The Village of Wilmette is a member of the Solid Waste Agency of Northern Cook County (SWANCC), an intergovernmental agency that strives to provide residents with environmentally-friendly lifestyle options. SWANCC has produced an Eco-Cleaning Guide to offer home recipes for cleaning products as a safer alternative to using cleaning products.

The use of environmental cleaning products can:

• Decrease exposure to ingredients that may be harmful to your health
• Provide your home environment with cleaner air
• Save money if you make your own cleaning products
• Reduce use of non-renewable resources

Selected Eco-Cleaning Recommendations

Below, the Village has summarized some of the recommendations provided by SWANCC for homemade cleaning products:

General Household

All Purpose Liquid Cleaner

1 tablespoon baking soda
2 tablespoons liquid soap
1 gallon hot water
1 tablespoon of washing soda
1 tablespoon of borax
Add baking soda and liquid soap to hot water.
Add washing soda to remove heavy grease, or borax to disinfect or kill mildew.


Grout Cleaner

3 cups baking soda
1 cup warm water
Mix baking soda with warm water into a paste.
Scrub into grout with a toothbrush or sponge and rinse. For stubborn stains, leave paste on grout for an hour before rinsing.


Weed Control

Purchase higher concentrate vinegar (10 percent, as opposed to the 5 percent concentration of household vinegar) from a hardware store.
Spray undiluted vinegar directly on weeds and in cracks in sidewalks and driveways to kill weeds.


All-Purpose Sanitizer

Fill a spray bottle with equal parts water and white vinegar to sanitize surfaces and remove food odors. Use distilled water if you plan to reuse the spray at a later time, as tap water mixed with vinegar will smell over time.

Home Furnishings


1 Baking soda (or cornstarch)
Crushed Lavender Flowers (for scent)
To eliminate odors, sprinkle baking soda over carpet, let stand for 30 minutes, then vacuum.