I love homemade cleaning products.  They’re free of toxins, chemicals, and other harmful ingredients.  They also happen to be insanely inexpensive, good for the environment, and much, much healthier for your children, pets and for you!

The very first homemade cleaner I tried out was floor cleaner.  It was a couple years ago when Elle had just learned to crawl.  I was moping the kitchen, and she wanted to see what I was up to, so she crawled onto the wet, newly mopped floor.  I had been using a commercial floor cleaner, and her poor little legs broke out into a horrible rash. :(

In case you’re curious, common ingredients in floor cleaners include: C10-12 Alcohols Ethoxylated 8EO, Fragrance, Hydroxyethylcellulose, Liquitint Lemon Dye, Sodium C14-17 Sec-Alkyl Sulfonatea, and Sodium Carbonate.

After the adverse skin reaction to chemical floor cleaners, I sought out to find an easy, affordable, and SAFE homemade floor cleaner recipe.  I was instantly surprised at how easy it was! Basically, a really great floor cleaner consists of two ingredients: Vinegar and Water.

Really, that easy?   Yep! It is really that easy!  I’ll show you how:


What you need:

  • 1 cup white vinegar
  • 2 gallons hot water
  • 10 drops essential oils (optional)
  • 1/4 cup borax (optional — for really dirty floors)

Homemade floor cleaner

How to do it :

  • Fill up your kitchen sink with hot water until about half way full (2 gallons).  Add 1 cup vinegar, and any essential oils or borax.  
  • Mop as normal! 

Why it works:

  • Vinegar has a high acidity level, which makes it an effective mold, bacteria, and germ killer.  Vinegar and water alone are a great way to clean your floor. 
  • Borax is a natural mineral compound that serves as a fungicide and a disinfectant, but it can be toxic if swallowed or handled openly around food, so use with caution and keep out of the reach of children and pets.  If your floor is extra dirty, you can add 1/4 cup borax to the vinegar/water mixture. 
  • Lemon essential oil is one of my go-to cleaning oils for its antibacterial properties and its uplifting scent.  It masks the smell of vinegar very well, so I usually add 5 drops to my vinegar/water solution.
  • Melaleuca essential oil (tea tree oil) is a great cleaning oil because it has antibacterial, antiviral, and anti-fungal properties. I usually add 5 drops of it, along with lemon to ensure a clean, disinfected floor.

Inspired to “green” your other cleaning products?  Check out my Homemade Cleaning Products!



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4 Responses to Homemade Floor Cleaner

  1. Angels says:

    Thanks for this recipe! Can you leave it prepared in a bottle and add to the water to clean the floor every time or loses the effects once mixed?

    Thank you!

  2. Claris sharp says:

    What type of floors can this be used on? I have wood floors and waxed ceramic tile? Is it possible for you to include info on essential oils effect on waxed area?

    • avaughan says:

      Great question, Claris! The recipe above is for linolium or vinyl-type floors. If you’re cleaning wood floors, I would half the vinegar in the recipe and wring your mop out really well, so you don’t get your floors overly wet. Essential oils should be fine to use on the wood floors.

      I am sorry, but I don’t have any experience with waxed ceramic tile, so I would hate to tell you something and be wrong! Maybe some other readers may have some insight??

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