With spring coming soon, property owners everywhere should take this time to do some cleaning. But, in the spirit of St. Patrick’s Day, why not try green cleaning?
Celebrate St. Patrick’s Day With These Green Cleaning Ideas
St. Patrick’s Day is the perfect time for all things green — green beer, shamrocks green costumes, and even green rivers. As part of this year’s celebrations, why not give green home cleaning a shot? Here are the best ways to utilize green cleaning.
1. Invest in Eco-Friendly Cleaning Products
When it comes to green cleaning, people often have a hard time adjusting or knowing where to start. But, you don’t have to jump into the trend blind. While you can certainly DIY green cleaning products, there are many manufactured ones you can buy off the shelves. Look for non-toxic versions of your favorite cleaners. You might think non-toxic cleaners don’t work as well as the conventional ones, but they accomplish the same job with less harm to the environment.
2. Take Advantage of Baking Soda, Lemon, and White Vinegar
If you want to take the DIY route or feel that off-the-shelf organic cleaning products are just too expensive, there are a handful of household items you can turn to. Baking soda, lemon, and white vinegar are your friends. Aside from being natural, these ingredients make for a mean cleaning solution.
Baking soda, for one thing, can get rid of nasty odors stemming from your carpets. If you have a particularly dirty oven or microwave, simply mix baking soda and water to create a paste. Then, slather it over the dirty parts and leave it overnight to harden. In the morning, you can just scrape off the hardened baking soda, along with all the gunk it soaked up.
White vinegar is also an all-around cleaner. Mix it with baking soda to clean toilet bowls or dilute it with water to remove stains. White vinegar also contains antibacterial properties, so it’s great for getting rid of germs.
Lemons also contain antibacterial and antiseptic properties. As such, they are perfect for sanitizing surfaces. Use them on your cutting board or rub some salt on lemon halves and scrub your copper pans to restore their shine. You can also use leave lemon peels in white vinegar. After a few days, simply remove the peels, and you’ve got one of the best natural cleaning products around.
3. Repurpose Old Toothbrushes
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends replacing your toothbrushes every 3 to 4 months. You may even need to replace them sooner if the bristles look too worn. That means you end up with about three to four old toothbrushes every year.
Instead of throwing them out, why not repurpose them to reduce waste? Toothbrushes are thin and long, which makes them great for scrubbing hard-to-reach areas. You can also use toothbrushes to clean shoes, shower handles, stovetops, carpet stains, keyboards, blinds, grout, and many more!
4. Use Plants as Pest Repellents
Insects are common household pests. But, instead of reaching for that toxic insect repellent, consider purchasing a houseplant. There are several houseplants that repel or even consume bugs. If you have a mouse problem, you might want to get a spearmint or peppermint plant. Spiders and mosquitoes, on the other hand, dislike citronella. As such, you may want to get a citronella-scented plant.
In addition to warding away pests, houseplants can improve the air quality in your home. They also look great in any space.
5. Switch to Reusable Kitchen Towels
If you’re serious about green cleaning, think about all the waste you create when you use disposable kitchen towels. Those kitchen towels are usually made of virgin wood pulp that is processed using toxic chemicals. They also typically come in plastic packaging.
As an eco-friendly alternative, look for reusable kitchen towels. These washable and reusable ones are just as effective when it comes to cleaning. Plus, there are many designs you can choose from!
6. Air Out Your Space
Ventilation is important if you want to truly clean your house inside and out. If you don’t open your windows often, the air inside your home can become stale. Bacteria and germs are more likely to accumulate, thereby jeopardizing the health and safety of occupants. In line with St. Patrick’s Day, open your windows and let your house air out. Enjoy the greenery outside for once!
7. Give Rugs a Good Beating
If you have carpets in your home, now is a good time to air them out, too. Take your carpets outside and hang them up nice and tight. Then, take a broom and start giving your carpets a good beating. This should let out all the dust, dirt, and loose debris. If your carpets have some stubborn stains on them, you might want to break out your non-toxic cleaner or take it to a professional.
8. Mattresses Need to Breathe, Too
Carpets aren’t the only things in your house that need a breath of fresh air. Your mattress probably hasn’t seen daylight in months, even years. All sorts of things can build up in your mattress, including dust mites, mold, and mildew. To air out your mattress, remove the cover and let it soak up some sun for a while. Your sheets, pillows, and pillowcases should get a deep cleaning, too.
Perhaps one of the best green cleaning methods is to simply declutter. If you find that your house has accumulated a lot of clutter, this is the perfect time to get rid of useless junk.
Go through each room and identify the items you no longer need or use. Before throwing them away, consider whether you can donate them. Some things may also be recycled, such as paper and magazines.
When you live in a cluttered home, you’re allowing dust mites to gather on top of surfaces and in crevices. After you get rid of the clutter, make sure to take a piece of damp cloth (preferably microfiber) and use it to wipe all surfaces. This should help get rid of any residual dust.
Hire Green Cleaning Services
This St. Patrick’s Day, take the time to give your house some love and attention with green cleaning. Green cleaning, though, isn’t always easy to do. Most people don’t even know how to begin. If you don’t have the time or energy for it, consider hiring a professional cleaning service that offers eco-friendly solutions.
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