How To Clean Garbage Can With Vinegar?

White vinegar is highly appreciated among all the things that can help you achieve that desired profound cleaning of the garbage cans free from smells and odors. If your garbage can is stinking so high these days and you don’t know what to do with these odors, you should learn how to clean garbage can with vinegar. It helps remove odors, especially harmful bacteria, that increase the decomposition process inside a bin. 

So, have a cup of tea and make yourself comfortable by reading this guide till the end. It’s going to be interesting and much helpful!

Why Do You Clean A Garbage Can With Vinegar?

We all know those basic methods of cleaning garbage cans where we can use any detergents, washing liquids or soaps. 

That’s the traditional way of cleaning something like this, which is a total mess and may not get cleaned properly by using these chemicals. 

But when the matter of using vinegar to clean products like garbage cans or recycling bins is concerned, there might be the following reasons for using white vinegar with the cleaning solution. 

Have a look, please!

  • When the garbage can smell so high and affects the environment, apply white vinegar comes forward to clean it. 
  • Suppose the garbage can has not been cleaned for a while. In that case, you may have to disinfect using white vinegar to kill bacteria and all other unknown harms inside a garbage bin. 
  • Vinegar may also be used to remove nasty and clogged stains or spots firmly connected with the surfaces as well as the bottom of the garbage can. 

So, it all states that white vinegar does help in cleaning, and these could be some of the most prominent reasons for using it!

Can You Really Clean A Garbage Can With Vinegar?

When we relate using white vinegar to cleaning something like a garbage can, we didn’t exactly mean cleaning it. 

It is basically used to disinfect that garbage can. It means the garbage can might be full of smells when you realize that only bleach or using vinegar might be the solution to get rid of these odors. 

The basic substances like detergents, soap, or any other remain the same. But an additional mixing of vinegar into a solution you make with these compounds helps you a great deal in removing odors and providing an excellent cleaning you deserve. 

Therefore, it’s true that you can use vinegar to clean and disinfect your garbage cans with it. 

How Should You Clean A Garbage Can With Vinegar?

Cleaning a garbage can is somewhat similar as you may clean dishes, clothes, or other stuff inside your house. 

But when there is a special application of using white vinegar is concerned, you should learn it completely. 

Among some of the best cleaning methods for recycling bins, using white vinegar is a famous one. But still, it shall be discussed in detail here. However, in short,

You have to protect yourself with some gloves and eyeglasses. After that, empty your garbage can and rinse it with water. Prepare a solution of white vinegar with other washing liquids and apply it to all the surfaces of that garbage can. Once done, leave the can under direct sunlight and let it dry!

This is how you are going to clean your garbage can by using a solution of white vinegar with other compounds. Be sure to protect yourself always before messing up with something like this. 

Step By Step Process Of Cleaning A Garbage Can With Vinegar:

Just in case you want to know the complete process of cleaning a garbage can by using white vinegar, you are most welcome. 

Below, I am gonna describe it in all those easy steps that you should perform to clean a garbage can with the help of white vinegar. Please have a look!

Step 1: Essentials You Will Need:

Before you start, you will have to ensure that you have specific tools and equipment to help you achieve maximum cleaning and protection during this cleaning. 

The garbage can and solution can themselves be toxic. 

So, no part of your body must be exposed to it. Therefore, confirm having the following equipment available before you come out for cleaning. 

  • Some rubber gloves to protect your hands while cleaning
  • Eye protection with glasses 
  • Water and a lot of water (some hot water too)
  • Consider putting on a face mask (optional)
  • Have a hose, consider the sink or the bathtub anywhere, wherever it’s easy
  • White vinegar 
  • Soap, liquid dishwasher, or detergent 
  • Any long-handed scrubbing brush 
  • A putty knife
  • A clean piece of cloth
  • Old wearing

Move to the next step ASAP when you realize that you have all these things collected and available on the spot. 

Step 2: Protect And Cover Yourself:

Wear your gloves on. Put on some old clothes so that solution does not affect your new dress while cleaning. 

Also, wear those eyeglasses and protect your eyes so that no toxic drop of vinegar solution may go into your eyes accidentally. 

And more importantly, perform this cleaning in any airy environment or wherever you feel comfortable. 

Step 3: Empty And Clean The Garbage Can:

Take that garbage can you want to clean with the vinegar and clean it out fully. Use a putty knife to scrap that tough stain or debris stuck around the surfaces. 

Make sure the can is empty, and you don’t see any pollutants inside it, which may disturb your cleaning process. 

Once it is empty, please take it to the hose, bathtub, sink or wherever you do cleaning and rinse it with water. 

Put this water with a little pressure in each corner of the garbage can and ensure it gets completely wet. Once it is so, move to the next step. 

Step 4: Mix Solution Of Vinegar:

Now, take some boiled or hot water and fill the ¼ or 1/3 portion of the garbage can. This water will be used to prepare a vinegar solution with other compounds. 

When the can is filled with hot water, consider putting detergent, soap, or any other washing liquid you may prefer for cleaning other items inside your home. 

Now, the solution is ready, which will help you clean your garbage can. The thing is, you can use vinegar for now. Or you can use it later after washing it. 

The best practice will be to mix this vinegar into the same solution and then use this solution to clean the garbage can. 

Or you can use a spray bottle, put some vinegar inside, and spray it on the garbage can to remove or disinfect the odors. That’s something that totally relies on you. 

However, if it is, for now, mix that vinegar into that solution and go for the next step. Let it soak for almost 30 minutes before you use it to clean the garbage can!

Pro Tip: The quantity of vinegar, detergents, and water will likely depend on the same side of your garbage can. 

You will always need more when the size is bigger. But when the size is medium or smaller, a small number of chemicals will just do the job. 

Step 5: Clean The Garbage Can:

Did you remember that brush? 

Yeah, you got that right. You can have a piece of cloth or sponge to thoroughly clean that garbage can come from every single corner when the solution is inside. 

Besides, where your hand cannot reach, you can take the help of that long-handled brush. Use these and ensure the solution touches every inch of your garbage container. 

Step 6: Wash The Garbage Can Again:

When dipped and dumped with the solution, use clean water and rinse it again. 

Make sure all the polluting compounds just go away from this garbage can, and it shall appear cleaned after washing. 

Step 7: Dry The Garbage Can:

Use that soft piece of cloth and dry out all the water from the garbage can. Ensure no water is contained or left behind in that garbage container. 

When this is done, move to the next step for absolute perfection. 

Step 8: Put The Garbage Can In Sunlight:

You may know that vinegar has its own smell. It may help you remove those bad garbage odors from the can. 

But it takes a little while to remove the smell of a garbage can. Just in case you have done cleaning, your garbage can is still smelling. 

However, this smell is a little different from the one that was coming before; it is the smell of white vinegar. 

To get rid of it, place your garbage can under the direct sunlight and wait a while. You’ll see that odor will disappear, and the can will be ready to use again!

Final Thoughts:

Conclusively, if you will do things just in the same way you are asked to do, you will end up learning how to clean garbage can with vinegar. And I am probably sure I’ve been provided with enough information to know all about that. But if you still have some queries to ask, you just need to tell them to me. I am here and ready to help you in any matter. 

But anyway, thanks for being here and valuing this post. Don’t forget to share if you like it. Have an awesome day!


  1. City Waste Services. (2016). How To Clean Your Garbage Can. [online] Available at: 
  2. Higuera, V. (2020). What You Should Know about Cleaning with Vinegar. [online] Healthline. Available at:
  3. Gibson, S.M. and Turner, P.R., 2008. Green cleaning: recipes for a healthy home.