Cleaners for Vinyl Siding That Will Not Harm Plants

You may be neglecting chores around your home simply because you do not know how they should be done. Many people avoid cleaning their vinyl siding because the process is confusing. There are many strong chemicals for this task available, but you may wonder to keep them from running off into the soil or street where they can contaminate water supplies. Use a perfectly natural cleanser and you can clean vinyl siding yourself without harming your plants.

Vinyl Siding

Vinyl is by far the most popular home exterior in Canada and the United States. This durable, weatherproof product is mostly made of a plastic product called polyvinyl chloride, otherwise known as PVC. Vinyl siding is available in a wide variety of colors and interesting shapes and with many different styles of molding and trim, so that any homeowner can achieve the look she desires.

Harsh Cleanser Effects

The careless use of harsh chemical cleansers can cause significant harm to the environment around you. Many times, you may not even be aware that you are doing anything dangerous. For example, many people rinse old chemicals and cleansers down the sink. This may corrode your pipes, allowing the chemically-tainted water to contaminate groundwater supplies. Through precipitation cycles, contaminated water may be drawn up and released as rain, damaging grass, trees and, yes, your garden plants. Even chemicals that are innocuous when ingested may raise algae levels in groundwater, making it undrinkable.

Further, the chemicals in these cleansers can harm our most valuable natural resource: people. Many common household chemicals have been linked to illness. Some detergents may cause cancer, according to the Breast Cancer Fund's website. The volatile organic compounds (VOCs) in paint are associated with allergies, claims Dr. Hyunok Choi and associates in a study entitled, "Common Household Chemicals and the Allergy Risks in Pre-School Age Children." Triclosan, an antibacterial chemical found in some cleansers has been linked to infertility, says Denise Mann, writing on the WebMD website, in "Household Chemicals Linked to Early Puberty, Infertility", and the VOCs in some occupational cleaning agents may cause the onset of asthma, according to Alexandra Farrow's article "Environmental Pollutants and Pediatric Asthma," that appeared in the Future Medicine website.

Vinegar is Answer

Fortunately, there is no need to break the bank on expensive organic cleansers. One of the safest, most powerful multi-purpose cleaning products available may be sitting in your pantry right now. White distilled vinegar is highly acidic, which means it can kill bacteria and germs. Yet it is completely natural, non-toxic, biodegradable and safe to keep around your family. Even if your small child drank an entire bottle, the only side effect would be a possible tummy ache (and most likely a sour expression). It will not damage your plants at all, and your acid-loving plants will even thrive.

Cleaning Vinyl Siding

To create the perfect cleanser for your vinyl siding combine 2 parts of plain water with 1 part white distilled vinegar. Pour this mixture into the reservoir of a power washer or into a plastic bucket. Use a power washer for heavily soiled siding. Use the bucket of cleanser and a nylon scrub brush to hand-wash lightly soiled or small areas of vinyl siding.