Disinfecting and Sanitizing at home

July 20, 2021

If you have been wanting to ditch those toxic, commercial household cleaners and switch to a natural, homemade cleaner, these simple natural cleaner recipes will not only make your home a healthier space, they will virtually eliminate that foul chemical odor and they're surprisingly inexpensive and easy to create.  

Here are a few items which you have always been using in your regular. You can easily find all these items in your local drug store or departmental store, or even better, in your own home!  

  1. White vinegar
  1. Hydrogen Peroxide (Bleach)
  1. Warm Water
  1. Essential oils- Tea tree oil, Eucalyptus oil, Lavender oil
  1. Liquid soap
  1. Baking soda
  1. Borax powder
  1. Lemon rind/ juice
  1. Salt

Surprised that it’s this simple and easy? We were too!

It’s fairly usual, how most of us don’t have an idea about the multiple uses of these products. But no worries, because this article will easily give you the start you need to natural and sustainable cleaning!

But before you begin, there are a few key points that you must keep in mind. Before you try out your homemade cleaning solutions on visible surfaces, try them out on hidden test surfaces to get an idea of its suitability.

Surfaces must be cleaned with water and soap or detergent first to remove dirt, followed by disinfection.  Cleaning should always start from the least soiled (cleanest) area to the most soiled (dirtiest) area to not spread the dirt to less soiled areas.

All disinfectant solutions should be stored in opaque containers (to prevent reactions due to light exposure), in a well-ventilated, covered area that is not exposed to direct sunlight and ideally should be freshly prepared every day. If not, the solutions should be remade freshly once every week.

For stone counter-tops and porous surfaces, try to avoid harsh chemicals like bleach or acids, which might eat through it. Plain warm water, gently scrubbed with a sponge or cloth will work just fine.

With this, let’s get cleaning green!

Tough stains on clothes and surfaces?

Hydrogen peroxide is a bleaching agent, thus can be used, and diluted in equal parts water, to remove stains. Again, don’t use on porous surfaces as it is a strong chemical.

The above solution is also proven to kill bacteria and viruses (certified by CDC and WHO), thus, it’s a very good homemade option for disinfecting surfaces during these times.

Resource- www.bhg.com  

Grout on tiles and other nooks and crannies?

Borax powder mixed in water is a good solution for removing fungus, moulds and grout off tiles, and other surfaces. Borax can also be used as an insect repellent.

Want an all-round home cleaner and disinfectant?

White vinegar is known to kill bacteria and viruses due to its acidic nature. Thus diluting with equal parts water along with dish soap and essential oils will make a great natural antibacterial cleaner with a great fragrance.

You can also use it as a toilet cleaner. Put some baking soda on your toilet seat, spray the above solution and let it sit for 5-10 minutes. Wash away with water.

Dull Metal-ware?  

Lemon rind/ juice with salt can be a great metal cleaner, especially for brass and copper. One can also use baking soda and water made into a paste, to clean silverware safely.  

Dirty and foggy windows and mirrors?

Combine 2 cups water, ½ cup white vinegar, 1/4th cup rubbing alcohol (Isopropyl alcohol) and a few drops of essential oils to make a homemade glass and mirror surface cleaner.

Resource- www.goodhousekeeping.com  

Unable to stock up on sanitizers?

Here is how you can make Homemade sanitizers, two ways-

  1. Isopropyl Alcohol (Minimum 60% to maximum 75 to 99%) - 3 parts
  1. Aloe Vera gel- 1 part
  1. Tea tree oil- few generous drops

Since the above solution leaves your hands a little sticky, one can also try another solution:

  1. Isopropyl Alcohol (Minimum 60% to maximum 75 to 99%) - 360 ml
  1. Hydrogen Peroxide (Bleach) - 1 tbsp
  1. Glycerine- 2 tsp
  1. Distilled/ Boiled and cooled water- 90 ml

Store the above solutions in a spray or squeeze bottle and make sure that the tools you use for mixing are properly sanitized; otherwise, you could potentially contaminate the whole solution. Also, the WHO recommends letting your concoction sit for a minimum of 72 hours after you're done. That way the sanitizer has time to kill any bacteria that might have been introduced during the mixing process.

Resource- www.wired.com, www.who.int  

In indoor spaces, routine application of disinfectants to surfaces via spraying is not recommended during the current COVID 19 pandemic according to WHO. If disinfectants are to be applied, these should be via a cloth or wipe which is soaked in the disinfectant. Unable to find them at your nearest store?

Here is how you can make Homemade disinfecting wipes:

  1. Isopropyl Alcohol/ rubbing alcohol (Minimum 60% to maximum 75 to 99%) - 3 cups
  1. 3 % Hydrogen Peroxide (Bleach) - 3/4th tsp
  1. Eucalyptus/ Lavender essential oil- 10-15 drops
  1. Paper towels/ cloth towels which are strong enough to absorb and stand the effect of the solution

Mix the above ingredients in a large container. Place the paper towels/ cloth towels in a large jar with an airtight lid (fold them into half and place it together). Then pour the prepared mixture and close the lid. Use the wipes to disinfect hard non-porous surfaces like the sink, remote, electronics, knobs, taps etc.

Resources- www.oneessentialcommunity.com  

Caution: When it comes to cleaning and disinfecting, apart from using sanitation products, one should always wash hands regularly, before and after use and keep children away from above products.

Safe Sanitizing!

If you are keen to join our cause and to know more about our workshops on sustainable living, please connect to us at 9154100775 or mail us at oes@organo.co.in


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