So this cleaning with vinegar business isn't as stinky as I thought it'd be. And my favorite part? When I clean stainless steel or faucets, it resists water spots later in the day and week. It's amazing!
According to Wikipedia:
"Among the items tested, vinegar (5% acetic acid) showed the strongest bactericidal activity against all strains tested, which was attributed to its high acetic acid content."
I thought this to be amazing. I have two bottles with vinegar. One with full strength, one two parts vinegar, one part water. I use the diluted vinegar for quick clean ups, on Luca's high chair and counter tops and such when I don't want the strong smell.
I use the full strength for everything else. Bathroom, kitchen, floors, cutting boards, rinse cycle in the washing machine for Luca's cloth diapers, anything gross or disgusting.
Also - vinegar is safe to use on paint, so I can use it to wipe down the walls, which is a common practice around here.
Please note - vinegar and bleach SHOULD NEVER be mixed. It creates toxic fumes that are likely to kill you. Nice, huh? I learned this from when I worked at Fridays. A cook knocked over a jug of vinegar while the cleaning crew was bleaching the floors. We all had to immediately leave and wait for the all clear.
Now to baking soda. I use it to pre-scrub the tub, shower, and pretty much anything gross in the bathroom. After that, I spray on the vinegar and scrub away. Note: it will fizz. And it will smell. And if you're sensitive to strong smells, then this may not be for you. Just stick with the vinegar. I have the exhaust fan on and another fan blowing when I do this. It's a very sour smell and extremely strong. But man does it ever do the trick. My shower stays cleaner, longer. I find that it seems to resist mildew and other gross happenings in the dark, moist areas.
I won't lie. I am the worst at scrubbing showers and such. So I am even happier that I can do it just as often as I typically do, and it stays clean!
Bestest, best part of all?!? There are no harsh chemicals that are bad for the kids, so I don't have to wait until they're napping to clean. Plus, I can clean pregnant. AND it's better for the environment. All things that make me happy.
So today, while the pizza was cooking in the oven, I cleaned with vinegar. Claire was a mere 10 feet away from me working on a puzzle and Luca was always within two feet. In that time, neither complained of a smell. And my fridge has never been whiter. And bacteria-free.
I'm so happy.