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That Vinegar Smell

post #1 of 13
Thread Starter 
So, I've recently switched most of my house cleaning to chem-free thanks to ideas from threads here on this board. I have one complaint -- my house smells so strongly of vinegar even after everything dries. I don't particularly like that. The bathrooms are the worst because the vinegar smell just lingers for days and days. It's not that vinegar smells *bad* just that I'd rather smell nothing or at least a clean smell.

I have put several drops of different EOs in my cleaning solutions to try and mask the vinegar. I've used lemon, peppermint, lavender. The peppermint was the strongest, too strong for my taste, actually. The lavender and lemon are unnoticable. How much do I need to use to mask the strong vinegar smell? Or should I follow up my cleaning with some spritzes of EOs and water? Ideas, please!
post #2 of 13
Wow, the vinegar smell completely disappears for me, and I even spray full strength vinegar on our mattress and pillows at least once a month to kill dust mites. Are you using your vinegar full strength? I think most people dilute it 50/50 with water when using in a spray bottle (with a 2-10 drops of EO) and even less vinegar in a mop bucket. Perhaps if you use more baking soda instead of vinegar for cleaning in the bathroom? Perhaps add E.O.s to your baking soda and perhaps a few drops of water, to make a paste when you do it?

Or you could use fresh squeeze lemon juice with your baking soda to clean? Sometimes I actually clean just with boiling water on a cloth (using rubber gloves) and then I squeeze 10 or so drops of fresh lemon on the cloth. Then save the vinegar for the jobs you want to be more sanitized?

Or what about squeezing some scent Dr. Bronner's liquid castile soap into a bucket of hot, hot water and using that to clean? Perhaps add a small amount of vinegar to the solution as well?
post #3 of 13
I use orange essential oil and like it much more than the peppermint - I also felt that was too strong & not a good mix with the vinegar smell.

I use straight vinegar with the orange eo and find the vinegar to fade pretty quickly. I smell it while I'm using it but not for long afterward. Maybe diluting to half water mix might be the answer if you aren't already diluting.
post #4 of 13
I am interested to hear more. I have only used vinegar as a fabric softener and couldn't get my clothes to not smell like vinegar, regardless the amount of E.O. I put in. I would like to start cleaning with baking soda and vinegar but am wary of that smell.
post #5 of 13
I use apple cider vinegar, and have never noticed a smell after the vinegar dries.
post #6 of 13
I think some people are just more sensitive to the vinegar smell. I can't get rid of the smell and my husband HATES it as well. EO just made it smell worse, in my opinion. I guess after a while of using it you just get used to it?
post #7 of 13
Yeah, you may get used to it.

I don't recommend using ACV for cleaning, it's sugary and it stains. White is superior for cleaning, while ACV is good for body and personal use.
post #8 of 13

A tip...

I add tea tree oil to my vinegar. The tea tree oil disinfects and smells great and the vinegar smell disappears shortly after cleaning. (Or maybe it's just covered up by the tea tree oil! )
post #9 of 13
I didn't notice any strong vinegar smell the last time I used it (and I used it on EVERYTHING). But mine was a huge bottle of 1/2 white vinegar, 1/2 distilled water with about 20 drops TTO and Lavender oil. I noticed only a clean smell after everything dried, no fragrance or odor at all.
post #10 of 13
Thread Starter 
so it might just be that i'm more sensitive to it. i've become sensitive to a lot of odors lately (soaps, lotions, etc). nope, not pregnant. still nursing, but she's almost 18 mos old, so not sure what sort of hormonal shift might have happened making me sensitive to odors. i just don't want guests to come to my house and think the whole thing smells like salad dressing!! i do use baking soda and dr bronner's to clean, too. but i like to spray a vinegar/water combo for quick wipe ups and cleanings. and i use vinegar/water on my lamenate floors.

i notice a lot of you mentioning distilled water. is it critical i use distilled water? or can i use tap? we live in austin which has a pretty high water quality.
post #11 of 13
I use it cause we have well water that is VERY hard and sometimes has sediment in it (it is drinkable, but we don't because it tastes funky because it's high in manganese, which is spelled very wrong). I have found using our tap water sometimes results in there being sediment in the bottom of the bottle when left to sit.
post #12 of 13
I use 50/50 water/vinegar (white vinegar) with 50 drops of lemon oil. That helps it not smell so "vinegary". However- shake the bottle each time you go to use it as I noticed the lemon oil floats to the top after sitting for a while.
post #13 of 13
Thread Starter 
Originally Posted by smudge
I use 50/50 water/vinegar (white vinegar) with 50 drops of lemon oil. That helps it not smell so "vinegary". However- shake the bottle each time you go to use it as I noticed the lemon oil floats to the top after sitting for a while.
that would help explain it! i only use about 10 drops of lemon or lavender oil. i'll try upping my oil and see if it helps!
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