Everywhere I look on the internet all I see is people talking about using white distilled vinegar for everything.
This is getting quite annoying.
I hate to break this to you, but Vinegar is not some miracle cleaner. If anything it kind of sucks. Also don’t get me started on the baking soda; I go into detail why you should not use that stuff on the carpet here.
Why Vinegar Doesn’t Work For Carpets
Vinegar is great if you want a natural cleaner for hard surfaces, but soft surfaces like the carpet is a big no-no. Like many of you, my cat peed on my carpet, and like everyone else I Googled the Answer. What everyone said to use was Vinegar – so I used Vinegar.
I thought I got the spot and the smell, but it would always come back. I thought maybe I didn’t use enough Vinegar, so I place more down and scrubbed the spot once again. The only thing that did happen was that the carpet smells like cat pee and Vinegar which combined is a horrible smell.
That brings me to my First Point – Vinegar Smells. When cleaning hard surfaces, it dries quickly but on soft surfaces, it gets trapped. Trapped vinegar on a hot day smells like B.O., and I really don’t know what’s worse, body odor or cat pee?
The Second Point is that Vinegar doesn’t attack the things that make the most odor. Cats, dogs, or even human pee or poop is organic, and the best thing to use on that is Enzyme Cleaners. An Enzyme Cleaner like this one here* works well on organic matter – even dog drool! Vinegar, on the other hand, will help to kill bacteria but it’s not eating or killing the source of the problem.
Don’t listen to anyone who says to mix Vinegar with Baking Soda – once combine it’s a useless cleaner that we explain below.
Organic Carpet Cleaners
Vinegar is organic, but it’s not the best cleaner for cleaning carpets. There exist many organic carpet cleaning solutions out there. I’m a fan of the Carpet Miracle – Carpet Cleaner and Deodorizer Solution*, its best to use this solution in a carpet cleaning machine.
When doing any serious cleaning of carpets, it’s best to use a carpet cleaner. You can rent them or you could buy one. If you have pets and kids then it would be wise to buy one as stains and carpet messes are going to happen.
Then Add Baking Soda
Everyone likes to do the science experiment where they mix the vinegar with baking soda and let it fizz up. Many people will even say let it dry before cleaning it up and to clean it up to use a vacuum cleaner. Baking soda is a big no-no when it comes to vacuums as I mention in the intro.
But I hate to break this to you but… Vinegar and Baking Soda together are horrible cleaners. Before you flip the table over, have you thought about how they work?
Many people see the bubbles and think that the two are hard at work cleaning the spot, but instead, all you’re seeing is carbon dioxide being released and what is left is saltwater. It’s more of an acidic saltwater mix, but still saltwater. Want proof, then check it out here.
Cleaning with salt water is not very useful unless you’re going for a texture-style clean where you want to remove the top layers of an item. Maybe that is why people think it works; it’s just removing a top layer.
Besides being a cool science experiment, it’s best not to use baking soda and vinegar to clean.