Unfuck Your Habitat

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Posts tagged "vinegar"


Things that vinegar will clean: all the hard water stains on your glasses.

I got distracted while practicing the “use waiting time” challenge because all of my glassware had gotten hella grody from my bad dishwasher and from my tendency to reuse water glasses over and over again. Example before and after glass is posed unnaturally on a black blanket to show the difference.

Vinegar is magic.

Asker summerbirds Asks:
Hi I was also wondering what type of vinegar to use for cleaning?
unfuckyourhabitat unfuckyourhabitat Said:

Plain white vinegar.

(Store brand is fine.)

I don't know if this counts as a "stain question" (so ignore me if it does) but here goes: I have a shower with a "pebbled" plastic floor. It's really hard to clean because my magic eraser just shreds on the "pebbles" It gets all grungy in the crevices really fast, and it gets that pinky-stuff on the sides. Is there a better way to clean this surface? Also, how do you get the shower door tracks clean when the doors overlap and you can't get to the middle part?
unfuckyourhabitat unfuckyourhabitat Said:

While the shower is still damp, sprinkle it liberally with a powdered cleaner (Comet if you don’t mind commercial cleaners; baking soda if you prefer that) and let it sit for a few minutes. Then use a medium to stiff-bristled scrub brush and scrub all of the surfaces and then rinse. For the door tracks, pour the liquid cleaner of your choice into them, let it work its way into the place you can’t reach, and then flush it out with water (most tracks should empty into the tub itself. If not, just wipe up the liquid with a rag or sponge).

"Pink mold" (which is actually caused by bacteria and often found in bathrooms), and is easily wiped away with any kind of disinfecting cleaner, including vinegar or a 1:10 bleach solution, and can be prevented by rinsing out soap residue and wiping down the shower and increasing ventilation so that it doesn’t stay damp.

Asker lrmaurer Asks:
I've been reading in the archives a lot about using vinegar to clean. I want to start using this method to clean my apartment, but I am unsure, honestly, how to go about using vinegar to clean all my shit. If you have one of those giant bottles from Costco, should I transfer some of it to a spray bottle? Full strength or diluted? Diluted in what ratio? After that can I use it like regular cleaning products and spray it all over my surfaces and wipe down? Thanks for your time!
unfuckyourhabitat unfuckyourhabitat Said:

A spray bottle will definitely make it easier to use. I don’t dilute vinegar, since white vinegar sold commercially is already diluted to a safe ratio. And you can use it to clean pretty much anything (check the vinegar tag; vinegar is infinitely useful). I tend to chuck all of my citrus rinds in my vinegar bottle; it makes things smell more like fruit and less like pickles, plus the small amount of acid from the citrus doesn’t hurt with cleaning things.

Asker kimbucktoo Asks:
Any advice for cleaning the oven? Stuff gets so caked on that the smoke detector goes off every time I open the door. I am not a huge fan of oven cleaners so something non-chemically would be ideal. Thanks!
unfuckyourhabitat unfuckyourhabitat Said:

Make a paste of baking soda and water (although they’re both “chemicals” — sodium bicarbonate and good ol’ H20) and let it sit for a good hour or so on the baked-on stuff. Give it a good scrubbing with a medium-stiff bristled scrub brush or a plastic scraper (make sure you’re not damaging the finish of your oven’s interior), and then wipe out all of the crud with a damp rag or sponge. You can also use vinegar (acetic acid) to wipe down any surfaces that interact with food.

To prevent future spills, try putting a baking sheet under whatever you’re cooking so that spills are easily contained. Don’t be tempted to line your oven floor with foil, since this can interfere with even heating and cause scorching and burns.

You made a post about the uses of vinegar a while back, but I didn't see this on there so I thought I'd ask. Can vinegar be used to wash mirrors? I don't have a glass cleaner to hand and I'm on a limited budget so I'd like to avoid having to buy any.
unfuckyourhabitat unfuckyourhabitat Said:

Yup! A lot of people will say to use newspaper, but I hate ink on my hands, so I just use a paper towel or rag and vinegar and then follow with a dry rag/towel, and the mirrors are sparkly and not streaky.

ETA: Yes, coffee filters. I neglected to mention them because I don’t ever have them on hand and I’m not a fan of buying stuff for one narrow purpose like washing windows. Thank you to the ten zillion of you who corrected me.

Asker margaret Asks:
What is the benefit of putting toilet bowl cleaner in your toilet at night as part of UFY Morning
unfuckyourhabitat unfuckyourhabitat Said:

So that your toilet bowl is cleaner.

Letting a small amount of cleaner (I use vinegar, so everyone just dial it back with the lectures) work overnight helps to remove and prevent bowl build-up and stains with a minimum of effort on your part. If you’re feeling industrious, give the bowl a quick scrub with your toilet brush in the morning.

Asker otterys Asks:
i just bought a quart of white vinegar for the purpose of unfucking my microwave. what are some other good uses for it?
unfuckyourhabitat unfuckyourhabitat Said:

Oh, man, you are going to be sorry you asked this. Vinegar is pretty much good for everything. I could clean an entire house with just vinegar and a rag.

Some uses:

  • Drain volcano! (Pour baking soda down drain. Pour vinegar over it. Watch magic happen.)
  • Add a cup to your laundry to get rid of musty odors and fabric softener build-up, especially on towels.
  • Microwave a bowl of vinegar and water to make cleaning the inside of your microwave a zillion times easier.
  • Run your dishwasher empty with a cup of vinegar, face up, to get rid of stains, smells, and mildew.
  • Take the sting out of sunburn. No, seriously.
  • Clean your fridge, especially the cruddy rubber seals.
  • Boil a pan of vinegar and citrus on the stove to get rid of lingering stink.
  • Kill weeds. (Will also kill plants that are not weeds, so use carefully.)
  • Cleaning mineral deposits out of coffee pots, tea kettles, and steam irons
  • Cleaning the stovetop
  • Dissolve mineral deposits from showerhead and faucets
  • Prevent and remove bathroom mildew
  • Fume-free oven cleaner
  • Get set-in pet smells out of bedding
  • A rinse for hair to remove product buildup

There are about a million more uses, but those are some of the more common ones.


I’ve seen the idea of using white distilled vinegar as a fabric softener bandied about, particularly by #unfuckyourhabitat , but not so much on how it works (like, quantities, how/when it goes in the machine, and so forth), and things I’m finding on google are contradictory. Can anyone tell me how it works?

Use between 1/2 and 1 cup, depending on the size of the load. My default is 1 cup. If you have a dispenser for fabric softener in your washing machine, put it in there. If not, add it to the rinse cycle. It will hep to remove residue from other fabric softeners, so it’s a good solution for towels, since fabric softener can interfere with absorbency.

If you’re using vinegar to de-funk musty or stinky clothes, you can just add it in (same quantities) with the detergent, or if you have a bleach dispenser that you don’t use for bleach (don’t mix bleach and vinegar), put it in that.

Asker shaideer Asks:
Is there a particular kind of vinegar you suggest using for drain volcanoes/other forms of cleaning? I'm not a fan of working with most cleaning products as they smell awful and are just nasty for the environment and everything else but I'm worried that if I use the wrong kind of vinegar that it might leave a visible residue behind or something! I looked but I couldn't find anything around UfYH about it, sorry if it's something you've already answered. Thank you for your time!
unfuckyourhabitat unfuckyourhabitat Said:

Plain white vinegar. I know it’s harder to find in places like the UK, but it’s the best for cleaning.

(I don’t usually buy the name brand, but this is just for an example.)

Asker slepaulica Asks:
my washing machine has mildew in it and clothes come out smelling like mould. what should i do?
unfuckyourhabitat unfuckyourhabitat Said:

Run an empty load with hot water and use a cup of vinegar instead of detergent. Make sure you clean out the detergent cup and around any seals or gaskets. Once the cycle has run, wipe out the inside of the machine with a water/vinegar mix, and let it air dry with the door/lid open. Vinegar’s safe for clothes, so you don’t need to worry about rinsing or re-cleaning it before your next load of laundry.

If you try all that and it doesn’t work, repeat using half a cup of bleach instead. As always, I think bleach is generally overused and underdiluted, so save this only for if the vinegar doesn’t work. As bleach will discolor your clothes, either run another empty load or one with whites when you’re done.

a glass bottle of cold brew coffee got too cold and exploded in my refrigerator. this was at least 2 months ago. the coffee is now very attached to the surface. i tried a clorox wipe and that did nothing. what will get this up?
unfuckyourhabitat unfuckyourhabitat Said:

Run your tap water as hot as you can get it, or heat some water up, but not to the point of boiling. Fill a decent-sized bowl. Wear some gloves. Using a rag or sponge, and repeatedly dipping it into the bowl of hot water, wipe up the residue. If needed, let the rag or sponge sit on part of the stain until it cools (which doesn’t take very long, hence the repeated dipping), which should loosen it up a bit. Once you’ve loosened and wiped up the bulk of the mess, wipe it down with some diluted vinegar (food-safe!) to de-stickify it, then give one more wipe with a clean sponge or cloth.

Asker btmsdolls Asks:
i saw a tip tonight saying you can cut up a magic eraser and toss a piece into your toilet overnight to soak off a toilet ring. do you know if that's safe for the septic?
unfuckyourhabitat unfuckyourhabitat Said:

Wisdom from my septic guy: the toilet is not a trash can. Nothing but biological matter and toilet paper should get flushed. Ever.

That said, I don’t really know how this would work. Magic Erasers are melamine foam, which act, essentially, as micro-grit sandpaper to buff away stains. I would think you’d need actual physical contact between the Magic Eraser and the ring for anything to happen. Melamine foam, while it does disintegrate, doesn’t dissolve into anything that would clean a toilet ring.

My septic guy (no, seriously, it’s a thing) is totally OK with white vinegar going into the septic system, so that’s usually what I use to clean my toilet bowl.


Finally conquered my fears and cleaned the stove… In 5 minutes.
Vinegar power!

(via beckyrigs-deactivated20140102)

Hi, I'm disabled (have lupus which causes bad arthritis) and I desperately need to clean my tub & shower. Sitting and scrubbing is hard for me to do, and I was wondering if there's anything I could use that would get mold and old soap out without the need for intense scrubbing. Thanks!
unfuckyourhabitat unfuckyourhabitat Said:

Vinegar spray! Just spray the surface and let it sit as long as you can, then rinse. For stubborn areas, try a paste of Comet or Barkeepers Friend, let it sit, and then rinse. Repeating the vinegar spray frequently should let you avoid scrubbing.