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Organic Consumers Association

If You Knew How Dangerous Cleaning Products Were, You'd Probably Go Back to Soap and Water

They're hiding under your sink, deep in the basement and out in your garage. They seem to be multiplying and most of them are green, for gosh sakes!

They are cleaning products. We have one for every conceivable job: floors, walls, dishes, laundry, windows, bathroom porcelain and ceramic tiles, wooden decks, cement surfaces, silverware, one for car paint and another for the chrome, and on and on.

Whatever happened to just plain soap? Well, it seems it wasn't fast enough for our busy lives. And these new cleaners certainly are fast. Just spray and wipe or swish with a mop and the job is done.

If you want really fast general cleaning products, commercial ones like Formula 409, Simple Green and Windex clean faster than any soap and water could. This is because they contain small amounts, usually in the range of 2-6 percent, of some members of the most powerful grease-cutting class of chemicals known: the "glycol ethers."


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