Most standard cleaning products and processes are either wasteful or just plain hazardous to humans and pets. Green your cleaning routine by putting these tips into practice.

Keep Cleaning Solutions Simple. Use simple, readily available cleaning solutions made with vinegar, salt, lemon juice and baking soda to make your own safe homemade cleaning solutions. Vinegar and water is great for cleaning glass windows and tile floors.

Naturally Freshen Air. Skip all those toxic artificial air fresheners and boil cinnamon or cloves to scent the air instead. One of our favorite ways to naturally scent the air is by sticking cloves into an orange to make a fragrant orange pomander ball.

Wash Clothes Wisely. Wait until you have a full load of laundry to run the washing machine. You’ll save big bucks on your water bill and spent less time listening to a noisy washing machine.

Recycle Your Rags. Make your own dust rags from old t-shirts, sweatshirts, and socks.

Conserve Cleaning Water. Don’t let the water run unless you are filling a cleaning bucket. Sweep instead of wet mop when possible, and put a tracking mat at the door to collect dirt so you don’t have to wash the floor as often.

Call for Household Hazardous Waste Pickups. Call your local recycling center, town or city hall. Most communities have several Household Hazardous Waste Pickup Days each year.

Start a Compost Bin. Composting food waste minimizes landfill burden and supports healthy soil in which you can grow your own food. Buy or make a compost bin and get the family involved. Household waste that can be composted includes things like paper towels, paper bags, cotton clothing (torn up), egg shells, hair (human, dog, cat etc.) Use all these items in moderation.