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We were asked these questions recently:

Can I use commercial cleaning products at home? It seems to make more sense to buy the larger volume at a reduced price and I understand the commercial cleaning products are stronger so would be more effective. Is this true?

It is true that “commercial” cleaning chemicals often stronger than their residential, or non-commercial counterparts. That said, however, many commercial cleaners contain the same or similar chemicals consumer products, but in higher concentrations.

For example, “spray and wipe” commercial cleaners are commonly made with a high percentage of citrus oils for heavy-duty cleaning. Most have to be diluted before use, with dilution rates ranging from 1 ounce per gallon of water to 12 ounces per gallon (for extreme cleaning). Improper dilution can cause damage to certain surfaces to be cleaned and create a perfect environment VOC.

Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs) are vapors and gases that are emitted from certain solids or liquids. VOCs can include a variety of chemicals some of which may have adverse health effects. As one might expect, VOCs tend to be higher in an enclosed space than outside. In a very large building, these can dissipate, but in smaller, particularly residential spaces, the fumes can gather and become a health risk.

Reputable cleaning companies such as NKeepers ensure that their staff is trained in the proper use of commercial products. We would strongly advise against using commercial cleaning products without proper training in their use.

By law, commercial cleaning chemicals are sold with an MSDA, a Material Safety Data Sheet, that includes important information such as

  • Composition and Information on Ingredients
  • Hazards Identification
  • First Aid Measures
  • Fire Fighting Measures
  • Accidental Release Measures
  • Handling and Storage
  • Exposure Controls/Personal Protection
  • Physical and Chemical Properties
  • Toxicological Information
  • Ecological Information
  • Disposal Considerations

The above list is just a sample of the information required by law to accompany commercial chemicals, which we hope would be intimidating enough to require anyone to get the proper training before handling them. While it may seem that commercial cleaning products might be a bigger “bang for the buck”, there are a lot of overhead, safety and other important considerations. Our advice is to stay with products you buy at the store, or call us for any commercial or residential cleaning you may need.


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