Is Clorox Bleach safe?

Bleach in Clorox

Is it spring-cleaning time already? Time to bust open the Clorox Bleach and get your house in order. Are you worried if Clorox Bleach is safe for you and your family? 

Rest assured, it is. Used according to the guidelines of the specific Clorox Bleach product you use, there is no possible harm. Unless you abuse the bleach by drinking it, performing kooky and harmful experiments, or being generally irresponsible- you’ll be alright. 

In this article, we explore what kinds of Clorox Bleach varieties exist, what they are used for, and how you can keep yourself out of harm’s way. 

What is Clorox Bleach made of? 

There are many different varieties of Clorox Bleach on offer. Some are in powder form while others are in gel form. The Clorox Germicidal  Bleach (Concentrated Formula) contains 8.25 wt% sodium hypochlorite. (wt% means the portion of the total weight of the solution). 

The Clorox Concentrated Bleach Powder is in the form of solid granules of sodium dichloroisocyanurate. Combined with water, this powder disinfects pools, toilet bowls, and other contaminated water.

The Clorox ColorLoad Non-Chlorine Bleach does not use sodium hypochlorite. Instead, it uses hydrogen peroxide and sodium lauryl sulfate as an antiseptic and a surfactant respectively. 

Most other variations use sodium hypochlorite as a base, with additions of sodium hydroxide, cetyl betaine, and sodium chlorate. The Clorox Precision Pour Bleach Gel includes palmitic acid, myristic acid, or stearic acid as surfactants. 

The Clorox Splash-Less Bleach also uses sodium xylene sulfonate as a stabilizer, whereas bleach gels use lauramine oxide.  

Regular Clorox Bleach has a pH of about 12.5 in its concentrated form. This may rise up to 13.5 for more potent varieties, such as for toilet cleaning. 

Does Clorox Bleach have chlorine or ammonia? 

None of the Clorox Bleach products contain ammonia. It is a fundamental rule that ammonia and chlorine bleach (sodium hypochlorite) should never be mixed. So you can be sure that there are no traces of ammonia in this brand of bleach. 

Clorox also offers bleach without chlorine. 

The Color-Load Non-Chlorine Bleach uses hydrogen peroxide as an alternative bleaching agent to sodium hypochlorite. Hydrogen peroxide is a good alternative as it is gentler for fabrics and color. It is also safer for the environment as it is biodegradable.  

Does Clorox Bleach disinfect? 

Not all Clorox Bleach products disinfect. The varieties that are disinfecting, sanitizing, and capable of fighting germs are distinctly labeled as such. Others are not registered disinfectants, and the lack of a disinfectant label will make this clear. 

For quick reference, the Clorox Precision Pour Bleach Gel, ProResults Outdoor Bleach (Concentrated), and the Scented Splash-less Bleach are not meant for disinfecting surfaces. 

They probably won’t do you any good, when cleaning surfaces against bacteria and viruses like COVID-19. 

The ones capable of disinfecting include the Multi-Surface Cleaner + Bleach, Germicidal Bleach Concentrated Formula, and the Disinfecting Bleach with CLOROMAX. These keep nasty germs off your surfaces, clothes, and linen, and with CLOROMAX, even whitens your garments. 

Is Clorox Bleach toxic? 

If used incorrectly Clorox Bleach can be highly toxic. This can happen in a number of ways. If you do not read the instructions and use the concentrated form without diluting it properly, it could cause burns and blisters on the skin and damage your eyes. 

It is highly corrosive, so ingestion can singe your trachea, stomach, and lungs. It can cause pulmonary edema and difficulty breathing. Vomiting, nausea, and diarrhea are also common side effects. 

If Clorox bleach is mixed with other substances like ammonia, it could also release noxious fumes. These fumes could cause nasal congestion, irritation, and even inflammation. 

Persistent and prolonged exposure could raise the severity of any of these health effects. 

Safety of Clorox Bleach

Not all bleach is created equal, and neither are chores. So it’s important to ensure that Clorox bleach variations are used for the right purposes and in the right manner, to avoid potential hazards. 

Is Clorox Bleach safe for washing clothes? 

When used correctly, Clorox Bleach is very effective for washing clothes. You can use the Clorox Disinfecting Bleach to sanitize clothes after you get home. You can add ½  a cup of the bleach to your washing machine or 2/3rds for heavy stain removal. 

The bleach works best if used with hot water and a rinse afterward as well. This is true for standard and high-efficiency (HE) machines. 

Clorox 2 for Colors can be useful when washing fabric that is not colorfast or fades quickly. In any case, check fabric labels of materials such as mohair, spandex, and wool, because they usually cannot be bleached. 

Is Clorox Bleach safe for washing dishes? 

You obviously cannot rinse and wash your dishes with Clorox Bleach. But you can sanitize them using a diluted bleach solution. Depending on the size of the kitchen item you want to disinfect, the bleach can be diluted. 

The dilution ranges anywhere from 1/4th of a teaspoon for a 16-ounce water bottle (filled), to about 2 tablespoons in a gallon of water when cleaning the sink. You can check detailed ratios for different kitchen utensils on the Clorox website. 

The dishes or holders must first be rinsed with soap or detergent and water. Once this is done, they can be dipped into the bleach and water solution for about 2-3 minutes. 

These are allowed to air dry without any intervention. And because of the dilution, there is no danger of consumption either. 

You can use the Clorox Disinfecting Bleach, but never in the dishwasher. Make sure you don’t use the Clorox Splash-Less Bleach because though it is EPA-Certified, it can’t be used on any food contact surfaces. So ensure any variety has this permission, before utilizing it. 

Is Clorox Bleach safe for cleaning? 

Clorox Bleach can help you get rid of tons of accumulated dirt around the house. You can get that shiny floor easily in a few quick steps. The floor should be vacuumed or swept using a broom to remove larger debris and soil. 

Then mop the floor with a bleach and water solution of 1/3rd cup or ½ a cup to a gallon of water. It can be left to soak and dry for about 5-6 minutes, post which you can rinse it and mop it with just water. Don’t use bleach on marble or hardwood floors, as it can damage and discolor them. 

For bathroom areas such as tubs, sinks and basins use the Clorox Disinfecting Bleach with CLOROMAX. Make sure the bathroom is cleared of all cosmetics and personal care products along with any bath items like loofahs, or bath salts. 

Then use a 1/3rd to 1-gallon ratio of bleach to water and sponge it gently on the surfaces. After letting 6 minutes elapse, use a scrub to scour off dirt, debris, stains, grease, and grime. 

Then rinse the surfaces with a bucket of water or showerhead to reach all the surfaces and let them air dry. The same ratios can be used for a toilet bowl. The only difference is to use a toilet brush to scrub the insides and the rim and let the bleach sit for 6 minutes. 

It can then be flushed to remove the solution and voila- your toilet is almost brand new! 

Is Clorox Bleach safe to clean the swimming pool? 

You can use Clorox Regular Bleach in in-ground or outdoor swimming pools. Depending on your pool’s chlorination levels, this may alter. But if you are using about 3 ppm of super-chlorination as is standard in most pools, then the following quantity should suffice. 

You can use about 2.5 cups in 5 gallons of water for a pool that has a 33000-gallon holding capacity. It will not only sanitize the pool, it will also keep algae at bay. 

This is suitable for use during winter when pool usage is less or nil. It probably needs to be raised if the pool is in use during summer. In addition, don’t use scented Clorox bleach varieties or with artificial dyes. 

Clorox in your swimming pool is also more work than you bargain for. Because Clorox bleach varieties have a pH ranging from 12.5 to 13.5, you will also have to add in a pH reducer. This could be muriatic acid or sodium bisulfate. 

Is Clorox Bleach safe to bleach my hair? 

Not unless your goal is to end up with fried, damaged hair if there is any left at all. Using Clorox Bleach to bleach your hair is not recommended and is very risky. 

Sodium hypochlorite is a potent bleaching agent that will cause chemical burns on your scalp, cause massive hair loss and even leave you partially bald. 

Don’t be fooled by the use of hydrogen peroxide. Treatments at salons use very specific concoctions using these bleaching agents, which are not to be tried at home. Clorox is very specifically made for home cleaning. 

Our suggestion- is don’t experiment with DIY solutions. If you can’t afford a salon treatment, wait till you can rather than put your precious hair in danger. 

Is Clorox Bleach safe for pets? 

Clorox Bleach products or any bleach for that matter are not safe for dogs, cats, and other companion animals. When cleaning with bleach keep your animals out of the room. Rinse the floor and let it dry completely before letting your pets back in. 

The odor of the bleach is very strong and it can cause breathing problems for your pooch. Small amounts of chlorine can release toxins into their bodies. It can cause hurt to their skin and fur. If they lick it off their paws, they can be poisoned. 

If you observe vomiting, diarrhea or seizures, consult a vet on an emergency basis. Keep the bleach bottles in places where the animals can’t get to them. Accidental ingestion of such large amounts can be fatal. 

Is Clorox Bleach safe for plumbing and septic systems? 

Usually, bleach is considered to be bad for your septic tank. But if the Clorox Bleach options are used as per directions, there shouldn’t be a problem. When used in the right quantities as guided and at the recommended intervals, Clorox Bleach will not harm your septic tank. 

This is because the quantities have been formulated to be able to break after use into sodium chloride and water. Only if you use excess amounts, will the bleach begin to attack bacteria in the septic tank. This can reduce the good bacteria available to disintegrate waste. 

But if you splosh in inordinate amounts, then the bacteria will die and the sludge and waste will build up. Following the rules to avoid a smelly septic system? Seems like a good bargain. 

Is Clorox Bleach safe during pregnancy? 

Clorox Bleach is safe to use when you are pregnant. Apart from the usual precautions, there isn’t anything special you need to do. Of course, be mindful not to mix chlorine bleach with other acidic solutions, because the fumes can be nasty, 

But otherwise, you can strap on some gloves, maybe wear a mask, and clean any area that is comfortable for you. While cleaning, keep the room well-ventilated. There are no harmful side effects like preterm labor, birth defects, or carcinogenic fumes. 

At most you’ll have a bout of nausea if the smell isn’t to your baby’s liking! 

Get out those sweatshirts, latex rubber gloves, and your swimming goggles, because the clean-up of the century beckons!

Categorized as Q&A