Living a more eco-friendly life is really simple, yet it can have a great impact on our planet Earth. There are plenty of small changes that will not only reduce the negative impact on the environment, but they will also save you money.
The following ideas are all low tech and easy to do. Pick out a few to incorporate into your life and “go green.”
If we each make small changes toward reducing our negative impact, it will make a difference on our environment. May knowing you’re helping our precious environment bring you joy.
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11 Eco-Friendly Ideas to Go Green AND Save
Consider which of these eco-friendly ideas you are willing to try. Each and every time you do the low-impact option, take joy in knowing you’re helping our environment!
1. Eco-Friendly Laundry Tips
Tip 1: Reducing hot water use is an easy, affordable way to save energy. Try washing your clothing in cold water as much as possible. Today’s detergent formulas get clothes just as clean when washed in cold water. Besides, hot water can make some clothing shrink, wrinkle, and fade.
Tip 2: While we’re on the topic of laundry, air dry your clothes as often as possible. When you do use a dryer, clean your dryer’s lint trap before every load to help the dryer be as energy-efficient as possible.
Tip 3: Make your own laundry detergent to reduce toxins and save money. With a good nontoxic detergent, your skin and the environment will have reduced exposure to toxins. Here’s the recipe for the 4-ingredient DIY non-toxic laundry detergent that I use.
2. Bottoms Up!
Use reusable water bottles instead of buying bottled water. Refilling water bottles is much less expensive than purchasing bottled water, and think about how much less plastic would be in our landfills if everyone did this! Use a water filter if needed.
Popular Stainless Steel Water Bottle Available on Amazon:
My favorite types of water bottles are stainless steel, insulated water bottles. Insulated bottles keep drinks very cold, even in warm temperatures. Stainless steel bottles are also safe in hot temperatures, so I can keep it in my car as I run errands. (Plastic water bottles may leak toxins into the water when left in the sun.) I appreciate this the most when we head out for a day of boating – my drink stays ice cold!
3. Condiment Bottles
This one seems like 100% common sense, but maybe someone doesn’t do it. When salad dressing or ketchup bottles get low, just turn them upside down when returning them to the refrigerator. You’ll get 2 or 3 more servings from the bottle.
4. Tube Trick
My aunt has done this for years. Although I cannot get myself to do this, you may like it. When a tube of toothpaste is “done”, she cuts off the flat end and squeezes it out from that end. Apparently she gets another whole 1-2 weeks worth. She uses this trick with anything that comes in a tube (hand lotion, sunscreen, etc). Thanks for the tip, Aunt Donna!
5. Refrigerator Tips
Tip 1: Be energy-efficient and minimize the time you need to have the door open.
- Get what you need and close the door! Standing there browsing with the door open lets out cold air, and then the refrigerator needs to work harder to cool down.
- After grocery shopping, gather all your items that need to be refrigerated before opening the door – put them away in one fast shot.
Tip 2: Unplug an extra refrigerator or freezer you might have in your basement or garage even though you don’t have much in it. Generally these extra appliances are older and not as energy efficient. Try to better organize your main refrigerator so you can get more in it and stop using a second refrigerator or freezer.
Tip 3: If possible, replace older refrigerators made in the early 2000s or earlier because they can use more energy than today’s energy efficient models. When purchasing a new refrigerator, look for the ENERGY STAR® models.
6. Change out light bulbs to compact fluorescent or LED light bulbs.
This not only saves money, but has the added benefit of avoiding the inconvenience of a burned out bulb. And your mother was incredibly smart when she so wisely told you to “turn off lights!”
Bomcosy has an LED “filament” bulb that has a great, fun look. It is energy saving LED without the unusual look like other LED bulbs. Actually, the yellow filaments look very cool. The Bomcosy bulb might seem expensive, but let’s put it into perspective. The life span is estimated at 30,000 hours. Even if you leave the light on 24/7, it would still last almost 3 1/2 years! No more bulbs inevitably burning out at an inconvenient time.
7. Reuse Your Plastic Baggies
I used to roll my eyes when my mom did this, but it really is eco-friendly and cost-wise. I don’t washout sandwich-size, but I do wash and reuse quart-size and larger.
To reduce usage of plastic baggies, I got reusable storage containers for sandwiches, chips and other lunch items that I otherwise would have put in a small baggie.
8. Reduce Food Waste
Instead of throwing out leftovers, designate 1 or 2 nights a week to be leftover night. Saves time, money, and garbage. Compost scraps, if possible.
9. Use reusable cloth grocery totes.
Help reduce your impact on the environment by using eco-friendly, reusable shopping totes. Inexpensive cloth bags are available at most grocery stores. Or, bring paper/plastic bags back and have the bagger reuse them on your next shopping trip.
After making up your mind to use cloth totes, it’ll be no big deal to remember to put the totes back into your car after putting away groceries. I’ve found that I much prefer the cloth totes because they’re sturdy and hold more groceries, and of course I like that I’m reducing the impact on the environment.
Here are some fun, reusable cloth bags available on Amazon:
10. Carpool or take public transportation.
As often as possible, utilize the option of sharing a ride. You’ll save money for obvious reasons, plus you’ll have more “down time” while you’re riding instead of driving. It just might be a stress-buster! (Might I even suggest walking or biking?)
11. Save Water
Catch rain water to water plants. Put a large plastic garbage can (or any container) under your drain spout to catch water from the roof during rain. Using plastic gallon milk jugs to transport, use that water for your garden, plants and bushes.
Make Choices to Reduce Your Negative Impact on the Environment
Again, you only need to apply a few of these eco-friendly ideas to your life and you WILL make a positive difference for the environment. For more ideas, read 10 Simple Ways To Reduce Waste at Home. Which ideas do you use already, and is there just one more idea you will commit to incorporating into your life? Please leave me a comment!
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