Tuesday, September 1, 2015

DIY Cleaners - All Purpose Cleaner




If you remember my "The summer that was!" post, you'll know that we moved into our new condo this summer.

The new house though cute came with a lot of work. The property was not in use for a long time. The landlord did replace the carpets and gave it a fresh coat of paint, but it still need some TLC... actually a lot of TLC. The appliances were filthy. The oven had a thick layer of grease. The counter was spotty and the cabinets dusty. And lets not even start on the bathrooms and the backyard weeds. It required a lot of work to make this house habitable. Since every cloud has a silver lining, some good came from this extensive house cleaning operation.
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Have you ever read the label of a household cleaner? It is SCARY!

And yes... there are all natural and organic 'Green Cleaners' on the self too.
But have you checked their prices???
Are they really worth that much????!!!

I have seen a lot of easy to make, absolutely natural cleansers. I wanted to try, but wasn't sure if they were as competent as their conventional commercial counterparts. My greasy, grimy new kitchen gave me the perfect opportunity to test it out. I had nothing to loose. In case it failed, Walmart was just around the corner.

And I was surprised. Very pleasantly surprised. They work as effectively as the chemical laden ones, except they didn't burn my nostrils.

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I am a relatively new in this Green/All Natural Cleaning world. Still taking baby steps. I am heavily dependent on all those wonderful mommy blogs in the blogosphere for inspiration and information. And then applying my own judgement.

The two things all is almost constant on all the Natural Cleaning recipes and Vinegar and Baking Soda. And these two are my new 'cleaning' best friends.

When used alone, Baking Soda is good for cleaning and deodorizing. And white vinegar is good for cutting grease and removing mildew. But when combined, the mixture releases carbon-di-oxide, which cuts through stains, dirt and water/scum deposits. 


This recipe of All Purpose Cleaner that I am sharing today works like a charm. I use it everyday on my Kitchen Counter, Kitchen Floor, Bathroom Floors and Vanity, It also does  great job of touch-up cleaning for 'oh-dear-guests-are-coming' sort of situation on the tub and shower shower enclosures too.




How Does it Work
Vinegar - cuts grease, removes mildew, odors, stains and wax build-up.
Baking Soda - cleans, deodorizes, softens water, scours.
Lemon - one of the strongest food-acids, effective against most household bacteria.
Tea Tree Oil - antibacterial, antimicrobial, antiseptic, antiviral, fungicide, insecticide, stimulant
Peppermint Oil - antibacterial, calming, natural bug and pest deterrent.

My new house had a nasty ant and spider infestation and the use of peppermint oil has kept the situation at bay pretty successfully. If you do not have a bug/pest problem, substitute the peppermint oil with lemon or orange essential oil for more cleaning power and a lovely citrus-y scent.


Apart from the fact that the All-Natural DIY cleaners, are non toxic and good for the environment and you, another reason most people are switching to is how inexpensive it is. I still haven't done a Comparative Cost Analysis between my use of Conventional Cleaner vs DIY Cleaners. I am still reeling under the impact of my investment on essential oils. Essential oils tend to be expensive upfront, but you really use just a few drops. It is very recently that I started working with essential oils. I might not know the best brands or the prices just yet. But I find the brand '365' from WholeFoods to be petty reasonable. The rest of the DIY staples are pretty inexpensive and buying in bulk from Costco also helps.

Please let me know any thought that you might have on this cleaner. I am still new in this area and any feedback is always welcomed.

DIY All Natural All Purpose Cleaner

What I need:
2 cups of warm water
1 tablespoon of Baking Soda (the deodorizer)
1/2 cup of white Vinegar (degreaser and disinfectant)
1 teaspoon of Dawn (or any dish detergent)
Juice of 1 lemon
10 drops of Tea Tree Essential Oil (antibacterial) (optional)
10 drops of Pure Peppermint Essential Oil (bug repellent) (optional)
1 4 cup measuring cup
1 spray bottle
1 funnel



What I did:

1. In a 4-cup measuring cup, add 2 cups of water and warm it in the microwave for 1 minute.

2. Add the baking soda and the Dawn and mix well.


3. Add the juice of one lemon and the vinegar very very slowly. It will fizz quite a bit. 


4. Once the mix had stopped fizzing, mix it well and add the essential oils, if using. 


5. Give it another good mix and pour it in a spray bottle, with the help of a funnel.


6. Use it on kitchen counter, stove top, kitchen floors, bathroom floors, bathroom vanity, shower enclosures and tubs. Just give it a good shake before using. 



Notes/Tip: 

1. I use peppermint oil because my house has a ant infestation problem and using peppermint oil has helped a lot in keeping the problem at bay. But feel free to use any other kind of oil. Citrus oils are great for kitchen.


2. I generally make one batch and use it for both kitchen and bathroom as I really like the fresh peppermint smell. But you can halve the recipe and make two batch with different essential - one for kitchen and one for bathroom.


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3 comments:

  1. I am so happy with the idea of one cleaner for everything. And you handed over the recipe, good for you. It is amazing what actually goes into soap products. Harsh chemicals, perfumes, and chemical preservatives are the worst. You can't go wrong when you are using baking soda and vinegar to clean. The reaction tells you it is working.

    Bo Tolbert @ HJS Supply Co.

    ReplyDelete

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