How to Clean Your Microwave with Vinegar (In 6 Steps)

January 3, 2024
Microwave Repair

Everyone knows how time-consuming and frustrating it can be to clean a microwave. The thought of scrubbing and scraping off dried food bits from the interior can make you want to avoid it altogether. But what if you could clean your microwave quickly and easily with just one ingredient you probably have in your kitchen cabinet? 

Vinegar is the secret ingredient you need to get your microwave looking spotless. 

In this blog post, we’ll show you how to clean your microwave with vinegar and enjoy a sparkling clean microwave in no time.

The steps:

Step 1: Preparation is key

Start by finding a bowl that is microwave-safe. Bowls that are not microwave-safe can melt, crack, or even disintegrate when exposed to the unique heat generated by a microwave. Once you’ve got it, fill it halfway with water and stir in two tablespoons of white vinegar. 

Step 2: Let the heat do the work

Safely place your vinegar-water mix in the microwave. Set the microwave for five minutes and turn the power up to high. Make sure to keep an eye on it – we want steam, not a boiling mess! This steam session will help loosen any food debris and stubborn stains on the interior walls.

Step 3: Handle with care

After five minutes, wait another three minutes to give the bowl time to cool. Then, it’s time to remove the bowl. But remember, it’s going to be very hot, so keep your hands protected with oven mitts or a thick towel.

Step 4: Wipe it away

Now it’s time to roll up your sleeves and get wiping. Using a microfiber cloth or a kitchen sponge, gently clean the insides of your microwave. Pay special attention to any hard-to-reach nooks and crannies. Thanks to the steaming process, those pesky food bits and stains should come off without much effort.

Step 5: Tackle stubborn spots

Even the best cleaners meet their match sometimes. If you encounter a stubborn stain that just refuses to budge, don’t worry. Dip your cloth in the leftover vinegar solution and scrub gently. You can even use any remaining vinegar mixture to give the exterior of your microwave a good wipe-down, too.

Step 6: The final touch

Rinse your cloth with water and wring out the excess. Use this damp cloth to wipe down the inside of your microwave one final time. Once that’s done, dry the inside of the microwave with a small towel or paper towel. Or you can leave the door open and allow your microwave to air dry.

Why vinegar?

You might be wondering why vinegar is the superhero of microwave cleaning. Well, let’s break it down.

First off, vinegar is a natural, non-toxic solution that’s safe for both you and the environment – a big bonus in today’s eco-conscious world. 

It’s also incredibly effective at cutting through grime and food splatters that have hardened over time. The acid in vinegar works to break down these stubborn stains, making them much easier to wipe away. Plus, heating the vinegar creates steam that softens any stuck-on food, making your cleaning job even easier! 

So next time you’re faced with a dirty microwave, skip the chemical cleaners and reach for the vinegar instead. Your microwave (and the planet) will thank you!

How does it work?

When you heat vinegar in your microwave, the acetic acid vaporizes and permeates every corner of your appliance. As it does so, it interacts with the grime, food particles, and other residues stuck inside your microwave. The acid in the vinegar begins to dissolve these stains, essentially weakening the bonds holding the dirt together. This makes it much easier to wipe away. 

The steam created by heating the vinegar solution also plays a vital role in this cleaning process. It softens hardened food splatters and loosens the grime, boosting the cleaning effect of the vinegar. 

Once the grime has been broken down and softened by the vinegar steam, a gentle wipe with a cloth or sponge will easily remove it, leaving your microwave looking shiny and new. And there you have it! That’s the science behind how vinegar can loosen grime from your microwave. 

What if I don’t like the smell of vinegar?

If you’re not a fan of vinegar’s potent smell, lemons or oranges can be your new go-to microwave cleaners. They have the same acidic properties as vinegar but also have a delightful citrus scent.

Here’s how to get the same sparkling shine without the sharp smell:

  1. Gather your supplies: You’ll need a microwave-safe bowl, a lemon or an orange, and some water.
  2. Prep your fruit: Cut the lemon or orange in half. Squeeze the juice from one half into the bowl, then pop the squeezed halves into the bowl as well. Fill the bowl halfway with water.
  3. Time to steam: Place your citrusy concoction in the microwave, then heat it on high for about five minutes. This process will generate steam, softening any splattered food or stains on the microwave walls. Plus, it’ll fill your kitchen with a fresh, citrusy aroma!
  4. Handle with care: After the timer goes off, wait a few minutes for the bowl to cool. Then, carefully remove the bowl of citrus water from the microwave. Remember, it’s extremely hot, so use oven mitts or a thick towel to avoid burning yourself.
  5. Wipe it down: Using a small damp cloth or household sponge, start wiping the inside of your microwave. The citrus steam should have loosened the grime, making it easy to wipe away. Don’t forget the door and the ceiling of the microwave!
  6. Final touches: For stubborn spots, use the heated citrus water to dampen your cloth and scrub gently. Once you’re satisfied with your cleaning job, leave the microwave door open for a bit to let it air dry and let the fresh citrus scent linger. You can also use a paper towel or dry cloth to wipe away the water.

And there you have it! Another natural, effective, and aromatic way to clean your microwave without the smell of vinegar. 

Using vinegar to clean your microwave is an easy and effective method that saves you time and effort. It’s also a great way to avoid using harsh chemical cleaners, which can cause damage to your microwave and harm the environment. 

You can clean your microwave whenever needed and keep it looking brand-new for years. We hope these instructions help you achieve a sparkling interior in your microwave and make cleaning a breeze.


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