Green Cleaning 101: Top tips for staying safe this winter - MetroFamily Magazine
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Green Cleaning 101: Top tips for staying safe this winter

By Kings Green Cleaning

Reading Time: 4 minutes 

Amanda and Amy King launched Kings Green Cleaning in 2006 using only green products after carefully researching the benefits to their own health and the environment. Amy previously cleaned homes and was often sick with upper respiratory infections and rashes. Her doctor advised her to find a new profession because the traditional cleaning products she was using were making her ill.

After a client with a newborn provided Amy with green products to use in her household, Amy began researching the benefits. She bought them for her own home and business, and her health issues disappeared. She and Amanda then launched Kings Green Cleaning to safely and effectively clean clients’ homes and businesses while also ensuring the health of their employees and low impact on the environment.

As we enter the holiday season, the twindemic of flu and COVID-19 and more time spent in our homes during the winter months, we asked the moms and business owners for their top tips on keeping families safe.

What does the term “green cleaning” mean and what are the biggest benefits to using green products?

We really believe in the positive health effects of using green products as opposed to traditional products with harsh chemicals. Green cleaning refers to using cleaning methods and products with environmentally-friendly ingredients and manufacturing procedures designed to preserve human health and environmental quality. When purchasing products, look for the Green Seal Certification — that ensures the ingredients are safe and that the manufacturer is making good choices in terms of limiting effects of production and packaging on the environment.

Volatile organic compounds (or VOCs) found in traditional cleaning products can affect indoor air quality and also contribute to smog formation in outdoor air. And for both people and pets, they can cause skin and eye irritation, allergies and asthma flare-ups, as well as even more serious health issues.

Especially when we’re all spending a lot of time in our homes during the winter or due to quarantines, it’s important that the products we’re putting on our home’s frequently-touched surfaces and in the air we’re breathing are safe. Changing to green cleaning products not only helps protect your family from VOCs it also helps the environment by not polluting our water. In addition, green practices like using microfiber cleaning cloths instead of paper towels and using refillable jugs for cleaning products reduce waste and benefit the environment.

As we enter cold and flu season in the midst of this pandemic, what are the high-touch areas in the house parents should pay extra attention to sanitizing?

clean cabinets, green cleanersFrequently clean your door knobs, light switch plates, drawer and cabinet pulls and faucets. It’s also important to regularly sanitize the items we bring into our homes — like school backpacks and lunch boxes, which should be washed at least once a week. Purses or work bags should also be cleaned regularly. The bottoms of our shoes track in bacteria and dirt, so take your shoes off, and ask guests to do the same, before entering the home. Vent covers, baseboards, the fronts of cabinets, insides of appliances and upper light fixtures often get neglected so remember to clean those regularly, too.

If families are preparing to welcome guests for the holidays, what measures can they take to ensure their home is safe and clean for guests and themselves?

Make sure you properly disinfect surfaces prior to your guests’ arrival. Sanitize all high-traffic areas and touch points. When your guests arrive, provide and encourage guests to use hand sanitizer throughout the gathering. Open windows and doors to increase air ventilation, or if that is not an option due to weather, use an air purifier. Encourage family and friends to wear masks and practice social distancing while indoors.

Speaking of disinfecting, that’s not as straightforward as it sounds. How can we ensure surfaces are properly disinfected?

Dirt and grime are what hold germs and bacteria, so you have to clean surfaces of all of that first before you can disinfect. After you’ve deep cleaned the area, the disinfectant needs to sit wet on the surface for 10 minutes to disinfect properly — and that goes for any disinfectant, from green products to Lysol.

If you have guests dropping by unexpectedly and you want the house to look clean(ish!), what tasks or areas should you focus on in the 20 or 30 minutes before the doorbell rings?

Start with getting all of your clutter out of the living room — and if that means piling things on your bed and then shutting the door, so be it! Next, clean out your sink of dirty dishes. Light a soy candle or turn on a scent diffuser. Friends may not care about a little dust on your TV but they will notice if they can smell your trash can! Finally, clean your front door — glass or storm doors show everything from doggy paw prints to kids’ fingerprints, and that is the first thing your guests will see.

At our house, we have been keeping disposable masks, hand sanitizer and shoe covers by the door to make sure everyone is staying safe.

For those looking to hire a cleaning service, what are some important considerations in choosing the right one for your family, especially during a pandemic?

Since the pandemic began, we have seen an increase in our business, for commercial and elderly clients especially, but also for families because parents are home with kids trying to do everything from working to teaching, and it’s nice to have one less plate to spin. Ask about the types of cleaning products used and what kind of safeguards are in place — for example, we wear masks, gloves and shoe covers on request, even if the client isn’t home while we are there. We can also use separate cleaning products for each home, and we separate our microfiber cloths by color so there isn’t cross-contamination between those used to dust, clean kitchens and clean bathrooms. Ask if the company offers call-in, call-out services so you don’t have to be in direct contact with the cleaners if you’d prefer not to be.

To learn more about Kings Green Cleaning and request a home or commercial cleaning estimate, visit kingsgreencleaning.com.

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