Removing Hard Water Stains With White Vinegar

Can you guess what this post is going to be about?  I was trying to think of a catchy title for this post…and nothing came to me.  Sometimes that happens.  I try to make these posts slightly funny and amusing, but sometimes all I get is nothin’.  “Just the facts, ma’am.”  That’s what happens in my brain.  Sometimes ya got it, and sometimes it’s just the facts.

Anyway, I would also like to apologize for my lack of posts this week.  I was sucked into the black hole known as reading.  It hasn’t happened to me in a long time…this whole being so immersed in a book where I can’t sleep, forget to eat, (and now, lose interest in blogging) because all I can think about doing is reading a book.  Well, it happened this week and I would like to blame anyone and everyone that encouraged me to read The Hunger Games.  I’m obsessed.  So, finally, I told myself I wasn’t being fair to my readers and decided that I wasn’t allowed to read today.  (I finished book 1 and I’m halfway through book 2 already…insane!)

So, back to the task at hand.  Last week, I shared with you how to clean hard water build up off of a faucet using the hard core cleaners and brushed upon how white vinegar is also up to smaller tasks in this department (and less caustic).  So, while I was changing out Roman’s water in his bowl, I saw this…

and thought this was as good a time as any to do a little demo.  Wanna see a close up?

This is after the bowl had a good rise and dry.  If you rub your fingers across the bottom it feels like sand paper.  It’s pretty crazy.  And, Roman is such a diva when it comes to hard water stains in his bowl.  So, I got out my supplies.  I keep this bottle of white vinegar and a spray bottle with vinegar in it that I bought from Target under my kitchen sink for just such occasions.  (I also pour a little white vinegar in with every dishwasher load.)

The best thing about white vinegar is that it’s cheap.  So, you don’t feel bad about using it liberally, which is what we’re about to do.

I poured some white vinegar from the jug directly into the bottom of the bowl since that’s where the worst of the stains were and then used the spray bottle to thoroughly douse the rest of the bowl.

Isn’t that a cute water bowl, by the way?  I bought the set from Ikea a couple years back and I love it.  It also came with a stand so that the bowls are raised so poor Roman doesn’t have to lean over to eat.  This is particularly funny because he’s the laziest dog in the universe and there have been times where I had to put the bowl on the ground for him to eat lying down.  Ya, I know, I’m a sucker.  😉

So, back to cleaning hard water stains.  I let this bowl sit for about a half hour and every once in a while came back and swirled the vinegar around or gave it another spray here and there.

Then, I got out my dog bowl brush.  Yes, it’s labeled and yes, I’m a little OCD about stuff like this.  When you live with someone like Dane who is not a huge attention-to-detail kinda person, it’s important to use big labels when it comes to stuff like this.  I love Roman, but I’m not too keen on sharing my dish brush with him.

I gave it a good scrub and rinsed it out.  Then I used some dish soap and gave it another good scrub.  And here’s the result.

So shiny and pretty!  Here’s a close up.  You can see there is a couple marks still there which I’m sure I could’ve gotten with a little more vinegar and time, but it is just a dog bowl after all. 😉  I still think it’s a pretty vast improvement.

And here’s the good ol’ before and after shot for ya.

This method works for anything with hard water spots and stains.  The other huge culprit is my coffee pot.  About once a month, I use a white vinegar and water solution (about 2:1) and run it through my coffee pot a few times.  Then I run clean water through another couple times.  Then, I use my spray bottle to douse the actual pot to clean that.

The great thing about white vinegar is although is stinks pretty bad at first, the smell goes away and it actually can get rid of bad odors, too.  Yay for cheap and natural ways to clean things!

Does anyone else out there use white vinegar for cleaning around the house?  Have you had success in getting rid of hard water?

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