False Myths About Natural Home Cleaning Tricks

Grandparents’ popular wisdom has transmitted much of the tricks that we use in cleaning the home to parents and these to children, but without any criteria that support them. Some of them can be completely false and can even cause serious problems.

Bacteria die in the freezer

It is false. The bacteria are still alive at temperatures of -18º. What is certain is that they cannot multiply. However, as soon as food begins to thaw, the bacteria begin to work again. At room temperature, the number of bacteria doubles every 20 minutes.

Coins and bills are a nest of bacteria

Despite popular belief, it is false. Multiple tests have shown that the copper in the coins even kills bacteria. In banknotes, only a small number of bacteria can survive, since they do not offer adequate living conditions.

It is not necessary to clean the dishwasher because it washes by itself.

It is false. The interior of the dishwasher should be cleaned monthly. It is a perfect place for mushrooms to grow. To avoid this, put a cup of vinegar on the top shelf with nothing else inside and program a complete cycle of washing at a high temperature.

Wearing gloves is more hygienic than hand washing.

False. Keeping gloves clean and dry when stored is vital because they could become very unhygienic. Also, they should be changed regularly at least once a month to minimize bacteria growth. To clean them, a good remedy is to leave them to soak 10-15 minutes in hot water with two tablespoons of vinegar and a little detergent. Then rinse them well and let them dry in a cool place.

The more soap we use, the more cleaning power

Another myth. Interestingly, soap and detergent are great nutrients for bacteria. Not rinsing your hands, dishes, or clothes well can help them grow.

All bacteria are harmful to humans.

It is not true, and in fact, man needs bacteria to live. There are a billion microorganisms on the skin and in our intestines, being only a few pathogens.

Scratched Teflon in pans is carcinogenic.

False. Only scratched Teflon is harmful to humans at temperatures above 260º. From this temperature, the coating called “polytetrafluoroethylene” emits toxic fumes. However, achieving such a temperature is only possible with specific forms of overheating.

Cutting boards are a swarm of bacteria.

It is not true. It does not matter to use a wooden or plastic cutting board as long as you clean it carefully (the wooden ones are perfect, free of odors, rubbing them with half a lemon). Also, the woods contain resins or tannic acids that are germicidal. If you prefer to use plastic boards, washing it at 60º temperature will help you kill bacteria.

The bathroom is the dirtiest part of the house.

Not at all. The fridge or kitchen towels are major sources of bacteria. However, many do not know and do not clean it, but the computer keyboard contains 400 times more germs than the bathroom toilet.

Using the bath towel repeatedly is not a concern.

On the contrary! Wet towels are the ideal habitat for bacteria, so they should be changed frequently and kept dry.