Using bleach for a variety of cleaning purposes throughout your home is generally safe but does come with some potential dangers you need to be aware of. When common household bleach is mixed with other chemicals, it can pose some health concerns, especially for people with asthma and other breathing conditions.
What Is Bleach and How Safe Is It?
Chlorine bleach is a mixture of water and a kind of salt, sodium hypochlorite, which is non-toxic and serves as one of the most expensive and cheapest cleaning products on the market. It does not harm the environment or pose any danger to groundwater.
Bleach is safe to use with cleaning equipment and nonporous materials like stainless steel, plastics, ceramic, glass, porcelain, and a wide range of other surface materials. Household chlorine bleach readily available in retail stores is commonly used to clean and disinfect many things in your house, including:
- Bathroom and kitchen hardware
- Garbage cans
- Light switches
What and How to Clean Using Chlorine Bleach
A little bleach goes a long way and should be heavily diluted with water for most household cleaning applications. The dilution rate should be around one tablespoon of bleach per one gallon of water, and only water. Mixing bleach with ammonia or vinegar can create harmful chemical reactions. It is also recommended that bleach not be mixed with hot water as the chlorine can release a potentially harmful gas.
Using Bleach in Laundry
Modern washing machines have a bleach dispenser for a reason. Bleach that has not been diluted with a lot of water should never be applied directly to your clothes. Instead, add around three-quarters of a cup of bleach to the dispenser, and the washer will do the rest. To clean more challenging stains, you can soak white garments in a quarter cup of bleach per gallon of cool or cold water for no more than 10 minutes.
Cleaning the Bathrooms with Bleach
A diluted compound using a half cup of bleach with a gallon of cool water is an effective cleaner and disinfectant for just about anything in your bathrooms, including:
- Shower curtains
You can pour about a half cup of bleach directly into the toilet, where it will mix with the water. After scrubbing all around and under the rim, wait around 10 minutes before flushing.
Kitchen Cleaning with Bleach
Bleach is safe to use even on the sealed granite countertops that are the latest trend in kitchen design. Apply a diluted bleach solution to the counter and wait five minutes before rinsing and letting the countertop air dry. The same bleach solution can be used to clean and disinfect the inside of your refrigerator, sinks, and the outside of your kitchen appliances.
General Disinfecting Using Household Chlorine Bleach
Bleach can also be used to keep some of your dirtiest household items that pose the highest risks for mold growth and other potentially harmful bacteria. Use the identical dilution solution for other cleaning applications to disinfect such items as:
- Children’s toys
- Patio furniture
- Pet toys and dishes
- Shower curtains
Potential Dangers of Cleaning with Bleach
While bleach is an effective and safe cleaning product when used properly and sufficiently diluted with water, however it does not mix well with other cleaners. Follow these tips and guidelines will help you safely use household chlorine bleach to clean and disinfect just about anything in your home.
Call the Professionals
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