Baking Soda and Vinegar Together?

Dear Annie,
I have been cleaning with vinegar for years. Now people are adding baking soda? Don’t they just neutralize each other?
—Shamana

Dear Shamana,
Yes, children are taught about acids and bases using baking soda and vinegar because they are opposites. They make a fun “volcano” with a heap of baking soda (mountain) and vinegar, which is added in a drizzle down the top, resulting in “lava.” When combined, baking soda and vinegar neutralize each other in a safe bubbly, hissing kind of way.

Baking soda is alkaline, a base, with a pH of around 8.1. Vinegar is acidic, and most commercial distilled white vinegars contain 5 percent acetic acid and has a pH of about 2.4. Neutral is 7.0.

There is one instance when I recommend combining baking soda and vinegar, and that is in the drain. Sometimes the bubbling and hissing in the drain when you combine these two is enough to dislodge hair and gummy buildup. (I recommend a cup of baking soda down the drain, followed by a cup of vinegar.)

Otherwise, readers take note that when you combine baking soda with vinegar you end up with a neutral liquid that isn’t much use for cleaning.

282 comments

S Gardner
sandy Gardner4 months ago

Thanks for the info. I'll try it in my tub drain.

Veronica Danie
Veronica Danie5 months ago

Thank you!

Julia Cabrera-Woscek

I use them both.

Jonathan Harper
Jonathan Harper11 months ago

Noted

Melanie St. Germaine
Melanie St. Germaineabout a year ago

I use vinegar and baking soda for my drains! I don't like using harsh chemicals knowing that it is filtered back and out our taps!

Gipsy Bee
Domina Trix B.about a year ago

Love it for my drains and have done so far many decades. Thank you Annie!

David Thieke
David Thiekeabout a year ago

Thanks for the info

Jonathan Harper
Jonathan Harperabout a year ago

ty

Paulinha Russell
Paulinha Russellabout a year ago

I always have at home both. Thank you

Ahlam Zaid
Ahlam Zaidabout a year ago

Shukran .