April 25, 2015

Natural cleaning products are becoming more and more popular and for good reason.

When you forgo chemical cleaners in favour of safer, gentler, more eco-friendly items, you:

  • Will be making an environmentally friendly choice
  • Will be promoting good health for you and your family
  • Won’t have harmful chemicals sitting around for children to get into
  • Even save money!

Did you know that you could clean your entire house with baking soda, lemon and vinegar?

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Homemade cleaning products are typically much less expensive than packaged cleaning products, not to mention safer and healthier. Here’s how to use them:

Baking soda

Baking soda is one of the most useful, most versatile items you can have on hand.

It’s non-toxic, it has multiple uses, and it’s extremely cost effective. You can use baking soda for cooking, for some medicinal applications – and for cleaning.

Some things you can do with baking soda include:

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  • Keep an open box of it in the fridge to eliminate unpleasant odours.
  • Sprinkle some in the bottom of the garbage bin for the same reason.
  • Use it to put out grease fires.
  • Sprinkle some on a damp cloth to wipe surfaces and then rinse with plain water.
  • Sprinkle onto burnt-on food in pots and pans, add hot water, and soak overnight – the pan will be easier to clean.
  • Use a baking soda solution to clean hairbrushes and combs.
  • Pour 1/4 cup baking soda down your drains every week or two to help keep them clear.
  • Sprinkle on carpet, let stand for about 15 minutes, then vacuum up to freshen carpets.
  • If you have a cat, add baking soda to the litterbox to help with odours.
  • Sprinkle your dog’s brush with baking soda before brushing to give him a quick cleaning and remove doggy smells.
  • Use a mixture of half laundry detergent and half baking soda to save money and keep clothes fresh.
  • Clean patio furniture and children’s pools with a solution of 1/4 cup baking soda to one-quart warm water.

Lemon

Lemon smells amazing and serves as a wonderful natural cleaner.

It has antibacterial properties, a low pH and aren’t likely to damage the surfaces you’re cleaning or the materials around them.

Keep in mind that you can’t clean brass-plated items with lemon – the lemon will damage the item.

Rinse lemon juice away completely with clear water after cleaning. Some things you can do with lemon include:

  • Shine chrome taps with a cut lemon dipped in salt.
  • Diluted lemon juice can clean and disinfect cutting boards.
  • Lemon juice and an old toothbrush can clean grout.
  • Heat a few tablespoons of lemon juice in a cup of water and microwave to boiling. Don’t open microwave for another 10 minutes – microwave will wipe clean easily and odours will be gone.
  • Clean laminate countertops with a spray bottle filled with diluted lemon juice.
  • Use lemon juice and salt to scrub grill grates.
  • Mix a half-cup of lemon juice into a gallon of hot water and pour down the drain to sanitise.
  • Diluted lemon juice can remove cooking odours from your hands.
  • Replace glass cleaner with a few tablespoons of lemon juice in a spray bottle full of water.
  • Pour half a cup of lemon juice into the toilet and swish with toilet brush.
  • Pouring baking soda and then lemon juice down your drain can unclog it.


 Vinegar

Vinegar is cheap, natural, and works on bacteria, dirt, and mildew.

This is definitely one cleaning staple you shouldn’t be without. There are a number of uses for vinegar in every room in your house.

Do keep in mind that there are certain things you should never clean with vinegar.

  • Use a 50/50 vinegar-water mix to wipe up spills in the fridge and keep the toxic chemicals away from your food (keep a spray bottle of this stored in the fridge for convenience).
  • Pour vinegar onto a small scrub brush, sprinkle with baking soda, and use it to scrub the inside of your bin.
  • Spray cutting boards with straight vinegar, then rinse.
  • Vinegar also makes a good toilet cleaner. Pour into the toilet and let sit overnight; the next morning, sprinkle with baking soda and scrub.
  • Use straight or diluted vinegar for general bathroom cleaning.
  • Use in place of fabric softener by adding a cup or so to the final rinse.
  • Make your own air freshener by adding a half-teaspoon of vinegar to a four-ounce spray bottle, filling with water, and adding a few drops of your favourite essential oil.
  • A 50/50 vinegar-water mixture makes a fantastic all-purpose cleaner.

These are just a few of the ways to use these inexpensive, natural, and versatile items to clean your whole house.

With this power trio on hand, you’ll very rarely need any other cleaners.

Do you have any other tricks you can share?

Image courtesy of Shutterstock.com

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  • I use bicarb and vinegar to clean almost everything in the house! You can’t go wrong!

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  • Love the idea of chemical free, healthy cleaning. Not convinced it’s better than the shop bought products though

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  • thank you for the tips – I use baking soda and vinegar to do most of my cleaning as I don’t like and can’t stand harsh chemicals!

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  • brilliant tips – thanks for sharing them… cannot wait for shiny sinks!

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  • will try both the lemon juice and the vinegar down the toiltet, separately, hope this works on a stubborn stain

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  • this is so great to have a read

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  • I’ve used this little recipe in my house for years and I often get comments about how nice my place smells. Feel better with the little ones too seeing how tactile they are and then shoving the fingers in their mouths etc. Better not only for the environment but also your budget.

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  • I’ve heard about these uses before but have never try them out. And I’ve been looking for inexpensive and more natural way to clean the house. Thank you for all the uses.

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  • Love these tips! I generally use metho and water for cleaning but will give these suggestions a go too. Thanks!

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  • Thanks for all of the awesome tips – I often wonder if the natural rememdies work so I guess its time to see for myself.

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  • Great cheap, natural and environmentally friendly! The article mentions that there are some items that shouldn’t be cleaned with vinegar. It would have been nice to specify which ones

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  • A good idea and interesting read.

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  • It’s great to know that vinegar cannot just only be used for cooking. I enjoyed this blog as I have not thought before that vinegar is a useful household stuff.

    Greets!
    Streatham Carpet Cleaners Ltd.
    http://streathamcarpetcleaners.org.uk/

    Reply


  • I love vinegar for cleaning, some great tips, thanks.

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  • it s absolutly great to read these

    Reply

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