Title

The Effect of Tea Tree Oil, Method® Household Cleaner and Lysol® on Bacterial Growth

Author(s)

Lilly Abernathy

School Name

Heathwood Hall Episcopal School

Grade Level

11th Grade

Presentation Topic

Consumer Science

Presentation Type

Non-Mentored

Abstract

The purpose of this experiment is to test whether natural alternative cleaners can kill bacteria effectively compared to traditional chemical cleaners. Three different types of cleaners were used in this experiment: tea tree essential oil, Method, and Lysol. E.coli and Staphylococcus epidermidis were spread on two separate plates along with paper disks soaked in the respective cleaning solution. The plates were incubated for three days to allow for bacterial growth, and then they were examined after that period. Diameters for the zones of inhibition were measured, and the data was analyzed. The plates with tea tree oil performed the best across the board, with clear zones of inhibition on each plate for all three trials. The other two cleaners surprisingly were not great at preventing bacteria from growing, which was unexpected since the green cleaner and chemical cleaner are both marketed to the public as 99.9 % effective against common household bacterias. The data is not completely conclusive as some areas of the experiment were flawed; however, through further investigation a more concrete conclusion could be made about whether or not traditional chemical cleaners are actually more effective at treating bacteria than natural cleaners. While the tea tree oil was effective in this experiment, it is hard to tell if it is more effective than Method and Lysol from this one experiment.

Location

Furman Hall 110

Start Date

3-28-2020 8:30 AM

Presentation Format

Oral and Written

Group Project

No

COinS
 
Mar 28th, 8:30 AM

The Effect of Tea Tree Oil, Method® Household Cleaner and Lysol® on Bacterial Growth

Furman Hall 110

The purpose of this experiment is to test whether natural alternative cleaners can kill bacteria effectively compared to traditional chemical cleaners. Three different types of cleaners were used in this experiment: tea tree essential oil, Method, and Lysol. E.coli and Staphylococcus epidermidis were spread on two separate plates along with paper disks soaked in the respective cleaning solution. The plates were incubated for three days to allow for bacterial growth, and then they were examined after that period. Diameters for the zones of inhibition were measured, and the data was analyzed. The plates with tea tree oil performed the best across the board, with clear zones of inhibition on each plate for all three trials. The other two cleaners surprisingly were not great at preventing bacteria from growing, which was unexpected since the green cleaner and chemical cleaner are both marketed to the public as 99.9 % effective against common household bacterias. The data is not completely conclusive as some areas of the experiment were flawed; however, through further investigation a more concrete conclusion could be made about whether or not traditional chemical cleaners are actually more effective at treating bacteria than natural cleaners. While the tea tree oil was effective in this experiment, it is hard to tell if it is more effective than Method and Lysol from this one experiment.