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Believe it or not, vinegar has been around since ancient times. The first known uses go all the way back to the Babylonians circa 3000 BC, and traces have been found in relation to the Ancient Egyptians, Chinese, Greeks, and Romans. It's thought that these ancient cultures used it for both cooking and medicinal purposes, and they made it out of dates, figs, wine, and beer. By the Middle Ages, vinegar was processed and sold in countries like England and France. The word “vinegar” is derived from Latin elements and ultimately means “sour wine.” These days, we love to use it in the kitchen when we cook and prepare food, but did you know it has numerous other uses?

Use Vinegar as a Natural Weed Killer

There are so many household uses for vinegar, but let's start outside in your yard. Weed killers and pesticides are quite controversial, and they can be harmful to you, your pets, and local wildlife. Vinegar makes a great natural alternative for getting rid of stubborn weeds — from those weeds that pop up in the cracks in your sidewalk to that one plant you just can't seem to get rid of. Spray white vinegar on the leaves of whatever you'd like to kill. Just make sure it's a warm sunny day with no rain. The sun and vinegar combined will handle the rest. Just be careful around plants you want to keep alive. Vinegar will kill those should you accidentally spill some on them or just start spraying it in a random area.

weed in sidewalk
White vinegar can provide natural mitigation of pesky weeds.

Use Vinegar to Clean Windows

Vinegar can make glass shine, unlike anything you've ever seen before. Some people even add it to their dishwasher cycle to keep their glasses and dishes shining and clean. To make your household — and even your car — windows shine without using harmful chemicals or leaving streaks, mix one part distilled vinegar with one part hot water in a spray bottle. Spray it on your window and use a sponge or squeegee to clean it. The vinegar will help break down grime and other buildups too.

vinegar to clean windows
Vinegar is a natural cleaning agent that can be used to clean windows as well as countless other spots around the home.

Use Vinegar to Extend the Life of Flowers

There's nothing like a vase full of cut flowers to brighten up your home, but unfortunately, they don't ever seem to last long enough. Vinegar could be the solution. Several people swear by adding a couple of tablespoons of it to their vase along with a pinch of sugar. As inexpensive as vinegar is, it's worth a shot to get a few more days of life out of your bouquet.

wilting flowers
Keep flowers alive for longer by adding some vinegar — and a pinch of sugar — to the water.

Use Vinegar to Clean Your Bathroom Tiles and Grout

When your bathroom tiles — and especially the grout — get grungy, you may be tempted to reach for bleach or some sort of commercial chemical cleanser that contains bleach. However, white vinegar does just as good a job, and it's safer. You don't even have to dilute it. Just spray it on your tiles and grout, and let it soak for about an hour. Afterward, scrub it off with a brush.

uses for vinegar include cleaning grout and tile
Skip the bleach and use vinegar to brighten up grungy tiles and grout.

Use Vinegar in Your Laundry

If you don't keep a bottle of vinegar in your laundry room, it's time to start. First, it's a great stain remover. From ketchup to grass stains, soak stained items in white vinegar for about an hour before you put them into the washing machine to retreat your stains. You can also add about half a cup of white vinegar to your wash to help remove body odors from clothing and linens. Finally, if you have an item that is wrinkled and you don't feel like ironing, spritz a little vinegar on it and shake it out.

pile of folded towels
Use vinegar in laundry as a natural odor-fighter and stain-remover.

RELATED: 14 Household Uses for Hydrogen Peroxide

Use Vinegar to Keep Your Dishwasher Clean

Over time, soap, lime, and grime build up in your dishwasher, especially if you have hard water. Keep your dishwasher clean by running a cycle (empty) with vinegar instead of dish soap. Do it at least once a year. This also works with the grime that builds up in your washing machine.

dishwasher
Run an empty cycle in your dishwasher using white vinegar in the dish-soap dispenser to get your machine clean and properly functioning.

Use Vinegar to Clarify Your Hair

Vinegar removes grime and buildup in your dishwasher and washing machine, and it can do the same for your hair. Over time, shampoos, conditioners, hairsprays, mousses, gels, and other products can build up, leaving your hair limp and lifeless. Take an old shampoo bottle and mix two parts water with one part apple cider vinegar. After you shampoo your hair as you normally would, rub some of the solution on your hair and let it sit for about 5 to 10 minutes. Rinse it, and then condition it as your would normally.

apple cider vinegar
Whip up a solution of apple cider vinegar and water and use it to clarify your hair.

Use Vinegar to Keep Fleas at Bay

If you have a dog, you know fleas can be a real problem, especially during the summertime. Vinegar can help with that too. Mix one part apple cider vinegar with one part water. After you bathe your dog, use the mixture as a rinse. Fleas won't come anywhere near your pet.

dog shampoo
After you bathe your dog, rinse them with apple cider vinegar to keep fleas at bay.

Use Vinegar to Remove Old Stickers

Moms know that kids love to stick stickers all around the house. Car owners know that the old bumper sticker you had from a few years ago is something you can easily outgrow. And everyone knows that stores tend to put sales stickers in awkward places. Luckily, vinegar is great for sticker removal. Simply use a brush to rub some white vinegar on the sticker, and let it sit for a few minutes. If you can't scrape it off just yet, repeat these steps until you can.

old sticker half-peeled off
Use vinegar to remove sticker residue that's left behind.

Use Vinegar to Eliminate Garbage Disposal Odors

Does your garbage disposal smell less than desirable? Vinegar can help with that too. Take an ice tray and fill it up with white vinegar. Stick it in the freezer until you have solid vinegar cubes. Once they're frozen, put them into your garbage disposal and grind them up. Afterward, run some cold water through for a minute or two, and you'll have taken care of your odor issues.

garbage disposal
Use vinegar in your disposal to get rid of nasty odors.

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