This natural all-purpose citrus cleaner is a great staple to have on hand. It is made of ingredients you probably already have at home or may be throwing away for no reason (I am a huge advocate of getting every possible use out of stuff before throwing it away!). It is easy to make and great for cleaning pretty much anything.
What is in citrus cleaner?
The key ingredients in this cleaner are citrus peels. You can use any type of citrus peel. Lemon, orange, grapefruit, tangerine, lime etc. They are all great grease cutters, disinfectant and deodorizing.
The other major ingredient is distilled white vinegar. Something you probably have at home and, if not, can cheaply buy. My favorite vinegar for the job is white vinegar, it is the most acidic and thus the most potent. Vinegar is great for cleaning. It can combat hard water stains, grease and mildew. Read more about vinegar as a cleaner here.
The only downside of vinegar is the smell. Even though it doesn’t smell half as bad as bleach, vinegar does have a certain smell that may bother some around the house. This is another reason why citrus peels and vinegar make such a great team. The citrus adds a wonderful citrus scent to the otherwise somewhat harsh vinegar smell.
How is citrus cleaner made?
What you need:
- Citrus peels
- Distilled White Vinegar
- Water (optional)
- Airtight container
- Spray bottle
- Mesh strainer
This cleaner is one of the simplest cleaning products to make at home and a great way to put citrus peels to use.
Simply fill an airtight jar with citrus peels. You can use just one type or mix whatever you have at home. Try to cut any flesh off the peels before infusing them, especially when using sweet citrus fruits like oranges. I left the flesh on my lemons, which has never caused me a problem, but the sugar in e.g. oranges can cause mold.
Fill the jar with enough vinegar to cover the peels. They should begin to float slightly, then you have enough.
Leave the jar to infuse on your counter for 3-4 weeks, giving it the ocasional swirl.
After 3-4 weeks the vinegar should have changed color from clear to yellow/orange. Strain the vinegar into a spray bottle and mix half/half with water.
Use as desired.
How to use citrus cleaner?
There are many awesome uses for this vinegar all-purpose cleaning spray. I especially enjoy using it in the kitchen as it is all natural and I don’t need to worry about traces of it going in or on my food. It has disinfectant properties so I use it on my counter tops as well as when cleaning out my sink. I have even put it in the rinse aid compartment of my dishwasher to use together with my diy dishwasher tabs. It makes my dishwasher smell like lemon, which is amazing.
Something to keep in mind for cleaning with vinegar is that it isn’t as powerful for cleaning applications that require a lot of scrubbing (like cleaning your oven). For this purpose I would use a soft scrub. However, this citrus cleaner, it is a great light cleaner for surfaces that you just want to get dust or light dirt off of, like when wiping you table or countertops or when cleaning your sink.
It is safe for most surfaces, just keep in mind that vinegar is highly acidic (especially if you choose not to dilute it with water). The only thing I wouldn’t recommend using it on is marble or granite, the acid can destroy the finish.
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