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How to Go Green: Cleaning Your Home

The pollution in the air and the dust that seems to have become a part of our daily life require that we are constantly fighting to keep our homes clean. Furniture, countertops, windows, floors, dishes and clothes require constant attention and therefore there is always a plethora of cleaning products around our homes, to assist us in the task of keeping our homes clean. Most of these cleaning products are petroleum based and are therefore environmentally unfriendly and also have health implications. So one has to go green and use natural products that can keep the house clean without having any other effects.

Fortunately with the present environmental consciousness that is now sweeping the world, manufacturers have bowed to public opinion and come up with green cleaning products that are non-toxic, bio-degradable and made from renewable sources; all very vital aspects for going green. Our forefathers and ancestors used just vinegar and baking soda to clean almost anything. Even today you can use this simple cleaning product, by mixing either of these with a little warm water and making up your own all purpose home cleaner. A mixture of hydrogen peroxide and water is also good for cleaning the taps in the home.

Air quality in a home requires as much attention as cleanliness. Due to the very high standards of insulation and building materials, homes are almost sealed off from the outside atmosphere, and we tend to improve air quality by using aerosols with air fresheners, both environmentally unfriendly solutions. Instead of that just keep your windows open, whenever you are cleaning the house and let the natural fresh air blow into your home. It will probably bring in with it the smell of your freshly mowed lawn and the scent of the flowers in your garden.

Cleaners nowadays are widely advertised as anti bacterial and anti microbial, and these big words impress us enough to make us buy these products. Use of these products may kill the germs initially, but these germs ultimately mutate into super germs which these cleaners are then ineffective against. Ultimately the environmentally friendly vegetable oil based soap and plain water is the best way to clean your hands and can never have any harmful effects either on your hands or the environment.

Odors in a house can be easily removed with baking soda, whether it is in your fridge or on the carpet. Try it out. If you want to add a natural air freshener to your house, boil some cinnamon or any natural herbs that you like and let the aroma of these waft through your house. Even freshly baked chocolate chip cookies will spread their aroma from the kitchen to all parts of your house and gladden the hearts of all, especially the children. Plants in the house can also help to reduce odor, especially if they are the broad leaf type.

If you have been convinced about all this and decide to dispense with the aerosols and other cleaning products, see that you dispose them off safely. Communities do offer such services nowadays and you would do well to take advantage of them. See that you use dry cleaners that use green methods to clean clothes instead of the conventional perc. All the same air your clothes thoroughly after you get them back from the dry cleaners. If you do use a maid cleaning service, insist that they use only ‘green’ cleaners. See that the home is made a zone where outside footwear is not allowed. This will keep away the dirt and the other muck from around the town entering your house, and allow you to keep it cleaner.

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