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Get Your Home Spring Clean the Eco-Friendly Way

Posted January 21, 2023 by Mike Lewis under Tips

Get Your Home Spring Clean the Eco-Friendly Way

Spring is here and it’s time for that annual deep clean of your home. As satisfying as it is to rid your space of dust and grime, many conventional cleaning products contain harmful chemicals that can negatively impact your health and the environment.

This year, why not try going green with your spring cleaning routine? Here are some tips to get your home sparkling clean the eco-friendly way.

Use Natural Cleaning Products

One of the best things you can do is swap out traditional chemical-laden cleaners for natural, non-toxic alternatives. Here are some easy DIY options:

  • All-purpose cleaner: Mix 1/2 cup vinegar, 1/4 cup baking soda, and 4 cups hot water.

  • Glass/window cleaner: Combine 2 cups water, 1/4 cup vinegar, and 5 drops essential oil like lemon or peppermint.

  • Wood cleaner: Mix 1/4 cup vinegar, 1/4 cup olive oil, and 10-20 drops lemon essential oil.

You can also find great natural cleaning products at most grocery stores, likeMethod, Mrs. Meyer’s, Seventh Generation, and more. Check the ingredient list and avoid products with ammonia, bleach, phosphates, sulfates, formaldehyde, and artificial fragrances.

Use Microfiber Cloths and Rags

Microfiber cloths are an eco-friendly alternative to single-use paper towels. The ultra-fine microfiber traps and lifts dirt and dust without the need for chemical cleaners. Microfiber rags can be washed and reused over and over. Using rags instead of paper towels reduces waste headed to landfills.

Clean with Baking Soda

Baking soda is a versatile natural cleaning product. It works to scrub surfaces, deodorize, polish chrome and stainless steel, and unclog drains. For an abrasive scrub, just sprinkle baking soda directly on surfaces. For household cleaner, mix with water to form a paste. Baking soda also absorbs odors so it’s great for freshening carpets, mattresses, and upholstery.

Opt for Plant-Based Sponges

Conventional sponges are made from plastic while natural sponges come from ocean animals like sea sponges. For an eco-friendly alternative, try sponges made from plant-based materials like bamboo, coconut coir, and cellulose. These renewable materials biodegrade when you’re done using them.

Clean with Vinegar

Vinegar is arguably the most versatile green cleaner. Most white vinegar consists of about 5–8% acetic acid and water which gives it antibacterial and antifungal properties. Diluted properly, it’s great for killing germs and disinfecting surfaces. Use it full-strength for extra grimy areas. You can also combine it with other pantry staples like lemon juice and essential oils to make natural cleaners.

Use Hydrogen Peroxide

Hydrogen peroxide is another common household item that doubles as a green cleaner. At 3-5% concentration, hydrogen peroxide is effective at killing bacteria, viruses, and germs without producing nasty fumes or irritating skin. Use it diluted to disinfect bathroom and kitchen surfaces. Combine with baking soda and dish soap to make an effective alternative to harsh chemical drain cleaners.

Opt for Reusable Mop Pads

Single-use mop pads end up in landfills quickly as you use and dispose of them with each cleaning session. Eco-friendly reusable mop pads reduce waste. Look for microfiber mop pads that can be tossed in the wash instead of the trash when dirty. Some reusable mop systems come with interchangeable heads for washing and drying that makes the cleaning process even more efficient.

Use Eco-Friendly Laundry Detergents

Spring is a good time to overhaul your laundry routine. Conventional laundry detergents contain chemicals, fragrances, and dyes that get released into the water supply after use. Opt for plant-derived, biodegradable detergents without dyes, fragrances, or petroleum-based ingredients. Brands like Seventh Generation, Molly’s Suds, and Dropps contain only natural plant-based cleaners which are gentler on skin and better for the earth.

Let In Fresh Air

One of the best ways to freshen your home naturally is to let fresh air in. On sunny days, open all windows and doors and let the fresh spring breeze circulate through your house. This will circulate out stale indoor air that accumulated all winter. Don’t forget to change out musty furnace and AC filters at the start of spring as well.

Use Eco-Friendly Disinfectants

With concerns about COVID-19 and other illnesses, you may want to use hospital-grade disinfectants when cleaning. Look for safer, plant-based disinfectants like Thymol or citric acid instead of conventional ones laden with harsh chemicals. Also consider adding natural antibacterial essential oils like tea tree, eucalyptus, peppermint or lavender to natural cleaners to boost germ-fighting powers.

Buy Sustainable Cleaning Tools

Choose reusable cleaning tools made of sustainable materials whenever possible. Look for mops, brooms, buckets and bins made of renewable bamboo instead of plastic. When old tools wear out, see if you can find a way to repurpose or recycle them. For example, I turn my kids’ old toothbrushes into grout scrubbers!

Use Reusable Lint Rollers

Sticky lint rollers are very wasteful since you use a sheet and throw it away each time. There are reusable fabric lint brushes that work just as well. Otherwise, you can make your own reusable lint roller by wrapping wide masking tape around your hand with the sticky side facing out. After collecting lint and fuzz, rinse the tape off to use it again and again.

Replace Air Fresheners and Candles

Many air fresheners and scented candles contain artificial fragrances, phthalates, and other chemicals that pollute indoor air. For natural aromatherapy, use essential oil diffusers with pure oils instead. Open windows regularly too for fresh outdoor air. You can also naturally freshen rooms by sprinkling baking soda on carpets before vacuuming.

Deep Clean Fabrics Naturally

Spring is a great time to do a deep clean of carpets, upholstery, curtains and bedding. Instead of using chemical carpet powders and upholstery cleaners, opt for natural solutions:

  • Refresh carpets by sprinkling baking soda and then vacuuming. For stains, blot with vinegar first.

  • Clean upholstery and fabrics with a mix of 2 cups warm water, 1/2 cup vinegar, and 5 drops essential oils.

  • Freshen mattresses by sprinkling baking soda, letting sit 20 minutes, and vacuuming up.

  • Put curtains in the wash on a gentle cycle then air dry. Add 1/2 cup baking soda to remove odors.

Use Non-Toxic Paints and Finishes

Spring is a popular time for freshening up walls with new paint colors. When choosing interior paints and finishes, look for low- or no-VOC options that don’t contain solvents or toxic emissions. Popular brands like Mythic Paint, Benjamin Moore Natura, and Sherwin Williams Harmony are good eco-friendly options. For wood finishing, use food-grade oils like coconut and beeswax which provide protection without toxins.

Compost and Recycle

An important part of green cleaning is proper recycling and composting. Set up bins in convenient places around your home. Recycle all paper, plastic, glass and metals. Compost food scraps and yard waste which reduces what gets sent to landfills. Find a hazardous waste disposal site to properly dispose of old paint cans, CFL bulbs, batteries and other hazardous items.

Enjoy a Fresh, Clean and Green Home!

With these tips, you can breathe new life into your home this spring the eco-friendly way. You’ll enjoy a fresh, sanitized space free of toxic chemicals. And you’ll have peace of mind knowing your family and environment are protected. Happy green spring cleaning!

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