Spring brings longer days, warmer weather, and bright flowers. It puts a “spring” in our steps! What a great time for an eco-friendly cleanup!
As you begin, leave nasty chemicals and stuffy air behind. Follow these tips to make this year’s spring cleaning friendly toward the environment.
- Use all-natural cleaners when possible. Most of your home can be cleaned with water, soap, vinegar, and baking soda. Recipes for homemade cleaning supplies abound on the Internet. Just search online to find the ones that work best for you. If you buy cleaners, look for less toxic options in the store.
- Change your laundry practices. Use cold water for most of your laundry. This saves the 75% of your washer’s energy that’s used toward heating water. Only wash full loads and dry your laundry outside or indoors on a clothesline. In the market for a new machine? Look for an efficient washer that uses less water and energy.
- Use old rags and cloths instead of paper towels to wipe down surfaces. Toss them in the wash afterwards to use again or simply rinse them by hand for small cleanups.
- Open the windows and turn on the fans when you start cleaning. This keeps the air moving and any chemicals from settling into your home and onto you. Add some plants to keep the air fresh without chemical fresheners.
- Take this time to rid your home of things you don’t need. Any clothes shoved into the back of your closet or books collecting dust on the shelves can be boxed up and donated. For more on donating textiles you no longer need, read From Rags to Riches. And check out Reuse Puts Items to Good Use.
- Pay extra attention to cleaning appliances. Dusting off the refrigerator coils and giving the oven a nice, deep cleaning make the machines more energy efficient.
- Clean out your recycling and trash bins and organize tools that help you stay ecofriendly, like reusable shopping bags and bulk food containers.
With everything clean and in its place, you’ll be ready to enjoy spring and summer activities!
Photo credit: Dean Mitchell | E+ | Getty Images