For those who make their own cleaning solutions....

DLM2000July 20, 2008

..... will you share your specific recipes? I'm looking to cut down on chemicals (aren't most of us?) cut down on costs (aren't most of us?) and cut down on the number of products I use overall (well, some of us like a cabinet full of stuff !).

What's your recipe for a window cleaner that you can keep in a spray bottle?

What's your recipe for a tile/tub cleaner? Do you have one that can be kept in a spray bottle? Do you use it to clean toilets?

What do you use on a dust cloth? For years I've used a very dilute solution of vinegar/water on a damp microfiber cloth but frankly, it's not the greatest. Is there anything homemade that attracts dust like Endust?

Those are my big 3 but I'm open to any suggestions. Thanks for sharing!


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Window cleaner:
2 T vinegar
1/2 C rubbing alcohol
1 1/2 C water
pinch of soap or detergent
few drops of lime or lemon oil

Bathroom cleaner:
2T borax
1 C vinegar
1/2 t tea tree oil
15 drops grapefruit seed extract
1/2 t detergent or soap

Heavy duty cleaner:
2 t Borax
1 t washing soda
1/4 t detergent or soap
4 T vinegar or lemon juice
4 C water

I use Charlie's soap or castile soap in the above recipes. I use the bathroom cleaner to clean the toilet. I use baking soda if I need a slightly abrasive scrub, or salt on a lemon half.

    Bookmark   July 20, 2008 at 2:51PM
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Alice thank you so much - that's exactly what I was looking for! I'm printing it out now and will laminate it and hang it on the inside of my cleaning cabinet door. Where do you find grapefruit seed extract and is there a purpose beyond scent?

    Bookmark   July 20, 2008 at 3:26PM
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health food store

It has no scent to speak of, but is a decent disinfectant, also safe to ingest if you want to clean or disinfect countertops.

    Bookmark   July 20, 2008 at 4:24PM
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Again - thank you. Great information regarding disinfecting. Any dusting product you are partial to?

    Bookmark   July 20, 2008 at 4:45PM
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I just use a micro fiber cloth, slightly damp. However, here are a couple you could try. I've used them, but I am so lazy about dusting and the kids tend to be less than thorough so a simple rag makes it look okay even if they miss stuff.

If you want the cloth to be impregnated with the solution:

Place 3 T lemon juice in a Ziploc and add about 5-10 drops of oil (jojoba, apricot kernel, olive, whatever you like). Shake, then stuff you dustcloth in the bag for a day. Dust as usual. This is more of a deep-cleaning dusting solution.

If you prefer a spray bottle:

1/2 C apricot kernel or jojoba oil or Murphy's oil soap
1 T rubbing alcohol
1 C water
3 T castile soap or 1 t powdered detergent
add 10-15 drops of essential oil if you want a scent. Lemon, cedar, patchouli work well. Pretty much anything you like is okay.

Mix soap and water first, then add other ingredients.

    Bookmark   July 20, 2008 at 5:38PM
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You've made my day! Getting my list ready for tomorrow. Thanks so much.


    Bookmark   July 20, 2008 at 6:14PM
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1. Steam cleaner - safe and effective on most surfaces. We have been so accustomed into cleaning solutions and chemical cleaners we forget plain old water in the form of steam.

2. "PRODUCTS" to remove dust are unnecessary. A microfiber towel, cotton cloth, or a lambswool duster work very nicely. The oily substances left by the "products" attracts dust and can even harm finishes on the furniture.

3. Grapefruit Seed Extract in water in a spritz bottle - kitchen and bath surface sanitizing.


    Bookmark   July 21, 2008 at 12:33PM
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For glass my housekeeper uses straight rubbing alcohol. The mirrors are always shiny and it gives the house a clean smell. I usually buy it at K-Mart when they have it on sale and the big pint bottles are usually 2/$1. Then just stick a sprayer nozzle from an old bottle down in it, screw it on and head to cleaning.


    Bookmark   July 21, 2008 at 7:59PM
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Lemon or lime oil in a window cleaner? Hummmmm
My basic "homebrew" for cleaning most surfaces in the house is a 50/50 combination of water and alcohol. I use it on windows, smooth top stove, granite, kitchen appliances, faucets. In the sink, faucets, granite, on and around the toilet but not IN the bowl it's self. Spot cleaning porcelain and stone floors. For regular cleaning of porcelain and stone floors, I use a steam mop.

    Bookmark   July 21, 2008 at 11:24PM
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