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Spring Clean the Earth-Friendly Way

March 5, 2024

Spring Clean the Earth-Friendly Way

As the weather warms up and the seasons change, I get the urge to declutter and deep clean my home. However, many conventional cleaning products contain harsh chemicals that are bad for the environment and my family’s health. This year, I am committed to green cleaning and purging clutter in an eco-friendly way. Here’s how I plan to spring clean sustainably:

Use Natural Cleaning Products

Instead of using cleaners with dangerous fumes and chemicals, I will be using natural cleaning products made from plant-based ingredients like vinegar, baking soda, lemon juice, and castile soap. These products get the job done without polluting the environment or triggering allergies and asthma.

Some of my go-to natural cleaners include:

  • Vinegar – cuts grease, removes stickiness, shines windows
  • Baking soda – scours and deodorizes
  • Lemon juice – cuts through grime and grease, bleaches stains
  • Castile soap – scrubs and disinfects
  • Hydrogen peroxide – disinfects and whitens
  • Essential oils – add cleansing and refreshing scents

I can easily make DIY cleaners by combining these ingredients. For example, mixing baking soda and vinegar makes an effective cleaner and drain unclogger.

Use Eco-Friendly Tools

I am avoiding disposable wipes, paper towels, and plastic cleaning tools. Instead, I will use reusable rags, mops, brushes, and scrubbers made of sustainable materials like cotton, wood, and bamboo. Reusing the same cleaning tools prevents waste.

I also plan to look for brooms, mops, buckets, and other tools made from recycled plastic or other eco-friendly materials.

Conserve Water

Spring cleaning uses a lot of water, so I will employ some water conservation tactics:

  • Use a bucket instead of running water for washing and rinsing
  • Sweep before mopping to use less water for cleaning floors
  • Only run full loads in the dishwasher and washing machine
  • Take shorter showers while deep cleaning the bathroom
  • Turn off faucets tightly so they don’t drip

Saving every drop helps protect our precious water resources.

Purge and Recycle Clutter

Part of my spring cleaning routine involves going through closets, drawers, and cabinets to remove unused items and clutter. Instead of throwing these things in the trash, I will donate, recycle, or repurpose them.

For example, I can:

  • Donate gently used clothes, shoes, books, toys, and housewares to charities
  • Recycle paper, glass bottles, jars, plastic containers, electronics, batteries
  • Repurpose jars and bottles for food storage or household uses
  • Sell valuable antiques, collectibles, furnishings on consignment

Properly handling discards reduces waste sent to landfills.

Use Non-Toxic Yard Care

As I tidy up the yard this spring, I want to avoid pesticides, herbicides, and chemical fertilizers that can leach into groundwater. Here are some steps I will take for an eco-friendly landscape:

  • Pull weeds by hand instead of using weed killer
  • Apply natural fertilizer like compost to nourish plants
  • Introduce beneficial insects that prey on pests instead of spraying
  • Mulch plants to reduce watering needs and suppress weeds
  • Compost yard waste like leaves and grass clippings

These methods improve soil health without releasing toxic runoff.

Switch to Eco-Friendly Habits

The changes I make this spring don’t have to end when my cleaning to-do list is crossed off. I plan to adopt more planet-friendly household habits all year long:

  • Replace incandescent bulbs with LEDs to lower energy use
  • Set appliances to energy-saving modes when not in use
  • Run full loads of laundry and dishes to conserve water and energy
  • Buy reusable rather than disposable products
  • Unplug devices when not in use to avoid phantom energy draw
  • Open windows rather than run air conditioning on cool days

With some eco-friendly adjustments, I can ensure every season is green for my home and the earth. What sustainable swaps will you be making this spring?

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