No longer just products in your kitchen pantry, vinegar and baking soda have become staples in the green-cleaning movement. From deodorizing your home to deep cleaning your bathroom, these simple products have so many practical uses, including being efficient cleaning agents. Plus, since they’re all-natural and toxin-free, they give you some peace of mind when you’re cleaning your home. Did you know, though, that vinegar and baking soda should also be staples in your laundry room? Both products act as boosters to your current laundry detergent and work to get your machine and your clothes sparkling clean. Here’s how these two secret ingredients are game-changers when it comes to washing your clothes.
One big advantage to adding vinegar to your laundry is that it helps clean your washing machine. It’s mildly acidic, so if you have hard water or a lot of residue buildup from laundry detergent, it can break up those particles and get your washing machine squeaky clean. One common problem with washing machines is that they eventually start to stink over the years. Vinegar is a natural deodorizer, so it can neutralize those foul washing machine odors.
Does vinegar help smelly laundry?
Not only does vinegar get those bad odors out of the washing machine, it also deodorizes those gross smells that linger in your laundry. It’s perfect for combating smelly work clothes, activewear, and those grimy socks.
Baking soda has some similar benefits to vinegar, since it deodorizes and uses its abrasive powers to work off detergent residue and hard-water mineral deposits in your machine. In addition to these benefits, baking soda also makes your white clothes whiter and brightens colored fabrics. It even acts as a natural fabric softener since it helps keep mineral deposits and detergent particles away from clothes during the rinse cycle, which would ordinarily cause fabrics to feel stiff.
Can baking soda ruin clothes?
Due to the high pH in baking soda, it can make certain dyes fade, particularly with natural fibers like wool, cashmere, and silk. For these fabrics, vinegar is a better option for a natural detergent booster.
You may be tempted to combine these powerful natural ingredients to get double the deodorizing and cleaning benefits for your laundry. However, since vinegar has a low pH and baking soda has a high pH, combining the two at the same time will cause them to cancel out each other’s effects. Instead of being left with no benefits, choose one ingredient per load, or use them at different times during the washing cycle.
- Load your washing machine with clothing and laundry detergent like you normally would.
- Add one cup of vinegar to the compartment for fabric softener, and run the machine as normal.
- Fill the drum partly with water and add one cup of baking soda.
- Add laundry detergent and clothing, and run the machine as normal.
Can I use baking soda in a front-loading washing machine?
If your washing machine is a front loader, you can simply add a cup of dry baking soda to the inside of the drum. Then, load in your clothing, add detergent to the dispenser, and start the machine. Baking soda should not be added to the automatic dispenser.
- Turn on the hottest possible water your washing machine allows.
- Add one cup of baking soda to the washing machine drum.
- Add one cup of vinegar to the fabric softener compartment.
- Run the machine’s washing cycle.
You can also scrub the inside of your machine with baking soda and a wet cloth or sponge to make the drum shine. Follow up with vinegar to wash away any remaining particles.
You don’t need extra chemicals to give your laundry a boost or to get your washing machine looking and smelling great. Both baking soda and vinegar are great natural products that enhance your laundry detergent’s performance to get your clothing brighter, fresher, and cleaner.
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