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DIY Green Household Cleaning Solutions

Have you ever wondered how safe and eco-friendly those "green" cleaning products are on the store shelves? Green cleaning products are flooding the market, and with over 80,000 chemical compounds approved for commercial purposes, it’s become harder to tell if they are truly safer. In the U.S., companies are only required to warn of a product’s toxicity. Buzzwords on green products such as “nontoxic,” “biodegradable,” and “all-natural” can also be misleading. It can simply mean products are made from organic materials but still contain potentially harmful chemicals.

How To Prevent Clothes Dryer Fires In Your Home

Have you noticed your clothes dryer getting super hot and giving off a burnt smell in the laundry room? Before you start shopping for a new one, take a look at your dryer vent which just may need a good cleaning. Lint balls are extremely flammable. Check out this Farmers Insurance commercial on dryer fires.

Carbon Monoxide – Protect Your Family Against This Silent Deadly Killer

Recently, five lives were lost in a tragedy involving carbon monoxide poisoning in Oxon Hill, MD. What killed them? It was carbon monoxide (CO) that leaked into the house from rusted and separated exhaust pipes on a natural gas furnace. According to the Washington Post, CO levels of between 140 parts per million to as high as 560 parts per million were found in the home. To put that number in perspective, 0 to 5 parts per million are considered “normal” and it takes only 30 parts per million to be fatal over time.

What Lead Poisoning Did to My Family - Part II

While lead poisoning is something my son Sean will live with for the rest of his life, the outcome could have been much worse had the local and state health departments not had the resources to help us. Without federal funding for both of these agencies, Sean would never have been tested for lead by a WIC nurse. Our home would not have been tested for lead-based paint in time to save us from an environmental hazard. There would not have been any nurse-related check ups and blood work schedules in place. We would not have been directed to AEA 267 to oversee my son’s education.

To put it simply, we might never have known that Sean was lead poisoned. Or worse, we might have lost him. We will forever be thankful to Mike Prideaux, the Black Hawk County Health Department Childhood Lead Poisoning Prevention Program, and Rita Gergely, Iowa Department of Public Health who have been a huge part of our lives over these past nine years.


DIY Green Floor Cleaners

My family was coming to town and I didn’t have time to clean the house so I hired a cleaning crew using a “groupon” that I bought online. A crew showed up while I was getting ready for work and I caught a whiff of ammonia and other chemicals. I decided to intervene and let them know about my preference for greener products. I was prepared for some eye-rolling, but was pleasantly surprised when the crew happily agreed to swap their standard chemicals for vinegar. They told me that vinegar is actually preferred for wood floors since it doesn’t leave a build-up like chemical products.

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