The impact the cleaning products you use have on local waterways
When you wash your dishes or clean your toilet, you’re probably not thinking about the impact your cleaner residue is having on local waterways. After all- this is just a little bit of cleaner, and a lot of water, and besides, it’s all filtered out, isn’t it?
How do household cleaners affect waterways?
Nitrogen, phosphorus, and ammonia are all regularly used in cleaners and then simply washed down the drain. Filtering doesn’t remove these chemicals fully, and they enter our waterways and act as fertilizers on some types of plant life. This vegetation can become dense, clogging once free-flowing streams and strangling native plant life. Then, as the plants die and decay, oxygen in the water is reduced, which kills aquatic animals. Algae grows and more animals die, and ‘suddenly’, the water is polluted and toxic.
Some chemicals also replicate oestrogen, which can alter the reproductive cycles of marine life.
If you use detergents which are then directly flushed into waterways (like washing your car on the street), it can harm aquatic animals. It destroys the external mucus layer on fish which provides protection from parasites and bacteria, and can also damage the gills, hindering breathing. Fish eggs can be killed even with low chemical concentration levels.
Which cleaners are the culprits?
The chemicals that cause problems are called alkylphenol ethoxylates (APEs). These are surfactants, which are the ingredients in cleaners that are used to break down the barrier between the dirt and the surface you’re cleaning. Commonly used in laundry powders and detergents, they are regularly found in most cleaning products.
Greywater tanks and surfactants
The effects of greywater use in your garden is still being studied. So far, studies have shown that over time, surfactants in the water create soil that is water repellent. The outcomes of this are not yet known or understood.
What can you do?
Avoid using unnecessary cleaners, and use products with natural surfactants such as Coco Betaine and Decyl Glucoside. Definitely do not dump or flush water with cleaners down storm water drains. This includes not washing your vehicle on the street- use a commercial carwash that filters and cleans their water.
Eco-friendly, stylish and useful Christmas gifts from Dream Eco Products
Are you struggling to buy a gift for someone in your life? Is there someone who has it all, or is hard to buy for? This year, buy a gift that gets used. Buy a gift that is environmentally friendly. Gift someone you love with natural, eco-friendly cleaning products.
Beautifully presented, Dream Eco cleaning products have stylish packaging and look elegant in any home.
Perfect gift for Mums
If you have a friend who cares about what products they use in their home and tries to avoid toxic chemicals, this is a thoughtful Christmas gift. Made without harmful chemicals and scented with essential oils, our cleaning range is safe for the home and the environment. With ingredients like lemongrass and pine that are natural antiseptics, this is great for keeping the home clean while still being safe for kids and pets.
Corporate Christmas gifts
The perfect Christmas gift for your customers and staff needs to be unique, Kiwi, and something that gets used. If your company prides itself on being eco-positive, gifting our products is a unique way to reinforce this. Mix and match our range of cleaners- our ‘Fly-Off’ surface cleaner is ideal for summer, and our range of handwashes smell divine.
Additionally, this is the perfect housewarming gift, or gift for real estate agents wanting to congratulate purchasers on their new home.
Support a healthy environment
For the eco-warrior, these products will be a gift they love. No palm oil or palm oil derivatives, no harmful chemicals that damage our waterways, and all scented with paraben-free natural essential oils.
Whether you use one product in an amazing gift basket, or send a pack as a complete present, Dream Eco Products are special, and useful too. If you’re a real estate agent wanting to buy a great house warming present, or looking for a gift for that hard to buy for person, Dream Eco Products may be your solution.
How Dream Eco Products support the environment AND their community
Here at Dream Eco Products, we take a holistic approach to our business. It’s great to produce a product that is fantastic and does a great job, but we want to do more. It’s part of our philosophy to support our local community. If our community is flourishing, then so will our business.
Supporting solo parents
It’s hard to be a parent. It’s even harder to be a solo parent. That’s why we hire single parents as our workforce. We offer full training and permanent work, not casual or contract work. This offers the certainty and security of knowing when your next pay check will be coming from. We support the living wage, and pay our staff what they deserve, not the minimum amount the government sets. We support a flexible working schedule to make life easier for the family.
Minimising our environmental impact
We are so mindful of the impact we make on our beautiful environment that our whole company is based around this. Our eco-positive products won’t harm the environment, which contributes to the health of our waterways, the people around us, and our homes. We drive hybrid vehicles, ensuring our impact on the environment is minimal.
Supporting social groups
We like to support local community groups and programs. We assist and support all charity drives run by Out and About With Kids in Hawkes Bay. This group aims to nurture and support the children of Hawkes Bay, ensuring the next generation are strong, healthy and caring people.
We also support local sporting groups. These are such an vital hub for a community, essential to forming networks and friends.
When you buy Dream Eco cleaning products, you’re doing so much more than cleaning your home with eco-friendly products. You’re supporting the next generation of young New Zealanders. You’re supporting a sustainable, environmentally aware company. You’re supporting your local community.
What is pH and why is alkalinity or acidity important for cleaning?
The pH level of something tells us if it’s an acid or an alkaline. We know that pure water is 7.0, a completely neutral substance. You might recall from science in high school that the higher the pH number, the more alkaline it is, the lower the number, the more acidic it is. The more acidic or alkaline something is, the stronger it is, and the more reactive it will be (and potentially more dangerous to surfaces and humans).
Acids and alkalines can balance each other out; similar to hot and cold water. Boiling water can be made tepid by mixing with cold water. This is the same as an extremely acidic substance can be neutralised by adding the appropriate alkaline.
Why does pH matter for cleaning products?
Different cleaners work in different ways for different dirt. Most cleaners are alkaline, as the breakdown of dirt is most effective when the solution is alkaline.
Also, you don’t want to use a cleaner on a surface that will be damaged by the pH level. For instance, some delicate silks or wools will be damaged for acids or alkalines.
It’s also important to note so that you shouldn’t mix some cleaners. For instance, adding vinegar to bleach or ammonia will create extremely toxic and harmful gas.
What are acidic cleaners used for?
Acid cleaners include vinegar, lemon, and most detergents are slightly acidic. Acid is excellent to use on rust and other metal oxides. Hard water marks and mineral deposits on shower doors and soap scum are effectively treated with a mild acidic cleaner. However, acidic cleaners can damage surfaces, especially marble/ stone benchtops and other natural products.
What are alkaline cleaners best for?
Alkaline cleaners include ammonia, bleach, borax, and baking soda (this is why it reacts when paired with vinegar, which is acidic). Bars of soap are alkaline.
Alkalines work best with dirt such as grease, fats, and oils, which is why oven cleaners are often alkaline. Strong alkalines are great as drain cleaners as they dissolve grease, often the cause of blocked drains. Laundry powder is usually alkaline too, as it is effective in breaking down and removing natural body oils and proteins.
How to clean your floor, regardless of surface, without harsh chemicals
Your floors take a battering every day, with kids, pets, and the occasional pair of muddy gummies being trekked through the house. So much of our lives happen on that same floor; kids playing board games or watching TV. You want your floors to be clean and safe to live on.
Different floor types need different care
If you have a waxed wooden floor, you have different needs to a lino or tile floor. Lino is the most easy-care floor option, and can take almost form of cleaner you use. Tiles and wooden floors are natural products and require a little more care. Be careful to avoid harsh, abrasive, or acidic cleaners on them. Avoid vinegar for floor cleaning as it is acidic and will eat away at the floor protective covering.
Timber floors with wax finishes require re-feeding or they will need re-finishing regularly. To keep your floor looking great with minimal effort, find a floor cleaner that re-feeds the wax. Use this product every few washes so your floor maintenance needs are less. Also remember to use minimal water on timber floors as they absorb water and can swell, causing damage to the timber.
Find an eco-positive floor cleaner
How do you balance finding an effective and anti-bacterial cleaner with an eco-friendly option? It is possible, with Dream Eco Products. With a range of non-toxic floor cleaners, they have just what you’re looking for.
With three amazing scents available, you know your floor will smell amazing, as well as being safe for all hard floor types. The essential oils used in Dream Eco products cleaner do double duty- not only do they smell great, but they have anti-bacterial properties. Lemongrass and lime is a potent anti-bacterial and anti-microbial combination. Lemongrass is also excellent at dispersing unpleasant fragrances, making it perfect for floors. Cinnamon and tangerine, as well as the pine and sweet orange combinations are anti-bacterial and very effective floor cleaners.
So what are you waiting for? Visit our store and take a look at our range.