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Household Toxics

Household Toxics

Using Less Toxic Cleaners

  • The average home contains a multitude of hazardous chemicals — a major portion of these can be found in household cleaners.
  • Indoor air is often 3 to 5 times more contaminated than outdoor air.
  • Over 90% of all poisonings occur in the home.

Many household cleaners contain chemicals that are hazardous to your health and to the environment. These hazardous chemicals can cause skin irritation, watery eyes, burns, poisoning, or even cancer. They can also harm local lakes, rivers, and drinking water supplies.

Avoid Exposure

Read the Label

Don’t buy products that contain any of the following words on their labels: DANGER! WARNING! POISON! TOXIC!

These “signal” words indicate the product’s risk to humans and pets. More information is available from the manufacturer. Most manufacturers provide a phone number on the product label and are willing to answer questions by phone.

Choose a Safer Alternative

“Industrial strength” cleaners are overkill for most jobs. Less toxic products or soap and water are suitable for many common jobs around the house. If you do use hazardous products, use and dispose of them properly. Buy only what you need to avoid surplus that becomes a storage and waste problem later.

Many less hazardous products are available at your local grocery store. If they are not, then you should request them.

Use & Store Properly

Follow these practices to safely use hazardous household products:

  • Keep all cleaning products out of the reach of children and pets.
  • Store products in their original containers.
  • Keep containers tightly sealed to avoid spills.
  • If a spill occurs, open windows and doors for fresh air and clean up the spill right away.
  • Use products in well-ventilated areas and away from sources of ignition.
  • Wear gloves, safety glasses, and aprons to avoid getting the cleaners on your skin or in your eyes.
  • Don’t dump any hazardous products in the trash or down the drain.
  • Follow directions for use on label.
  • Do not mix products.

Dispose of Waste Properly

Boulder County runs a FREE About Household Hazardous Waste collection facility, facility located at 1901 63rd Street, Boulder – immediately west of the Recycling Center.

Contact Us

Air Quality Program

Main: 303-441-1564
Submit a question


3450 Broadway
Map and Directions
Hours: 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

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