Spring Is In The Air, But Are Bugs And Germs As Well?Written by Alex under Air Conditioners, Air Purifiers, General | No Comments
Spring is almost upon us and naturally that means it’s time for a good spring clean! Today people are more aware of the chemicals they bring into their homes and the affects these chemicals have upon their own health and the wider health of the planet, than ever before.
People are particularly conscious of chemicals that they put on and in their bodies, from cosmetics to food additives but they often forget about the chemicals in the cleaning products that they use to clean the floors, furniture and surfaces around the home. If you’re trying to keep the number of chemicals you ingest to a minimum all your efforts will come to aught if you clean food prep surfaces with fragranced bleaches or other antibacterial agents.
Another consequence of keeping your home completely bacteria-free is an effect on your immune system. Many cleaning products are sold on their ability to eradicate germs from the home entirely, however, there are at least two consequences of this: If you have children who are never exposed to bugs they can never build up an immunity to them. This means that when they do come into contact with a school chum with a bug such as a sniffle or upset stomach they will have no defence against it and be so much the worse for it.
The other consequence is digestive. Those ‘friendly bacteria’ that we hear so much about are all around us, that is until we douse our homes in ammonia! People often cite the fact that there are more germs on a chopping board than there are in a lavatory. The thing is that these bacteria are almost exclusively harmless or indeed beneficial to human health. Those that aren’t, those present in raw meats et cetera are killed by cooking and basic food hygiene. Destroying all known germs dead is just unnecessary.
If you want to keep absolute tabs on the chemicals that are coming into your home it is perfectly possible to make effective cleaning products out of edible goods such as vinegar and baking soda.
Vinegar is a great multi surface cleanser, mix half vinegar with half water to create a detergent that can be used on almost any surface around the home. It has de-greasing and anti bacterial properties which aren’t as harsh as bleaches, it tastes vile but will do no significant harm if drunk by children or animals. While it smells ‘vinegary’ the smell disappears when it dries and helps eliminate other odour as it goes.
Using vinegar in the bathroom will cut through soap scum and lime scale. If your taps are scaly dampen some toilet tissue with vinegar, wrap it around the metalwork and cover it in cling film. Leave it overnight and the scale will have dissolved but the acid is so mild the metal will be unharmed.
If your family has sensitive skins then adding vinegar to your laundry will make it as soft as any conditioner. Just add a ¼ pint to the rinse cycle and it will soften clothes while also stripping away any detergent residue that might be left in the fabric.
Vinegar has traditionally been used to clean windows too. Wipe them down with undiluted vinegar on a cloth and then scrub away with screwed up newspaper. You’ll find that there are no smears or streaks, in fact it’s a far better product, and far cheaper than any off the shelf window cleaning formula.
Baking soda can be used in much the same way as scouring powder except it’s absolutely harmless. Using it as a gentle abrasive means that it can be used on any surface, no matter how delicate and it has the added advantage of being a natural deodorizer. Put half a cup in the fridge to stop it smelling, if a child or pet are ill in the home or car rinsing with clean water might remove the stain but not the smell, cover the affected area with baking soda overnight and then vacuuming it up the next day will take the smell away.
If you have teenagers or you yourself engage in sports & your sports shoes are shocking simply put a few tablespoons of baking soda in them for a day when you’re not using them and you’ll find they’re clean and refreshed!