Friday, April 21, 2017

Cost-Effective Eco-Friendly Tips

Yes, you can be eco-friendly without breaking the bank!

eco-friendly cleaning products
Eco-friendly products tend to be a bigger investment up front, but they last longer than conventional products.

But even if you aren't ready to take the full green plunge, here are steps to take to move in that direction AND save money:

* Unplug appliances. When appliances are not in use but remain plugged in, they are still using a small amount of electricity. The coffee pot, toaster oven, and fans can all be unplugged when not in use. So if you get into the habit of unplugging things when you're not using them, you will save yourself money on your electric bill.  And, you'll also be making your carbon footprint smaller by using less electricity and energy.

* Replace older appliances with Energy Star appliances. Now we know, that can be a huge up-front expense having to replace appliances that don't really need to be replaced. But you will save money on your energy bills and eventually it will pay off. You don't have to do it all at once, but you can save up to $75 a year by making the switch.

* Use rechargeable batteries. You will again be spending slightly more money up front. But again, think about how many times you change batteries on TV remote controls or the kids' toys. You'll save a fortune by purchasing rechargeable batteries once, instead of buying batteries multiple times each year. And, you will be keeping more batteries out of landfills. Batteries do not break down and  release harmful chemicals into the environment.

* Replace your chemical household cleaners with natural cleaners. You can buy specific green
vinegar cleaning solution
cleaners which will cost more upfront, but last longer. Alternatively, you can use a cleaner like white vinegar to disinfect, clean, remove stains and freshen the air. That's another way to save money on your cleaning products without compromising on cleanliness.

* Whenever possible, skip the car and walk or bike where you need to go. The obvious savings is at the gas pump, but you'll also save on auto repairs. If you must drive, combine errands as much as possible and take a more direct route to get to your destination. Carpool whenever possible. If your co-worker needs to pick up their dry cleaning at the same laundromat as you, then just do it together.

* Research recyclable items and use products that use recyclable items. It can be cost-effective to use items which use only green products. Companies are learning that they, too, save by using recycled materials. Then, they pass those cost savings onto you. However, companies need the materials to come back to them so they can continue to use recycled materials. So make sure to recycle your containers!

Once you start taking small steps, you'll naturally find other ways to help the earth while saving money. That's why steps like these are so important. They get you into the ecology mindset.
And that's a win-win for all of us!

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