Asians for Humans, Animals & Nature

Easy Alternative to Chemical Cleaners
Use common kitchen ingredients for a quick recipe for housecleaning. Instead of using the chemical-laden products below, replace them with household products such as baking soda, lemon juice or vinegar. A little imagination and some help from this chart can make chores such as polishing furniture and cleaning floors a nontoxic and environmentally friendly event.

Instead of floor cleaners:

For vinyl tile or linoleum, mix 1 cup white vinegar in 2 gallons of water.
For wood floors, mix 1 teaspoon washing soda in 1 gallon hot water.

Instead of air fresheners:
Place a dish of warm vinegar on the counter.
Simmer cloves and cinnamon in water.
Set out an open box of baking soda, or bottle of vanilla extract.

Instead of mothballs:
Mix 1/2 lb. mint, 1/4 lb. thyme and 2 tablespoons cloves and hang in cheesecloth bags.
Mix cedar chips, rosemary, mint, dried tobacco and whole peppercorns with cedar oil. Store in cedar chest.

Instead of glass cleaner:
Mix 1/2 cup vinegar and 1 quart water.
Mix 2 tablespoons lemon juice in 1 quart water or use baking soda on a wet rag.

Instead of oven cleaner:
Use aluminum foil or trays to protect racks.
Put salt on area before the oven cools, then clean with baking soda and water.

Instead of chemical disinfectants:
Use washing soda and warm water.

Instead of laundry detergent:
Add borax to your laundry.
Sprinkle washing soda over your clothes.

Instead of furniture polish:
Make a lemon wax by mixing 1 teaspoon lemon oil with 1 pint of mineral oil.
Scrub surfaces with shaving soap.
Clean with borax and warm water.

Instead of insecticide for plants:

Put soapy water on leaves.

Excerpted from Drinking Water Hazards (Envirographics) by John Cary Stewart. Caution: Children should be kept away from many of these products, including borax and boric acid.