How to Clean Wooden Toys
What You Need
How boring would taking care of kids be if they could recognize the difference between dirty and clean? Babies and toddlers have their own method of exploring the world around them, and it happens to include putting anything and everything in their mouths. Children's toys are no exception.
Fortunately, wood is naturally antimicrobial, so harmful bacteria and viruses can't accumulate on wooden toys in the same way they can on plastic toys. Because of this, you'll only need to clean and disinfect your child's wooden toys after they've been sick or if you notice dirt or grime build-up on them (which is probably more often than you'd like).
When cleaning with a household cleaning product, it's important to consider its ingredients. Many cleaners contain harsh chemicals or leave behind residue that can expose children to possible ingestion or skin irritation.
Simple Green All-Purpose Cleaner removes food residue, dirt, and more without degrading or discoloring wood or removing paint. The clean-rinsing formula* cleans grimy toys without leaving behind a residue that could cause skin irritation.
After you've cleaned wooden baby toys, it's important to follow up with an EPA-registered disinfectant if your child is ill or if the toy has been passed among multiple children. A vinegar and water mixture is not powerful enough to reach the sanitizing and disinfecting levels required to be recognized as a disinfectant by the EPA. Vinegar also won't provide you with the surfactants needed to help penetrate, loosen, and remove soils, meaning you could just be pushing dirt around instead of disinfecting.
Simple Green All-Purpose Cleaner does not eliminate germs, but a fast-acting spray-application disinfectant can eliminate cold, flu, E. Coli, Salmonella, Staph, and other illness-causing bacteria in 2 minutes or less.
Disinfecting wipes are commonly used for this process because they seem convenient. Still, wipes can require that surfaces remain wet for up to 10 minutes to be effective.
Keeping a surface wet with disinfecting wipes can be more complicated than you might think. Many of them contain alcohol, which can cause the liquid to dry quickly. This can make it challenging to keep the surface wet without re-wiping multiple times, resulting in a potential waste of time and money.
Directions for Cleaning Wooden Toys:
- Mix your Simple Green solution. Mix ¼ cup of Simple Green All-Purpose Cleaner with 2 cups of water in an empty spray bottle.
- Apply. Spray your cleaning solution onto the toys or a clean cloth and wipe them down.
- Scrub, if necessary. Use a nylon-bristle brush or toothbrush to scrub away any dirt, being careful not to damage paint, decals, or stickers.
- Rinse. Wipe each toy with a clean, damp cloth or rinse under running water. Allow toys to air dry.
- Remove gross filth or heavy soil before application of Simple Green Clean Finish Disinfectant Cleaner.
- Apply the product with a hand pump trigger sprayer. Hold sprayer six to eight inches from the surface to be treated.
- Spray area until it is covered with the product.
- Allow the surface to remain wet for 2 minutes. No scrubbing necessary.
- Allow treated surfaces to air dry or wipe off with a clean cloth.
*Simple Green All-Purpose Cleaner is an EPA Safer Choice product. You can learn more about how EPA toxicologists have reviewed each ingredient for health, safety, and environmental compliance here.