen a lunchbox. Soak a piece of bread in vinegar and let it sit in the lunchbox over night.

    • Clean the refrigerator. Wash with a solution of equal parts water and vinegar.

    • Unclog a drain. Pour a handful of baking soda down the drain and add 1/2 cup of vinegar. Rinse with hot water.

    • Clean and deodorize the garbage disposal. Make vinegar ice cubes and feed them down the disposal. After grinding, run cold water through 31 Clean and deodorize jars. Rinse mayonnaise, peanut butter, and mustard jars with vinegar when empty.

    • Clean the dishwasher. Run a cup of vinegar through the whole cycle once a month to reduce soap build up on the inner mechanisms and on glassware.

    • Clean stainless steel. Wipe with a vinegar dampened cloth.

    • Clean china and fine glassware. Add a cup of vinegar to a sink of warm water. Gently dip the glass or china in the solution and let dry.

    • Get stains out of pots. Fill pot with a solution of 3 tablespoons of vinegar to a pint of water. Boil until stain loosens and can be washed away.

    • Clean the microwave. Boil a solution of 1/4 cup of vinegar and 1 cup of water in the microwave. Will loosen splattered on food and deodorize.

    • Dissolve rust from bolts and other metals. Soak in full strength vinegar.

    • Get rid of cooking smells. Let simmer a small pot of vinegar and water solution.

    • Unclog steam iron. Pour equal amounts of vinegar and water into the iron's water chamber. Turn to steam and leave the iron on for 5 minutes in an upright position. Then unplug and allow to cool. Any loose particles should come out when you empty the water.

    • Clean a scorched iron plate. Heat equal parts vinegar and salt in a small pan. Rub solution on the cooled iron surface to remove dark or burned stains.

    • Get rid of lint in clothes. Add 1/2 cup of vinegar to the rinse cycle.

    • Keep colors from running. Immerse clothes in full strength vinegar before washing.

    • Freshen up the washing machine. Periodically, pour a cup of vinegar in the machine and let in run through a regular cycle (no clothes added). Will dissolve soap residue.

    • Brighten fabric colors. Add a 1/2 cup vinegar to the rinse cycle.

    • Take grease off suede. Dip a toothbrush in vinegar and gently brush over grease spot.

    • Remove tough stains. Gently rub on fruit, jam, mustard, coffee, tea. Then wash as usual.

    • Get smoke smell out of clothes. Add a cup of vinegar to a bath tub of hot water. Hang clothes above the steam.

    • Remove decals. Brush with a couple coats of vinegar. Allow to soak in. Wash off.

    • Clean eyeglasses. Wipe each lens with a drop of vinegar.

    • Freshen cut flowers. Add 2 tablespoons vinegar and 1 teaspoon sugar for each quart of water.

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