April 30, 2010

Spring Cleaning for the allergy ridden, safe, green ways to clean

I've been spring cleaning lately, and I've come up with a few tips for helping those (like me) with allergies clean their house.

Clean the dust off of surfaces, fans, etc. with a wet cloth or wet paper towel. Why? The wet cloth actually removes the dust from your house, the dry cloth just moves the dust around and stirs it into the air.

Vacuum instead of sweeping, once again this removes the dust and debree from your house instead of moving it around.

Mop to remove anything that might have been left behind by the vacuum cleaner.

Clean the carpets in addition to vacuuming them.

Wear a protective facial mask to prevent and allergic reactions.

If necessary take an antihistamine before starting to dust.

Remember to dust in those places that don't normally get cleaned; just because you can't see the dust does not mean it is not there (waiting to cause you all sorts of breathing problems, and rashes etc.).

Use "green" or all natural products when you clean. The harsher products can leave chemicals in the air that cause just as many allergic reactions as that dust and mold you are cleaning away.

I don't bother with buying the green products in the store. I make my own at home.

Gently stir together 1/4 cup vinegar, 2 cups water, one squirt of dish washing liquid, and pour into an empty spray bottle and use it to wash windows with. Use newspaper, or old phone book paper to clean glass. Paper towels and cloths tend to leave a specks.

Use Borax to clean counters, etc. (If you can't find Borax in your local department store try Alice.com)
Dissolve 3/4 cup borax (or more) into 1 gallon of hot water. Pour some of this solution into another empty spray bottle and use for a multipurpose cleaner. Use the rest of this solution to mop your floors (you can also use some of this solution help clean your carpets).
 
This stuff is great on grease and grime, but not so good for stain removal.

I plan on trying out a lemon method I read about for stain removal.  Roll a lemon gently on the counter and then cut it in half dip the flesh of the lemon into either salt or baking soda. Rub the lemon over your counters or other surfaces in need of cleaning and stain removal.

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