The Professional Choice

A companion overview to the popular "Ask Mr. Handyman" radio program airing on Christian Talk Radio, KCRO 660AM Saturdays @ 9:30AM.

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

"Green" Uses for Vinegar

Some people are earth friendly in almost everything they do. Some of us are just learning to be. Here is a less harmful way (environmentally) to accomplish tasks around the home without chemicals.

Soap scum on shower walls: Spray on vinegar, scrub and rinse.

Hard-water rings in the toilet: Turn off the supply valve to the toilet then flush it to lower the water level. Pour vinegar on the ring, sprinkle in borax and scrub a green scrubby.

Shower head lime/calcium deposit: Pour vinegar into a plastic bag, tape to the shower head and leave overnight. Brush the shower head to remove remaining deposits. You can remove the shower head and soak it in a tupperware bowl. You will need to apply teflon tape when re-installing it.

Drain Cleaner: Remove the stopper, pour 1 cup baking soda down the drain, then pour in 1 cup of vinegar; the mixture will foam, clean and deodorize. Use whenever needed to unclog the drain or when the drain starts to smell badly.

Mildew in the tub/shower area: Use full strength, scrub with a green scrubbie to remove mold and mildew. Evaluate the caulking and re-caulk if needed. Inspect tile grout. Repair if needed to prevent future water damage.

Fabric Softener: Fill dispenser with 1/4 cup white vinegar to soften laundry without leaving odors.

Cleaning vinyl floors: Add 1/4 cup vinegar to 1 gallon hot water for spotless floors.

Cleaning windows: Mix 50 percent white vinegar with 50 percent water in a spray bottle. Spray glass surfaces and wipe dry.

Neutralize pet odors: Mix 1 part white vinegar to 3 parts water. Pour on stained areas and blot; never rub to remove stains and odors.

Greasy dishes: Mix 2 tablespoons white vinegar to liquid dish soap to boost its cleaning power.

Coffee Pot: Add 1/2 cup vinegar to the full level for the coffee pot and run it through. Be sure to run another of just water to rinse.