Going "green" can be a daunting task. Relax. Here are a few simple changes you can make to get started on a greener lifestyle.
1. Save water by washing full loads. This handy green tip works for both washing clothes and dishes. Save dirty clothes in a laundry bag or hamper and use that super large setting on your washing machine. The same savings applies to washing dishes. Make sure the dishwasher is full before turning that start dial.
2. Air-dry your laundry. Consider installing a clothesline in your backyard or basement, or use a freestanding clothes rack that folds up when not in use. Drying your clothes will be 100% green with the air-dry method!
3. Use glass food storage containers. Plastic is the least "green" food storage container. But, if you look in most kitchens, plastic is the most often used food container. By switching to glass food storage containers, you take a big step toward living a greener lifestyle.
* Not only does the manufacturing of plastic harm the natural environment, but certain types of plastic are harmful to your health as well.
** The best time to also invest in metal reusable straws.
4. Install a new shower head. Traditional shower heads are notorious water-wasters. Switch your old one for a newer model. A new "green" shower head uses 1 to 3 gallons less water per minute than older models. That's quite a savings on your wallet, too!
5. Turn off lights when you leave a room. You'd be surprised how many people forget to do this simple action. If no one is in the room, there can't be a good reason to waste energy to brighten it up! With a simple flip of the light switch, a greener lifestyle is yours.
6. Think before buying paper products. Sometimes paper plates, cups, or napkins are a necessity. Most of the time, they're not. Even recycled paper products use energy during the recycling process. Look in your kitchen cabinets and you'll probably find an assortment of little used china and ceramic plates, mugs, and glasses that could be put to good use.
* Also, cloth napkins can make any meal seem like a special occasion.
7. Recycle old tee shirts. Everyone has old tee shirts that are not worthy of donating to Goodwill. Don't throw them out. Replace your paper towel rack with a stack of tee shirt squares. They're soft and absorbent and best of all, reusable. Just throw them in the washer and you have an unending supply of cloths for every kind of clean-up chore.
8. Use an old-fashioned broom and mop. Have you ever noticed that most of today's household chores require some sort of electrical appliance? Well, your local home improvement store still has a supply of old-fashioned brooms and mops on hand.
* Sweeping the floor with a broom gets rid of dust and crumbs just as well as plugging in that vacuum. And mops have been used to clean floors for hundreds of years. Using both makes your house a "green" haven.
Follow these simple tips every day and see how easy it is to live a greener lifestyle!