White vinegar warning: The 5 surfaces you should never clean with white vinegar

Cleaning Hack: Expert shows how to clean using vinegar

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Making your own cleaning products can be a cheap and natural alternative to buying chemical solutions, however, you must be careful which surfaces you clean with your homemade solutions. White vinegar, for example, can damage many common household items. Here are five things you should never clean with white vinegar.

For many surfaces in your home, white vinegar is an excellent choice for a homemade cleaning solution, creating streak-free shine.

However, due to the acidity of the vinegar, some surfaces can be damaged by the potency of the vinegar.

When you’re using any new cleaning products – whether they are homemade or bought from the shop – you should test a small area of the surface you are cleaning before going for the whole thing.

This patch test can prevent any damage to your surfaces, but these are six household surfaces you should never clean with white vinegar.

1 – Granite and marble countertops

Acidic vinegar can damage these natural stone surfaces.

A milder cleaner such as washing up liquid and water should leave your counters sparkling clean.

2 – Natural stone floor tiles

If you have a tiled floor of stone in your kitchen or bathroom, it won’t get on well with a white vinegar-based cleaner, or any containing lemon juice either.

You can buy specialist stone cleaners online or from hardware stores, but if you can’t get hold of any use a mild solution made of washing-up liquid and water.

3 – Egg stains

If you drop an egg on the floor, don’t ever use vinegar to try and clean it.

Much like adding vinegar to boiling water in order to help poach an egg, vinegar stiffens up an egg, which will only make it harder to remove.

4 – Iron

Vinegar can damage the internal mechanisms of an iron, so don’t be tempted to use white vinegar to attempt to remove stains from your iron.

5 – Hardwood floors

Acidic cleaners such as vinegar can cause damage to your beautiful hardwood floors.

Vinegar might cause damage to the finish, so instead you should buy a cleaner specially for hardwood floors.

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What should you clean with vinegar?

So there’s just about everything you shouldn’t clean with vinegar, but what household items can you clean with a vinegar solution?

1 – Windows

A vinegar and water solution makes a very effective window cleaner.

2 – Towels

Adding vinegar to your washing machine when you’re giving old towels a wash can give them a refresh, as the vinegar helps lift old detergent that can make old towels feel stiff.


3 – Carpet stains – especially red wine

A vinegar and warm water solution can attack stains in the carpet such as coffee or red wine.

4 – Grease

The acid in vinegar makes it very capable of cutting through grease.

If you have any baking trays with baked-on grease, leaving them to soak in a vinegar and water solution can help.

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