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      Spring cleaning, the green way

      If you've been thinking about getting out the cleaning supplies sometime soon, now is the best time to consider spring cleaning your home in an environmentally-friendly way.

      According to the Environmental Protection Agency, indoor pollutants can be up to ten times higher than outdoor levels.

      Over the winter months, toxins have built up in your home, affecting the air quality and settling into your floors, walls, and furniture.

      "A lot of the cleaning products I use for surfaces are green, specifically countertops and tables that my daughters come in contact with. They're both younger, so keeping those surfaces clean, but also chemical free, is important," said David Sprouse, a frequent user of eco-friendly cleaning products.

      There are many clearly labeled eco-friendly products on the market that are readily available in stores, and most are non-toxic, biodegradable, and made from renewable resources.

      Making your own cleaning solutions is another "green" and safe option to effectively spring clean your home.

      "Most of the time I'm just using water for things. Now, if I'm trying to give the bathroom a good scrub or get some stains out of something, baking soda is wonderful, and the combination of baking soda and vinegar creates a reaction that really helps. It can even clean out a clogged sink," said Sarah Monte, who makes her own cleaning products.

      If you choose to use ready-made "green" products, checking the label to see what's in the products is important. Be watchful of the words "natural," "organic," and "green" on labels. Companies are able to put those words on their products, even if it isn't true of the product.

      Many companies claim to make their products eco-friendly, when in reality they are only *less harmful* and not necessarily "green".

      So doing your spring cleaning with green products makes your home beautiful and helps keep your environment beautiful.