Do! Green Cleaning Conversion

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Do!  Green Cleaning Conversion

There’s more to do than just decide to convert to green cleaning products in your home.  If you’re like most people, you end up with the problem of what to do with the nasty chemical-laden products you are replacing.  What to do with the nasty oven and toilet cleaners, windows and general purpose cleaners, and carpet and fabric cleaners? It’s not as easy a decision as you might think. I think the answer depends heavily on the reasons you decided to go green in the first place.

How you dispose of commercial cleaners depends on why you decided not to use them.

If your primary concern is the harmful impact commercial cleaners have on your family, then dispose of the chemicals in the quickest and most complete way.  Pour liquid and gels down the drain. Put the solids in the trash, if it’s safe to do so.

Kreateedoo chemicals in cleaners

If you are most concerned about the environment, you’ll likely want to take your time figuring out the most ecological way to dispose of each cleaner. You can check with your local township, city, or county. They often have hazardous disposal days and will accept what you want to get rid of. You can even choose to transfer the liquids and solids into glass or metal containers and recycle any plastics the cleaners came in.  

If saving green is most important to you, then use up the cleaners you have now and replace them with green cleaners as you run out.  Use our cleaning matrix to help figure out the ingredients to start collecting so when you run out of commercial cleaners you’ll have what you need to make your own.  

A Mixed Method of Disposal

If you are concerned about all of these things, perhaps you want to choose to dispose of some, use some up, and get rid of the nastiest chemicals through a local hazardous disposal opportunity.  This is how I am doing it.

I’m using up my carpet cleaner and Blue Dawn dish soap and will use green cleaners when those are gone.  I’ve gathered the nasty toilet cleaners and won’t use them again. I’m saving them for an upcoming disposal day in my county.   I’ve used Murphy’s Oil Soap for a long time for washing wood cupboards and furniture. I’ll use that up and not replace it.  I’m fortunate to not have too many commercial cleaners to deal with.

Disposal of Commercial Household Cleaners

Depending on why you’re choosing to go green in your cleaning methods, here are a few ideas on how to dispose of your existing commercial cleaners:

  • Post an ad on freecycle.org with the cleaners you want to give away.
  • Check Earth911.com and put in your zip code to find disposal sources.
  • Check with your local government. Most have disposal days or locations where you can turn in your cleaners.
  • Local homeless or animal shelters or other community-supported organizations might be interested in your donations.  
  • Call the number on the cleaner packaging to see how they recommend disposing of it.
  • We can now order these commercial cleaners and have them shipped to you. Why not ship them back to the manufacturer and have them dispose of their creations?  
  • If you’re comfortable with it, pour liquids and gels down the drain and follow with lots of hot water.  Securely wrap solid cleaners and put them in the trash.
  • Use up the cleaners you have and don’t replace them.

A New Discovery

I’ve only recently heard about cleaning cloths with special compounds or fibers that require only water to clean.  I’ve talked to three friends who have the Norwex cloths and swear by them. I meant to order Norwex cloths. When I received them I realized I had ordered a different brand instead – an E-Cloth set.  

The set I ordered (above) has these cloths in it:

  • 2 Kitchen cloths with scrubber
  • Glass and polishing cloth
  • Bathroom cloth
  • Window cloth
  • Dusting cloth
  • Stainless steel cloth
  • Range and stovetop cloth

So far, I’ve only tried a couple of the cloths and they’ve worked great!  I love the fact that they require nothing beyond water to clean. The cloths are machine washable (no fabric softeners!) and are guaranteed for 300 washes.  The price is a bargain even when considering homemade green cleaners.

Kreateedoo cleaning with only water

I have learned a lot this month about green cleaning.  The month began with my confusion about all the conflicting advice online about what to mix and not mix, what cleaners to use on which surfaces.  I made the green cleaning matrix to try and sort it all out and shared it with you.  To better organize my cleaning supplies, I repurposed an old towel into a rag bag and I’ve now put my new E-cloths in it.  We’ve totally transformed how we clean our home this month and I feel so much the better for it.  I hope you will decide to take this journey yourself.

The Journey Thus Far

In this Kreateedoo journey so far, I’ve nearly eliminated our use of single-use plastics and dramatically reduced the plastic use in our home.  There’s just something so satisfying about all of the wood bowls and platters, and glass storage jars I’m using instead of plastic now.    

Following my daughter’s fine example, I worked to pursue a more minimalist lifestyle and cannot tell you adequately what a difference it’s made in how I feel about my home now.  I can breathe again with almost no clutter and I’ve gotten the great gift of more time to do as I choose (which is usually spent working on this blog!).  

With spring springing all about and with everything I’ve learned this month about green cleaners, I’m actually looking forward to giving my house a thorough cleaning.  

I’m also looking forward to next month’s topic.  Although I’m feeling more settled at home, my day job has recently changed significantly and I’m anxious to be more quieted in my mind.  I’ve long had an interest in meditation but have never really felt I had the time or strong inclination to really get into it. I’m going to rectify that in the coming month.  I hope you will come along with me and I hope you will stop in to Kreateedoo again soon.

Peace and be well,

Marin

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