Using hydrogen peroxide for cleaning
Using hydrogen peroxide for cleaning is practical, non-toxic and cheap!
Even though I’ve been using hydrogen peroxide for years, I’m still finding more uses and learning more uses. I’ve known about house cleaning with hydrogen peroxide for a long time, but I've been slow to switch over to for some things, so I'm still expanding on the ways I use it.
To clean walls, windows, and countertops
Just put some 3% hydrogen peroxide into a spray bottle. Spray it on and wipe it off as you would with other household cleaners.
Hydrogen peroxide is generally anti-bacterial and anti-viral, so it makes sense to use it as a household cleaner. However, it does take time to work, so the short amount of contact time in cleaning counters and windows probably won't kill all the tiny pathogens in your house. On the other hand, it's a step in that direction, and if you want to really sanitize something, you can leave the hydrogen peroxide for a longer time. (This page talks more about uses for disinfection.)
I’ve only started using hydrogen peroxide recently for most of my general housecleaning. I’m impressed with what a good job it does on mirrors. It seems that the more ways I use hydrogen peroxide for cleaning, the more ways I want to try....
To clean floors
You’ll probably want to use hot water, so the easiest way to accomplish this (and also use a 3% solution of hydrogen peroxide), is to put a gallon of hot water into a bucket and then add 1 cup of 35% hydrogen peroxide. Use the temperature water you’d like to use on the floor, and then add the concentrated peroxide. (This is an approximate dilution, which is fine for floor cleaning, no need to be exact. See the mixing page, though, if you want exact proportions.)
Another great option is to use sodium percarbonate mixed in hot water.
Another option is to use a half gallon of very hot water, and add a half gallon of 3% hydrogen peroxide. This will result in a solution that is 1.5% hydrogen peroxide, and, obviously, mixing it this way will cool the mixture down quite a bit. 1.5% is also fine for washing floors.
Finally, if you don’t mind using cold water to clean the floor, you can just spray some 3% hydrogen peroxide onto the floor from your spray bottle. That's what I usually do. This also works well for day-to-day cleaning up gunk on the floor, and disinfects as you go along.
To clean toiletsSplash 3% hydrogen peroxide around the toilet rim and onto your toilet brush, then scrub the toilet as usual. Also use 3% hydrogen peroxide on a sponge to clean the rest of the toilet surfaces, and the floor around the toilet.
If the toilet is stained, adding a small amount (maybe a cup?) of 35% hydrogen peroxide to the toilet bowl, and leaving it overnight will help a lot. This only works on the area that is under the water, however, not stains above the water level. For heavy duty stains, you may need to repeat this treatment.
To clean showers and mildewSpray 3% hydrogen peroxide onto the walls of the shower and let it sit for a while. For tiles that have mold or mildew, this will start to loosen it up and clean it out. Depending on the amount of mold and mildew, you may need to leave the solution on longer, or repeat this treatment. Certainly using hydrogen peroxide, over time, will reduce or prevent mildew and mold from developing.
Advantages of using hydrogen peroxide for cleaningFirst off, it is anti-bacterial, anti-fungal, anti-mold and anti-mildew. Whew!
Secondly it is non-toxic for people, plants, household animals, and the earth. (Don’t forget that whatever household cleaners you use do end up going back to the earth, rivers and oceans eventually. In most cases, cleaning products will go through the sewage system first, but it all goes back to the environment eventually.)
Third, since hydrogen peroxide can be used for cleaning so many different things, it can simplify the number of different cleaning products you need to keep around. (This particular advantage occurs to me more over time, as I’m slowly using hydrogen peroxide for more different kinds of cleaning.)
Fourth, bought in concentrated form and in bulk, using hydrogen peroxide for cleaning is very inexpensive.
And, finally, using hydrogen peroxide for cleaning tends to keep your sponges, mops, and scrubie pads a whole lot cleaner. (They'll all get a bit of disinfecting every time you use them.)
There are different types of hydrogen peroxide. I use food grade hydrogen peroxide, in general, for everything. (The other grades of hydrogen peroxide tend to have some stabilizers in them. Since I buy 35% food grade peroxide in large amounts, it is easy to use it for everything.)