Start by selecting a basic categories and then choose the specific product to learn more information on types, processes, ingredients and alternative formulas.
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Meet the Basic Ingredients. These Cleaning Agents are broken down into the following active ingredients.
Click on a Cleaning Agent to learn more. This website is designed to inform you about Cleaning Products. The history, product types, ingredients, processes and so much more! Is Green More Clean?
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So what is a Cleaning Product? Get to know your Cleaning Products. Builders : Adjust pH to optimize cleaning performance and suspend soils.
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Bleaches : Oxidize and remove soils and lighten the color of stains. Enzymes : Biological proteins that speed the breakdown of soils.
Cleaning Supplies and Household Chemicals | American Lung Association
Surfactants : Allow a product to wet surfaces, emulsify greasy soils, lift away dirt. Solvents : Organics that dissolve soils. Chelants : Bind with metal ions in solution calcium and magnesium in soap scum Biologicals : Non-pathogenic microorganisms and associated enzymes useful in decomposing soil.
Select your location. Submit a Question. Cleaning is essential to protecting our health in our homes, schools and workplaces. However, household and cleaning products—including soaps, polishes and grooming supplies—often include harmful chemicals.
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Even products advertised as "green" or "natural" may contain ingredients that can cause health problems. Some cleaning supplies can even be flammable or corrosive. Fortunately, you can limit your exposure to those risks. Read all labels and follow instructions when using cleaning products.
It could save your life. Many cleaning supplies or household products can irritate the eyes or throat, or cause headaches and other health problems, including cancer. Some products release dangerous chemicals, including volatile organic compounds VOCs. Other harmful ingredients include ammonia and bleach. Even natural fragrances such as citrus can react to produce dangerous pollutants indoors. VOCs and other chemicals released when using cleaning supplies contribute to chronic respiratory problems, allergic reactions and headaches.
Studies are underway to assess how these chemicals affect people who have asthma and other respiratory illnesses. Cleaning supplies and household products containing VOCs and other toxic substances can include, but are not limited to:. The gases created from this combination can lead to chronic breathing problems and even death.
Particles are also common air pollutants that can worsen asthma and other lung diseases and risk heart attacks and stroke. Both ozone and particles can be life-threatening. Read all labels on cleaning supplies and household products before you buy them.
Choose products that do not contain or have reduced amounts of VOCs, fragrances, irritants and flammable ingredients. Avoid using air fresheners altogether. Manufacturers are not obligated by U. Do a little research on the product from a reliable source. For example, the U.