Monday, January 20, 2014

Can You Wash Dishes With Plain Vinegar?

I have had that question brewing in my mind for over a year now. I have tried home made dish detergent and store bought, and always had the same results: dishes that came out dirtier than they went in. In 4 years of owning our dishwasher, we have taken it completely apart twice to clean out all the gunk build up which ultimately ends up all over our dishes. It. Is. Disgusting. So, after our last all day affair at cleaning out the dishwasher, I decided we would never load it with soap again. We have a secret ingredient: Vinegar.


That is all. Nothing more. Well, almost nothing more.  I also have 2 young men who have to put a little elbow grease into their dish loading duty. They get by with help from scotch bright pads and this awesome mesh dish cloth from Norwex. Love this thing.

 
We rinse the dishes thoroughly, scrub off the stuck on stuff with this cloth, then load the dishwasher. Add vinegar to the soap holder, shut it and turn it on. That is all. It has been almost a month now and my dishwasher has never looked so clean inside. My dishes have never been so clean and grit free.

 
So, why do we spend a fortune each year on cleaners like Cascade when vinegar has worked all along? I did it because that is what you do. Well, if vinegar can sanitize counters, and elbow grease can get off the stuck on stuff, why can't it do the same with my dishes? Oh, yeah, it can! Did you all know this trick? If so, why didn't you share it with me? The best part is that there is nothing to assemble. No difficult ingredients to procure. Just vinegar. Couldn't be easier. Couldn't be cleaner.

A few tips:
Rinse dishes off right away so it is easy, peasy to rinse before loading.
Pay attention to silverware. Make sure each utensil gets scrubbed before loading.
Use hot water to remove oily residue from dishes before loading.

Learn more about Norwex here. It is a green cleaner's best friend!

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Disclosure of Material Connection: Some of the links in this post are “affiliate links.” This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, I will receive an affiliate commission. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will add value to my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”
 

24 comments:

  1. I am so excited to have discovered this. I am thrilled it works so well.

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  2. What a great idea - I routinely clean my dishwasher with vinegar, but have never thought to actually have dishes in there at the same time :) I'll definitely be pinning this and trying it out. Thank you :)

    I'm visiting from the Cornerstone Confessions Link-up!
    ~Lisha

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  3. Vinegar certainly has many helpful uses. I unfotunetaly can't tolerate the smell so I use hydrogen peroxide a lot with baking soda. But I believe full heartly that it is unhealthy and a waste of money to be buying all these toxic cleaners. Thanks for sharing. Visiting from Wildcrafting Wednesday Blog Hop. Have a wonderful healthy day!

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    1. I have always hated the smell of vinegar. I will not eat it, actually because of that. But It does not have any scent while it runs in the dishwasher. I find that soaking orange peels, then straining them leaves the vinegar smelling much more tolerable.

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  4. I have been using vinegar in the rinse agent compartment, but hadn't used it as the actual soap. I will definitely give it a try. I do want to give a tip that I am not sure other people do...I don't use the dry cycle. I had a plastic handle knife fall out onto the drying element and even after I got it off the element, I could still smell burning plastic. I decided not to use the dry cycle because of it and haven't for over a year now. I haven't noticed any difference in my dishes and it saves time on the whole cycle and I am sure saves me on my electric bill. I can also put the "top rack" only items anywhere in the dishwasher since you don't have to worry about them melting.

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    1. We too, notice If you can open your washer right when it finishes, the heat helps the water evaporate faster!

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  5. wow thank you for the helpful advice. I will try to use vinegar more often

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    1. Hope it keeps your whole dishwasher sparkly!

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  6. So how much vinegar would you suggest if you were going to wash dishes by hand (as I assume it would work just as well that way?)?

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  7. Yea, a few TBS in some hot water just to rinse the dishes off with would do it, I imagine.

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  8. Vinegar is great for washing floors too! I haven't bought floor washing soap (what's the word for that? hahaha) in years! ...Luckily, I don't have to do them. Or the dishes. That's the bf's job. he's well trained ;)

    Thanks for the cleaning tips!! And thank you so much for sharing your post with us at Fresh Foods Wednesday! I hope you'll be back this week with more fresh food posts :) xo, kristy

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  9. I love vinegar. It irks me that more people don't know about it. I would suggest some research and caution in using vinegar in your dishwasher before using it as either a rinsing or cleaning agent. Some dishwashers will give a warning not to use vinegar since they have bits that are vulnerable to it. However, I have never had any problems with it.

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    1. Hmm, you are the second person to tell me that. It surprises me! I will keep an eye and ear on the dishwasher.

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  10. I'm going to try this!! Thanks for sharing it with us on the Four Seasons Blog Hop!! Pinning this, for sure!!!!

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  11. I am fascinated! We, too, have SUCH trouble with our dishwasher! I am defiantly going to try this! Thank you!

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    1. Good luck! I love less gunk in my dishwasher and my dishes.

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  12. Great tip! We've been having some bits of grit and gunk on our dishes lately and it's driving me nuts. I'm off to run some vinegar through the dishwasher now to give it a try!

    Thanks so much for sharing this on Waste Not Want Not Wednesday, I've pinned it :)

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    Replies
    1. We have had zero problems with that since we started this a month ago!

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  13. Thanks so much for sharing with Wednesday's Adorned From Above Link Party.
    Debi and Charly @ Adorned From Above

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  14. Wow! I love this - I've tried making my own dishwasher detergent and haven't been happy with any of my attempts. This is so simple, and I have plenty of vinegar in the cupboard. Thank you for sharing this at the HomeAcre Hop; I hope you'll join us again this Thursday.
    Kathi at Oak Hill Homestead

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  15. Hi! :)

    This week's edition of Wildcrafting Wednesday is all about personal care and cleaning and getting rid of the toxic and disposable items we use every day on our bodies and in our homes. This would be a great addition and I hope you'll share it with us this week on Wildcrafting Wednesday.

    Thanks! :)

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