While Spring Cleaning is gearing up, it is important to think of ways to do it in an Eco-friendly manner since so many people will be using chemicals and dumping their trash. The great thing about living green is, you really can do just about anything a more eco-friendly way and it doesn’t require much if any effort at all. Plus, green living often equals frugal living as I find the two go hand-in-hand very nicely most of the time.
Eco-Friendly Spring Cleaning Tips
First and foremost, do your cleaning with the right attitude. The simple “Reduce, re-use, recycle” adage applies here just as it does in day-to-day life. Before you toss anything that will just go into the landfill, ask yourself, “Can this be used for something else, even if it isn’t for me? Can this or parts of this be recycled?” If the answer is yes, start making piles of things you will possibly sell on Craigslist, giveaway on free-cycle and take to the recycling center. Don’t automatically just toss carelessly into the garbage.
Make your own cleaning supplies with natural elements. You can make your own simple abrasive cleaner for less than 50 cents to use on cleaning hard areas like garage sinks, baseboards, showers, tubs and even the microwave. You can also use simple things like plain distilled vinegar to clean more surfaces than you could even imagine.
More Homemade Cleaners:
- 5 Easy DIY Cleaning Products
- Frugal Eco-Friendly Homemade Soaps and Cleaners
- Homemade Soft Scrub
- Laundry Tips
- DIY Furniture Polish
- Reusable Disinfecting Wipes
- Homemade glass cleaning Wipes
- Frugal Paperless Window Cleaning
- Homemade Carpet Cleaners and Stain Removers
Rid yourself of dangerous things safely and in a better manner for the environment. Don’t dump chemicals, paint or paint thinner in drains. Instead, ask your local recycling center or garbage pickup service to advise you on where you can go to have it destroyed properly. Also, never flush old medications down the toilet. Trace amounts stay in the water that you and your neighbors will eventually drink. Instead, many pharmacies or police departments offer certain times of the year that they will take them and destroy them for free.
One of the number one things that end up in landfills is furniture and clothing. The sad part is, many of the pieces that go there are totally still useful and in good shape. Instead of tossing, if you don’t have the time to hassle with selling these still-useful items, call local charities such as half-way house for those who are looking to transition from homelessness to homes or local clothing ‘closets” for the homeless and ask if you can make a donation. Many times, these charities will even come pick up your items.
If Spring Cleaning also means some DIY projects such as painting, choose low-VOC paint as it has less chemical air pollutants and is better for the environment. Make sure to also decorate places like your living room the green way after you de-clutter it.
Skip wasteful cleaning products like swiffers and paper towels. Instead, opt for rags. You can make rags out of pretty much anything. So as you are going through you old clothing and wanting to get rid of some of it, consider the ones with holes or stains as your new rags. Cut into washcloth sized squares and launder them when you are done. You can even take rags and use them on your swiffer style mop. Just make a rag the same size as one of the clothes and tuck it into the holes. Spray the bottom of your rag with vinegar.
How do you live greener when you are cleaning? I would love to hear your eco-friendly cleaning tips!
Jen M @ www.teachingtinyfootprints.com says
I love all of your great tips. I just recently made a bunch of rags out of old teeshirts of different colors. Now, when it’s time to clean with my vinegar, water and essential oil mixture, my 2 small kids love grabbing the pretty rags and helping out!