Frequently Asked Questions

Simple Green >> Industrial >> FAQS

Simple Green cares about providing safer cleaning choices, offering a wide variety of cutting-edge cleaning products for both home & industrial use. We're dedicated to producing environmentally-friendly formulas for virtually any cleaning need, and proud of the work we do to meet or exceed all federal health & safety requirements.

Find informative answers to all your questions about Simple Green products in the Simple Green F.A.Q. below.

Do you have a Simple Green inquiry that's not addressed here? Please contact us via email or phone at (800)228-0709.

 Agitation — Why is agitation required for water based cleaners?
Agitation puts fresh cleaner in contact with soils so that cleaning happens faster and better. Some form of agitation is required when using an aqueous-based cleaner. Agitation can be accomplished through re-circulation, spraying, scrubbing by hand and use of mechanical equipment.
 Aircrafts — Is Simple Green All-Purpose Cleaner safe for cleaning aircraft?
Simple Green manufactures a product specifically designed for use on aircraft - Extreme Simple Green Aircraft & Precision Cleaner. This product was initially developed for use in the aircraft industry and extensive testing shows it to be safe for use on aluminum, plastics, rubber, and high tech alloys, in both normal and extreme temperatures and stress conditions. Extreme Simple Green passed a variety of aircraft industry tests. Testing has been performed by Scientific Materials International, Inc. and is available upon request.
 Alkaline — What is an alkaline aqueous solution?
Alkaline aqueous solutions are water-based mixtures with a pH greater than 7. Most of these types of cleaners range from a pH of 10 to 14. Simple Green All-Purpose Cleaner is a water-based cleaner with a pH of 8.5 to 9.5. Alkaline aqueous solutions are the most common solutions in water based cleaning. These often contain additives to improve cleaning, such as sequestering agents, emulsifiers and surfactants. Corrosion inhibitors may be necessary with some metals, especially aluminum.

Alkaline aqueous solutions remove grease, coolants, cutting oils, shop dirt, fingerprints, cosmoline, petroleum and some water-soluble paints. They are also used with all types of liquid processes, e.g., sprays, ultrasonic, immersion and power washers. These solutions can clean to very high levels, with good filtration and rinsing. Cost per gallon is generally less than for semi-aqueous cleaners.

One should never assume that aqueous solutions can be disposed of down the drain. Your local water treatment authority or publicly owned treatment works (POTW) will have information on treatment and disposal of these cleaners.

 Alkaline — What are high-alkaline, water-based cleaners, and are they hazardous?
The cleaning principle of these products is that the alkaline (high pH) strips the oil from the substrate (surface) and floats it on top of the water, thus allowing re-deposition of oil on the substrate (resulting in poor rinse ability.) Other problems with this cleaning mechanism are that higher alkalinity creates health and safety issues (i.e., chemical burns, choking vapors, the need for costly protective equipment, disposal difficulties, etc.) High alkaline cleaners also cause problems for sewage treatment plants.
 Aluminum — Is it safe to use Simple Green All-Purpose Cleaner on aluminum?
When used with caution and according to the instructions, Simple Green All-Purpose Cleaner has been safely and successfully used to clean aluminum. Simple Green All-Purpose Cleaner, Crystal Simple Green Industrial Cleaner & Degreaser, and Simple Green Pressure Washer Concentrates have been used on aircraft, automotive, industrial and consumer aluminum items for over 20 years. However, caution and common sense must be used: aluminum is a soft metal that easily corrodes with unprotected exposure to water. The aqueous-base and alkalinity of Simple Green All-Purpose Cleaner can accelerate the corrosion process. Therefore, contact times for unprotected or unpainted aluminum surfaces should be kept as brief as the job will allow - never for more than 10 minutes. Large cleaning jobs should be conducted in smaller-area stages to achieve lower contact time. Rinsing after cleaning should always be extremely thorough - paying special attention to flush out cracks and crevices to remove all Simple Green product residues. Unfinished, uncoated or unpainted aluminum cleaned with Simple Green products should receive some sort of protectant after cleaning to prevent oxidation.

Simple Green has also developed break-through water based cleaners that are safe for use on metals, plastics, rubber and high tech alloys. Extreme Simple Green Aircraft & Precision Cleaner, Pro Series Simple Green Automotive Cleaner, and Simple Green Pro HD are available on both the industrial and retail markets, respectively. These products were initially developed for the aircraft industry and extensive testing shows that they are safe and effective on a variety of metals and other sensitive surfaces even in the most extreme circumstances.

Simple Green Stainless Steel One Step Cleaner & Polish is another option for cleaning polished aluminum. This product is designed for light duty metal cleaning and polishing.

 Ammonia — Can I mix Simple Green All-Purpose Cleaner with ammonia?
No. We don't recommend mixing ammonia with any Simple Green products because mixing will detract from the cleaning ability of our formulas. You will achieve better cleaning results if Simple Green products are used separately from ammonia. Our recommendation is that you never mix any household chemicals.
 Ammonia — Does Simple Green All-Purpose Cleaner contain ammonia?
No, Simple Green All-Purpose Cleaner does not contain ammonia.
 Animals — Does Simple Green test on animals?
Since the early 1990's, Sunshine Makers, Inc. (the makers of Simple Green brand products) has not conducted any mammalian testing, and does not perform animal testing for its products on any ongoing basis. When a new product is introduced, non-mammalian test methods are done by third-party laboratories in order to assure consumers and regulatory agencies of the safety of the product. On occasion, aquatic toxicity testing has been done on fish because the nature of our product causes it to come into contact with the aquatic environment during disposal. While non-fish aquatic toxicity assessments exist, we choose those tests that are preferred by the EPA's Design for the Environment program, consisting of fish, crustacean, and algae tests. However, these tests are also not performed on any ongoing basis.

During our 40 year history, Simple Green All-Purpose Cleaner has been used all over the world to save lives of birds and mammals caught in oil spills and chemical lagoons, because it enables them to be cleaned and then returned to the wild with minimal stress and no ill effects. Simple Green has also been used to maintain safe and clean environments for mammals, birds, and fish that are temporary guests of veterinary clinics and wildlife rehabilitation centers (such as the World Bird Sanctuary, The Marine Mammal Stranding Center, and the Dolphin Rescue Center,) as well as for those animals that are permanent residents of zoos, aviaries, and aquatic centers (the National Zoo, Shedd Aquarium, Wellington Zoo, and the Monterey Bay Aquarium are a few examples.)
 Animals — Is Simple Green All-Purpose Cleaner safe for use around my pets?
Yes, Simple Green All-Purpose Cleaner is safe for use around pets. Of course, we do recommend using common sense and caution when using in pet areas. Pets should be removed from the immediate cleaning area, and never leave puddles or containers of cleaning solution where pets or wildlife can drink, because Simple Green can cause upset stomachs and diarrhea, due to its detersive properties. See our cleaning tips for specific uses around pets, livestock and even birds.
 Applications — Where can I use Simple Green All-Purpose Cleaner?
Simple Green All-Purpose Cleaner can be used for over 100 different applications. For a complete list of uses and the different dilution ratios for each use, please download our Household Applications/Dilution Ratio Chart or our Industrial Applications/Dilution Ratio Chart. Downloading or reading these charts requires Adobe Acrobat Reader. Or contact our Consumer Relations at 800-228-0709 and request a free "Dilution Chart." Simple Green is not recommended for use on suede, leather, unfinished wood, opals or pearls.

 Biodegradable — Is Simple Green All-Purpose Cleaner biodegradable?
Yes. Simple Green All-Purpose Cleaner is readily decomposed by naturally occurring microorganisms. Simple Green meets the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development's (OECD) requirements for ready biodegradability. ("Ready" biodegradability is the highest biodegradable classification that a product can achieve.)
 Biodegradable — What is the definition of biodegradable?
Biodegradable means capable of being decomposed back into elemental components by biological agents, especially bacteria. Biodegradability is associated with the use of an item as a nutrient source by some organism within the environment.
 Bleach — Can I mix Simple Green All-Purpose Cleaner with bleach?
No. We don't recommend mixing bleach with any Simple Green products because mixing will detract from the cleaning ability of our formulas. You will achieve better cleaning results if Simple Green products are used separately from bleach. Our recommendation is that you never mix any household chemicals.

 Carbon — Can Simple Green All-Purpose Cleaner be used to remove carbon based soils?
Yes, Simple Green All-Purpose Cleaner is an excellent carbon remover.
 Chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs) — Do Simple Green products contain CFCs?
No. The Montreal Protocol and the U.S. Clean Air Act Sections 602 and 611, and various international agreements outline the reduction in use and the ultimate elimination of chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs), hydro chlorofluorocarbons (HCFCs), halons and other ozone depleting chemicals. Simple Green products contain no ozone depleting substances (See Montreal Protocol, U.S. Clean Air Act and Ozone Depleting)
 Citrus — Do Simple Green products contain any citrus ingredients?
Simple Green does not use citrus ingredients as cleaning agents within our products. However, some of the fragrances in Simple Green products and several of the essential oil blends for Simple Green Naturals products contain tiny amounts of citrus oils as scent agents.
 Claims — How do I know that Simple Greens claims are true?
Sunshine Makers, Inc., the makers of Simple Green, is committed to research and testing by independent laboratories to help prove the validity of our claims. The results verify the non-toxicity and efficacy claims of Simple Green. Summaries of these tests are available here.
 Clean Air — What is the Clean Air Act of 1990?
Required total elimination of CFC's - Class I ozone-depleting chemicals (ODC's) - by the end of 1995. Simple Green is a safer replacement for cleaners and solvents prohibited by the U.S. Clean Air Act.
 Color — Why did my colored Simple Green product go clear?
Not to be confused with our new Free & Clear Simple Green, a fading of your colored Simple Green product over time can occur with long exposure to sunlight's UV rays, but should not affect it's cleaning ability.
 Color — Why would Simple Green product's color separate? Is it still good?
The color in your Simple Green product may separate at freezing temperatures because it is a water-based product. After it has thawed, it can still be used without damage to product by shaking or stirring to re-mix the components that have separated.
 Company — Is Simple Green a public or privately held company?
Simple Green is a privately held company.
 Company — Are Simple Green products made in the USA?
Sunshine Makers, Inc. has been manufacturing Simple Green products in the USA for over 35 years. We are proud of our American manufacturing heritage and have always made note of it on our product labels. We do not utilize any offshore outsourced production for Simple Green products sold in the USA. Production facilities for our domestic products are located in: Sylacauga, Alabama, Chino, Gardena, Garden Grove, and San Marcos, California, Lawrenceville, Georgia, Wiscasset, Maine, Holland, Michigan, and Olive Branch, Mississippi. We do produce some products outside of the USA for our international customers and they are not brought back into the USA for sale.
Simple Green products that are sold in the USA are assembled 100% in the USA at the facilities listed above. We utilize USA-made ingredients and source USA-made components for our products. If a particular ingredient is not viable for purchase in the USA, due to unforeseen acts of nature or force majeure, we have on occasion been forced to source it from a trade-friendly country. We are of the opinion that in those rare occurrences, it has been an insignificant portion to the overall product composition; that, we can maintain "All or virtually all" US origin product. As soon as normal US sourcing is made available, off-shore components are replaced with domestic.
We make this claim on a reasonable belief - and rely on - that as we negotiate our manufacturing and supply chain sources; we are reaffirming that those sources are of domestic origin. This good faith reliance has allowed Sunshine Makers, Inc. to faithfully say "Made in the USA" for over 35 years.
 Compare — What products can I replace with Simple Green All-Purpose Cleaner?
Solvents, evaporative, petroleum-based, citrus cleaners or other hazardous solvents, task-specific cleaners, window cleaners and many more…

 d-Limonene — What is d-Limonene?
For definitive scientific information about this citrus ingredient, please visit the web site for the National Institutes of Health, and type "d-Limonene" in their Search feature.
Simple Green does not use citrus ingredients as cleaning agents within our products. However, some of the fragrances in Simple Green products and several of the essential oil blends for Simple Green Naturals product contain tiny amounts of citrus oils as scent agents.
 Defoamers — Is Simple Green All-Purpose Cleaner a foaming cleaner?
Foaming is a built-in feature of Simple Green All-Purpose Cleaner, which actually enhances the cleaning process. There are certain applications, however, where defoamers may need to be added to Simple Green All-Purpose Cleaner in order to inhibit excessive foaming (for example, equipment with enclosed, high-pressure systems such as spray cabinets & carpet cleaning). For more information please call the Simple Green Technical Department at 800-228-0709.

A word of caution: when adding foreign material into Simple Green All-Purpose Cleaner, be aware that biodegradability, toxicity and disposal issues need to be addressed by the additive manufacturer.

 Detergent — What is a detergent?
A detergent is a surfactant or a mixture of surfactants with "cleaning properties in dilute solutions." These substances are similar to soap but are more soluble in hard water.
 Dilutions — How to measure 1:1, 1:10, and 1:30
The dilution ratios for Simple Green All-Purpose Cleaner are our suggestions for certain applications. Exact measurements are not necessary to achieve excellent performance and maintain safety.
  • 1:1 - equal parts cleaner and water
  • 1:10 - about 1 oz. cleaner per cup of water
  • 1:30 - about 1 oz. cleaner per 1 quart of water

For a complete list of uses and the different dilution ratios for each use, please download our Household Applications/Dilution Ratio Chart or our Industrial Applications/Dilution Ratio Chart. Downloading or reading these charts requires Adobe Acrobat Reader or call 800-228-0709 and request a free "Dilution Chart."
 Dilutions — Why are the ratios given in parts?
The dilution ratios are given in parts and not exact measurements because: (1) it allows for larger volume uses; (2) Simple Green is an international product and this allows for the use of the metric system; and (3) it allows one to use any form of measuring device (cup, teaspoon, quart, etc.)
 Disinfectant — Is Simple Green All-Purpose Cleaner a disinfectant?
No. Simple Green All-Purpose Cleaner is non-toxic and is not able to kill germs.
 Disposal — Are there special requirements for disposing of Simple Green All-Purpose Cleaner?
Disposal regulations require that only used product can go into any sanitary sewer system. Depending on what types of soils you are cleaning, the resulting used Simple Green solution may not be suitable for sewage disposal. Check with your local POTW (Publicly Owned Treatment Works) before disposing effluent into sanitary sewer drains. Do not dispose of anything other than water down a storm drain or into an open waterway.
 Disposal — Can Simple Green products be disposed of in a storm drain?
No. The Clean Water Act of 1995 protects surface and ground water quality by forbidding any foreign material from being put down storm drains. Do not dispose of degreasing rinsates into or near storm drains.

 Economical — What makes Simple Green All-Purpose Cleaner economical?
Most cleaning jobs are effectively performed at the general cleaning dilution ratio of 10-30 parts water to one part of Simple Green

You can also refer to our Cleaning Tips under our All-Purpose Cleaner in the Household Products section.
 Electrolysis — How do Simple Green products and other water-based cleaners relate to electrolysis?
Electrolysis is the transfer of metal ions from one type of metal to another. Electrolysis needs a medium through which these ions can travel, and water is a good medium for this. Therefore, when cleaning metal parts or equipment, particularly in parts washing scenarios, it is best not to allow multiple metals to soak in the solution for any extended period of time. Evidence of electrolysis can be black or dull streaking on metal parts/equipment after prolonged soaking with other kinds of metals.
 Emulsifier — What is an emulsifier?
An emulsifier is an ingredient used to keep soils dispersed throughout the cleaning fluid.
 EPA — What is the EPA National Contingency Plan? Are Simple Green products listed?
The National Oil and Hazardous Substances Pollution Contingency Plan, more commonly called the National Contingency Plan or NCP, is the federal government's blueprint for responding to both oil spills and hazardous substance releases. Simple Green All-Purpose Cleaner is on the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's NCP Product Schedule. This listing does NOT mean that EPA approves, recommends, licenses, certifies, or authorizes the use of Simple Green All-Purpose Cleaner on an oil discharge. The listing means only that data has been submitted to EPA as required by subpart J of the National Contingency Plan, 300.915. (Source 40 CFR section 300.920(e)).
 Evaporation — What is the evaporation rate of Simple Green All-Purpose Cleaner?
Simple Green evaporates at the same rate as water.
 Expiration — What is the shelf life of Simple Green products?
The majority of Simple Green products have a 5 year shelf life. Simple Green aerosols have a two year shelf life. Simple Green disinfectants have an 18 month shelf life.

 Fragrance — What type of fragrance does Simple Green products use?
Simple Green products contain both synthetic and natural fragrances, all of which meet the standards set by the International Fragrance Association.

 Glass — Can Simple Green All-Purpose Cleaner be used on glass?
Simple Green All-Purpose Cleaner and Crystal Simple Green Industrial Cleaner & Degreaser should be diluted at 150 parts water to 1 part cleaner before use on glass, mirrored or reflective surfaces (Tip: add 1 teaspoon of cleaner to a 24 or 32 oz. spray bottle and fill the rest with water). If used too strong, filmy, streaky, hazy marks can result. First, attempt to remove this by wiping down the surface with a clean, non-abrasive cloth and very hot water. If the problem persists, toothpaste will remove stubborn residue.
 Good Housekeeping — What does the Good Housekeeping Seal of Approval mean?
The seal means that the Good Housekeeping Institute has verified all usage instructions and claims on that product label. Maintaining the Good Housekeeping Seal requires a manufacturer to offer replacement or refund of defective product. Simple Green typically goes further and honors this policy if the customer is not 100% satisfied.

 H1N1 — H1N1 Flu* Preparedness (*also known as Swine Flu)

The World Health Organization (WHO) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) are currently tracking an H1N1 flu outbreak that has caused infections in humans in the United States, Mexico, Canada and other countries.

EPA registers pesticide products, including disinfectants. As part of the registration process, EPA evaluates the product efficacy to make sure the public health label claims are accurate. Currently, over 500 disinfectant products are registered for use on hard, non-porous surfaces against influenza A viruses. EPA believes, based on available scientific information, that the currently registered influenza A virus products will be effective against the 2009-H1N1 flu strain and other influenza A virus strains on hard, non-porous surfaces. For safe and effective use of these products, always follow label instructions for these products, paying special attention to the product's dilution rate (if applicable) and contact time.

Choose a product whose label states that it is effective against "Influenza A virus" and lists your specific site of concern, such as: farm premises, hospitals and other healthcare facilities, schools, offices or homes. These products are widely available and can be purchased at home maintenance/repair stores and industrial/institutional distributors, among others.

As the CDC stresses, your first line of defense is to wash your hands frequently with soap and water or use an alcohol-based cleaner. Registered disinfectant products are for use on hard, non-porous surfaces, such as door knobs, handles, tables, floors, etc. EPA emphasizes that these products are not to be used on the skin or to be taken orally.

 History — How long has Simple Green been available?
Since 1972. To read more about Simple Green's history, please go to our Company History section.

 Ingredients — What are the ingredients in Simple Green All-Purpose Cleaner?
Water, Ethoxylated Alcohol, Sodium Citrate, Tetrasodium N,N-bis(carboxymethyl)-L-glutamate, Sodium carbonate, Citric Acid, Colorant, Fragrance, Preservative.

Simple Green All-Purpse Cleaner does not contain chlorine (bleach), ammonia, formaldehyde, phosphates or petroleum distillates.

A Note about Ingredients: In late 2012, Sunshine Makers, Inc. implemented a 4 year reformulation project, and changed the formula of Simple Green to what is listed above. This was done to comply with 2013 California air quality regulations. We conducted testing to confirm that the new formulation is every bit as efficacious as the prior formula, and that it is just as safe for the user and the environment. For more information about this, please see the 2013 SDS, and test data at
 Ingredients — Why aren't the ingredients listed on the label?
Simple Green All-Purpose Cleaner is classified as a whole as non-toxic in accordance with the Occupational Safety & Health Administration (OSHA) and The Globally Harmonized System of Classification and Labelling of Chemicals. Sunshine Makers, Inc. has had the required independent laboratory tests conducted to verify this. Therefore, it is not required by law to list the ingredients on the label. Ingredient information can be found on each individual Material Safety Data Sheet. If you want to inquire about what ingredients are or are not found in our products, please contact the Simple Green Consumer Relations at 1-800-228-0709.
 Ingredients — Is Simple Green All-Purpose Cleaner a natural product? Does it contain natural ingredients?
Simple Green All-Purpose Cleaner is not considered "natural." It is a blend of synthetic and naturally-derived ingredients.
 Ingredients — Sodium Lauryl Sulfate (SLS) and Sodium Laureth Sulfate (SLES)
The Cosmetic, Toiletry, and Fragrance Association (CTFA) and the American Cancer Society have stated that the common belief that SLES and SLS are carcinogens is an urban legend, a view confirmed by toxicology research by the Occupational Health and Safety Administration (OSHA), National Toxicology Program (NTP), and International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC). SLES, and subsequently some of the products containing it, has sometimes been found to contain parts-per-thousand to parts-per-million levels of 1,4-dioxane, with the recommendation that these levels be monitored. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency considers 1,4-dioxane to be a probable human carcinogen (having observed an increased incidence of cancer in controlled animal studies, but not in epidemiological studies of workers using the compound), and a known irritant (with a no-observed-adverse-effects level of 400 milligrams per cubic meter). While the U.S. Food and Drug Administration encourages manufacturers to remove this contaminant, it is not currently required by federal law. The ingredients within our products have been screened to make sure that we are utilizing those that are strongly filtered so that they contain little-to-no 1,4 dioxane. We closely monitor these ingredients and constantly seek to utilize the safest alternatives available. While Laureth-6 and Laureth-7, also found within some of our Naturals products, are not part of the SLES family, they are ethoxylated ingredients with potential to contain 1,4 dioxane if not filtered. We monitor them as well to be sure that they do not carry 1,4 dioxane into our products.
 Inhalation — Is inhaling Simple Green All-Purpose Cleaner hazardous to my health?
Simple Green All-Purpose Cleaner contains surfactants (surface-active-agents) which have the ability to lift grease, oil and soils up off of surfaces. If an excessive amount of mist is breathed in, those surfactants can aggravate the mucous membranes of the nose and throat as well. This can cause sore throat, sore nose, sore sinuses, coughing and -in extreme cases- a tightness in the chest. Although uncomfortable, Simple Green All-Purpose Cleaner is non-toxic and these are completely reversible symptoms. Persons with chronic asthma, emphysema, or other lung conditions should take precautions and avoid breathing in surfactant mists.

Care should be taken when spraying Simple Green All-Purpose Cleaner above the level of one's head, or using mechanical applicators that create mist (pressure sprayers, steam cleaners, etc.) Additionally, Simple Green products are sold in spray bottles that create a coarse droplet spray that is not easily inhaled. If using a spray bottle other than a Simple Green spray bottle, take care not to breathe in any mist. Use Simple Green products in a well-ventilated area or, in more extreme cases or cases of impaired lung condition, use of a fiber painter's mask (found in hardware and home improvement stores) will greatly reduce the risk of inhalation problems.

 Ions — Are Simple Green products non-ionic and non-deionizing?
Yes, Simple Green products are all non-ionic. Simple Green products are made with non-ionic surfactants. As such, they are not able to impart a charge, nor do they readily take on a charge.
This makes Simple Green products non-deionizing. Crystal Simple Green Industrial Cleaner & Degreaser are suitable for use in clean room cleaning applications, in nuclear submarine cleaning, and in other circumstances in which electrical stability of a cleaning product is imperative.

 Laminate — Is Simple Green All-Purpose Cleaner safe for use on laminate flooring and other laminate surfaces?
When used according to directions, Simple Green All-Purpose Cleaner is safe and effective for use on laminate. See "cleaning tips" for details on cleaning laminate surfaces with Simple Green.
 Laundry — Can Simple Green All-Purpose Cleaner be used in the laundry?
Simple Green All-Purpose Cleaner can be used as an additive or to pre-treat stains on greasy or heavily soiled laundry fabric. For use in a conventional washing machine, add 1/4 cup of Simple Green while the washing machine is filling, then add clothes.
Simple Green All-Purpose Cleaner is not recommended for use in High Effeciency (HE) machines. We do also offer a specially formulated Laundry Detergent.

 MRSA — What is MRSA and how do I prevent it?
MRSA stands for methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus. The term is used to describe a variety of strains of the bacteria, Staphylococcus aureus, that are resistant to a variety of antibiotics, including methicillin.

Simple Green's answer to MRSA is Simple Green d Pro 3 and Simple Green d Pro 5. For more information about these products, including contact information for those industrial and institutional distributors carrying it in your area, please call Customer Relations at 800-228-0709.

 Non-Toxic — Is Simple Green All-Purpose Cleaner non-toxic?
Simple Green All-Purpose Cleaner has been classified as a whole for a toxicity rating in accordance with the Occupational Safety & Health Administration (OSHA) and The Globally Harmonized System of Classification and Labeling of Chemicals. This is because Simple Green is used in the commercial workplace as well as in the consumer household.

In reality, toxicity is relative. Everything is toxic in large enough quantities. A person could consume enough milk, chocolate or even water to cause death.

 Ozone — Do any Simple Green products contain CFCs or ozone depleting substances?
No. All Simple Green products are CFC-free and utilize a non-CFC butane & propane propellant. The Montreal Protocol and the US Clean Air Act, Sections 602 and 611, and various international agreements outline the reduction of use, and ultimately the elimination of chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs), hydro chlorofluorocarbons (HCFCs), halons and other ozone depleting chemicals. Simple Green products do not contain any ozone depleting substances.
 Ozone — What causes the destruction of the ozone layer, and why is this important?
The ozone layer shields the earth from ultraviolet radiation harmful to biological life. This destruction of ozone is caused by the breakdown of certain compounds containing chlorine and/or bromine (chlorofluorocarbons or halons) which then reach the stratosphere and catalytically destroy ozone molecules (see Chlorofluorocarbons, Montreal Protocol and U.S. Clean Air Act). Simple Green contains no ozone depleting substances.

 Packaging — What type of plastic packaging does Simple Green use?
Simple Green is being packaged in PETE (Polyethylene Terephthlate) and HDPE (High Density Polyethylene). Trigger Sprayer tops are made out of 80% Polypropylene and 20% HDPE. Our wipes come on a cellulose-polypropylene or pure polypropylene substrate. Our scrubbing pad is a non-woven polyester.
 Packaging — Why is a concentrated cleaner in a spray bottle?
Concentrated Simple Green products that are in spray bottles can be used full strength. The product is very effective for cleaning heavy grease and soils when used as is. All of the safety features are based on full strength product. For an economical, lighter cleaning solution the concentrated Simple Green products can also be diluted at ratios ranging from 1:1 (equal parts Simple Green and water) up to 1:30 (just an ounce per quart of water) depending on the surface type and how heavily soiled it is. For very light cleaning and reflective surfaces an even higher dilution ratio can be used. One teaspoon of Simple Green can make 3 cups of extra light cleaning solution for very light cleaning and for some glass and reflective surfaces.
 Packaging — Does Simple Green use Styrofoam in packaging?
We do not use Styrofoam in our packaging; we use cornstarch packing, which is biodegradable.
 Parts Washers — What if my parts washer or dip tank begins to smell bad?
If you are experiencing foul odors from your dip tank or parts washer, you may have a bacterial contamination. Please contact our Consumer Relations for assistance 1-800-228-0709.
 Parts Washers — Can Simple Green products be used in a parts washer, and if so, how?
Simple Green products can be used in aqueous parts washers. Please contact our Consumer Relations for product recommendations at 1-800-228-0709.

Simple Green brokers Parts washers with 30 gallon, 60 gallon, and 80 gallon capacity. Simple Green parts washers are made of thermoplastic, with a recirculating pump, heater and replaceable filter cartridge. Recommended temperature is to remain below 120°F. For more information on parts washers, go to the Family of Industrial Equipment page.

 Petroleum — How is Simple Green used in cleaning oil spills?
See "EPA National Contingency Plan"
 Petroleum — What are petroleum-based solvents? Are they hazardous?
Also known as "solvent evaporatives", petroleum-based solvents are significant contributors to smog, and create large volumes of hazardous waste. California's South Coast Air Quality Management District has ordered approximately 32,000 Southern California businesses to stop using these high-polluting solvents. In 1999, businesses in Los Angeles and other surrounding areas had to switch from solvent evaporatives to water-based detergents and other less-polluting alternatives for cleaning metal parts and machinery. California tends to set the trend for legislation in the rest of the United States in this area.
 pH — What is the definition of pH?
pH is the negative logarithm of the effectiveness the hydrogen ion concentration or hydrogen ion activity in gram equivalents per liter, used in expressing both acidity and alkalinity on a scale whose values run from 0 to 14, with 7 representing neutrality, numbers less than 7 increasing the acidity and numbers greater than 7 increasing the alkalinity. The pH scale is logarithmic. Each scale unit equals a power of 10. Consequently, a product that has a rating of 13 is 10,000 times more alkaline/caustic than one with a rating of 9. Simple Green All-Purpose Cleaner has a mild pH of 8.5 to 9.5.

pH is an important factor to consider when choosing or recommending cleaners or degreasers. Cleaners at both ends of the scale (14 & 0) can be effective cleaners, however they are more likely to be environmentally hazardous or present serious health hazards. The challenge in choosing a product is finding a balance of both safety and effectiveness. Simple Green All-Purpose Cleaner meets both of these qualifications.

 pH — How does pH affect disposal?
The pH scale is one of the factors used to evaluate whether a product can be discharged into a sanitary sewer.
 pH — What is the pH of Simple Green All-Purpose Cleaner?
Simple Green's pH is 8.5-9.5.
 Pressure Washers — Are Simple Green products pressure washer safe?
Yes. Simple Green products are pressure washer safe. We also offer products specifically designed for use in pressure washers.
 Priority Chemicals — Priority Chemicals
Simple Green continues to restrict and replace priority chemicals from its formulations with a goal of reaching 100% elimination. We review our formulations against priority chemical lists from the Walmart Reference Lists of Priority Chemicals. We currently do not intentionally add any chemicals from these lists to our products and are currently at approximately 98% priority chemical-free across our entire product range. Any questions about this should be sent to
 Propositions — Proposition 65
Simple Green continues to restrict and replace priority chemicals from its formulations with a goal of reaching 100% elimination. We review our formulations against priority chemical lists from the Walmart Reference Lists of Priority Chemicals. We currently do not intentionally add any chemicals from these lists to our products and are currently at approximately 98% priority chemical-free across our entire product range. Any questions about this should be sent to

 Recycling — Recycling and Reuse of Simple Green Containers

Gallon containers and smaller are packaged in either PETE or HDPE type plastic and are readily recyclable nationwide. Trigger Sprayer tops are made of 80% Polypropylene and 20% HDPE and are recyclable but will only be accepted at certain recycling centers. To find a recycling facility near you we suggest looking at Earth911 will only be accepted as certain recycling centers.


Simple Green ships drums of product all around the USA (and internationally) - mainly to industrial & institutional distributors. We then do not have data about where distributors ship them. Therefore, there is no practical or financially feasible way for our company to offer a drum return program. Further, it is not environmentally correct to ship empty drums back from a multitude of locations when there are facilities around the country that will take them and recycle them locally.

  • We recommend that end-users utilize Earth911 to find local recycling sites that will take #2 HDPE colored plastic (which our drums are made of.) HDPE is readily recycled around the country and the Earth911 site is super easy to use.
  • Another method of getting drums into the recycling stream is to check with a waste hauler to see if the drums can be removed from facilities along with other recyclable trash. Here in Huntington Beach, manufacturers can have HDPE drums removed along with other solid waste and our city refuse collection company sorts out the recyclable materials.
  • One other suggestion is to check and see if there is a rain-water program in your city. Because Simple Green is non-toxic and rinses easily, our drums can be easily utilized in rain-water collection systems. This site lists many programs around the country. If there is an active rain-water collection program in the locale of the facility with the empty drums, this can often be a great synergy between a facility and its community.
 Resale — Can you re-package or pre-dilute Simple Green for resale?
 Rinseability — Does Simple Green All-Purpose Cleaner rinse easily?
Simple Green All-Purpose Cleaner rinses residue-free and is an exceptional cleaner for paint prep and cleaning. If you are involved in the pharmaceutical or electronics industry and have concerns regarding even microscopic levels of residue, call 1-800-228-0709 to receive information on Crystal Simple Green Industrial Cleaner & Degreaser and its excellent rinse features. Crystal Simple Green does not contain the added fragrance or color found in Simple Green All-Purpose Cleaner.
 Rust — Is Simple Green All-Purpose Cleaner recommended for removing rust?
No. Rust is an alkaline soil created by the corrosion and oxidation of iron in metals. Simple Green is an alkaline aqueous-based cleaner and, as such, is not the best choice for removing rust. Alkaline soils typically require acidic solutions to effective remove them.
 Rust — How can I still use Simple Green All-Purpose Cleaner to clean but also address rusting or metals corrosion?
Whether an aqueous-based product, chlorinated solvent, caustic or citrus type cleaner is used, the cleaned metal will begin to oxidize or rust. Many factors, including time, temperature, humidity and type of metal influence the rate of oxidation. Simple Green All-Purpose Cleaner is an aqueous-based cleaner. When bare metal is cleaned and degreased, all barrier coatings (i.e. oil, grease, lubricants, cutting oils, etc.) are removed. If a rust inhibitor or protectant spray is required, please call 800-228-0709 for more information. A word of caution: when adding foreign materials into Simple Green All-Purpose Cleaner, be aware that toxicity, biodegradability and sewer ability issues need to be addressed by the additive manufacturer.

 Septic — Is Simple Green All-Purpose Cleaner safe for septic systems?
Yes. When used according to directions, Simple Green All-Purpose Cleaner is septic safe. It will not affect the good bacteria or enzymes that keep a septic system free flowing.
 Simple Green — What is Simple Green?
Simple Green is a brand of cleaning products. Our most well known product is our all-purpose cleaner which is used as a safer alternative for removing grease, oil and dirt.
 Solvents — What are solvent based cleaners, and are they hazardous?
Solvent based cleaners can be found in a number of household products. Mineral spirits, Xylene, 1-1-1 Trichloroethylene, Perchloroethylene and all other chlorinated and halogenated solvents present hazards to the user and the environment. These products soften oils and greases to allow for separation from the substrate. Along with environmental, health and safety concerns, there are complications with the disposal of these solvents.
 Surfactants — What are non-ionic surfactants?
Simple Green All-Purpose Cleaner consists of non-ionic surfactants. Non-ionic surfactants carry no discrete charge when dissolved in an aqueous media, unlike anionic or cationic surfactants. Hydrophilicity in non-ionic surfactants is provided by hydrogen bonding with water and molecules. Hydrogen bonding provides solubilization (loosening or dissolving action) in neutral and alkaline solutions.
 Surfactants — What is a surfactant?
A surfactant is a surface active agent. It reduces the surface tension of water and increases the solubility of soils.

 Temperature — What temperature should Simple Green be stored?
Simple Green products should be stored at ambient room conditions of 70°F (21°C) and 14.7 psig (760 mmHg). Excessive and prolonged heat, cold and direct sunlight will result in a loss of efficacy.
 Temperature — Can Simple Green products be heated when cleaning?
Simple Green All-Purpose Cleaner can be heated up to 105°F. Overheating will begin to break down certain components of Simple Green and make it more likely that the cleaning ability of the product will be diminished.
 Temperature — Will Simple Green products freeze?
Yes. Simple Green products are aqueous based and will freeze at approximately 32°F (0°C). Our liquid formulations (except for disinfectants) can be thawed and reconstituted back to normal by gently agitating or rocking the container. Simple Green All-Purpose Cleaner can go through three freeze-thaw cycles before beginning to lose efficacy.
 TSCA — What is the Toxic Substances Control Act?
Controls the exposure to and use of raw industrial chemicals not subject to other laws. The act provides for a listing of all chemicals that are to be evaluated prior to manufacture or use in the U.S. All of the components of Simple Green are listed on the "TSCA Inventory" of chemical substances maintained by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency ("EPA").

 Urine — Urine Spots and UV Light
Hand-held UV lights (commonly known as "black-lights") can be found at some pet stores or online pet product web sites (such as PetSmart & Petco) and also at some hardware or DIY home centers. Another place to find them are art stores or gag gift shops that carry black-light posters.

A black-light is a handy tool for finding urine spots when they can be smelled but are not visible to the naked eye. Your first step is to darken the room as much as possible.

Dried urine has a signature dull yellow glow. This will help you tell it apart from other things that glow such as detergents (often glow bright white or blueish-white) and lint (which glows very bright white.) Simple Green Pet Stain & Odor Remover does not fluoresce under black-light. Another characteristic of a pet urine stain is a puddle, stream, or spray shape to the stain. Cats & dogs often urinate in room corners or at the base of furniture. If your pet is a cat, also check baseboards and low wall areas as these are often additional areas where cats spray urine. Because urine may seep into carpet pads or underlying floor, you may want to lift carpet where you can and check underneath it, too.

Once the area has been cleaned, you may still see fluorescence if the urine has interacted with the carpet dye, or if more urine has drawn up from the padding into the carpet fibers. Even though the stain is no longer visible in normal light and the smell is gone, the area can still show residual fluorescence under black-light. Even if you keep treating the same spot repeatedly, it is possible that you could still see residual fluorescence. So, if the visible stain and the smell are gone upon first or second treatment, the objective of the product has been met.

Simple Green Pet Stain & Odor Remover works via a combination of biological action and through the surfactant in the product. The surfactant will handle 99% of the color of the stain. There are a few pet foods that contain actual dyes that can chemically interact with carpet dyes and form a non-biological stain on carpet or fabric that simply cannot be reversed. (Think of pouring a little bleach onto a dark fabric or carpet. The only way to cover the white bleached spot is to re-dye the fabric or carpet - and even then you might still see a color difference at the bleached area.)

The biological component of Simple Green Pet Stain & Odor Remover is a combination of several different non-harmful bacteria that produce enzymes when they are in the presence of organic soil (food) and moisture (water). Soaking a urine spot with Simple Green Pet Stain & Odor Remover unleashes the bacteria to start making enzymes to convert organic soils into digestible food for the bacteria. If the spot dries out before all organics have been consumed, some of the urine salts can still remain. It is recommended that if the stain is still visible, or the smell remains, to first wet the area with plain water and allow the bacteria to continue doing their work. If stain and smell still remain, a second application of the product is warranted.

It is much easier to eliminate urine on hard, non-absorbent surfaces such as tile floors or painted baseboards. One exception may be hardwood floors. If urine sits for too long on some hardwoods, the cellulose in the wood can actually become burned. If that happens, no cleaner will eliminate the black mark that results. Only refinishing will resolve that problem.

Soft, absorbent surfaces can be more difficult and involve repeated applications, the use of extraction equipment, applying and extraction of carpet fibers, carpet backing, carpet padding, and even the floor below. Therefore, eliminating ALL fluorescence is often not practical and is just too costly in time, money, and effort. Removal of the visible stain and of the smell is the achievement of success.

Use a black-light to locate urine stains, treat them with Simple Green Pet Stain & Odor Remover, and then enjoy the fresh, clean results!
 Urine — Steam Cleaning Carpets to Address Pet Urine Problems - A BIG NO-NO!
DO NOT clean your carpets with a steam carpet cleaner until you are sure you have addressed all urine spots with manual cleaning first. A steam-cleaning carpet machine can actually dissolve old urine salt crystals and redeposit them throughout your entire carpet. Your carpet may not smell too bad once it has dried, but in moist or humid conditions, the results of urine salt spread via steam cleaning can be awful. We recommend that if you are planning to have your carpets steam cleaned, you first pre-treat all spots well in advance with Simple Green Pet Stain & Odor Remover until you observe that the stains and odors are gone.
 Urine — Shampooing Carpets to Address Pet Urine Problems - Pre-treating is key
Although not as severe as urine salt dispersion from steam cleaning, wet shampooing of your carpets can also transfer urine salts over a broader area than where they were initially concentrated. Therefore, pre-treat all spots with Simple Green Pet Stain & Odor Remover before shampooing your carpet. Users of Simple Green Pet Stain & Odor Remover have had nice results with pre-treating spots, and then putting the product into the carpet cleaning machine to clean a broader area and even out "clean spots" left at the spot-treated areas. Simple Green also makes several other carpet products that are specifically designed to be used in the pre-spray and extraction carpet cleaning process. Check for more information.

Whether steam cleaning or shampooing, always be sure to extract as much fluid as possible from your carpets. This can be time-consuming, but the results are worth it. Once extraction is done, you should not be able to place your hand on your carpet and come away with a wet hand. A slightly damp hand is fine, but no visible wetness. If wetness exists, perform extraction on the carpet again. A dry carpet is a happy (and non-smelly) carpet!
 USDA — Does Simple Green have USDA approval?
In 1997 the USDA stopped their non-food compound approval process and instilled the HACCP letter of guarantee program. No Simple Green products currently have pre-1997 USDA approval. Crystal Simple Green Industrial Cleaner & Degreaser has undergone third party review by NSF International to confirm that it meets the old USDA guidelines for non-food compounds. Crystal Simple Green has achieved NSF ratings as an A1, A2, A4, A8, B1 and C1 cleaner. Foaming Crystal Simple Green has received an A1, A4, A8 and C1 rating. Simple Green Coil Cleaner (both foaming and liquid) have a C1 and P1 rating. Simple Green Safety Towels have earned A1, A4, A8 and C1 ratings. Simple Green Stainless Steel One-Step Cleaner and Polish has also received an A7 rating.

 Vapors — Is Simple Green All-Purpose Cleaner a Vapor Degreaser?
Simple Green All-Purpose Cleaner is not a vapor degreaser. It is an aqueous cleaner/degreaser.
 Vegetation — Is Simple Green All-Purpose Cleaner safe for vegetation?
Diluted Simple Green All-Purpose Cleaner will not harm grass or flowers, but it's always a good idea to rinse foliage after it has had contact with the product. Simple Green All-Purpose Cleaner has been tested to be readily biodegradable. The product will break down by bacteria and not persist in the environment.
 VOC — What is a VOC?
VOC stands for Volatile Organic Compound. These are chemicals that will evaporate at low temperatures and, by a photochemical reaction, will cause atmospheric oxygen to be converted into potential smog.

There are federal and state requirements to reduce VOC emissions.

 VOC — Do Simple Green products contain VOCs?
The VOC content for all Simple Green products is given on the Safety Data Sheet in the "Physical & Chemical Properties" section. All Simple Green products fall within state and federal VOC regulations.

 Water — Are Simple Green products water-based cleaners?
Simple Green products are water-based cleaners. See "Alkaline Aqueous Solutions - General Description" for more details.