Lake Friendly Products

Using lake-friendly products is a call to action to do what matters to help protect the lakes and streams within our watershed. Many chemicals find their way into our water. Knowing the right products to use and how to use them helps to protect the health of the Glen Lake/Crystal River watershed.


eco lake friendly natural cleaning products

LAKE-Friendly Product Alternatives

Whether you live on or near a lake or river, are vacationing, or own a rental, consider the following alternatives to commonly used products in order to keep harmful chemicals from entering the water.


Use these handy Lake-Friendly product checklists when shopping!

Commonly Used Products and Their WATER-Friendly Alternatives



Chlorine bleach Hydrogen peroxide
Drain cleaner 2 cups boiling water and/or Baking soda (1/2 c.) followed by vinegar
Bathroom cleaners Baking soda, borax
Toilet cleaner Vinegar, salt & water
Baking soda & water
Disinfectant 1/2 c. borax in 1 gal. water
Lime Away Vinegar
Scouring powders Baking soda
Rug cleaners Club soda & sprinkle with cornstarch, then vacuum
Floor cleaner Mop with 1 c. vinegar in 2 gal. water
Furniture polish 1 part lemon juice with 2 parts vegitable oil
Copper cleaner Dip side of lemon in salt, rub
Oven cleaner Salt and scrub
Wipe with ammonia & let stand overnight, scrub with baking soda
Porcelain cleaner Make paste of baking soda and water, apply & let stand, rub clean & rinse
Silver polish Soak in 1 qt. warm water & 1 tsp. baking soda & 1 tsp. salt, and piece of aluminum foil or in aluminum pan
Stainless steel cleaner 1 qt. water & 1 tbls. baking soda, rinse in hot water
Floor cleaner 1 c. vinegar in 2 gal. water
Window cleaner 1/2 c. vinegar & 1 gal. warm water, use newspapers to dry glass
Ant traps or pesticide for inside ants Sprinkle thick line of borax around foundation
Flee repellent Rosemary on pet bed
Moth balls Lavender or cedar chips in small bags
Wood preservative Water based wood preservatives
Fungicide Avoid watering in the vening and over watering
House plan insecticide A few drops of soap & water, spray on leaves, rinse
Pesticides Insecticidal soap
Herbicides Weeding and hoeing, corn herbicide
Snail and slug killer Shallow pan with stale beer

Refuse, Reuse and Recycle/Hazardous Household Chemicals

Take action to help protect the lakes and streams by following best practices which promote lake-friendly products and reduce the impact of harmful chemicals on the watershed.

Watershed-Friendly Best Practices

  • Recycle all that you can! Recycle all materials accepted by sites in Empire and at the Leelanau School
  • Use gallon jugs of shampoo, rinse, laundry soap, hand soap, and dish soap to refill small reusable containers
  • Shop where you can use reusable gallon containers, small reusable containers, and cloth bags in place of plastic bags
  • Take your own cloth reusable bags to the store
  • Support local agriculture by buying local produce and products to preserve rural landscapes
  • Buy suggested alternatives to household chemicals
  • Compost garbage and use it on the garden
  • Compost yard waste
recycle in leelanau county