The sun is shining, the birds are tweeting, and flowers are blooming which means spring is here. Of course, after opening the windows and letting in all of that sunlight and breeze, it won't take you long to realize just how dusty and cluttered your house has become during the winter months.

The solution? Spring cleaning of course. But often the chemicals used to clean with can be more harmful than the dirt and dust they're intended to clean. The good news is that there are many spring cleaning tips to make for a greener, more eco-friendly home.

Here are some of our best spring cleaning tips that will help you freshen your home in the least toxic and most environmentally-friendly way.

Green Cleaning Products

Spring cleaning should freshen your home and rejuvenate you, not make you feel sick by filling rooms with toxic fumes and pollution. Chemicals found in conventional cleaning products, you know, the ones that say things like "harmful or fatal if swallowed," and "highly flammable" should stay on the shelf where they belong. Instead, opt for "all natural" cleaners or better yet try making them yourself.

Most eco-friendly homemade cleaner recipes can be found online but they usually consist of a combination of things such as hot water, vinegar, and baking soda. You can also add a few drops of essential oils for scent. Just make sure you check to see if they are toxic to animals. Eucalyptus oil, for instance, can be toxic to dogs.

Reduce Your Waste 

Eco-friendly homes shouldn't just be chemical-free, they should also aim to be waste-free. By using natural cleaning products, you're on the right track to having a more eco-friendly home, but if you're using an entire roll of paper towel just to clean the bathroom, you're not exactly being eco-friendly.

Swap paper towels and disinfectant wipes for reusable cloths or sponges. And ditch your Swiffer sweeper for a broom or use reusable microfiber pads on the sweeper instead.

Recycle and Donate

If you're planning on doing a thorough spring cleaning, you might end up with a pile of items you don't want cluttering up your home anymore. If you find yourself with old electronics and clothes, remember that there are recycling centers for nearly every item. Instead of sticking old things like VCRs on the curb or throwing batteries away that will all inevitably end up in landfills – recycle or donate these items to your local recycling collection centers.

Other Tips

Do you have any spring cleaning tips for a greener, more eco-friendly home? We'd love to hear from you in the comments section below.