With the holidays fast approaching, we are all trying to keep our homes presentable and sanitary for our friends and family. It seems like we have plenty of things to clean around the house and there doesn’t seem to be enough time to do it all. We also run into bigger jobs such as getting our curtains cleaned and getting the oven looking shiny, free from grime and grunge, before the holidays arrive. To get our homes clean, we generally have many different types of cleaning products for tackling different types of jobs. There are products for our dishes, furniture, glass, bathroom tiles, kitchen floors, laundry, and so on. Most of the common cleaning products that we grew up with contain toxic chemicals that could be bad for our health and also for the indoor air quality and the environment.
Using toxic and petroleum-based products for cleaning our homes and for killing germs often have consequences that are worse than germs. Today, more cleaning product manufacturers are environmentally conscious and you have more choices of sustainable, eco-friendly, green cleaning products to use for your cleaning jobs. There are also some basic ingredients available at home like baking soda, lemon, vinegar or salt, that have disinfecting and cleaning properties naturally, which you can use to make your own organic cleaning products yourself.
7 tips for green cleaning
Below are some tips for green home cleaning. These will ensure that you keep your home free from germs, toxic elements and also keep your indoor air quality healthy.
1. Use green cleaning products
The consequences of using toxic products for cleaning are more clearly and thoroughly understood today, and therefore, more brands are hitting the supermarkets that are healthy, eco-friendly and non-toxic. You now have a choice to buy a product that only have organic ingredients, and do not pose any harm to your health or the environment. Look for third party labels of certification on products such as “non toxic,” “organic,” “biodegradable,” “natural “and “made with renewable resources.”
To make sure that the claims made by green products and services are legitimate, make sure to look for third party certified products and services when you purchase them. Product or service with green clean certified seal have been reviewed and certified by reputable and unbiased third party certification organizations, and contains a seal of certification such as the Green Clean Seal, US Green Building Counsel seal or a seal from The Carpet and Rug Institute (CRI) – Seal of Approval Program, to name a few. They verify a set of criteria and also the claims made by a company for their green products or services are legitimate, and not just a way to attract more customers with a false claim.
2. Use ammonia free window and glass cleaners
Why use ammonia based commercial glass and mirror cleaners when you can get the same effect from lemon juice? Yes, you are able to make your own glass cleaner with 4 tablespoons of lemon juice mixed with a half gallon of water. Use an old cotton T-shirt instead of paper towels to save paper.
3. Keep your indoor air quality clean
Avoid poor indoor air quality from toxic fumes from cleaning products. Use non toxic products as much as possible and open your windows and doors to let fresh air in while you clean. Make sure that your home is properly ventilated.
4. Avoid anti bacterial cleaners
Many people reach for products labeled “antibacterial” or “anti microbial” thinking that these cleaners are necessary to keep homes or hands germ-free during the winter. However, according to Joseph Stromberg of smithsonian.com , “antibacterial products are no more effective than soap and water, and could be dangerous. “After more than 40 years of study, the U.S FDA has made a bold new announcement on antibacterial soap: Manufacturers have to show that it’s both safe and more effective than simply washing with conventional soap and water, or they have to take it off the shelves in the next few years. (Five Reasons Why You Should Probably Stop Using Antibacterial Soap | Smithsonian.com)
5. Non toxic wood polish
Conventional furniture polish contains petroleum distillates and solvents which are toxic and terrible smelling. An eco-friendly alternative could be made by mixing 2 parts olive oil with 1 part lemon juice. Apply it to your wood furniture using a soft cloth. The combination gives your wood furniture a nice smell and a sparkling shine. (10 Green Home Cleaning Tips – HowStuffWorks)
6. Clean your home with baking soda
Baking soda is an effective cleaner to get odor out of your carpet. Just sprinkle some baking soda on your carpet before you vacuum. Baking soda can also be used for scrubbing and scouring. Make paste with water or sprinkle on a surface and scrub with a wet cloth or sponge; it works great as an oven cleaner too.
7. White vinegar disinfectant and mold cleaners
White vinegar has disinfectant properties naturally, and can be used to kill germs from smooth surfaces such as glass, floors, counter tops, etc. It cleans, disinfects, absorbs odor and removes mold and mildew. White vinegar is great as a toilet cleaner.
Would you like to know more about green cleaning and green living? We are proud to present Russ Biaggne as our next NTP/CEED Webinar huddle guest. Russ pioneered green cleaning in Idaho and owns Selway Services, a sustainable green cleaning business. please sign up for our live webinar event, to be held on Wednesday, December 10. I am sure that you’ll enjoy this live event.
Source: Balanced Life Team
- A Few Good Reasons To Use Eco-Friendly Products For A Greener Home | Environmental Professionals Network
- Green Cleaning & Preventing Indoor Air Pollution | Environmental Professionals Network –
- The Environmental Impacts of Using Paper | Environmental Professionals Network
- Top 5 DIY Eco-Friendly Cleaning Recipes You Can Make Yourself | Environmental Professionals Network
- Five Reasons Why You Should Probably Stop Using Antibacterial Soap | Science | Smithsonian
- Consumer Updates > FDA Taking Closer Look at ‘Antibacterial’ Soap
- 10 Green Home Cleaning Tips – HowStuffWorks
- photo credit: colorblindPICASO, Lenny Montana via photopin