Cleaning green is a science in itself. Make the most use of the cleaning products you have chosen for your natural green home cleaning and the green janitorial supplies and chemicals you have chosen to enhance your business green initiatives and to improve your employee health. There are budget friendly techniques for your green cleaning. Neither the green cleaning products and green janitorial chemicals and supplies nor the green cleaning methods need to cost more for the homemaker, housekeeper, business owner, or custodial staff.
The first post in this series presented to you some changes you can take in your cleaning strategy. Some cost efficient and easy to do, high impact practices you can implement are:
- Purchasing properly sized plastic trash bags and those that are the appropriate thickness for the contents will lead to the avoidance of wasting material
- Using disposable paper products (paper hand towels and toilet tissue) with a high total amount of recycled content. This is preferable because it can reduce impacts on forest ecosystems compared to the use of virgin tree fiber which requires more tree cutting when can negatively impact forest ecosystems. Unbleached is better than bleached to avoid the chlorinating process that causes dioxin.
- Even choosing durable products (e.g. mop bucket, microfiber cleaning cloths) will further reduce environmental impacts (and long term cost) due to less frequent replacement requirements.
Changing the natural green home and business cleaning procedures has a large impact on the end result. Here are six easy to do actions that will improve your outcome. As these practices are put into use we find that we are also saving money – both in product cost, and even more significantly the cost of labor!
- Focus on preventing dirt and contaminants from entering the building in the first place. This can be done by keeping walks and parking areas clean and swept so shoes stay clean and dry – avoid road salt whenever possible.
- Install effective matting in front of and behind all points of entry to collect and remove the dirt and contaminants that have made their way into the building is prevention oriented and eco friendly. A good rule of thumb for the “walk off mats” is for them to be sized as wide as the doorway and twice as long. (Matching the mat for weather conditions, types of soils and traffic will enhance the effectiveness of this green cleaning strategy. Of course proper maintenance of these mats is equally important.
- Install durable, hard surface floor surfaces, easy to clean materials for floors and walls.
- Start high and dry … working down to remove dust rather than more dust and dirt. Replacing traditional feather and wool dusters and cotton rags with high quality microfiber cloths enables you to remove dust rather than kicking it back into the air.
- Put into place a vacuuming program that removes loose dirt for the purpose of minimizing the more aggressive cleaning operations later. Attention paid to spot removal quickly and daily and routine maintenance is the greener approach to carpet care.
- Ending the green cleaning process with a damp (not wet) mop with clean water or auto scrub floors instead of dry sweeping floors will keep dust down.
Additionally here are four more natural green cleaning strategies for your home and your business:
- Decorate with live plants as they have been found to reduce indoor air pollution, as well as providing more oxygen.
- Open your windows and ventilate the natural way as air outside is generally cleaner than the inside.
- Conserve water wherever possible for instance do not run water unless you are using it or catching it in a bucket. (Using a nontoxic floor cleaner will enable you to use the waste water on your landscaping.)
- Maintain the heating and ventilating system to reduce or eliminate airborne contaminants such as bacteria and molds.
Following these suggestions, as well as selecting and using the right green cleaning products and green janitorial supplies and chemicals you can make sure your home and work environment is a truly clean haven rather than a chemical storage tank.