DIY Citrus Vinegar Cleaner for the Home

DIY citrus vinegar cleaner is an all-natural item for the home. This chemical free homemade all purpose cleaner makes an amazing citrus and vinegar cleaning solution.

diy citrus vinegar cleaner

Living a toxin free life means leaving behind cleaning supplies filled with chemicals. Chemicals which are not safe for your family, pets, and even septic tanks. It’s a healthy choice for your household.

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Leave Behind the Toxin Chemicals

The move to using natural items for cleaning is difficult. In truth, natural cleaners work, there’s no denying that. So, what’s the problem?

The problem is, we are conditioned to believe that a product must smell nice to work. Scented glass cleaners, wood polish, hardwood floor cleaner, bathroom cleaners are a prime example of this.

But that is not the case. Many of the items mentioned above contain chemicals which are extremely harmful to the body. Use caution when selecting cleaning products. Many unhealthy chemicals are hidden withing the label.

Better yet, leave behind the chemical cleaners and make your own.

diy citrus cleaner

Harmful Chemicals found Cleaning Products.

  • Phthalates – Avoid anything which contains a fragrance. Dish soap, laundry soap, glass cleaner, wood cleaner, scented soaps, etc. Phathalates are endocrine disruptors; produce adverse developmental, reproductive, neurological, and immune effects in both humans and wildlife.
  • Perchloroethylene aka PERC – Found in deep cleaning solutions. Dry cleaning, spot cleaners, carpet cleaning solutions. PERC is a neurotoxin and has also been classified as a “possible carcinogen”.
  • Triclosan – Found in liquid dish washing soap and everything labeled antibacterial. Triclosan is an aggressive antibacterial agent that can promote the growth of drug-resistant bacteria.
  • Quarternary Ammonium Compounds aka QUATS – Found in liquid and sheet farbric softner, and in anything labeled antibacterial, breeding anti-biotic resistant bacteria. QUATS is an antimicrobial, leading cause of skin irritation and asthma. QUATS
homemade all purpose cleaner
  • 2-Butoxyethanol – Found in window and multiple all purpose cleaners. 2-Buoxyethanol falls into the category of “glycol ethers”. A minor reaction can occur when inhaled, coughing and sore throat. However, high exposure to can lead to narcosis, pulmonary edema, and severe liver and kidney damage.
  • Ammonia – Found in many polishing agent for bathroom fixtures, sinks, glass and jewelry cleaner. When used regularly individuals develop chronic bronchitis and asthma.
  • Chlorine – Found in scouring powders, toilet bowl cleaners, mildew removers, laundry whiteners, household tap water (mainly city water). New reports suggest that chlorine may be a thyroid disrupter.
  • Sodium Hydroxide Found in many oven and drain cleaners. This chemical is extremely corrosive, burning the skin and eyes upon contact.

Natual Cleaning Items

In addition to this DIY citrus cleaner, other natural homemade all purpose cleaners are readily available. Distilled vinegar and baking soda make excellent cleaners. These items are safe for you, your pets, and septic tanks.

Citrus peels contains d-limonene, a natural solvent that cuts through grease and dirt. Make a homemade citrus cleaner using the peels of any type of citrus fruit. However, the peels of oranges contain a higher level of d-limonene.

homemade all purpose cleaner

A cleaning bucket in our homestead consists of this citrus cleaner recipe, distilled white vinegar, hydrogen peroxide, baking soda, colloidal silver, and a few unadulterated essential oils.

Colloidal silver is antimicrobial, eliminating bacteria and viruses within the home. This makes cleaning with colloidal silver ideal.

In addition to using citrus peels as a cleaner, use the peels as nature fire starting material.

Citrus Vinegar Cleaning Solution – A Zero Waste Product

Between November through April citrus fruit is in season. During this time of the year the fruit is quite inexpensive. Making canning and preserving citrus ideal.

It is during this time of the year which makes canning citrus, well, fruitful. It is the reserved peels which make this all purpose cleaning recipe, hence, creating a zero waste product.

Adding citrus peels to a vinegar cleaning solution creates a stronger homemade all purpose cleaner. A cleaner which will not disappoint.

DIY Citrus Cleaner for the Home – Ingredients

The process for making a citrus base cleaner is extremely simply. Taking only minutes of your time. Since the peels are being recycled, this is a cost efficient cleaning recipe.

  • citrus peels, oranges, grapefruit, lime, lemon, etc.
  • distilled white vinegar
vinegar cleaning solution

DIY Citrus Cleaner for the Home – Equipment

The jar size for this project will vary based on the amount of citrus peels being used. Ranging from pint-size mason jars to gallon glass jars. Because vinegar causes the lids to corrode over time, plastic lids work best.

  • glass jar, determine size based on how many peels are available
  • air bubble remover
  • plastic reusable jar lids
  • fine mesh strainer
  • jar funnel
  • swing top bottle or mason jar, used to store the citrus cleaner

DIY Citrus Vinegar Cleaner – Instructions

The citrus and vinegar infusion will take between 2 to 6 weeks. The longer the solution is allowed to sit 2 things are bound to happen. First, the solution will become stronger. Next, the peel will slowly begin to break down after the 6 week mark.

It is important to make sure the citrus peels are not exposed to air. Any exposed peels run the risk of molding. Use a fermenting weight to keep the peels below the distilled vinegar at all times.

Store the strained citrus vinegar solution in a mason jar or swing top bottle.

  1. Using a knife, remove any remaining fruit from the peels.
  2. Place peels to the jar, filling jars 3/4 full.
  3. Add white distilled vinegar, leaving a 1-inch headspace. Add a fermenting weight to keep the citrus peels submerged.
  4. With the air bubble remover, remove any air bubbles within the jar. Top jar with additional vinegar making sure to leave a 1-inch headspace.
  5. Place reusable plastic cap onto jar, store in a cool dark location up to 2 weeks.
vinegar cleaning solution

Strain the Citrus Vinegar Solution

  1. Begin by placing the jar funnel and fine mesh sieve on top of the jar. Next, strain the citrus vinegar solution into a clean mason jar or swing top bottle.
  2. Finally, store the DIY citrus vinegar cleaner in a cool dark location until ready to use.

Note

Do not discard the vinegar infused citrus peels. Use the peels to freshen the garbage disposal.

Herbs and spices add scent, as well as, additional bacterial fighting qualities. The following herbs and spice contain antibacterial qualities. Use these items in their fresh or dried form.

  • thyme
  • mint
  • rosemary
  • cinnamon sticks
  • whole cloves (cloves are antimicrobial, eliminating both bacteria and viruses within the home)
diy citrus vinegar cleaner

Homemade All Purpose Cleaner

Homemade citrus cleaner work to clean bathrooms, the kitchen including the stove top, vent fan, and inside refrigerator. Basically, anywhere grease, grime, or dirt is present.

This citrus base cleaner is also ideal to clean pet waterers and kennels, and works great as a coop cleaner and freshener.

Cleaning Solution

In a spray bottle mix a 1:1 ratio of citrus cleaner and water. Shake gently before spraying.

To make a streak free window cleaner mix to following:

  1. 3 cups water
  2. 1/4-cup rubbing alcohol
  3. 1/4-cup citrus vinegar cleaner

Printable Recipe Card – Homemade Citrus Cleaner

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DIY Citrus Cleaner for the Home

DIY citrus vinegar cleaner is an all-natural item for the home. This chemical free homemade all purpose cleaner makes an amazing citrus and vinegar cleaning solution.

Course: Natural Cleaner
Keyword: DIY Citrus Vinegar Cleaner, homemade all purpose cleaner, vinegar cleaning solution

Equipment

  • glass jar, determine size based on how many peels are available
  • Air Bubble Remover
  • plastic reusable jar lids
  • fine mesh strainer
  • Jar Funnel
  • swing top bottle or mason jar, used to store the citrus cleaner

Ingredients

  • citrus peels oranges, grapefruit, lime, lemon, etc.
  • distilled white vinegar

Instructions

  • Using a knife, remove any remaining fruit from the peels.
  • Add peels to the jar, filling jars 3/4 full.
  • Add white distilled vinegar, leaving a 1-inch headspace. Add a fermenting weight to keep the citrus peels submerged.
  • With the air bubble remover, remove any air bubbles within the jar. Top jar with additional vinegar making sure to leave a 1-inch headspace.
  • Place reusable plastic cap onto jar, store in a cool dark location up to 2 weeks.

Strain the Citrus Vinegar Concentrate

  • Using a jar funnel and fine mesh sieve, strain the citrus vinegar solution into a clean mason jar or swing top bottle.
  • Store the DIY citrus vinegar cleaner in a cool dark location until ready to use.

Notes

Do not discard the vinegar infused citrus peels. Use the peels to freshen the garbage disposal.
Herbs and spices add scent, as well as, additional bacterial fighting qualities. The following herbs and spice contain antibacterial qualities. Use these items in their fresh or dried form.
  • thyme
  • mint
  • rosemary
  • cinnamon sticks
  • whole cloves (cloves are antimicrobial, eliminating both bacteria and viruses within the home)

Avoid fruit flies in the summer months by adding a drop of dish soap to the citrus cleaner.

diy citrus vinegar cleaner
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Comments

  1. JoAnn says

    Hi Farm Girl.
    I love your posts and I follow you on fb.
    I’m just a little confused here… in the above instructions, after you add the vinegar to the peels, you say, “…remove any air bubbles and add additional vinegar if needed”, and then next you say, “…now you are ready to strain the peels” but what time frame do you wait in between? How long do you let the peels soak in the vinegar?
    What if you left the peels in the solution? Would it become more concentrated?
    Thanks for your great article and this awesome post… I too want to buy less and less from the market where ever possible!

    • Farm Girl says

      I am so sorry! I should never have written the blog while having a stomach flu! The mixture will need to sit for a minimum of 2 weeks, but the longer it sits the stronger it becomes. We allow ours to sit between 4 to 6 weeks. I added it to the blog, sorry and thank you!

  2. Louise Akid says

    Hello I would like to say thank you I made this recipe in March and used it today.I now have sparkling Windows, it works brilliantly.

  3. Claudia says

    In your pic, you seem to be using distilled vinegar, is there any advantage to using that over regular, say, apple cider vinegar (locally made here)?

    • Ann Accetta-Scott says

      Yes, it is distilled white vinegar. As a cleaning solution I wouldn’t suggest using a live bacterial to clean with, it will draw fruit flies. You are working on drawing the oils from the orange peels and that’s what the white vinegar will do.

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