A while back, my family and I decided to try to lessen our environmental impact while living more frugally. We have started our own family garden, started cooking meals from scratch as much as possible, and have been making our own cleaning products. Now, if you are anything like me, you are probably thinking to yourself, "I'll spend the $2.75 and buy something that I'm sure works. But, for just pennies, yes pennies, you can have a disinfectant spray cleaner that is not only green, but frugal as well.
Simply add the baking soda, borax, and vinegar in a spray bottle. You can either reuse an old spray bottle when through with it (making sure to clean thoroughly) or buy a cheap one at the dollar store for a buck. Slowly add 4 cups of hot water to dissolve all the ingredients. Put the spray nozzle on, and shake to mix ingredients.
I have used this recipe in the bathroom, outdoors, on glass, and in the kitchen, everywhere I would use our old spray cleaners, and have had fantastic results. I do not worry about spraying it near kids or pets, and I know that it is safe to use around food. That's it.
A good tip to ensure that ANYONE can mix up a new batch when you are running low is to write the "recipe" on the bottle. I have done this on all of my bottles of cleaning solutions, and even our nine year old is able to replace an empty bottle.
By Teri M from Omaha, NE
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Cut up old t-shirts into rectangles and put into an old wipes container. Add about 2 tablespoons of Dr. Bronner's soap or whatever soap you prefer. Add 1 cup of water until the shirts are moistened.
I save the large can that cleaning wipes come in and then make my own. Buy a roll of good quality paper towels. Cut them in the middle with a knife and remove the cardboard tube.
Make your own disinfectant general cleaner. Here's the recipe.
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Anyone know how to make my own cleaning wipes like the ones that come in the plastic containers?
By Rose Smith from Malvern, PA
I doubt this is even close to an exact equivalent, but it works in our home. I use inexpensive, plastic spray bottles that you can buy from the dollar or discount store and fill them with one part Clorox (or one part straight Lysol cleaner, which ever you prefer) with three parts water.
Remove the cardboard tube from the center of a roll of papet towels. Then cut the roll in half and insert the roll in a large can with lid (i.e. a large plastic coffee container would be good). Using the mixture propertions posted by KansasCindy add to the container with the roll of paper towels. Don't get it too wet, you just want to dampen the towels. Pull the center towel out a little so you can get hold of it when you are ready to use. Place the lid on the can and let it set for at least a day, giving time for the towels to absorb all the liquid. When the pulled towel feels just damp they are ready to use.
How do I make a disinfectant cleaner with tea tree oil and water?
By Pete Hazlet
I sometimes use a mixture of tea tree oil and water as a hand sanitizer or a kitchen counter cleaner. I put about 3/4 of the small spray bottle full of water, and then I put a little bit of the tea tree oil in it. I do not measure. Tea tree oil always needs to come in a dark colored bottle, since it will react to light and not be as strong. I put around 1/2 of the capful of tea tree oil in a small spray bottle full of water.
Keep away from cats though.
Lately instead of tea tree oil for disinfectant, have been using listerene generic straight in a spray bottle, for a hand sanitizer and saving the tea tree oil for diluting with water and dawn and bathing my German Shepherd with it. Tea tree oil and dawn (1/3 cup dawn, and 2 tsp tea tree oil) works for killing lice also.
You can save money using coffee filters or paper towels to make your own handy disinfecting wipes. This is a page about making your own disinfectant wipes.