healthy house institute

4 Free HHI Books:

Creating a Healthy Household, The Healthy House Answer Book, Healthy Home Building, The Healthy House 4th Edition
Your email will only be used as described in our Privacy Policy

Follow us on Twitter

 

Search

Proud Supporter of:

OnlineCourses.com

 

OpenCourseWare

HHI-Pedia Entry

Green Cleaning

By HousekeepingChannel.com

The decision to engage in green cleaning often begins with product selection. Green cleaning involves the use of detergents and other products containing few or no ingredients harmful to building occupants or to the environment. More info on green cleaning.

 

entry continues below ↓


We do not strictly control Google ad content. If you believe any Google ad is inappropriate, please email us directly here.

Disinfecting surfaces offers one clear example of choices in green-cleaning. Most people know that a solution of chlorine bleach and water is highly effective against harmful bacteria. What many may not know is that, as chlorine breaks down, it may form organic compounds that are toxic to humans and other organisms. Many disinfecting chores may be completed just as effectively by using solutions containing hydrogen peroxide or citric acid. Both compounds are biodegradable.

By law, all cleaning products sold in the U.S. and Canada must be labeled with appropriate cautions and warnings about any acutely hazardous, poisonous or toxic ingredients. These instructions are the first place to look for clues as to whether a product might be “green” or not. However, also by law, manufacturers do not need to list chemistries that are proprietary or chemicals that are not among the "active" cleaning ingredients. Many of these hidden substances may be hazardous to your health over time or in combination with other chemicals in the environment.

If you want to employ green cleaning in your home, use the following guidelines when evaluating product labels:

• Avoid products with bold warnings that include words such as “poison” or “toxic.”

• When choosing a sanitizer or disinfectant, choose the mildest product ingredients possible (for example, hydrogen peroxide instead of chlorine bleach). The label will include such information.

• Look for biodegradable products. Their components will decompose into harmless minerals, carbon dioxide and water.

• Choose products whose packaging may be recycled in your area.

• Avoid products with ingredients such as certain volatile organic compounds (VOCs), EDTA (a chelating agent in detergents), or more than a minimal amount of phosphates (above 0.5 percent). These substances either contribute to air pollution, aren’t biodegradable or have a number of undesirable effects in environmental water.

When shopping, keep in mind that labels may (or may not) mention biodegradability or the inclusion of undesirable compounds. One way to be sure is to check with the manufacturer. Many product labels include a toll-free telephone number for “questions and comments,” and some makers’ Web sites include comprehensive product information. You may also check the Household Products Database, sponsored by the National Institutes of Health, for known hazards and warnings on specific brand names.

Reference:

Arthur Weissman, Ph.D., is president and chief executive officer of Green Seal, a non-profit green cleaning certification organization. For more information, see Dr. Weissman’s Housekeeping Channel articles, “How to Choose a Green Cleaning Product” and “Weighing Green Products.”

 

HHI Error Correction Policy

HHI is committed to accuracy of content and correcting information that is incomplete or inaccurate. With our broad scope of coverage of healthful indoor environments, and desire to rapidly publish info to benefit the community, mistakes are inevitable. HHI has established an error correction policy to welcome corrections or enhancements to our information. Please help us improve the quality of our content by contacting allen@healthyhouseinstitute.com with corrections or suggestions for improvement. Each contact will receive a respectful reply.

The Healthy House Institute (HHI), a for-profit educational LLC, provides the information on HealthyHouseInstitute.com as a free service to the public. The intent is to disseminate accurate, verified and science-based information on creating healthy home environments.

 

While an effort is made to ensure the quality of the content and credibility of sources listed on this site, HHI provides no warranty - expressed or implied - and assumes no legal liability for the accuracy, completeness, or usefulness of any information, product or process disclosed on or in conjunction with the site. The views and opinions of the authors or originators expressed herein do not necessarily state or reflect those of HHI: its principals, executives, Board members, advisors or affiliates.

Green Cleaning:  Created on June 4th, 2009.  Last Modified on December 23rd, 2009

 

References listed above credit sources The Healthy House Institute consulted for background or additional information.

All HHI-PediaTM content is © 2005-2017 The Healthy House InstituteTM.

Except for third-party Copyrighted© material, you may freely use, excerpt or cite this material provided the Healthy House Institute receives credit and the Web address www.HealthyHouseInstitute.com is plainly listed with all uses, excerpts or citations.

 

We do not strictly control Google ad content. If you believe any Google ad is inappropriate, please email us directly here.

 

 

Information provided by The Healthy House Institute is designed to support, not to replace the relationship between patient/physician or other qualified healthcare provider.

Education Partners

 

 

Popular Topics: Air Cleaners & Air Purifiers | Allergies & Asthma | Energy Efficiency & Energy Savings | Healthy Homes | Green Building
Green Cleaning | Green Homes | Green Living | Green Remodeling | Indoor Air Quality | Water Filters | Water Quality

© 2006-2017 The Healthy House Institute, LLC.

 

About The Healthy House Institute | Contact HHI | HHI News & Media | Linking Resources | Advertising Info | Privacy Policy | Legal Disclaimer

 

HHI Info