About six months back I worked out how much I was spending on cleaning products and I was shocked, even with cheap store brand items it gets expensive. It's also bad for the environment to be pouring so many chemicals down the drain and throwing out all those packets. Definitely seemed a good place to cut back.
Toilet cleaner has got to be the most wasteful thing we used to use. Even the cheapest brand is a waste of money by the design of the product. One application uses lots of liquid and the bottle goes down very fast. We were throwing out loads of them. Turns out that about 2 teaspoons of dish washing liquid in the pan and scrubbed around every day or two works really well. It's actually brighter and cleaner than ever before. I use the cheap store brand stuff that costs 13p a litre.
We also live in a hard water area, so the kettle fills up with chalky deposits fast. The acid based de-scaler was expensive, smelly and corroded the kettle over time. Soda crystals work much better. Fill the kettle with enough water to cover the element and scale deposits, add a table spoon or two of soda crystals and boil it. Leave it overnight and by the next morning the hard scale will have turned in to a soft mush that easily cleans away.
Multi-purpose liquid is another wasteful item, the directions on most packets suggest you use far more than you really need to. Instead of lasting months and months, like it should, a bottle is empty within weeks if you use it as they suggest. It generally works much better if you get a damp cloth or sponge, place the end of the bottle against it and upend it for a moment, then clean with the cloth. The level in the bottle doesn't even visibly go down. Should be able to do a whole bath or cooker top with this much. There might be radically less product being used, but it's concentrated and cleans much better this way. Makes lots of foam and you can rinse it away with all the dirt at the end. They also suggest about 5 full caps in hot water to clean the floor. Better to get a bucket of just hot water, wet the floor then pour a small quantity (half a cap perhaps) on the floor and scrub it with that until it's clean, which doesn't take long with concentrate, then rinse it.
I also used to use various products to clean things with burnt on dirt, like oven trays, the shelves from inside the oven itself and BBQ parts. Expensive, and most of them were hard work to use. However, placing all the dirty things covered in carbonised grime in a plastic bag with a few tablespoons of ammonia, sealing the bag and leaving it a couple of days turns the dirt in to soft gunk that just rinses away.
There are also lots of expensive products for cleaning TVs and computer monitors. Unfortunately most other cheaper cleaning products (even glass cleaner), don't get them quite clean enough. A little isopropyl alcohol on a cloth works really well on glass screens, being a solvent it removes the dirt and then evaporates without trace itself.
I have spent almost nothing on cleaning products the past few months. Most the things I use now are cheap, come in large packets and a little bit goes a very long way. I hope these suggestions everyone save some money as well as reduce the chemicals they pour down the drain.