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Green Cleaning [IMAGE: Spring Cleaning]
Spring has just begun, which means it's time to wake up from our winter hibernation to begin enjoying the outdoors again. It is also time for the dreaded spring cleaning.
What makes this yearly ritual worse is that many commercial cleaning products are bad for your health and the environment, containing chemicals that are associated with: cancer; reproductive disorders; respiratory ailments including asthma; and eye or skin irritants.
Fortunately, many everyday household cleaning products can be used that don't endanger your health, the health of your children, or the environment. . .and they're cheap. Here are 'green cleaning' recipes for any occasion:
Green Cleaning Recipes
All Purpose Cleaner:
Add 1/2 cup ammonia and 1/3 cup washing soda to a gallon of warm water. Use to clean floors, tiles, and painted walls.
Window and Mirror Cleaner:
Put 1/4 cup white vinegar in a spray bottle, and fill to the top with water. Spray on desired surface, and rub with a newspaper or a rag. Squeegee dry.
Toilet, Tub and Tile Cleaner:
Mix 1/2 cup borax and add enough lemon juice to make into a paste. Wet the sides of the surface and add the paste. Let stand for a few minutes, then scrub off and rinse.
Dampen stained area with water, and rub in borax. Vacuum when dry.
Mix 1 cup of baking soda with enough water to make a paste. Apply to surface and let stand for a few minutes. Scrub the surface with a scouring pad. Do not use this recipe in self-cleaning ovens.
Three words - Use a plunger.
A hand plunger used every time the drain slows down will take care of almost any problem.
In you need a cleanser pour 1/2 cup baking soda down the drain, and then 1/2 cup vinegar. Let it fizz for a few minutes. Then pour down a teakettle full of boiling water. Repeat if necessary.
Make a paste from salt and vinegar and rub into affected area.
Add 1/2 cup lemon juice to 1 cup vegetable or olive oil. Apply with a soft rag.
General air freshener:
Simmer a pot of water with cloves, an orange peel and cinnamon.
To naturally keep ants and other insects away, add a few teaspoons of orange oil to your green cleaning products. To kill ants that are already around, just spray them with diluted orange oil.
Content updated on 2/27/2007
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