At GCC Facilities Management, we are constantly working with suppliers to provide more environmentally friendly cleaning methods and products to support our commercial cleaning services.
It is more imperative than ever that every business does their part to help our planet in reducing waste and harsh chemicals that can have severe negative impacts on the environment.
Whether you are seeking knowledge to make dramatic changes in your large office buildings or simply want to make some small switches at home, here we will talk about the environmental impacts of conventional cleaners, green cleaning mythbusters and costs you may see by making this adjustment.
How Do Conventional Cleaners Directly Impact Us?
The majority of conventional cleaners are destined to end up down the drain and into our water systems. While water waste plants make every effort to eradicate these from water supplies it is an incredibly tricky process and only a small percentage is ever removed.
These chemicals then enter our water, home to all forms of marine life. We can then be exposing ourselves when we next dive into our Friday night fish and chips and even our drinking water.
Those with breathing-related conditions, such as asthma, are also at risk from chemical cleaners. Strong chemicals, known as monoethanolamine, can directly impact these people and cause irritation and even more difficulties.
Your staff could be suffering in the workplace due to poor ventilation in conjunction with these products. Many schools have banned these products as children can be particularly vulnerable.
It is also well known that aerosols contain hydrocarbons and compressed gases, directly linked to destroying the ozone layer and contributing to climate change.
Green Cleaning Mythbusters
There are some out there who may still be dubious about making a change to more natural-based cleaning products as they believe they do not produce the same results. Read on for some green cleaning mythbusters.
There is a common misconception that you need harsh chemicals to kill bacteria and achieve shiny surfaces. However, more natural cleaners can achieve this.
You may need to use a little more of the product, depending on which one you have chosen and a bit more elbow grease but you can still get the same results as chemical cleaners.
That ‘clean’ smell you achieve with a chemical cleaner may give the perception that everything is sterile and natural cleaners often don’t produce this. Most chemical cleaners have artificial scents added to them to please the senses. In reality, these are not needed at all.
A crucial element of cleaning is killing bacteria and viruses. When a nasty cold or flu is being spread, it is natural to float towards the harshest chemical cleaners in an attempt to kill this bacteria and prevent others from falling ill.
Where you aware you can do so with natural products? Vinegar is a great example of this and can kill cold and flu germs.
Green cleaning isn’t just about the products you use. While you may have swapped out your chemicals for a more an eco-friendly brand, there are still many other steps you can take to be as green as possible.
This includes reducing water waste, such as limiting washing machine cycles to only when needed. You can also reduce your energy consumption by replacing old appliances with new ones that are designed to use less electricity.
You should also try to reduce consumable goods, for example, replace disposable hand towels in washrooms with hand dryers. Make sure you invest in high-quality dryers that use less energy.
How Much Does Green Cleaning Cost?
At the moment, green cleaning is more costly than chemical cleaning. Many manufacturers of eco-friendly products are smaller and therefore may not have the resources to mass-produce products, therefore reducing the price.
However, there are products that are higher in initial cost but will save money in the long-run such as green cleaning cloths. These are reusable and can be washed and used multiple times, therefore reducing waste and your outgoings.
You can also make a lot of green cleaning products yourself. An easy window cleaner recipe is ¼ cup vinegar, ½ teaspoon of liquid soap and 2 cups of water. The ingredients for these are relatively cheap and can last much longer than buying a conventional cleaner.
By reusing spray bottles, you not only save money but can reduce your waste, leading to less plastic ending up in our landfills. Many conventional cleaners are packaged in stronger plastics to prevent chemicals eroding them. Unfortunately, these bottles are often unable to be recycled.
You should now have a better understanding of the benefits of green cleaning and any worries about making this change should be cleared up. We understand there may be some products you are unable to change at this time but every small action can make a positive impact on our planet.