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Mixing Common Household Chemicals Can Lead to Poison Dangers

  • Posted: 04.08.2020

Do not play chemist. It is important to recognize that some cleaning products should NEVER be mixed.

Graphic  illustration of chemical compounds listed in the story with a skull and crossbones image and the title "Chemical Safety: Poison Danger"
It is important to recognize that some cleaning products should NEVER be mixed.

As a part of the response to COVID-19, cleaning and disinfection is extremely important to combat the spread of the Coronavirus. However, mixing chemicals to substitute for cleaning products that may be in short supply or to increase their potency is not recommended. Always read the warning and ingredient labels on cleaning products and common household chemicals.

Do not play chemist. It is important to recognize that some cleaning products should NEVER be mixed.

Please refer to the following list of chemical combinations that can be dangerous if mixed:

  • Bleach + Vinegar: Mixing bleach and vinegar can be poisonous and may cause bronchitis, chronic lung conditions or may even be fatal if inhaled. Contact with this solution may cause burns to skin and eyes.
  • Bleach + Ammonia: Mixing bleach and ammonia produces a gas that may cause irritation to eyes or the respiratory tract. If ingested, this combination would cause corrosive effects to the gastrointestinal tract and induce nausea and vomiting.
  • Bleach + Rubbing Alcohol: This combination of bleach and running alcohol is suspected to be a human carcinogen and moderately toxic. Mixing these chemicals together produces a solution that is a central nervous system depressant and a gastrointestinal irritant and has been reported to cause rapid death attributable to cardiac arrest and delayed death from liver and kidney damage.
  • Hydrogen Peroxide + Vinegar: Considered a highly toxic compound, the probable human oral lethal dose of hydrogen peroxide and vinegar is just between one teaspoon to one ounce. Consumption (ingestion) of this mixture may result in death.

Be safe.

For additional information on how cleaning best practices can help prevent the spread of COVID-19, visit the American Cleaning Institute’s “Coronavirus Cleaning Updates” site.