I just found a new floor cleaner! Let me preface this post by saying that PineSol makes my nose bleed. Windex makes me sneeze. Most cleaners are too heavily perfumed that they make me feel unwell in some way. I have a very narrow range of products I can use and tolerate. I also have two dogs and a cat. The dogs like to "help" clean, by licking up the crumbs of food that are scattered about. So I worry about what chemicals they are licking. The cat wouldn't deign to help clean, but she does supervise. For this reason I have to lock her out of the bathroom when I scrub the bathtub with comet. Otherwise, she jumps up on the side or even will try to get in it. I know she licks her paws later, so I don't want her licking bleach. And while I was mopping the floor, sure enough, there she was, every step of the way, sitting in the wet floor. Plus soon enough I will have a mobile baby to worry about, either my own or Jeanna's. I don't want them licking the floor or picking up something and putting it in their mouths that has chemicals on it.
For cleaning the floors, I prefer mop and glo. I don't know why. Probably because that is what we always used growing up. I like the smell too, it isn't overpowering. But you can't use Mop and Glo on laminate. It makes it cloudy. Go ahead, ask me how I know. So, I've been using mostly just hot water, which works ok, but you can't leave water on the laminate or it buckles. (Again, ask me how I know.) So my solution was just don't mop that often. That works great when you don't have kids. Not so great now. So I was racking my brains trying to figure out what to do. What did I do? I googled it. A few people mentioned that equal parts rubbing alcohol, vinegar, and water, with or without a few drops of dish soap, would make a good laminate cleaner. I personally have a hard time with anything that LEAVES soap behind. I feel like I need to rinse it afterwards. So I tried it without the soap and it worked great!! Most of the floor just has an assortment of dirt and dog / cat dander on it. That wasn't a big deal. Where the cleaner really stood out was the laundry room and the kitchen. I don't know about you, but I make a BIG mess when I cook. That's why I have dogs. =) So the floor in there is um, scary sometimes. And the laundry room is a mess because that is where we feed and water the dogs, so there is dog food, water spots, gravy made from dog food sitting in water spots, you get the drift. Plus the entrance from the back yard is there, so it is extra dirty. It cleaned up the filth just great.
So, here is a "recipe" if you will. Mix 1 part rubbing alcohol, white vinegar (or I guess you could use apple cider for a more pleasing scent), and water in a spray bottle. I used 1/2 cup of each in a 12 oz bottle. Then I ran one of my kitchen dish rags of which I have 500 under some hot water in the sink and stuck it on the end of my "swiffer" (it's not name brand. Shh). Then I went to town. I spritzed some solution on the rag to prime it a little, then sprayed it on the floor, and rubbed with the rag. It was easy, it was QUIET (baby was sleeping), and I don't have to worry about the chemicals. It does smell a little weird while you are applying it, but as the alcohol and vinegar evaporate, the smell goes away. I even sniff tested the floor after it was dry. There is NO lingering vinegar smell. Alann hates the smell of vinegar, so I made sure to use it first thing this morning, so that it will for sure be gone before he gets home. If I could do one thing differently, it would be this: a microfiber cloth for the end of the swiffer, and a better spray bottle. The kitchen rag worked ok, but if there was any dog hair on the floor, it just pushed it into a pile, instead of picking it up like the microfiber would have. Also, the spray bottle I used was the cheapo $1 at Target bottle that I bought to use for baby's wipe solution. It sucks a little. It works okay once you get the spray going, but it takes a while to get the pumper primed. Plus you have to get really close to the floor because it isn't too strong. So a "professional" bottle might work a little better. But overall, I am pleased, and will be using this method from now on, at least once a week, maybe twice. Yay for a clean house!