13 Time to Adopt a Greener Way of Life

When it comes to going green, people are finding that little changes in their homes and daily routines can have large positive benefits on the environment. Here are 13 tips you can implement in your own home today.

Collect the Excess Water When Washing Produce: Most of us have a habit of running the tap for long periods of time when washing fruits and vegetables. Instead of having all that water go down the drain, wash fruits in a colander that sits on the rim of a large pot or container. As you wash the produce, you can collect the dirty water and use it to water plants in and around the house.

Use pantry products as cleaners: White distilled vinegar, baking soda, and essential natural oils can be used as cleaning products for your furniture, counters and appliances. They’re both effective cleaners and safer for the environment.

Use less water in major appliances: You will use less water if you wash full loads of dishes in the dishwasher and full loads of dirty clothes in the washing machine. Also, wash laundry in cold water to save on heating energy.

Organize small objects with recycled glass jars and plastic containers: Jars, butter tubs and mayonnaise containers can be cleaned out and reused to hold small items around the house such as nuts, screws, bolts, marbles, coins, paper clips, and a range of other items.

Collect rainwater: Collecting rainwater to use for watering house plants, outdoor gardens and patio plants can significantly decrease water usage during drier months.

Insulate water heaters to save energy: Insulation blankets can be wrapped around your water heater to save on energy. This method allows the water to stay warm for longer periods, which means that your water heater will run less and use less energy.

Install high-efficiency low-flow faucets, showerheads and toilets: Newer high-efficiency taps, toilets and showerheads are designed to conserve more water than the older models, while also providing good water pressure.

Use power strips to save energy: Plug appliances and electronics that don’t need to be on all the time into power strips. Turn off the power strip when you’re not using them to lessen electrical usage.

Swap and donate items: Most clothing, appliances and furniture items don’t have to go to a landfill. There are many places where you can swap items with someone else or donate gently used items to be re-purposed or used by someone new.

Switch to CFL or LED lighting: Lessen energy costs by using more energy efficient lighting options.

Install dimmer switches and timers throughout the home: Dimmer switches are ideal in your home as you can lessen the amount of electricity you use when you don’t need a bright light. Timers are another great way to save on energy usage and utilize daylight to its fullest potential throughout the year.

Reuse old shower curtains: Old shower curtains make great drop cloths when you are painting or need to prevent messes.

Support Your Shoes with Recycled Magazines: The upper part of knee-high leather boots can become floppy with age, creating unwanted creasing or cracks in the leather. Instead of throwing out old magazines, roll them up and place them into the boots to help maintain their shape.

Making just a few simple changes around your house can lead to an overall greener lifestyle.