DIY Green Spring Cleaning

bakvinIt’s still technically spring, so if other obligations have kept you from you spring cleaning there is still time. You’ve probably noticed that more and more companies are formulating and marketing greener, less toxic cleaners. And that’s great. But me, I generally never need to buy any of them. Why buy when you can DIY?

Below is a sneak peek into my cleaning cabinet filled with easy to make cleaners that won’t break the bank or expose you to nasty chems that can cause problems from asthma to reproductive harm (more info on the problems with conventional cleaners from Women’s Voices for the Earth. Just think, of the eighty some thousand chemicals we use, only about thirteen hundred have even been tested for safety-scary, right?

Vinegar Spray
This works beautifully for glass, mirror, counters, tile floors, sinks and other surfaces. I buy vinegar in bulk from Smart & Final and use the same spray bottle over and over for a not only green, but less-waste clean. Vinegar kills bacteria, mold and germs and that smell, it dissipates lickety-split. You can also add a cup to laundry if you’re at the mat and want to kick the chemical residues left over from the spin before yours.

Recipe:
1/2 water
1/2 vinegar

ahbox-150x150Baking Soda
Again, a big old box from Smart & Final (Green and Greener carried the same sized box last time I was in) will last for many a scrubbing and scouring of your sink or tub-the natural alternative to Ajax with bleach. Note: You can also use baking soda to unclog a drain by pouring down a couple of cups followed by some boiling water. It works!
Vinegar + Baking Soda Mixture
By combining these two wonder ingredients you get a fabulous, fizzy paste to lift away dirt and grime. Sprinkle some soda, spray some vinegar, wait a couple of minutes and your mini-science project will start showing results.

Hydrogen Peroxide
I mix a third of this (again, bulked from Smart & Final) with two-thirds water and am good to go for a sure-fire bathroom and kitchen disinfectant.

Recipe:
1/3 hydrogen peroxide
2/3 water

lemon1-150x150
See my whole line-up of natural DIY cleaners for yourself at Flickr.
And while I haven’t used it myself, I hear a mix of lemon juice and olive oil works wonders for wood dusting and polishing.

Finally, see Budget Ecoist’s recommendations for how to concoct a cleaning agent with the addition of powerful, natural essential oils.

Some other people doing their spring clean

and cleaning the bathroom