The Perils of Relying on Bleach: A Safety Insight by CAF

The Perils of Relying on Bleach: A Safety Insight by CAF

Bleach, despite its long-standing use in households and commercial spaces, has recently come under scrutiny due to incidents like the following bleach related death, we wanted to make sure that we give our customers as much safety information as possible - even if it has nothing to do with our products. There are very definitive dangers of bleach to health and welfare. Such alarming events underscore the pressing need to understand and respect the potency of this chemical.

Bleach: A Bane in Disguise

Bleach, mainly comprising sodium hypochlorite, is hailed for its disinfectant properties. Its prowess in eliminating stains and microbes is unparalleled. But its efficacy comes at a price—potential health and environmental hazards. While bleach’s pungent aroma and potential for material destruction are concerns, its real danger lies in its health implications. Despite these risks, bleach remains a ubiquitous cleaning agent. But why?

Trapped in Tradition

Bleach's existence traces back to the 17th century. This enduring legacy often equates to a handed-down habit: if our predecessors used it, it must be safe, right? Wrong. Although technology, transportation, and treatments have evolved, bleach usage remains stuck in a time warp.

The rationale behind its widespread use is simple:

  1. Affordability
  2. Ubiquity
  3. Tradition
  4. Underestimation of its peril

Many choose bleach for its cost-effectiveness, often overlooking its lurking dangers.

The Unseen Menace in the Workplace

Primarily a solution of sodium hypochlorite, bleach reacts with several substances, leading to discoloration and material breakdown.

OSHA highlights multiple health hazards associated with bleach. Exposure may result in:

  • Respiratory issues
  • Organ damage
  • Burns or irritation to eyes, skin, throat, etc.
  • Potentially fatal tissue damage

To mitigate these risks, OSHA advises:

  • Opting for safer cleaning alternatives
  • Strictly adhering to label directions
  • Using Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)
  • Minimizing exposure duration
  • Ensuring proper dilution
  • NEVER mixing bleach with other chemicals

Especially vital is the last point. Bleach, when combined with certain substances, produces toxic gases – a fact tragically validated by numerous injury and fatality reports.

The Environmental Cost

Beyond human health, bleach endangers our ecosystem. When used extensively, particularly in industrial settings, resultant wastewater, laced with bleach, contaminates local water sources, jeopardizing aquatic life.

OSHA (The Occupational Safety and Health Administration) has documented lots of potential health issues that can occur when working with bleach. These issues can include respiratory distress, pain, burning, irritation, as well as damage to lungs, organs, eyes, nasal passages, throat, skin and other body parts. Even in a short period of time, bleach can permanently damage tissue or cause death. In fact, it’s recommended that anyone using bleach:

  • Use alternative cleaners when available
  • Read all packaging for safe use instructions
  • Wear personal protective equipment (PPE) including gloves, masks, and eye protection to avoid bodily exposure
  • Limit the amount of time you are in a location where bleach is present
  • Properly dilute bleach based on need/use
  • Avoid mixing bleach with any other chemical

This last point is extremely important. Mixing bleach with other cleaning or chemical components can create a dangerous reaction resulting in noxious fumes. Sadly, there have been countless injuries and deaths related to bleach exposure and fume inhalation.

Another point to call out is that bleach is bad for the environment. Bleach, especially in commercial settings, is often used in massive quantities. This means gallons of wastewater containing bleach are released into local bodies of water – impacting fish and wildlife populations.


Modern, safer, and eco-friendlier alternatives to bleach abound. These alternatives offer effective cleaning without the hazardous repercussions.

Your well-being is paramount. Reach out if you're seeking guidance on bleach-free cleaning solutions. At CAF, we're committed to a cleaner and safer world for all.

There are an abundance of bleach-free alternatives for cleaning and disinfecting different surfaces that are safer for you and the environment. It’s always best to explore these other options before turning to bleach.

Remember, your safety is always a priority. If you have questions on cleaning or better bleach-free alternatives, give us a shout! We’d love to give you some ideas on cleaners that are healthier for you, your workplace and the environment.


All CAF Outdoor Cleaning Products

The CAF name and reputation were built on a foundation of trust. This online privacy policy describes the information CAF collects through the services available on our web site, (the “Site”) and how we use that information. Our policy also describes the choices you can make about how we collect and use your information.

What type of information does CAF collect about me?

CAF may collect personal information. Personal information does not include business contact information (e.g. office address, telephone number) in those jurisdictions that recognize such information as not being personal information. Personal information means information about an identifiable individual and may include:

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In addition to the personal information you actively provide us, we also collect web site use information which includes information about your internet service provider, browser type, domain name, IP address, the web site that referred you to us, the web pages you request, the date and time of those requests, and entry and exit points. Our collection of web site use information may involve the use of cookies and pixel tags.

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Our web site may share information with companies that provide support services to us (such as credit card processors, mailing houses or web hosts) or that help us market our products and services. These companies may need information about you in order to perform their functions. These companies are not authorized to use the information we share with them for any other purpose.

We may disclose specific information upon governmental request, in response to a court order, when required by law, to enforce our corporate policies, or to protect our or others' rights, property, or safety. We do not provide information to these agencies or companies for marketing or commercial purposes.

In the event of a sale of some or all of our business, CAF may disclose personal information to those involved in a transfer of all or part of the assets or business.

Unless permitted by law, no personal information is collected, without first obtaining your consent for the collection, use and sharing of that information. The provision of personal information to CAF means that you agree and consent that we may collect, use and share your personal information in accordance with this privacy policy.

How do I remove or modify my personal information?

CAF strives to ensure that any personal information provided and in its possession is as accurate, current and complete as necessary for the purposes for which we use that information.

If you signed up to receive email communications by providing your email address on the home page of, you may either call our customer care line at 425.837.0025 to remove your email address to opt out.

Why does CAF collect web site use information?

During your visit to, we will collect certain web site use information for a number of purposes, namely to:

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  • Monitor Site performance; and
  • Improve Site design and functionality.

What about links to other sites?

Please be aware that we provide links to third-party web sites as a service to our guests, and that we are not responsible for the content or information collection practices of those pages. Please note that these web sites' privacy policies may differ from this privacy policy. We encourage you to review and understand their privacy practices before providing them with information.

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CAF strives to maintain appropriate physical, procedural and technical security with respect to its offices and information storage facilities so as to prevent any loss, misuse, unauthorized access, disclosure, or modification of personal information. This also applies to our disposal or destruction of personal information.

We encrypt the pipe through which personal information, such as credit card numbers, is sent, using Secure Socket Layer (SSL) technology to ensure that your information is safe as it is sent over the Internet to our server.

What about links to other sites?

Please be aware that we provide links to third-party web sites as a service to our guests, and that we are not responsible for the content or information collection practices of those pages. Please note that these web sites' privacy policies may differ from this privacy policy. We encourage you to review and understand their privacy practices before providing them with information.

Privacy policy changes

If we decide to change our privacy policy, we will post a new statement on our Site and change the date at the top of the policy. Therefore, we encourage you to check the date of our privacy policy whenever you visit this Site for any updates or changes. If you have provided personal information to us, we will email you any changes to the privacy policy that might affect the way we use your personal information.

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