Friday, March 16, 2012

Chemical Free Spring Cleaning

Spring is in the air and it is time to open up the windows and clean up the winter clutter. 

 What you need
  • White Distilled Vinegar
  • Liquid Castile Soap - An olive oil-based soap, liquid Castile is available at health-food stores
  • Liquid Dish Soap
  • Baking Soda (deodorize) - Large boxes can be found in most box store laundry aisle
  • Borax (deodorize and disinfect)
  • Essential Oil - Make sure you’re buying pure, undiluted essential oil. Can be found at your local whole food store or online.
  • Tea Tree Oil - is a great natural disinfectant.
  • Ditch the paper towels. It just adds to waste. Cut up old shirts, towels, or other fabrics and make rags. 
  • Microfiber towels

--Not necessary but i love it, is a floor steamer and a hand held steamer, they are great at disinfecting, cleaning stubborn stains, and getting in cracks that a rag just cannot reach -- 

Windows and Other Glass Surfaces: 
2 cups water
1/4 cup distilled vinegar
1/4 to 1/2 tsp liquid dish soap or liquid Castile soap(prevents streaking)
Combine in a spray bottle and wash using newspaper for a clean streak free window.

My hand held steamer has a glass cleaner attachment that makes for a streak free clean!

Washing Walls
Get rid of the scuff marks:
Mix 1 part baking soda
        1 part water
Make a paste and apply to mark on wall, let dry before wiping off. 

Wash walls to make a simple all-purpose cleaner
1/4 borax
4 cups warm water

4 cups of vinegar
1 gallon of hot water
Few drops - pure peppermint or lemon oil for pleasant scent
-After damp mopping the floors - the smell of vinegar will dissipate quickly - leaving behind only the scent of the oil -

Counter Tops and Tile
2 parts vinegar
1 part baking soda
4 parts water.
Apply with a sponge, scour, and wipe away

Empty out all outdated items, recycle the containers, compost the waste

-All purpose cleaner-
1/4 borax
4 cups warm water

Leave a container of baking soda with a drop of pure lemon essential oil or vanilla for a fresh clean deodorizing smell.

If you oven is as neglected as mine - here is a very deep clean concoction for cleaning that oven
1/2 cup salt
1/4 cup washing soda
1 box (16 ounces) baking soda
Scant 1/4 cup water
3/4 cup white vinegar
10 drops thyme essential oil
10 drops lemon or lemongrass essential oil
Combine salt, washing soda and baking soda in a glass bowl. Add just enough water to make a paste. Remove oven racks and preheat oven to 250 degrees for 15 minutes, then turn off the oven and leave the door open. Carefully spread the paste on oven walls with a sponge or cloth and allow to set for 20 to 30 minutes. Combine the vinegar and essential oils in a spray bottle and shake well. Spray the oven walls and wipe clean. Use a steel cleaning pad will help with the scouring where needed. Rinse well. 
Wood Furniture
1 part lemon juice
1 part olive oil
Apply small amount to a cloth, rub onto furniture - long even strokes

Toilet Bowl Cleaner
Sprinkle with some borax
Brush clean

-- Want to leave a fresh clean smell in your bathroom. Put a drop or two of essential oil into the toilet bowl. Use a scent to fit the mood - for spring cleaning, a great citrus scent would be very clean smelling! --

2 tsp borax
4 tbs vinegar
3 cups hot water
1/4 tsp liquid Castile soap
Wipe with dampened cloth or use spray bottle and wipe

Taking out new bedding that has been stored away? Launder them using green detergent and hang dry them or put them in the dryer using lavender sachets

In all that scrubbing - if you find some mold from being closed up - Wash with pure vinegar

Open up a room or basement closed up for the winter? Get that dingy smell?
Cut an onion in half then place it in the middle of the room for 12-24 hours


What are some green cleaning methods do you use?