People ask me all the time for simple ways they can go “green” in their homes without breaking the bank. One simple way is by introducing green products slowly. For example, as you run out of cleaning chemicals, replace them with safe, natural products. You can even make many of these safe products using items from your cupboards. You will find it well worth the effort to follow these steps to eliminate toxins from your home, clean green, and then maintain an eco-friendly home by using green products whenever remodeling.
Give Your Home A Breath Of Fresh Air
While the warm weather is here, open up those windows for at least a few minutes each day; in most cases the outdoor air is so much cleaner than the stale air indoors. Let those stale smells waft out your windows and welcome that fresh air inside! Of course, if the humidity and temperatures are high and you air condition your house, wait until a cool evening to let the fresh air in. You don’t want to make your air conditioner work harder and burn more energy!
Poisons Be Gone
Take some time to read your labels. You will likely notice all the toxins that exist in your cleaning supplies, batteries, pesticides, paints, thinners, and even personal products. Check your local EPA website (http://www.epa.gov/) to learn how to effectively get rid of these hazardous wastes.
Using Green to Clean Is Best
You should use only natural products to clean your newly “aired out” and “clutter-free” home. You can either buy organic, non-toxic cleaners in a natural health store or make natural cleaners yourself. Two of my favorite natural cleaning “recipes” are:
- All-Purpose Cleaning Spray: Mix 1 part white vinegar and 1 part water in a spray bottle, adding in your favorite essential oils. Spray and scrub. For really tough soap scum or mineral deposits, warm the solution first, spray, and let sit before scrubbing. (For countertops, sinks, toilets, and for spot cleaning floors)
- Bathtub & Sink Scrub: In a bowl, make a paste with baking soda, a squirt of your dish soap, and a squeeze of lemon; mix to the consistency of frosting. Dip cloth or sponge into paste and scrub.
For really stubborn grime, allow to sit 10-15 minutes before rinsing.
When you have remodeling or repair work to be done in your home such as window replacement, interior painting and other such updates, it’s smart to use a home maintenance service that specializes in using eco-friendly and green products. Double paned energy-savings windows and environmentally friendly paints, containing low or zero VOC’s, are a great way to make your home greener without a major expense.
Clean The Clutter
All your extra “stuff” that you may need someday just harbors dust, mold and bacteria. Don’t know what is considered clutter? If you aren’t actively using it, enjoying it, or wearing it on a regular basis, then get rid of it by donating it to a charity for someone else to enjoy.
Besides fresh air, one of the greenest ways to ensure the air in your home stays clean is to regularly change your air filters in your furnace and air-conditioning unit with high-powered, eco-friendly filters at least every spring. While doing this, clean all fan blades to stop from recirculation that brings dust back into your home.
About the Author: Joaquin Erazo, Jr. is the Chief Marketing Officer (CMO) of Case Design/Remodeling, Inc. He loves to blog and shows his clients the value of making their home more eco-friendly and introducing them to products to make their home greener when remodeling.