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Guest post: vinegar instead of Jet Dry or other dishwasher rinse aids.

Hey everyone, today I have a guest post from Wendy!  I hope you enjoy it.  This is a trick I use myself all the time and love it!

I love a clean house and pride myself on that.  I’m pretty sure most people would call me a nerd, but I take it as a compliment. 🙂  I changed my dish soap and dishwasher detergent to more natural products.  I was pretty darn proud of myself!  Then one day I went to fill my rinse aid compartment with Jet Dry and thought “WHAT the heck am I doing?!”  I’m taking great pride in all of my efforts and I was about to fill my dishwasher with unwanted chemicals.  Who would do such a thing?  The answer…me.

After a quick Google search I discovered that white vinegar can be used as a rinse aid.  I was a little skeptical at first because my husband hates the smell of vinegar, but I threw caution to the wind.  You know what?  My dishes looked awesome, no spots, and most importantly….no vinegar smell.  Score!

After 3 years of doing this I am proud to say that I still use vinegar as my rinse aid.  Jet Dry, who?  Not only is the vinegar a more natural option, but it is a whole lot cheaper.

Let’s do a little cost comparison*:

  • 4.66oz bottle of Jet Dry $3.60 = $0.85/oz
  • 128oz white vinegar $2.35 = $0.01/oz

*Prices at my regional grocery store.

The cost alone sounds like a win to me!  Plus you can use the vinegar in so many other ways.  The only downfall I have found (a very minor one) is that you will need to fill the compartment about twice as often.  I’m assuming that is because Jet Dry is a gel and the vinegar is a liquid and more comes out in the cycle.  I feel that is minor.

Next time you need to fill your rinse aid compartment I dare you to try vinegar.  Not only is it safe and simple, but it is frugal.

Bio: My name is Wendy and I have been married to my husband Tim for just over 6 years.  About 4 years ago I decided we needed to take the processed junk out of our lives.  It has been a slow process, but I feel good about where we are today. 

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20 comments on “Guest post: vinegar instead of Jet Dry or other dishwasher rinse aids.”

  1. I also use vinegar! But I can never tell when it is empty (because it’s clear, duh!) so I’ve started to add just a little drop of food coloring so that I can tell when I need to refill it…instead of filling it up and having it leak all over the place. Because that has NEVER happened to me.

  2. Great Idea! I am so gonna do that today!

  3. I do the same thing and love the fact that it is so much less expensive. I couldn’t believe it when I read about, but it works. Win!

  4. I tried this, while also trying to use a Pinterest dishwasher soap and it totally bombed. I have a terrible film on all of mt stuff that’s crazy hard to get off. We have hard water, without a softener…any ideas? Thanks!

    • Go back to your normal soap, and then try vinegar and see if there is any difference. I can’t use any hippy soap in my dishwasher – I have to use Cascade. My dishes never got clean with the hippy soap.

    • Will do, when the jet dry is gone out off the machine. Thanks.

      Btw – you crack me up. I have even interrupted the hubbs very important tv programs to read him some of your stuff out loud.

      Have a good one. Gotta give a horsey back ride to my little dude now.

  5. At one point I stopped using Jet Dry. I could tell no difference. Than, I used vinegar and can still tell no difference. My dishes look fine. But, I will never go back to Jet Dry.

  6. We have hard well water and even with a softener I am leery trying anything. Too often I have had my dishes and glasses scored and filmed. Sometimes I can get off with vinegar wipe, sometimes is permanent. We have been using a non phosphate detergent from the Fleet Farm for 4-5 years now with very good success. I may try the vinegar rinse…it is just so touch I hate to mess with it. Jet Dry is one of the few “chemicals” we use.

  7. Tried this after reading on Pinterest but it doesn’t work on our brand new machine. Apparently there was a “warning” in the users manual that said this, but I didn’t read it first (who does??). Nothing gets dry when I use vinegar in it. ;( Makes me wish I had my old machine back.

  8. I have heard of people soaking orange or lemon peels in vinegar for two weeks, discarding the peels, and using the now citrus scented vinegar to clean without the horrible smell. Can you do that to vinegar you use in the dishwasher to avoid the smell?

  9. thanks for sharing..

  10. Can you tell me How does using Vinegar Sopose to Get your dishes Dry???

  11. I’d love to be able to do this, but every (modern) dishwasher I’ve tried this in leaves everything stinking of vinegar. Remember that a dishwasher that uses rinse aid appropriately will not rinse off the rinse aid… so if your rinse aid smells (like vinegar) so will your dishes. It also does not cut down on spotting, if anything it makes it worse. I’d really love to be able to do this, but unfortunately it has never worked as intended and always ends in me rinsing dishes until all of the vinegar has dissipated from the rinse aid compartment.

  12. I’ve known about the vinegar trick for years. As a former chef we used to save on dishwasher chemicals by using vinegar instead of JetDry. I never owned a dishwasher until we bought our new house recently. I noticed our dishwaser was turning a brownish green color. I added bleach and it made it worse! It turns out we have clear iron water and the bleach reacted and stained the dishwasher. Saturday I spent an hour scrubbing the inside door with Kaboom and a scrub pad. It looked…OK at best. I was going to go to Lowes and get some nasty chemicals to clean it. I also saw dishwasher cleaner. Both costed approx $8 for 24oz of chemicals. I found a forum that suggested something that sounded absolutely crazy but I kept seeing people suggesting this method. Here it is…add one packet of unsweetened Kool-Aid to the soap dispenser in your dishwasher and run a cycle with no dishes in it. I decided to give crazy a try and low and behold..IT WORKED!! My dishwasher looked like it came off the showroom floor! Instead of spending $8 I ended up spending only $0.15 for a packet of KoolAid (that we no longer drink).

    Geo D

  13. I use a homemade dish detergent (borax, washing soda, salt, and citric acid) — it works out great, but it can leave a film on the glassware due to my hard water. I don’t put vinegar in the rinse aid, I just pour a bit into the bottom of the dishwasher itself, and voila! Clean dishes!

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  15. for dish soap (and clothes washing soap), I use a mix of liquid hand soap, borax & baking soda or salt. The saline in the salt or baking soda keeps the liquid hand soap from sudsing up. I salvaged an old, large liquid laundry detergent bottle out of the trash, cleaned it up. I put 1 huge thing of liquid hand soap in it, 3 cups of borax & 3 cups salt or baking soda. Shake it around. The borax and salt/baking soda break the soap down a bit, so it thins out. The annoying part is the borax and salt/bs settle to the bottom, so you have to shake it up each time. But, takes only a few seconds. I pour some of it into an old liquid dish soap container. I use it to wash dishes by hand, and pour it into the dish washing machine cup to use it there, too. I only fill it about 1/2 way for normal wash, full for really nasty wash. Blasts everything clean. I use liquid hand soap, because it’s the cheapest liquid soap I’ve been able to find. Liquid soap doesn’t leave soap scum / film behind. I tried washing machine homemade formulas like Fels Naptha and Ivory, but they just didn’t break down well and clean well. So, I stuck with liquid soaps. They clean and rinse well. Could probably skip the borax in the formula if you wanted. I use salt in the formula when I’m being cheap ($0.50 for a container of salt… as opposed to $1.00+ for baking soda). Baking soda is useful in the shower for shampoo-free body care, though.

  16. I have a brand new Bosch 300 dishwasher. Will using vinegar void my warranty?