Going green at home isn't really that difficult. In fact, it is one of the first steps we should take towards living a more sustainable lifestyle. Through technological advances, people are living longer and more people are being born. While that is definitely a good thing, it also means there is more competition for the earth's resources.
There is only so much space, food and water to go around. That is why we must start living as sustainably as we can today. This includes reducing waste and conserving and/or reusing resources in your home. It is also about non-toxic living. What seems like a sacrifice today, may be critical for tomorrow--so, don't wait.
Another great thing about going green at home is this is often the more frugal option. We can all play our part in cleaning the air, preserving the natural landscape and reducing landfill waste. Here are 10 DIY ways to go green at home.
Commercial detergent leaves a lot to be desired. They come with a host of chemicals that can pollute the water supply. In addition, there is an unnatural fragrance that lingers on your clean clothes. This includes dryer sheets and liquid fabric softener; many are rated high for toxicity or simply unregulated. Instead of washing with potentially toxic detergents use something natural or make your own.
2. Add low-flow showerheads and faucets
You really don't need that much water to get clean. In fact, some people argue that it actually isn't even that healthy to shower everyday. You strip your body of its natural oils, leaving your skin dry. You then try to replace those oils with chemical-filled lotions.
It just doesn't make sense. Unless you're sweating in the sun all day, you really only need to shower once a day. If you can shower every other day, even better. So, replace your showerheads and faucets with low-flow covers. These can certainly be worth your while if you have leaky and outdated faucets.
3. Reuse washing machine parts
When your washing machine is ready to give up, you probably won't even be able to repair it. But, don't toss it all out just yet. You can still use the drum. It has eyelets around the rim where you can add wheels and a lid for a top. Then, place a comfy cushion on the surface. Now, you have a moving and futuristic-looking ottoman. It can also be used for storage of blankets, toys and more. You can replace the cushion anytime you like. It's also as comfortable as any store-bought ottoman.
4. Turn off all of your lights at night
Unless you have trouble with vision, you really don't need any lights on at all. This helps to conserve energy and usage out of your lightbulbs. You don't want to have to replace lightbulbs every week because they are being overused. The world only has so much power to go around. There are increasing numbers of resources competing for that power. Do your part by turning all of the lights off.
5. Grow your own vegetables
You can use pots, a soil bed or even mason jars. It can be a traditional vegetable garden or pots of herbs. Nonetheless, growing your own food helps to reduce your carbon footprint.
6. Use your pet to power your cell phone
If you have a hamster, you can be sure it likes its exercise. This is why there is the hamster wheel. Well, you can attach a small generator to your hamster wheel and connect it to your phone charger. Every two minutes your hamster spends on its wheel gives you around 30 minutes of talk time. Your hamster gets its daily dose of exercise, and your phone gets charged.
7. Replace windows
You can lose a lot of energy through your windows. If you're heating up your home, the heat can leak out through your windows. Then, you have to use a higher heat setting just to make up for it. As a result, you pay more in energy costs. Instead, consider installing double-paned windows. If those aren't in your budget, storm windows can also be used.
8. Get a programmable thermostat
You don't even need an electrician to help you. The benefits of a programmable thermostat is they regulate your heating and cooling spending. Most of them also come with a built-in energy saving program. In addition, you can customize it to represent your schedule. You don’t need to cool or heat your home all day.
9. Wash in cool water
Unless water is boiling, it doesn't have more hygienic benefits than cool water. In fact, a study by Vanderbilt University showed that cold water has the same hygienic benefits as hot water. Yet, hot water takes more energy to maintain. So, switch to cold. Water is water.
10. Use cloth instead of paper
You don't have to use paper to clean up every mess, you can use cloth. They are cost effective and reusable. You can even make rags out of old towels and t-shirts. The same is true of napkins, you can use cloth instead of paper versions. Just maintain and wash them.
Going green is not difficult, daunting or expensive. Many of the tips above are quite easy and inexpensive. Moreover, it doesn't take much time to change how you run your home. These simple steps will have you well on your way to cutting costs, helping the planet and saving energy. You’ll realize you don’t even miss your old way of life. You can survive just fine, thank you very much.