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Illustration for article titled Remove Odors From Your Entire Home by Simmering Vinegar

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No need to cover up a smell when you can neutralize it. We’ve written in the past about how a bowl of vinegar can deodorize a room, but the same advice can be expanded to an entire house with slightly more effort: Simmering that same vinegar on the stove can maximize the reach of its odor-eating power.

If you don’t already keep a large bottle of vinegar on hand, you might consider changing that once you realize how versatile it can be for cooking, cleaning, and deodorizing. We’re focused on the latter here, because while there’s plenty over over-the-counter products that can mask an odor, it can be hard to get an area to smell like nothing at all.

Of course, vinegar itself stinks to most people—it can be downright gag-causing to some—but the silver lining of its odor is that when it dissipates, it’s completely gone, along with the other smells that lingered before it. Even spills of vinegar will lose their scent fairly quickly, making it a cheap, easy, and effective alternative to get rid of more pervasive smells.

Whether it’s a bad smell that’s turned your home into a stink-nest, or the lingering aroma of something you cooked yesterday, just pour about a cup of white vinegar in a sauce pan on your stove top and bring it to a simmer. The simmering vinegar will release its odor-fighting power into the air, and if you let it go for a while, it will deodorize your whole house. Of course, if you want, you can take your steaming pot of vinegar and move it from room to room as well. It will smell a lot like vinegar at first, but after a little while it won’t smell like anything at all.

This story was originally published in October 2015 and was updated on February 23, 2020 with more information and to meet Lifehacker style guidelines.



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