A Cleaning Conundrum?!?

Steam Cleaning

VS. Traditional Cleaning


A lot of people are making the decision to leave harsh chemicals for cleaning behind. They have found that steam cleaning kills germs and cleans messes without the suspected risks of harm from traditional cleaning products. However, Top Hat Tips would like for you to know what might be needed to prevent illness from germs and bacteria that steam cleaning cannot provide. Plus, alternative solutions less fearful than utilizing traditional cleaners.

There was a time, when it was recommended, that a soapy residue should be left behind on all surfaces. The left behind residue would continue to kill germs in-between cleaning. My mother was adamant about it. My grandmother, as well. Modernly, scientists have determined that the leaving behind of residue isn’t necessary. Let’s revue this finding.

The Minnesota Department of Health published in their Evaluation of Cleaners, Sanitizers and Disinfectants for Surfaces , “ Pathogen resistance to antibiotics and antimicrobials is a concern that has prompted an interest in developing new technologies to sanitize and disinfect surfaces. At the same time, there is interest in using products that will have less impact on the environment, and lower likelihood of development of new strains of resistant pathogens.”

On June 7, 2017 Coco Ballantyne published an article in the Scientific American which discusses how some types of cleaning products may cause superbacteria. Superbacteria developes from cleaning product residue left behind on surfaces. This residue, scientists claim, causes bacteria or even viruses to become immune to that which was intended to kill it. Also, causing the bacteria or virus to become stronger. Coco Ballantyne states, “… antibacterial products leave surface residues, creating conditions that may foster the development of resistant bacteria …”

Another health concern regarding traditional cleaning products is allergic reaction. This includes skin reactions, as well as, lung irritation. We know that some cleaning products, such as, bleach can be harmful to everyone when utilized too strongly. However, these cleaning products are still highly recommended for the killing of germs, bacteria and viruses including HIV.

Steam cleaning, as stated in Better Homes and Gardens in their article Steam Cleaning 101 by Berit Thorkelkson, ” The beauty of steam cleaning is that it effectively trades heat for chemicals without sacrificing strength. In fact, when used correctly, steam can quickly kill 99.99% of germs and bacteria, making it a safe, healthy, eco-friendly, all-natural way to clean your home from top to bottom.

In my research for this post, I have found multiple answers to the question, “How hot does steam have to be in order to kill germs, bacteria and viruses?” I have read 175 degrees to 212 degrees. There is also the conundrum of truth in product. Is it really getting the steam that hot? However, truth be told. Steam cleaning is quite effective. Especially, When there is a huge difference in the overall appearance of an area/surface after it has been steam cleaned.

Although, steam cleaning has effective and fast bacteria killing capabilities. Once the surface is cleaned, it is immediately prepared for the laying down of germs, bacteria and viruses that might would all be killed by clean residue left behind. Besides, there is only one sure way to beat the super-bacteria. Clean more frequently!

Non-the-less, I love my traditional cleaning. I believe in it. It has sustained me well throughout my 49 years of life. Like all other cleaning decisions, “I’ll use this cleaner because it gets up grease better than my other cleaner.” The same goes for when I use steam. It’s a happy addition to the family and I will always follow up with disinfectant!

Super Simple Cleaner Recipe

We have all fallen in love with the quick-grab-access to the swipes for quick clean-ups. They come in different brands, generic forms and different types of cleaner solutions. There are swipes for even cleaning mirrors! Wow! Fortunately for me, I have a slight issue with swipes. The size does not cut it for me, and they do not hold dirt. I am always left thinking, “I wish these were bigger,” or “I wish these stayed wetter longer.”

I came up with a solution to my problem. Make my own!

Step 1. Buy a pack of inexpensive dry floor clothes. I got mine at the Dollar Tree.

Step 2. Buy a bottle of rubbing alcohol. Your preferred strength.

Step 3. Buy or utilize dish detergent you already have. It can be echo friendly!

Step 4. Buy an airtight container. A plastic food container would suffice.

Step 5. Pour dish detergent into the alcohol, the same as making soapy water.

Step 6. Shake well.

Step 7. Open pack of dry floor clothes. Place them into plastic container.

Step 8. Pour the alcohol and soap solution over the dry floor clothes.

You can go as light or heavy as you desire. You can use premixed solutions. You can also, use any brand or any generic form. You are custom making your most preferred cleaning swipes. Remember!!! Keep the lid on when not in use. Use them and enjoy!

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