Housekeeping Channel started by examining the claims of vinegar as a germ-killer, and – thanks to Dr. Nancy Goodyear, a microbiologist with UMass Lowell – found that it does indeed kill germs but not as well as many EPA-Registered disinfectants. See the results here:
Next HC tested a cleaning recipe from Leslie Reichert, green cleaning coach, consisting of:
· Club soda
· Tea tree oil
· Lemon grass oil, and
· Hydrogen peroxide
With the help of Antimicrobial Test Laboratories (ATL), HC found that, like vinegar, the mixture does help control germs but also not as well as many EPA-Registered disinfectants. See: http://www.housekeepingchannel.com/a_1092-ATL_Tests_Homemade_Disinfectant
Does this mean that consumers should avoid using DIY products to clean and kill germs?
“Not at all. Since cleaning or removal is always the best first step in sanitizing or disinfecting, people should focus on cleaning first, and disinfecting second. Removal of germs is better than destroying them with a powerful disinfectant. These greener methods can be very effective at cleaning while doing a fair job of germ control. Still, where there are vulnerable populations, and in cases of infectious illness that could be life threatening, it is prudent to use a stronger, EPA-registered intervention as the lesser of two evils,” noted Rathey.
“Our findings stress the importance of common sense, and using the right product for the right application. In many cases, using tap water and a microfiber cloth can an effective cleaner, whereas, vinegar and various DIY cleaning recipes can also do a good job of daily cleaning in many cases. If someone is sick with the flu, however, you may want to use something stronger,” concluded Rathey.
You can see the video here: