If you’ve resolved to go green in 2013 -- or at least to pay more attention to being Earth friendly -- here are some small but significant changes you can make in your cleaning routine.
Vinegar has long been regarded as a cheap and natural alternative to harsh chemicals.
Cost: On average, a gallon of white vinegar costs about $1.80. Even with a coupon and a good sale, all-purpose cleaners can cost at least twice as much.
Uses: Clear dirt off your computer, printer and other office machines. Turn off all equipment and use equal parts vinegar and water to wipe down surfaces. Use a cotton swap for those hard-to-reach places.
Cleaning blinds can be easy when you use a gardening glove dipped in vinegar.
Freshen lunchboxes and other small places by wiping down with a mix of water and vinegar.
For dirty carpets, rub light stains with a mix of 2 tablespoons salt dissolved in 1/2 cup white vinegar. Let the solution dry, then vacuum.
Remove grime from hardwood floors with a solution of 1/4 cup white vinegar and 30 ounces of warm water, then mop away the dirt.
Use half a lemon and salt to clean discolored brass, copper and chrome faucets.
Clean and disinfect cutting boards with lemon juice. Rub the lemon juice onto the board, let stand overnight, then rinse.
In the laundry room, remove grease stains on clothes by rubbing lemon juice on the spot, allow to sit overnight, then wash.