Eco-Friendly CleaningEco-friendly Tips for Cleaning Your House from Top to Bottom

Eco-friendly house cleaning is becoming more and more popular. Why wouldn’t it be? You can save a lot of money, protect your family’s health and help the environment by not polluting it.

Standard cleaning products may be effective, but they are also aggressive and usually contain chemicals that harm both nature and people. So, let’s see how we can make cleaning just as effective and harmless, using ingredients that are safe, natural and biodegradable.

Eco-friendly cleaning products?

You’ve probably seen plenty of eco-friendly products in the nearest supermarket. Those are up to 99 percent biodegradable and usually consist of three main cleaning ingredients: baking soda, lemon and lavender. You’ll recognize them by the lack of alarming words on their labels such as “toxic” or “dangerous”. You can also find some great cleaning products in online stores such as Mitey Fresh.

Although these options help you save time and are cost effective, you may also choose to make your own cleaning product. There are numerous recipes for making eco-friendly products at home. Several ingredients are necessary for such recipes, but they are pretty common and inexpensive, and you also probably already have them in your home: baking soda, white vinegar, hydrogen peroxide,borax, lavender oil, olive oil, castile soap, lemon, etc. Now, let’s see how you can use them!

Bathtub and bathroom tiles

Mix these ingredients: 1 2/3 cups of baking soda, 1/2 cup of liquid soap that’s based on vegetable oil, 1/2 cup of water and 2 tablespoons of vinegar. Put the mixture in a jar or a spray bottle and always shake before using. Just spray it all over the tub and tiles, clean with a cloth or sponge and rinse well.

Another option is to take half of a grapefruit, sprinkle it with salt and just scrub the wet tub using the grapefruit as a sponge! Your bathroom tiles and tub are rarely extremely filthy if you clean them on a regular basis. So, don’t worry – grime and ordinary soap scum are actually relatively easy to clean when you have a few cleaning tricks up your sleeve.

Bathroom calcite

Your bathroom is probably full of calcite and lime deposits. One of the places you can find them is on a chrome tap. In that case, just soak a towel in vinegar and wrap it around the tap. You can leave it to sit as long as you want – the longer, the better. Use vinegar on your toilet, too.

You can also flush some Coca-Cola down your toilet. We’re not sure if it’s eco-friendly and it’s surely not as cheap as other home-made products, however, if you have some Coca-Cola leftovers, you can try and see how it goes! Leave it overnight.

Bathroom and kitchen drains

Pour 1/2 cup of baking soda into the drain, and then pour 1 cup of vinegar. Just leave it to sit for 15 minutes as you would leave a usual drain cleaning product. Let hot water run for several minutes.

Windows and mirrors

Combine 1/4 cup of vinegar and 4 cups of lukewarm water in a spray bottle. You can also add lemon oil, or lavender and lemongrass oil  into the mix to repel insects in the summer.

Clean your windows and mirrors as you usually do, with a dry cloth or a piece of newspaper. If you can, avoid paper towels. Eco cleaning implies using eco-friendly solutions and it’s not very helpful to use paper towels.

Wooden surfaces and door knobs

Essential oils are a good option for cleaning surfaces that are not very filthy and/or made of sensitive materials, and that can’t be cleaned with acids. Lavender oil is the most common oil used for cleaning purposes, and it’s our favourite because of its refreshing scent.

Here’s a simple recipe – add 7 drops of lavender, eucalyptus, tea tree, cinnamon or oregano oil to 2 cups of water you have previously poured into a spraying bottle. Spray directly onto the surface or onto the cloth, and then wipe the surface.

Floors

Add 10 drops of lemon oil and 4 drops of oregano oil to 1/4 cup of white vinegar. Put this in a bucket and add plenty of water. If your floors are extremely dirty you can add several drops of dish soap into the mixture. Use a mop and wipe the floors twice: first with this solution, and later with pure water (to prevent slipperiness).

Mould

Mould can be cleaned with a wide variety of products: borax, bleach, ammonia, or vinegar. Of course, we recommend vinegar and borax. Mix 1/2 cup of borax and 1/2 cup of vinegar and make a dense paste. If you have a pressure sprayer, you can also use pure water to remove the mould from concrete. Use a scrub brush to apply the paste. You can let it sit for a while. Just be careful when removing the mould – when you finish scrubbing, the waste water will contain spores.

Some additional things you should get if you want to clean the mould yourself are a protective suit, gloves and a mask. You don’t want to inhale harmful spores and risk lung infection! The area must be wet the whole time to prevent those spores from becoming airborne. It’s also a good idea to use a dehumidifier to keep the mould from reappearing in your home.

These are just some of our suggestions for making and using eco-friendly products to clean your home.

What are some of the techniques you use to keep your home both green and sparkly clean?

Written by Guest Contributor: Bob Gorman from Buddy Cleaning Services

Carol Parr

Author Carol Parr

Carol Parr is a Building Biologist and Healthy Home Wizard. She has worked with asthma and allergy sufferers in their homes and work places for over twenty years, specialising in mould, dust mites, chemicals, EMFs and WiFi. When she’s not turning unhealthy rooms into healthier, relaxing and productive spaces, she’s most likely frightening her husband and their children with numerous “let’s see what this does when …” projects.

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