I have to give my friend, Kelly, over at Large Family Homestead credit for sharing this idea on how to make homemade cleaner. She posted on her FB page recently about making your own orange-infused vinegar.
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Homemade Cleaner or Disinfectant? Is There a Difference?
First, the facts. According to healthline.com:
Cleaners physically remove dirt, debris, and some germs from a surface. They don’t kill germs.
Disinfectants destroy germs on contact. These products kill or inactivate harmful germs, including viruses and bacteria.
This is an important distinction. For disinfectant, I use 3% hydrogen peroxide. After one too many sicknesses being spread around our house, I did some heavy research on the best way to prevent the spread of norovirus (more commonly known as The Puking Flu). In short, I learned that hydrogen peroxide is one of the only things that will kill the norovirus. Bleach will also kill norovirus, but I prefer using hydrogen peroxide.
A “fun” graphic I made a few years ago after I had not one, but two kids, in two different schools, need to be picked up on the same day for puking at school.
Okay, so we’ve established why I use hydrogen peroxide as a disinfectant. Now, on to my orange-infused vinegar cleaner.
How to Make a Natural Cleaner with Vinegar and Orange Peels
Fill a clean, empty jar with orange peels. Pour as much vinegar in as will fit, replace the lid, leave for two weeks.
After two weeks, remove the orange peels, and pour into spray bottle.
And just like that, you have a beautiful homemade cleaner. I keep this in my kitchen and use it for spraying down my counters and sink. Yes, it still smells like vinegar, with a light citrus aroma. If you want a stronger orange smell, you can add a few drops of essential oils.
One word of warning. Do not use vinegar on granite countertops, it will ruin them!