When you have first time visitors over, which of your rooms is your favorite to show off? For some people it is their gleaming kitchen. For others it is a cozy and welcoming living room. Are there any rooms that you leave off the tour? Maybe a disheveled laundry room or a workroom scattered with tools or sewing samples. For some people the bathroom can be the most embarrassing room in the house. No matter how much they scrub and clean, the odors remain.
As a blogger for a commercial cleaning services service and as the primary bathroom cleaner in my humble household I have a reputation to uphold. And because at Environmental Cleaners we are big believers in green (and economical cleaning), I use a variety of cleaners from common household supplies. Don’t worry though, if your odors are more persistent I have some heavier duty suggestions for you as well.
A friend of mine has twin 5 year old boys and while they are a generally known as a clean family, the boys are not known for their “aim.” In fixing this type of situation we want to achieve two goals. The first is to disinfect, to kill all the nasty little germs. The second goal is to eliminate the odor associated with little boy pee.
One of the best and most popular green cleaning methods for the bathroom is a recipe that combines the following ingredients:
Lemon Juice (from a fresh squeezed lemon)
You begin by mixing the baking soda and lemon juice together until you get a lemony tooth paste kind of consistency. This mixture takes care of our first goal. Lemon juice is a natural disinfectant, designed by nature to protect the seeds of the lemon tree from bacteria, it can also protect your toilet as well. Make sure to apply this paste to all of the problem areas; the base of the toilet, around the back of the seat, etc. Once applied let it set for approximately 15 minutes to do its magic.
After the time is up, spray the vinegar on the paste. This is where your 5th grade science fair project comes in. When you combine the baking soda in the paste with the vinegar, you may get the famous “science fair volcano” reaction. Don’t worry though, yours will be some minor fizzing at best. But that just helps to get our cleaner into all the nooks and crannies.
Now it is time to wipe it all down with a damp rag. Et voila! You have a clean, green, odor free bathroom!
But what if you don’t? What if your’s is more of a heavy duty case (triplet 5 year old boys)? Then it is time to take it up to phase 2. This time try mixing some laundry detergent and bleach in a bucket of warm water. Then using an old towel, again liberally apply this to the problem areas. Wipe down all around the toilet and give it a good scrubbing. Next slowly pour the remainder of the bucket into the toilet and give that a good scrubbing as well. Finally refill the bucket with warm water and using a different old towel wipe everything clean and gleaming.
If for some reason this doesn’t take care of the problem, then it is time to skip industrial and head straight to getting agricultural on your toilet. Buy a gallon of Nature’s Miracle Stain and Odor Remover. Nature’s Miracle is actually a pet odor remover, primarily for households with multiple or large animals. But it seems to do just fine with the kind of animals that you send to kindergarten every morning as well.
Make sure to do a standard cleaning of the area prior to application, let the area dry. Then apply generously. Don’t be afraid to really get your toilet and surrounding area soaked in this stuff. Let it sit and dry for 15-20 minutes. Then wipe up.
Personally for me, all it took was the vinegar and baking soda to turn my bathroom from an embarrassment into one of the first stops on the tour. At least as long as I remember to restock the toilet paper.