Using vinegar is a DIY-er’s best friend when it comes to home cleaning, but the smell can be a pungent one. Granted, part of the benefit of using vinegar as a cleaning solution is that it’s a great deodoriser, too — your room will smell strongly like vinegar for a while, but give it a few hours and, like magic, the vinegar smell will be gone along with whatever bad smells came before it.
If you want to lessen the harshness of the vinegar smell though — whether because it makes you gag, or you’d just like a better scent while you clean — adding citrus is a refreshing way to get your home clean with a nice smell, and for a fraction of the cost of most cleaning solutions from the store. The best part is that it takes little effort on your part.
We’ve talked about how leaving out a bowl of vinegar can deodorise a room, but what if there’s a smell that’s taken over your entire house? Simmering that vinegar on the stove can maximise its reach and odor-eating power.Read more
All you need to make your own cleaner is a few leftover citrus peels from oranges (or clementines), distilled white vinegar, and a little water. Simply fill up an airtight container with the peels, cover them with white vinegar, and wait two weeks. After that, you can strain out the peels, dilute the mixture with water, and dump it into a spray bottle. Use it as an all-purpose cleaner for grease, grime, dirt — basically anything in the kitchen or bathroom except fancy surfaces like marble or granite. Here’s a list of things you should not use vinegar on, but otherwise, have a ball. It takes hardly any work, and it’s a heck of a lot cheaper than buying a cleaner at the store.
This story was originally published in March 2013 and was updated on February 24, 2021 with more information and to meet Lifehacker style guidelines.