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Cleaning the Toilet- The Green Way

June 10, 2009

Vinegar and baking soda, originally uploaded by jilldoughtie.

For the past year and a half J. and I have been phasing store bought cleaning products out of our lives. As things run out we switch to something homemade. For some reason we had a lot of bathroom cleaning products between the two of us so we didn’t run out of toilet bowl cleaner until a week ago. The green alternative involves three ingredients that you probably already have on hand.

I poured 1 cup baking soda mixed with 1/4 cup salt into the toilet and then “chased” it with 1 1/2 cups of plain white vinegar. I was warned that if I poured the vinegar in too quickly that the resulting foam might achieve epic proportions but this was a gross exaggeration. I definitely got foam but it never rose more than 1/2 inch from the surface of the water. I let the mixture sit for 10 minutes and scrubbed away with my brush. The result was a squeaky clean toilet requiring no more effort than previous cleaners and it lacked any sort of vinegar smell as an added bonus.

9 Comments leave one →
  1. June 13, 2009 1:08 am

    Isn’t it fun cleaning ‘Green’? I’ve done much the same – tend to pour some white vinegar in the bowl & leave it for awhile. ‘This Guy’ has a great post on a variety of green cleaning formulas (most use baking soda & vinegar), & I have a link over at my ‘vale’ blog 🙂

  2. Sincerely, Emily permalink
    June 14, 2009 9:15 am

    I am in the same boat you are…..using up all my store bought cleaning supplies and as I use them up switching over to baking soda and vinegar. I have run out of laundry soap and fabric softener, so I made a liquid laundry soap and use the vinegar for the fabric softener. also using vinegar in the “jet dry” container in the dishwater. all working great. Also stretching the shampoo a bit by putting a small amount of vinegar in with it. works great. my Gram used to use all this stuff for her cleaning, I knew that then and I am glad I am switching back to it now. Emily (in TX)

  3. June 24, 2009 11:33 am

    I’d like to try that some time. Right now we are mostly using pine soft soap (“såpa”), a traditional cleaning product which is also environmental friendly. For our toilet we are using other stuff though, so trying vinegar, salt and baking soda would be an interesting experiment.

  4. paulahewitt permalink
    June 29, 2009 4:15 pm

    personally I would not use the quantities you describe – that is a lot of salt (and bicarb is a type of salt too, i think) going into the system. I only use a sprinkle of bicarb and scrub and then rinse with vinegar.

  5. July 8, 2009 8:54 pm

    I use baking soda and vinegar exclusively to clean my apt. My shower has never been cleaner! I also use vinegar as a rinse/conditioner for my hair. I’ve washed my hair with baking soda, but didn’t care for it enough to continue. Good luck with the green cleaning!

  6. doloreshayes permalink
    July 18, 2009 1:40 pm

    I just wrote about this very subject! I’ve been experimenting a lot with baking soda and vinegar, and my current toilet scheme is spray surfaces with vinegar, wipe down, dump some in the bowl, scrub around, and flush. If I had anything that needed extra scrubbing power, I’d use baking soda for that, but since we rinse diapers every day it seems to reduce the need to scrub. My next home-made challenge is deoderant!

  7. chesherca permalink
    August 3, 2009 8:44 pm

    Vinegar and baking soda are my HEROS! I get them in bulk (much to the amusement of my friends and family). Nothing can stop these guys from cleaning. I also let my potty have a bit of a vinegar soak before cleaning. Kudos on another good recipe!

  8. August 10, 2009 7:34 pm

    Vinegar and baking soda are great for cleaing the dishwasher too. Thanks for the post.


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