Need a Non-toxic Disinfectant to Clean Toys (& Books?)

Updated on October 02, 2010
J.W. asks from North Charleston, SC
10 answers

Hi Moms,

What do you use as a non-toxic disinfectant to clean toys? I recently purchased some used toys and would like to clean them before my child plays with them. I used soap and water, however, think I should disinfect them to be sure they are clean.

Additional Request: Do you do anything to clean used books (such as wiping them)? I just got a box of used books and they are clearly dirty but I just let my baby dive in...since I was afraid of damaging the books.

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So What Happened?

Thank you everyone for your responses :o)

I have decided to use the vinegar and warm water option to clean our toys for three reasons (1) I already have these supplies at home (2) The toys I need to clean are all electronic (3) Low cost :o)

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answers from Seattle on

No special cleaners needed: Use white vinegar and warm water. The acidity of the vinegar will get rid of any germs. There is a lingering smell that lasts for a day. It's safe, non-toxic (unlike bleach or ammonia) and probably something you already have.

Vinegar is a great all around cleanser -- we use it all over the house.

2 moms found this helpful

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answers from Spokane on


I use clorox anywhere ALL the time:)I would recommend that:)

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Eugene on

My favorite all around cleaner is orange based cleaner, such as Citrasolve. You buy it in a concentrate, and can dilute it into spray bottles for household use. I also pour a few tablespoons in the sink and fill with hot water for mopping, etc. It will disenfect naturally, and unlike Clorox, will not creat dioxins as a by-product. Dioxins are one of the most nasty things around-they do not dilute, they stay around forever, and most of us have much of it in our body fat because of the high levels of bleach used everywhere.

I also love vinegar and water-it will disinfect and is great for windows with old newspaper to wipe with.

Hydrogen peroxide, very cheap, will take out any protein based stain and also is a disinfectant.


1 mom found this helpful


answers from Seattle on

clean the toys with 1T bleach and a quart water. wipe the books down with a damp cloth


answers from Seattle on

The clorox anywhere is good. If you also want to go earth friendly babies r us and alot of other retailers sell seventh generation house hold cleaner that works well is non toxic and safe.



answers from Seattle on

Clorox clean-works is great. It's made from natural products, its just as effective and bleach, but it's as gentle and soap and water, and it costs the same as any other cleaner.



answers from Medford on

A bottle of white vinegar and water would work. You could add some tea tree oil or lemon essential oil too.



answers from Seattle on

I've read that clorox anywhere spray (light blue bottle) works without having to be wiped off. There are also pampers wipes for toys and high chairs. And there are many more "green" products coming out every day, try trader joe's or whole foods market or the like.



answers from Washington DC on

I use a non toxic, green product that kills MRSA, Staph, Ecoli, HIV and so many others and is rated the same toxicity as water. It is a antibacterial, antiviral, anti fungal. Safe for kids. Best of all, it protects for 24hrs. Go to name of product is IV-7 Ultimate Germ Defense. Other product lines like, laundry soap, wipes, soap and more are coming. My 14yr old uses it on his face and it prevents acne.



answers from Portland on

I also buy a lot of toys from thrift stores. I've run all of them thru the dishwasher or washer and dryer and have yet to ruin any of them. Even stuffed animals are good after washing and drying. My granddaughter takes most of her stuffed animals with her into the bath tub anyway. "Gramma, they need a bath too."

Chlorox Anywhere is Chlorox bleach greatly reduced with water. When my granddaughter was in the hospital they told me that they disinfect their toys with a bleach such as Chlorox diluted with water. Chlorox is chlorine (sodium hypochlorite); the same substance that purifies our water.

I've only purchased quality stuffed animals such as the small ones stuffed with pellets. The ones sold at Walmart for .99 also wash well. My granddaughter loved one that I bought at the Dollar Store that was stuffed with a fiber stuffing. She vomited on it and the surface came out rough after her mother washed it. I think the key to success with stuffed animals is the pellet like stuffing. All of he Disney ones have washed well. So have all of the "collectible" brands.

MOst electronic toys will not survive the dishwasher. However, I've washed some small baby toys that play a tune when you push a buttong and they've returned to "singing" after they dried completely. These are the kind that do not use a replaceable battery.

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