Sunday, November 6, 2011

Easy DIY Cleaner {Windows and Mirrors}

There is just something really cool about cleaning the house when I know I am using something that I made! It certainly doesn't make the job easier, but it does add an element of fun and creativity. And, it's a perfect way to bring the children into mix. I find that by allowing them to measure and combine the ingredients they have ownership of the "product" and are usually a little more apt to help with the chores!

Today I want to share with you my recipes for cleaning windows and mirrors. But first, I want to review the toxic hazards that are lurking in those readily available commercially prepared products.

If you go to FAQ page for Windex you will find a list of the few products that are ammonia-free. Otherwise, most of the products available for use on glass contain the chemical ammonia. Ammonia is known as an eye irritant that may cause headaches and even respiratory system/lung irritation.

Ammonia in your glass cleaner isn't something to take lightly nor should it be left around children. It is in fact, a very serious hazard. Inhalation, absorption, or ingestion of this product can cause harmful effects.

The effects of these toxic chemicals can be reduced and/or even eliminated by first learning about the chemicals and then by educating yourself on the variety of choices that are available as safe and effective alternatives.

The first objective is to determine where the toxic chemicals are; next, is to replace them with safe products. And for the frugally sustainable minded individual, homemade is the best option!

Here are a couple quick, easy, and extremely affordable recipes to whip up. The best part may even have the ingredients hiding in your cabinets!

Window Cleaner
- ½ cup white vinegar
- 2 teaspoons liquid castile soap
- 2 cups pure or distilled warm water
- 3-5 drops tea tree oil (optional)

Directions: Add all ingredients to spray bottle, shake to blend, spray on glass, and clean with newspaper.

Mirror Cleaner
- 1 part white vinegar
- 1 part 70% Isopropyl Alcohol (a.k.a. rubbing alcohol)
- 1 part pure or distilled water

Directions: Combine ingredients and spray on mirrors. Wipe clean with microfiber cloth or newspaper. Note: The smell of this cleaner is kind of strong. I really like to add a few drops of either lemon or orange essential oils.


-Reduce spending and waste by finishing the window cleaner you have now. Save the spray bottle. Wash it out and reload it with these products.

-The Mirror Cleaner recipe is an excellent cleaner for granite counter tops! I usually clean my counter tops with All-Purpose Cleaner and then go over them with the Mirror Cleaner. Amazing clean and shine!

-If you have a microfiber cloth, that is the best thing to clean windows and mirrors with. Newspaper is the next best thing. Never use paper towels. They leave lint and are super wasteful.

What are your favorite ways to clean windows and mirrors?

See this post and a host of others like it here: Homestead Barn Hop, Inspire Me Monday, More the Merrier, Monday Mania, The Girl Creative, Homemaker Monday, Fat Tuesday, New Nostalgia, Tip Me Tuesday, Ladybug Blessings, Under Ten Tuesday, Teach Me Tuesday, Frugal Tuesday Tip, Show Me What Ya Got, Time Out Tuesday, Tuesday Confessional, Tutorial Tuesday, Far Above Rubies, Take-A-Look, Healthy 2day Wednesday, Homemaking Link-Up, Wicked Awesome Wednesday, The Mommy Club, Whatever Wednesday, The Sasse Life, Sugar and Dots, Show Off Your Stuff, It's a Keeper Thursday, Creative Juices



At November 7, 2011 at 5:42 AM , Blogger Carmen C. said...

I will have to try these as I have chemical sensitivities to alot of commercial (toxic) cleaners, thank you for sharing them and have a great day:)

At November 8, 2011 at 7:14 AM , Blogger Stay At Home Farmer Mom said...

I have read that I shouldn't use vinegar on granite because it will eventually pit it. I have granite tile counter tops in my kitchen and a granite vanity in the bathroom so I REALLY need a good cleaner for them! I already use vinegar to clean just about everything but I am stumped as to what to use on the granite.

At November 8, 2011 at 12:41 PM , Blogger Katie said...

I'll have to try these! I hate the haze left on my mirrors by other glass cleaners! Hopefully this will work for me! Thanks!

At November 8, 2011 at 5:20 PM , Anonymous Jill said...

Thanks for linking your great post to FAT TUESDAY. This was very interesting! Hope to see you next week!

Be sure to visit on Sunday for Sunday Snippets – your post from Fat Tuesday may be featured there!

At November 8, 2011 at 6:35 PM , Blogger Vicky said...

This is a great idea! I love homemade cleaners. I would love for you to do a guest post on my blog Mess For Less. I have a money saving section called "Spend LESS, Save More" that I think you would be perfect for. Please contact me if interested and I can give you more info. I am a new follower from Tuesday Time Out. Vicky from Mess For Less

At November 8, 2011 at 7:15 PM , Blogger chris said...

I love finding new cleaning tips. Thanks for sharing!

At November 9, 2011 at 7:37 AM , OpenID rebekahdawn said...

Thanks! I'm going to try this.

At November 10, 2011 at 7:19 PM , Blogger Linda said...

Hi it is my first time visiting your site. Thanks for the recipe for glass and mirror cleaner. I have found that Windex doesn't work well on my glass tables. Have a great weekend!

At November 13, 2011 at 8:50 AM , Blogger Heidi said...

You are a wealth of valuable information. I am a follower and look forward to learning so many new things from your helpful, informative posts. Thank you.

At December 22, 2011 at 6:50 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Just use water and a good microfiber cloth - completely clean mirrors and windows with NO cleaner!


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