Everyone wants their home clean because a clean home not only looks and smells better, but it is much healthier. It is less likely to have unwanted bugs or larger pests and it will put you at a smaller risk of developing illnesses. The problem, however, is that many of the traditional cleaning supplies contain harsh chemicals. These chemicals can harm our health when we over-expose ourselves and this is especially true for certain groups of people, such as pregnant women or those with breathing problems. For those of us who are environmentally conscious, using harsh chemicals has another disadvantage in that the production and disposal of these cleaning products damage the environment. Because of this, many people are switching to green cleaning methods.
The easiest way to go green with your cleaning is to opt for environmentally friendly cleaning products. These products have labels stating that they contain no chemicals that harm you or the environment. While they are sometimes hard to find, most natural stores and many larger department stores will have plenty of options. There is also a range of natural cleaning supplies online.
Make Your Own
If you can’t seem to find any green cleaning supplies in your local stores and you don’t like ordering online, you still have choices. All it takes is a simple look online to find plenty of natural cleaning recipes that will allow you to clean your entire home without any harmful chemicals. Even better, usually all the ingredients for these recipes are usually right in your home so you don’t even have to go to the store. The rest of this article will give instructions for some of the most common and effective natural cleaning recipes for different problem areas in the home.
Wood floors can seem hard to wash at first and that is why you will find plenty of chemicals to clean them; some even come in the form of mops (or similar items) with a cleaning solution already applied. While these make cleaning easy, they will contain harmful ingredients. If you need a green, non-toxic option for your floors, try the following recipe:
- Add a quarter cup of a mild dishwashing detergent (liquid) to a bucket of warm water.
Most people expect that if there are scuff marks on their floor they will need to scrub hard and use harsh chemicals to get rid of them. The good (and surprising) news is that green cleaning techniques can get rid of these scuff marks quickly and without any harmful effects.
- Sprinkle a bit of baking soda onto a damp sponge then rub the scuff mark.
Countertops, Sinks And Fiberglass
Most people find sinks, baths, ovens and countertops some of the most difficult areas in the home to clean. If you don’t do so often enough, food and dirt scum can quickly cake on, making it almost impossible to remove. When this happens, they resort to strong cleaning products that almost always contain harsh agents. To avoid this problem, try one of these natural cleaning recipes:
- Mix a cup and a half of baking soda and half a cup of water into a paste. Spread it on stains or streaks and let it sit for ten minutes before wiping it off using a moist sponge.
- Another solution is to mix a cup of water and a cup of white vinegar into a spray bottle. Just be sure that the vinegar is well-diluted as otherwise it can damage your surface.
Disinfectants are one of the most basic cleaning supplies but there are green cleaning options for that as well. Instead of relying on a disinfectant spray that may put toxins in your air, try one of the natural cleaning recipes.
- Mix two cups of water and a teaspoon of essential oils (tea tree oil, lavender oil or clove oil). Put it in a spray bottle and use it just like you would a chemical disinfectant. It works great for sinks and bathrooms.
Most of the time when faced with a clogged drain people feel that chemicals are the only way to go and while these products are great at producing immediate results, they are not the best option. Not only can they be expensive, but the ingredients that unclog the drain are incredibly strong meaning that they take their toll on the environment. This is even worse when they mix in with the water running through your pipes, which eventually becomes purified as drinking water. But is it possible to use green cleaning methods to unclog your drain? Of course.
- If your drain isn’t too clogged and you need a quick fix, just dump some boiling water down it. It will fix the problem, but only temporarily.
- For bigger problems, try pouring one cup of baking soda down the drain then following it with half a cup of vinegar. Cover the drain for a half hour then let hot water run for a few minutes. Not only will this get rid of clogs, but doing so once a month will help prevent future drainage issues.
Mirrors And Glass
Most commercial window cleaners contain ammonia, but the good news is that there are natural cleaning recipes that can do the same job without the harsh chemicals.
- Take ½ a gallon of water and mix in 4 tablespoons of lemon juice.
- Mix rubbing alcohol and witch hazel.
Although a clean home is less likely to have pest problems than a dirty one, it is still possible to have small bugs or other problems. But instead of resorting to harsh chemicals that can harm the environment, you and your pets, there are natural methods that work just as effectively.
- Fruit Flies: Fruit flies hate mint so try sprinkling fresh mint around your sinks and window sills.
- Ants: Ants don’t like coffee grounds or citrus so placing these around any part of your home where they could enter (such as windows or doors) can prevent an infestation.
- Cockroaches: Cockroaches hate catnip so try making a “catnip tea” by adding dried (or fresh) catnip to warm water. Then allow it to cool and spray it on areas where the cockroaches stay.