These three heavy-duty cleaners will cover all household needs for safer degreasers. They are all biodegradable, non-hazardous, and non-toxic.
Ranked by the strength of the cleaners, and their ability to act as a degreaser ECOS PRO is the mildest, AFM Superclean is in the middle, and Crystal is the toughest (truly industrial) degreaser and cleaner on the list.
Super clean and Crystal are fragrance-free and ECOS comes in unscented or with natural fragrance.
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1. AFM SuperClean
AFM Safechoice Super Clean is a highly concentrated, all-purpose cleaner and degreaser formulated for the chemically sensitive.
It is not toxic, odor-free, dye-free, and biodegradable but it is still strong enough for industrial strength chores.
This is the best all-around option for heavy-duty household cleaning, in and outside the home.
Where to use it:
You can use it on stainless steel, fiberglass, porcelain, ceramic tile, chrome, painted surfaces, wallpaper, wood, vinyl, steel, concrete, fabric, plastic or any other hard non-porous surface. The only surface it’s not recommended for is aluminum because it will stain it.
- Odorless, non-offensive for the user and occupant.
- It will not irritate sensitive skin, nor does it give off noxious fumes.
- Safely used by the chemically sensitive.
- No butyl ethers, ammonia, chlorine, phosphates, alkalines, or acids.
- Fragrance-free and dye-free.
- Absorbs and helps eliminate odors for example from tobacco, animals and smoke and soot damage.
- Heavy-Duty Cleaning Jobs – Undiluted. Use on: Heavily soiled shop floors, ovens, lime deposits, soap scum, mold and mildew stains, grills, engines, grout, concrete, laundry (spot test for colorfastness), decks, smoke stains and pet odors. Rinse off.
- Medium Indoor/Outdoor Cleaning – 7:1 dilution. Use on: Floor wax (use hot water), tough food and tobacco stains, house exterior, ordinary oil and grease, and vents. Rinse off.
- Light Cleaning – Most regular household cleaning would be done at a dilution of 20:1 dilution with no special rinsing. You can use it on Marmoleum floors if diluted 20:1 which will give the cleaner a neutral pH. You can also use this on linseed oil finished floors.
Water, Two Non-Ionic Plant-Based Surfactants, Water Softener, Two Plant-Based Emulsifiers, Citric Acid, Sodium Percarbonate.
Where to buy:
2. Crystal Simple Green Industrial Strength Cleaner and Degreaser
Simple Green Crystal is a concentrated industrial-strength degreaser and cleaner that is fragrance-free and dye-free.
Where to use it:
This is a serious degreaser used in industrial settings on equipment and machinery, in facility maintenance plants, on vehicles and parts, and in cosmetics, medical and pharmaceutical environments.
The formula is NSF labeled for use in commercial kitchens, food processing plants, and other areas where food is prepared or handled.
In a more everyday application in the home, it can be used on metal, concrete, rubber, synthetics, and plastic.
- It is non-toxic and biodegradable.
- Non-hazardous, non-flammable, and non-corrosive/non-caustic.
- It’s free of butyl and phosphate.
- Heavy Cleaning – For thick grease, oil, hydrocarbons and soot, baked-on soils, and tough soils lodged in porous surfaces, you can dilute it up to 15:1.
- Medium Cleaning – For grease and oils, most metal working fluids, hydraulic fluids, dirt, grime, and food residue, you can dilute it 15-30:1
- Light Cleaning – For dust, particulates, and very light oils, you can dilute it 30 part (or more) water to 1 part cleaner.
Safe for the Chemically Sensitive?
The ingredients look pretty good here. If you are chemically sensitive it could still be possible to react, especially if you sniff the bottle, to the alcohols, or to the preservatives. But I would consider these ingredients to be safe generally.
The EWG does rate the ingredients C9-11 Alcohols Ethoxylated and Tetrasodium Glutamate Diacetate as a “C” mainly because of possible impurities in those ingredients.
If you have become highly sensitive then you might have to be more particular in the kids of surfactants that are good for you. If that is the case try out different brands.
Water 82%, C9-11 Alcohols Ethoxylated < 5%, Surfactant Proprietary < 5%, Sodium Citrate < 5%, Sodium Carbonate, Tetrasodium Glutamate Diacetate, Citric Acid.
Where to buy:
An alternative heavy-duty degreaser to Simple Green that is vetted by the chemically sensitive is Blue Bear Emerge.
3. ECOS Pro Dishmate
ECOS is the more natural option on the list. I use this brand for regular dish soap and find it to be really “clean” in its ingredients. Most sensitive folks do well with this brand.
This is a stronger version of regular dish soap that could be used for more heavy-duty cleaning in the home and kitchen.
It’s not an industrial cleaner like Crystal is above, but dish soap is a good degreaser for many everyday household projects.
It is non-toxic, biodegradable, and made using sustainable plant-derived surfactants.
It works well on most kitchen jobs like stuck-on food, stains, grease. You can use it on anything from fine china to heavy-duty pots and pans. You don’t have to keep it to the kitchen. Dish soap works well as a general all-purpose cleaner for walls, wood, and other floors, countertops, etc.
- Gentle on the skin.
- Readily biodegradable.
- PH balanced formula.
- Come in either “Free and Clear” (unscented) or with natural fragrance. It is free of dyes.
- Greywater and septic safe.
- U.S. EPA Safer Choice certified, NSF A1.
Sodium Coco Sulfate (Plant-Derived Surfactant), Citric Acid (Plant-Derived Ph Adjuster), Cocamidopropylamine Oxide (Plant-Derived Surfactant), Coco Betaine (Plant-Derived Surfactant), Ethylhexylglycerin (Preservative), Lauramine Oxide (Plant-Derived Surfactant), Natural Fragrance, Phenoxyethanol (Preservative), Tetrasodium Glutamate Diacetate (Plant-Derived Water Softener), Water.
Where to buy:
Corinne Segura is a Building Biologist Practitioner with 8 years of experience helping others create healthy homes.
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