Homemade Floor Cleaner Without Vinegar – How to Make + Use It

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Homemade floor cleaners are an excellent choice for families dealing with various health issues, homeowners on a budget, and a good option for the environment. One of the main ingredients used to prepare homemade floor cleaners is vinegar. The acidic nature of vinegar can easily dissolve grime, grease, dirt, mineral deposit, and other stain elements. It’s also strong enough to kill bacteria. But can you clean floors naturally without vinegar? Are there any problems with using homemade floor cleaner with vinegar?

You can clean floors naturally without vinegar. While most homemade floor cleaners with vinegar can be used on almost all floors including laminate, hardwood, and tiles, their acidic nature can cause damage to your home and health if not used properly.

Some of the simple and effective DIY remedies that don’t require vinegar to prepare includes castile soap floor cleaner, liquid soap floor cleaner, vegetable oil floor cleaner, and washing soda floor cleaner. I’m going to discuss one of the most recommended and effective homemade floor cleaners that don’t use vinegar below. Read on to learn more.

Can You Clean Floors Naturally Without Vinegar?

You can clean floors naturally without vinegar. Homemade floor cleaners without vinegar get your laminate, tile, vinyl, laminate, wood, and other flooring materials as shiny and stain-free as the vinegar-based homemade cleaners. You don’t have to worry about the remedy breaking down the floor finish and reducing shine over time.

Homemade Floor Cleaner Without Vinegar

One of the most effective homemade floors cleaners that you can prepare without using vinegar is the castile soap floor cleaner. Like commercial, eco-friendly floor cleaning products, homemade castile soap floor cleaners can work miracles. This is what you need to prepare the remedy.


  • 2 tablespoons of castile soap
  • 2 gallons (7.5 liters) of hot water
  • 6 of drops essential oil (you can use tea tree essential oil, pine essential oil, or preferred essential oil scent

How to make castile soap floor cleaner

Put 2 gallons (7.5 liters) of hot water into a bucket and then add 2 tablespoons of castile soap. Stir the mixture gently to combine. If you feel this ratio is too soapy, then reduce the soap ratio to 2 gallons of hot water to 1 tablespoon of castile soap. Add 6 of drops essential oil and then stir again gently to mix

How to use the castile soap floor cleaner

The first thing you need to do before using the castile soap floor cleaner on the entire floor is to spot-test it. Once you are sure it’s safe, dip a mop into the solution, then use it to clean the floor. Don’t saturate the floor while mopping it with the homemade cleaning solution. Once all the parts of the floor have been cleaned using the solution you made, mob the floor once again using clean hot water (no castile soap floor cleaner).

Advantages of using castile soap floor cleaner

  • The cleaning is easy to make. You can use any type of castile soap to prepare the cleaning agent.
  • With a pH of around 8.9, the castile soap floor cleaner is safe for sealed wood floors and other common household surfaces.
  • Another advantage of castile soap floor cleaning solution is that it’s bio-degradable and non-toxic since the main ingredients in castile soap are plant-based.

Disadvantages of using castile soap floor cleaner

You need an acid afterward after cleaning your floor with homemade castile soap floor cleaner. Why? Castile soap is an effective floor cleaner but it can leave a deposit of salt film when used on shiny or hard surfaces.

Even though you want to avoid mixing your homemade castile soap floor cleaner with vinegar (which is acidic), adding lemon or vinegar into the solution is an excellent way to remove the leftover salt deposit from the floor.

Another shortcoming of the castle soap floor cleaner remedy is that it’s not 100% anti-bacterial. The solution will not kill antibacterial but it will detach and rinse germs and dirt from the floor, leaving behind a clean surface.

Vinegar Alternatives For Cleaning Floors

If you don’t want to use vinegar as a cleaning agent, there are many ingredients you can use as a substitute for white vinegar. I have explained some of the most effective remedies below:

1. Lemon juice

Lemon juice is an excellent vinegar alternative thanks to its high citric acid concentration. The acid in lemons is an awesome cleaning agent, effective due to its antiseptic, antibacterial, and natural bleaching properties. The citrus smell of lemon juice gives your floor smelling fresh.

While lemon juice can do a great job when it comes to cleaning floors, it doesn’t have disinfecting properties. Take care when using homemade floor cleaners that contain lemon juice, as direct exposure to UV light may bleach the flooring materials much more quickly.

2. Baking soda

You can add baking soda (sodium bicarbonate) to your homemade solution if you don’t want to use vinegar. Sodium bicarbonate is mild alkaline and so it can dissolve grease and dirt easily. Besides, it removes odors from the floor thanks to its ability to deodorize.

Make a paste comprising of warm water, two to three cups of baking soda, and one cup of liquid dishwashing soap. Use your hands to apply the paste to the floors. Leave it to stand for at least 10 minutes and then scrub the floor using a sponge to help remove stains. Soak a cloth in lemon juice and use it to wipe down the cleaned tiles. Rinse the tile with warm water and leave the surface to dry.

3. Essential oils

Essential oils are also another excellent vinegar alternative. They are not only effective in removing dirt from floors but also leave a refreshing aroma in the air. Adding essential oils to your homemade floor cleaner is completely safe. When properly diluted, essential oils are non-toxic and non-corrosive. The solution is not only safe for floors but also for human beings.

For instance, you can use essential oils to prepare a multi-purpose floor cleaner recipe. This is a great homemade floor cleaner for cleaning hardwood, tile, linoleum, laminate, ceramic, and vinyl flooring.

The ingredient you need to make this cleaner include one bucket of water, 1 tablespoon of castile soap, 1 cup of white lemon juice (substitutes vinegar), and 15 drops of essential oils. Put all the ingredients in a bucket, add some water, stir it gently to mix, and use to solution to mop the floors.

4. Apple cider

Apple cider offers the same benefits as vinegar thanks to its acetic acid concentration. The acid in apple cider dissolves dirt, disinfects the surface, and leaves an awesome aroma in the house. One of the advantages of apple cider vinegar is that it’s biodegradable and no-toxic.

Put 1 gallon of water in a bucket and add a diluted solution of apple cider (around 1 cup) Mop the floor with the solution above and then rinse the floor surface using hot water to remove the leftover solution.

There are many other vinegar alternatives you can use to prepare your homemade floor cleaning solution. Just keep in mind that one vinegar alternative works best when combined with one or two vinegar alternatives.

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Joe McGuinty
I’ve been working with floors for over 12 years. I started as a flooring contractor, primarily in materials selection. Then, I switched careers into accounting, so my wife and I began buying, renovating, and re-selling homes on the side. You’d be surprised how much value you can add to a home simply by adding new floors.

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