Vinegar has been hailed as the natural all-purpose, multipurpose cleaning agent that cleans just about anything – From kitchen countertops, bathrooms and windows to the insides of washing machine and dishwashers. Vinegar is one of the easily accessible, favorite cleaning ingredients for many reasons. First, it’s natural and non-toxic. Second, it’s incredibly inexpensive. And third, it’s really versatile! You can use it to clean all kinds of things.
But you are forgetting that, however mildly, vinegar is acidic in nature containing acetic acid, which can react with some things. This means you cannot clean some surfaces with vinegar.
Check out which are the things that you shouldn’t clean with vinegar at your home.
Never use vinegar on your touchscreens
Your touchscreens like computer screens, smartphone may get blurry from fingerprints, but that doesn’t mean you can clean them with vinegar. These touchscreens are given a protective coating (oleophobic coating which makes your device resistant to fingerprints). Cleaning with Vinegar could remove this protective coating. Instead buy screen cleaning solution that is made to be used on device screens and use a microfiber cloth or one used to clean eyeglasses.
Never mix vinegar with bleach
Vinegar and bleach are both strong cleaning agents and can remove the hardest of stains and mold very effectively. Since they are both cleaning agents, mixing vinegar with bleach sounds like a great idea, right? Wrong, very wrong. If you do, a toxic chlorine gas is emitted. When mixed with water the gas creates hydrochloric and hypochlorous acids. The gas by itself isn’t good for you, but mix it with water and your clothing will be completely ruined. If that occurs, seek medical attention. Better use these cleaners separately.
Never Clean Your Pearls With Vinegar
Vinegar is known to dissolve pearls. Pearls consist of calcium carbonate like limestone which when cleaned with vinegar, which being acidic can react with chemical and you can say goodbye to your beautiful pearls.
Never Use Vinegar On Marble Or Granite Countertops
As with vinegar dissolving your pearls, your stone surfaces (marble or granite countertops) and ceramic tile floors are porous in nature and can be etch by vinegar’s acidity, leaving a dull or discolored spot behind. Clean your stone surfaces with mild liquid detergent and lukewarm water. This will sufficiently remove the grime and grease deposited in these areas. Or you can use hydrogen peroxide instead of vinegar or any acidic cleaning agents (like lemon juice) to clean your marble surfaces. For regular cleaning, simply dust the granite with a microfiber cloth or wash with water.
Grout is alkaline and if it’s unsealed or need to be resealed due to age, using vinegar to clean will do more harm than good. The vinegar seeps into the spaces for air in the grout and weakens them. Over time the grout will etch or wear away, deteriorating the condition of your grout. If your grout is sealed, you should be okay. A better, natural alternative to clean grout is baking soda. Check your grout yearly to see if it is time to seal the tile again.
Acidic nature of vinegar can dull and damage the finish of hardwood floors. Some homeowners stand by vinegar as cleaning agent for hardwood floors. When you are cleaning hardwood floors with vinegar, dilute the vinegar in an equal amount of water and do a test spot before tackling the entire floor. Sealed hardwood surfaces can be ideally cleaned with soap and water or dry dusted. Opt instead for a hardwood floor cleaner that will enhance and protect the shine and surface of your floor
No Wax Floors
Like with hardwood floors, vinegar’s acidity will take away the shine and sheen here. No wax floors need their own type of cleaner. “No-wax” refers to vinyl surfaces to which a clear acrylic or urethane topcoat has been applied by the manufacturer. In either case, the high-acidity of vinegar can diminish that clear protective coat.
Never Use Vinegar On Egg Stains
If egg happens to get somewhere it shouldn’t, don’t reach for the vinegar! Since eggs have protein enzymes, adding vinegar to egg stains—on clothing or on your car—could cause them to coagulate. This makes it even harder to clean.
Don’t Use It As Grease Remover For Dirty Dishes
White vinegar is a great product to clean and disinfect various kitchen surfaces due to its acidity. But you shouldn’t use it to clean greasy pans, pots and plates. However, Alkaline cleaners like dishwashing liquid, or even ordinary soap are way more effective in removing grease and oil stains from your dishes.
Be Careful What Vinegar You Use For Laundry
If your clothes have stubborn stains from grass, ink, ice cream and blood, you can be tempted to give a vinegar treatment but you are wrong in this case. Once a stain sets into a fabric it will not react to the acidic cleaners. And if you try to wipe off the stain too hard, using vinegar, you might lose the fabric altogether. There are many pre-wash stain removers available in the market, apply one of them to witness the difference.
Never use wine or apple cider vinegar for washing your clothes. These two kinds can color and stain your laundry. If you want to add vinegar to your washing machine use only white distilled vinegar – it bleaches the fabric and removes foul odors.
Don’t Use Vinegar On Aluminum And Iron
Aluminum dishes and cast iron pans shouldn’t be cleaned with vinegar. These metals react with the acid and will be damaged. You can use vinegar for cleaning stainless steel or enameled cast iron.
Here are few more facts about vinegar
Vinegar is acid and baking soda is base. Mixing them isn’t an effective cleaning solution since they neutralize each other. Always use vinegar and baking soda separately.
Vinegar can kill some bacteria, but it’s not a disinfectant. If you want to disinfect a surface where you’ve had, say, raw chicken, you need to use something like bleach.
When preparing DIY cleaners with vinegar, never use metal dish. Instead use glass or ceramic bowl.