5 Things You Should Not Clean With Vinegar

Vinegar is a great, inexpensive natural cleaner for many household items. However, its high acidity can cause damage to metal, stone, rubber and hardwoods. Read on to find out what not to clean with vinegar.

The acidity of vinegar can cause etching on natural materials and corrode protective coatings on some man-made products. Here are a few things that you should never clean using vinegar, and what you should use instead.

RSR200 What To Avoid With Vinegar



1. Kitchen Knives

A set of quality kitchen knives can be an expensive investment. You probably know that you need to have them regularly sharpened and never put them in the dishwasher. But did you know you should never wash them with vinegar? Over time the acid will corrode the metal on your knives. Instead, wash your good knives with mild dish soap and water.

RSR200 What To Avoid With Vinegar

All types of knives — chef, paring, bread, cleavers, etc. — should be washed with soap and water, not vinegar.



All types of knives — chef, paring, bread, cleavers, etc. — should be washed with soap and water, not vinegar.

2. Natural Stone Countertops

Granite, marble and concrete are porous. Spraying these surfaces with vinegar can cause etching and loss of shine. Instead, use mild soap and a damp rag, then disinfect the surface with a 50/50 mixture of water and rubbing alcohol. Wipe immediately with a dry cloth for a smooth finish.

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3. Rubber Gaskets on Appliances

Rubber gaskets on your dishwasher, refrigerator and washing machine can corrode if they repeatedly come in contact with vinegar. To remove mold and mildew from appliance gaskets, use hydrogen peroxide with either a microfiber cloth or cotton swabs.

RSR200 What To Avoid With Vinegar

Lengthen the life of appliance gaskets by not washing them with vinegar.



Lengthen the life of appliance gaskets by not washing them with vinegar.

4. Waxed Wood Floors or Furniture

Cleaning with vinegar eats away at the finish and can lead to dullness on some wood surfaces. For hardwood floors, check with the manufacturer for their recommendation. If that’s not an option, try a commercial cleaner made specifically for your type of floor. Or use the tea method. Steep two tea bags in water then apply the water to the floor using a damp cloth. The tannic acid in tea creates a nice sheen on hardwoods.

5. Electronic Screens

Vinegar damages the anti-glare properties on computer and phone screens as well as TVs. Another side effect of too much vinegar is unresponsive touchscreens. Instead, clean your electronics with a microfiber cloth and a disinfectant made specifically for screens.

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