COMMON HOME CLEANING PRODUCTS flushed down drains across the country contribute to the large quantities of hazardous waste materials that ultimately arrive and contaminate our streams, rivers, and lakes.

The EPA states the average U.S. household generates more than 20 pounds of household hazardous waste per year“.

 Common Home Cleaning Products and Methods Are Now Exposed as HAZARDS TO OUR HEALTH

Home Cleaning Is Easy, But At What Expense?
© 2012 Maryland National Guard, “Operation Deep Water” https://www.flickr.com/photos/mdng/
      • The EPA states “indoor air levels of many pollutants may be 2-5 times, and occasionally, more than 100 times higher than outdoor levels” and is in part “due to the chemicals found in household cleaners and pesticides“.
  • Warning Terms Used Are Significant
    • DANGER – Harmful or fatal if swallowed A taste to a teaspoonful taken by mouth could kill an average sized adult.
    • WARNING – Harmful if swallowed A teaspoonful to an ounce taken by mouth could kill an average sized adult.
    • CAUTION – Harmful if swallowed An ounce to over a pint taken by mouth could kill an average sized adult.
    • Common household ingredients contain toxins and results in side effects from as little as a headache to as severe as cancer. 

Our family’s health is significantly risked 

when we use these home cleaning products on a regular basis.

 

Which products do you use?   

              Do you know the difference?

Home Cleaning Is Easy, But At What Expense?
© 2010 Enokson, “Poisonous and Infectious” https://www.flickr.com/photos/vblibrary/

A Look At 

COMMON HOME CLEANING PRODUCTS   

  • Under the Federal Hazardous Substances Act – home cleaning products are the only household products for which manufacturers are NOT required to list all ingredients.
  • If the manufacturer does include an ingredient statement it is voluntary and in many cases this disclosure is inaccurate and incomplete.
  • Many of these home cleaning products can be seen on the “Household Cleaners Wall of Shame”:
    • AMMONIA – a volatile chemical damaging the eyes, respiratory tract, and skin
    • AIR FRESHENER – interferes with your smell-ability by coating the nasal passages with an oil film or by releasing a nerve deadening agent; toxic chemicals of air fresheners are formaldehyde (highly toxic; carcinogen), phenol (skin irritant causing swelling, burning, peeling, and hive breakouts; can cause cold sweats, convulsions, circulatory collapse, coma and death)
    • BLEACH – a strong corrosive; skin, eyes and respiratory tract irritant; can cause pulmonary edema or vomiting and coma if ingested
    • CARPET AND UPHOLSTERY SHAMPOO – made of highly toxic substances including perchlorethylene (carcinogen; damages liver, kidney and nervous system), ammonium hydroxide (corrosive, extreme irritant of the eyes, skin and respiratory passages)
    • DISHWASHER DETERGENT– highly concentrated with chlorine (number 1 cause of child poisonings)
    • DRAIN CLEANER – contain lye (caustic, burns eyes & skin; if ingested damages esophagus and stomach), hydrochloric acid (corrosive; skin and eye irritant; damages kidneys, liver and digestive tract) and trichloroethane (skin & eye irritant; nervous system depressant; damages liver and kidneys)
    • Home Cleaning Is Easy, But At What Expense?FURNITURE POLISH – contain petroleum distillates (highly flammable; causes lung and skin cancer), phenol (as in air fresheners), and nitrobenzene (absorbed through skineasily; extremely toxic)
    • MOLD AND MILDEW CLEANERS – contains chemicals sodium hypochlorite (corrosive; irritates or burns eyes and skin; causes fluid to build in the lungs leading to coma or death),  formaldehyde (highly toxic; carcinogen; Irritant to skin, eyes, nose, & throat; causes nausea, headaches, dizziness, nosebleeds, memory loss and shortness of breath)
    • OVEN CLEANER – contains sodium hydroxide (aka lye; caustic; strong irritant; burns eyes & skin; inhibits reflexes; causes severe tissue damage when swallowed
    • ANTIBACTERIAL CLEANERS – contains triclosan (when absorbed through the skin is tied to liver damage)
    • LAUNDRY ROOM PRODUCTSsodium or calcium hypocrite (highly corrosive; skin, eyes and respiratory tract irritants), linear alkylate sulfonate (when absorbed through the skin is tied to liver damage), sodium tripolyphosphate (mucous membrane & skin irritant; causes vomiting; absorbed through the skin via clothes
    • TOILET BOWL CLEANERShydrochloric acid (highly corrosive; skin and eye irritant; damages liver and kidneys); hypochlorite bleach (corrosive; irritates or burns eyes, skin and respiratory tract; causes pulmonary edema, coma, or vomiting if ingested; contact with other chemicals may cause fatal chlorine fumes)

 

ALTERNATIVE HOME CLEANING PRODUCTS 

Include Many Questionable Ingredients

Home Cleaning Is Easy, But At What Expense?
© 2012 Caelie Frampton, “Protesting CAPP” https://www.flickr.com/photos/caelie/

 

 

 

 

Taking responsibility for your

                                                                                                                                                                family’s health is simple…

                                                                                                                                                                  Make informed choices.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

GREEN HOME CLEANING PRODUCTS

  • These products are on the rise as consumers are more aware of the health risks associated with these traditional home cleaning products and procedures.
  • They are important to families desiring the safest indoor environment possible – for themselves, their pets, & their guests.
  • They can reduce or eliminate health risks related to common home cleaning products.
  • Proving not only safe for our families, they are also safe for the world we live in. 

GREEN HOME CLEANING creates a healthy, and necessary, shift

in our community’s lifestyle and thought 

as more people choose the necessary steps to protect themselves,

their loved ones, and the environment.

 

BUT BEWARE OF GREENWASHING

Eco-friendly, Green, Non-Toxic….What does it all mean?

  • GREENWASHING: a term describing deceptively used terms to promote the perception that an organization’s products, aims or policies are environmentally friendly
  • ENVIRONMENTALLY FRIENDLY: (aka eco-friendly) One of many ambiguous titles and can be confusing without a specific definition. This doesn’t mean it’s safe for people and pets. For example poison ivy, it’s bio-degradable and marine friendly, but we wouldn’t want to be in contact with it in our homes 
  • DISINFECTANT: The EPA regulates any cleaning product making a disinfection claim, as they classify them as a pesticide. Since they contain toxic chemicals designed to kill living organisms, this makes sense.  These products don’t work unless used as directed and almost all cleaning products containing disinfecting /antibacterial agents, the direction wording is usually “Spray surface until thoroughly wet. Let stand 10 minutes, then wipe clean. Rinse thoroughly with water for surfaces that will come in contact with food or placed in mouth” You must wash the surface twice in order to remove the harmful chemical residue and then rinse it off your hands. Since most of us don’t read the directions to let it sit for ten minutes, we aren’t disinfecting at all and to top it off, we are dumping these chemicals down our drains into our streams, rivers, and lakes. We use products with cleaning agents, not killing agents.
  • ANTIBACTERIAL: A product that contains pesticides that kill bacteria, viruses or molds. Linked to the  “Hygeine Hypothesis” which stems from studies that reveal an increased frequency of allergies, cases of asthma, and eczema in persons who have been raised in an environment overly protective against microorganisms.
  • GREEN: Environmentally preferable products and services that have a lesser or reduced effect on human health and the environment when compared with competing products or services that serve the same purpose.
  • NON-TOXIC: This is a common marketing term implying that the ingredient or product will not harm human health or the environment. There is no standard definition in the cleaning products industry, so this term has little value in choosing the safest cleaners.
  • BIO-DEGRADABLE: Refers to the ingredients break down in the environment once they enter waste water treatment plants, rivers and streams or landfills. Cleaning supplies makers often advertise their products as biodegradable to make them seem safer or greener than they really are. But since no one regulates the use of this term on cleaning product labels, you can’t assume that a product with the label is better than one that isn’t.

 

The DISINFECTANT Debate

The concept of disinfecting makes most of us feel safe and secure but

when a product says “disinfect” do we know anything about this process? 

DISINFECTANT KILLS 

  • Regarding the glossary term above, in order for a product to be labeled “disinfectant” they must be reviewed by the EPA and are classified as a pesticide. After all, they kill micro-organisms.
  • The Merriam Webster defines “disinfectant” as a chemical substance that is used to kill harmful germs and bacteria. But this implies the disinfectant knows what is harmful and what is not. 
  • It takes a period of time for the disinfectant to work and the reason directions state to leave it on the surface for a period of time. Most of us want to get the cleaning finished and don’t take the time to do so. So are we really disinfecting or just using the product?

BUT IT DOES NOT CLEAN

  • Disinfectants are not designed to lift dirt off a surface, make it shiny or leave a scent behind like a cleaner does. 
  • Once you wipe or spray with a disinfectant, the area is left with a toxic, chemical residue. Then it must be cleaned with a cleaner. This is a two step process.
  • Once they are removed from the surface with a cleaner, they don’t disappear. These products travel down the drains and into our environment.
Home Cleaning Is Easy, But At What Expense?
© 2009 Dennis Wong, “Smell” https://www.flickr.com/photos/denniswong/

 

Serene Clean’s home cleaning replaces the philosophy of

killing to clean” with 

cleaning to clean“.

  • We use natural home cleaning products with high quality ingredients and are the very best at removing dirt and germs. 
  • They don’t leave any residues so there is no need to clean the product from the surface. It is a one step process.

 

It’s just simply clean…

And it’s a clean you have never felt before!