UGA GreenWay News

A Greener Way of Living, at Home and Abroad

Create a Healthy Home: Use Green Cleaners

You could be adding to the pollutants in your home with the cleaning products you use. Studies conducted by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency show levels of several common organic pollutants are two to five times higher inside homes than outside. These indoor pollutants come from volatile organic compounds (VOCs) released from a variety of household products, including things like household cleaning products and air fresheners. Exposure to these products can have negative health effects.

Are you keeping a clean and healthy home for your children and grandchildren?


What can you do to reduce exposure to chemicals in your home? Assess your habits and behaviors.

  1. Do you use more than five different household cleaning products?
  2. Do you have different cleaning products for the bathroom and kitchen?
  3. Do you use a broom to sweep your floors?
  4. Do you follow the manufacturer’s directions when using household cleaning products?
  5. How many air fresheners do you have in your home?

TAKE ACTION! – Simplify and clean thoughtfully

  • Stop buying cleaning products and use up the ones you have in your home.
  • When you need more cleaning products buy “green cleaning products.” Look for products with a label like Design for the Environment.
  • Start making green cleaning products.
  • Stop pushing around the dirt in your home with a broom and start using a microfiber mop.
  • Invest in good equipment and it will make cleaning easier. The three things that will help you the most are a microfiber mop, microfiber cloths and a HEPA vacuum.
  • Freshen the air naturally by opening a window or using “natural air fresheners.” A bowl of white vinegar absorbs many odors. Add fragrance to your home with essential oils or a pan of simmering spices like cinnamon and cloves.

For additional information on making your home healthier visit:

Please tell us in the comments or by email what one thing you did to make your home safer for your family.

Living Healthy Living Green


About Pamela Turner

I am an Associate Professor and Extension Housing & Environment Specialist at the University of Georgia. I have a passion for helping people improve their home environment and live greener and healthier lives. An important part of that is helping people weed through all of the information to find trustworthy sources.

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