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Green Cleaning

Everybody wants a clean and healthy home. Taking the green approach avoids use of hazardous products, which protects your health and the environment.

Don’t over clean

Most areas of your home--even bathroom surfaces--do not need to be disinfected to prevent illness.

The kitchen is the exception. Use very hot water and soap (or a very mild bleach solution) after every use to clean:

  • Food preparation surfaces
  • Utensils
  • Cleaning rags
  • Sponges

Try non-chemical solutions first

Often, preventive measures can avoid problems like a stopped-up drain. If you’ve got a mess on your hands, try non-chemical solutions as a first step. See Non-toxic Cleaning Tips.

Make a Green Clean Kit


green cleaning bucket

You can make a green cleaning kit to use around your house. All you need is the following ingredients and our recipes to make your own green cleansers.

  • A bucket
  • Spray bottle
  • Rag or scrubber
  • Bon Ami
  • Vinegar and Baking soda

Buy the least hazardous product and use it correctly

If elbow grease and making your own green cleaners isn’t enough, take these steps when buying household cleaners:

  • Avoid products marked “Poison” or “Danger.” These words indicate the highest level of hazard, under federal law.
  • Be careful with products marked “Caution” or “Warning,” which carry moderate hazard.
  • Always read labels and follow the directions.
  • Never mix cleaning products, such as those containing chlorine with those containing ammonia.

Safely dispose of hazardous products

If you have leftover toxic cleaning products, offer them to others who can use them.

If disposal is your only option, see Where to Dispose of Hazardous Waste.

Links to other sites

Washington Toxics Coalition
Local Hazardous Waste Program