Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Miracle Vinegar

Killing time while the client folks are in meetings...

BoingBoing has an intersting post about all the uses of vinegar. All kinds of things... though some I have issues with. (I added some comments in Bold)

It is a mild acid and has a bunch of valid uses around the house. I highly recommend the Bragg brand organic apple cider vinegar which in addition to being very nice as a food vinegar it also comes with the "mother". Some of the recommendations suggest mixing the vinegar with baking soda which makes me wonder since acetic acid + sodium bicarbonate = sodium acetate (a salt) and carbonic acid (a very weak acid which decomposes to water and CO2). The one below about using vinegar and baking soda to clean copper is a good example since you should use vinegar and salt.

One thing I use vinegar for is cleaning fruit and vegetables. In a spray bottle mix one part vinegar to two parts water. Use this instead of those expensive things you see in the store for cleaning veggies. It is cheap and has been shown to be more effective in lab tests. Just make up a batch and keep it handy to remove surface bacteria before you consume raw food. Rinse the food in cool water after giving it a good spray.

Here are a couple of sites that also provide some good uses for vinegar.


Here are some of the uses posted on BoingBoing .

Make creamy scrambled eggs: as eggs thicken when scrambling, add a tablespoon of vinegar for every two eggs. (Comment: That is a lot of vinegar and I think you might want to sneak up on this one by starting with a teaspoon for 4 eggs.)

Add a tsp. of vinegar and sugar to correct a too-salty taste (in any recipe).

Pour a dash of white vinegar on a cloth and lay it over a burn, including sunburn.

Try vinegar ice cubes to clean and deodorize a garbage disposal.

Pour a cup of vinegar into the dishwasher and run the empty machine through the whole cycle to get rid of soap buildup and odors.

Use a paste of vinegar and baking soda to clean tarnished brass, copper, and pewter, or the scorch marks on the bottom of an iron. (Comment: This must be a misprint as you should use vinegar and salt)

Renew sponges, loofahs, dingy white socks, and dish rags by letting them soak overnight in dilute vinegar.

Remove grease and grime from fan blades, oven interiors, tops of refrigerators, etc.

Pour 1/2 cup baking soda and 1 cup vinegar into a sandwich-sized or quart-sized plastic bag and tying over a scummy shower-head for an hour. (Comment: Just use the vinegar alone. Mixing it with baking soda neutralizes the acidity.)

Clean toilet bowl rings by turning off the input spigot, removing water from the bowl, and laying vinegar-soaked paper towels on the ring for an hour or more. (Comment: Chlorine bleach is more effective)

Stretch any commercial window cleaner by combining it with 1/3 water and 1/3 vinegar.

Decrease static or dust accumulation of plastic or vinyl surfaces by wiping them down with vinegar and water.

Use vinegar on mildewed garments that cannot take bleach.

Wash new clothes with 1/2 cup white vinegar to eliminate manufacturing chemicals.

Remove odor and perspiration or deodorant stains by spraying vinegar on underarm or collar areas.

Get salt stains off shoes with a dilute vinegar wipe. (Comment: Water alone is better at dissolving the salt.)

Stop itching from insect stings or poison ivy by dabbing or spraying with vinegar. (Comment: household ammonia is more effective at cooling stings.)

Pour vinegar wherever you don't want ants to congregate.

Tighten the cane in a sagging chair by sponging it with a heated solution of 50/50 vinegar and water.

Add vinegar to a pet's drinking water to discourage fleas and mange.


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