Home cleaning hacks: Non-toxic DIY carpet cleaner recipe
09/10/2021 // Zoey Sky // Views

DIY non-toxic cleaners are a must-have on your homestead, especially if you have children or pets. Many store-bought cleaning products contain harsh chemicals that are harmful to their health as well as the environment. If you have rooms at home covered in carpet, use this recipe to make a non-toxic carpet cleaner. (h/t to ModernSurvivalOnline.com)

When SHTF, you can make this carpet cleaner using natural ingredients you're likely to have in your stockpile, such as distilled white vinegar, essential oils and salt. You can also use this DIY carpet cleaner to remove dirt, bacteria and other potentially harmful pathogens from your floors.

Unlike store-bought carpet cleaners, this eco-friendly carpet cleaner can be used even around babies or pets since the ingredients aren't harsh enough to cause any adverse reactions. (Related: Mold, begone: 5 Non-toxic DIY mold cleaner recipes.)

Active ingredients for the carpet cleaner

To make a DIY carpet cleaner, you will need the following ingredients:

Distilled white vinegar

Distilled white vinegar can be used in your kitchen and even all over your homestead. This versatile ingredient helps remove tough stains and debris in carpets and can help eliminate odors from pets.

Distilled white vinegar is very acidic, so you need to dilute it with lukewarm water. Most recipes use a 2:1 ratio of vinegar to lukewarm water, but you can use a less distilled version when cleaning a thicker carpet or dealing with a big mess.

You can also use distilled white vinegar to make a glass cleaner. Just combine one part water with two parts vinegar in a spray bottle. Shake the bottle and spray the solution on glass surfaces, then wipe clean for a streak-free finish.


Essential oils

Essential oils are an optional ingredient, but this non-toxic ingredient will easily give your cleaner a pleasant scent, minus the harsh chemicals.

When using your DIY carpet cleaner around children or pets, only use essential oils that are safe for them to come into contact with after the carpet has dried.

Here are some essential oils that you should avoid if you have babies, cats or dogs:

Essential oils that may be dangerous for babies:

  • Birch
  • Black pepper
  • Douglas fir
  • Eucalyptus
  • Oregano
  • Peppermint (Some say it's safe to use, but always proceed with caution)
  • Rosemary
  • Sage
  • Thyme
  • Wintergreen

Essential oils that may be dangerous for cats:

  • Birch
  • Cassia
  • Cinnamon
  • Citrus
  • Eucalyptus
  • Lavender
  • Lemon
  • Melaleuca
  • Others that contain phenols
  • Peppermint
  • Spruce
  • Tea tree
  • Thyme
  • Wintergreen

Essential oils that may be dangerous for dogs:

  • Anise
  • Clove
  • Garlic
  • Horseradish
  • Juniper
  • Oregano
  • Rosemary
  • Tea tree
  • Thyme
  • Wintergreen
  • Yarrow


You can use regular salt for this DIY carpet cleaner, but you may need sea salt if you have very dirty or thick carpets. Sea salt is larger and more abrasive so it can help break up and pull up the dirt and scum better than regular table salt.

Salt is also needed as a pre-treatment for cleaning carpets. Sprinkle salt generously onto the carpet. Let it settle for about 15 to 25 minutes. Once done, vacuum up the salt and start cleaning the carpet.

Non-toxic DIY carpet cleaner recipe


  • 2 cups lukewarm water
  • 2 cups salt
  • 1 cup distilled white vinegar
  • 15 drops of essential oil


  1. Pour the distilled white vinegar and the lukewarm water into a spray bottle.
  2. Add the salt to the spray bottle. Put the nozzle lid back on the spray bottle and screw it in place firmly.
  3. Vigorously shake the spray bottle for 30 to 60 seconds.
  4. Remove the nozzle lid again and add the essential oil. Replace the squirt bottle nozzle and shake vigorously before using.

Tips for using the carpet cleaner

  • Shake the spray bottle for 30 to 60 seconds before using.
  • Prepare a large batch of the DIY carpet cleaner if you're using a carpet shampoo machine or a carpet steamer.
  • Squirt the carpet cleaner onto the carpet section being cleaned or the entire carpet.
  • Pour one cup of carpet cleaner and fill up the rest of the steam or carpet shampooer reservoir with hot water.
  • Let the carpet dry for one hour before using the sweeper to vacuum up the DIY carpet cleaner and the debris and bacteria it has lifted.

This recipe should make enough carpet cleaner to treat a 10x15 room with thin to mildly thick carpet. If you're cleaning soiled carpet that smells very bad, pre-treat it with both salt and baking soda to better eliminate the smell.

Use this DIY non-toxic carpet cleaner to keep your home clean without any harsh chemicals.

Sources include:




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