Category Archives: Go Green

Traveling Green

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No, this post is not about all of the greenest places you can travel or the best green outfits to wear while traveling. This post is about how to be green while traveling. Traveling can sometimes make it a little more difficult when it comes to recycling and making the greener choices. Here are some green tips to help maintain that green living while you are away and traveling.

Green Transportation

When you are exploring the new places you are in think of a greener way to travel when you are there. Bikes are a great alternative when you are traveling abroad. Bikes can get you around almost anywhere and they make sightseeing easier. A great way to get your steps in while on vacation is walking around. Walking is exercise and a green alternative to driving a car. These are great ways for traveling green.

Ask About Recycling

Staying at a hotel? Then ask them about their recycling policy. Most hotels should have recycling available. If that is not the case, then plane ahead. Bring some trash bags with you and separate your trash from recycling. In the end you can recycle everything on your own and feel better about the greener choices you have made.

Local, Local, Local

Stay local when you are traveling abroad. Most placed get their money from tourism, so think local when traveling abroad. Ask the hotel where the best local restaurants to dine are at and where the best local markets there are when it comes to shopping. Supporting the local farmers and workers is always the better and greener choice when traveling abroad.

Reusable Bottle

Bring your own water bottle abroad instead of using plastic water bottles. Some hotels supply their own watering stations and are supportive of reusable water bottles over using plastic ones. Reusable bottles are the greener choice when it comes to traveling green.

The Best Green Tips

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Green living is the best living when it comes to helping out the planet. There are so many green tips that are floating out there, so what are the best ones? Here is where we filter through some of the best green living tips. The best part is that most of these are pretty simple and easy for anyone to follow these green living tips! Here are the top green tips.

Recycle Water Bottles

So many water bottles that are thrown away each year. 60 million to be exact according to the Container Recycling Institute. The best green tip is to recycle those water bottles. Stop throwing them out into the trash and just refill them with some more water. This is better for the environment and better for your wallet.

Compost

Starting a compost is one of the most common and best green tip that is out there. Composting is recycling your food scraps in a food bin and turning that into rich mulch for gardens and other plants. This is a green tip that can reduce the amount of trash that is produced in a household and the plants love the minerals a compost can produce.

Large Laundry Loads

Laundry can be one of the reasons there is a lot of water waste. Do not clean a few shirts and pants three to four times a week. That is piling up the water waste produced. Instead, try to do laundry at least once a week and make it a large load. This will reduce the amount of water that is used multiple times in one week.

Carpooling

Carpooling is one of the oldest green tips that has been around. Carpooling can reduce the amount of gas that is emitted into the air. Who does not want to reduce air pollution? Also, carpooling with people can make the car ride more enjoyable and not seem so long.

Reuse Water in the Home

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Imagine the amount of water that you use in a household once a day. It may not seem like a lot, but this will show you that there is a lot of water usage going on in the home. These tips will be a good way to recycle water and help reduce the amount of water that goes wasted in a day. Here are some tips to help recycle water in the home!

Shower Water

The shower is where most people tend to use a lot of water. Place a bucket in the shower and watch that thing easily fill up. Shower water can be recused for many other things around the home. You can recuse the water to water plants. Also, take a smaller cup of water from the bucket and use that water to brush your teeth.

Runoff Water

Collect the runoff water that comes from the roof. Place a bucket at the downspout and that will collect more water for you to use. Runoff water can be a big use of water recycling and can help you collect a lot of water. Recycling water can come from inside you outside the home.

Old Water Bottles

If you are someone that has half-drunk water bottles all around your home, then keep them and do not dump that hot water down the sink. The water in those bottles can be used to water plants or even clean off some dirt left on the porch. Old water bottles can have an extra use and have recycled water ready at hand.

Pasta Water

Filling up a large pot with water can result in a lot of water waste if that water is later dumped down the sink. Save that pasta water! Dump the water into another bucket when making pasta. Save the water and wait for it to cool down to use it to water plants.

High Electricity Costs

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Electricity can take a huge chunk out of anyone’s paycheck. No one really likes receiving high electricity bills either.  It is time to say good bye to those high electricity bills. These tips are going to lower that dollar sign and save you more money, instead of spending more money.

Install Ceiling Fans

The AC and heater can be the number one source when it comes to high costs on your electricity bill. Installing ceiling fans can help with the flow of circulation throughout a home. The best part is this reduces the amount of electricity is needed to cool down an entire house.

Wash Full Loads

Doing the laundry 4 times in one week is not the most energy efficient thing to do. Instead of washing clothes sporadically throughout the week, you should designate a certain day for doing the laundry. Washing full loads can decrease the use of water and the constant use of electricity.

LED Lighting

Switch out your incandescent lightbulbs for LED light bulbs. LED lights use 90 percent less energy than incandescent lights use. It only takes a few seconds to switch out these old lightbulbs for LED bulbs and save yourself some electricity and money.

Dishwasher Efficiency

There is a method to the dishwasher’s madness. Loading a dishwasher efficiently can reduce the number of loads you might have to accomplish that day. The dishwasher is made to clean large amounts of dishes at once. Do not be afraid to pile stuff in but pile it in an efficient way.

Clean Vents

Keep vents open and always clean. Open vents help with the flow of circulation in a home. Replace the home’s air filters, too. Replace the filters at least once a month in order to make sure the vents are clean. They attract dirt and dust and you do not want that spreading throughout the home.

Zero Waste Living

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A zero-waste lifestyle may seem impossible, but it can be accomplished. The concept of a zero-waste lifestyle may be hard to understand. Here is a little beginners guide to living this sustainable lifestyle. Zero waste does not exactly mean that you never ever produce waste ever again. Some of the items you buy do come in containers or other things, but this is to reduce as much waste as possible and to better your lifestyle and choices.

Inventory Check

Starts by going through all of your cabinets, fridge and every nook and cranny. It is time to go through everything and see what can be made into something else, what can be recycled and what should be thrown out for the very last time. An inventory check is a great way to start this zero-waste living.

First, Food

After you have gone through all the food in your kitchen, decide what you can no longer can be digested. Instead of just throwing all of those scraps in the trash you can start a compost. This is a great alternative to trash and is easy to do at home. Here is our blog on how to start your own compost.

At Home Chef

If you are someone that gets all of their meals from popping them into the microwave, then stop. This creates a lot of waste and is not always the healthiest choice. Start small and teach yourself how to cook. Chicken, salmon and shrimp are some easy and simple food that you can cook in many different ways. Anything left over, you can save for tomorrow or add to a compost.

Paper and Plastic

It may seem almost impossible to escape the use of paper and plastic, but there are some ways to get around these two things. Instead of using plastic wrap, you can switch it out for a food wrap. There are many alternatives that can be reused many times and eliminate the use of paper and plastic. Here is some more information of those products and how to use them.

 

This is only a few tips of on how to start a zero-waste lifestyle. Going Zero Waste has many places and ways to dive into this sustainable lifestyle.

Recycling Facts

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Let’s get down to the facts. There is a lot of information that goes along with recycling and some people have not even heard of some of these recycling facts. These are facts that come from Waste Management. Waste Management has tons of facts and information about recycling. Click on this clink to go find out even more facts on recycling: Waste Management.

What Is Recyclable

Some items are recyclable and some are not. Let’s get these recycling facts straightened out. Then not everything can go into the recycling bin, but here are some items that can make into the recycle club. Recycle paper materials, cardboard, glass, aluminum, tins cans and plastic.

What Is Not Recyclable

Tossing everything into the recycling bin is not helpful. Know the difference and help the recycling factory out. Cutting that part out will help and filling you in on what cannot be recycled. The top ones are animal waste, chips and candy bags, napkins plastic food wrap and more that can be found on Waste Management’s site.

Recyclable Tips

Check out these tips about the things that are in the recycling club.

  • Aluminum: Crushing the cans can create more space for you to recycle. Rinsing them out will help with not attracting bugs.
  • Cardboard: Break down the boxes to save space and make sure all material is removed.
  • Glass: Rinse out the glasses and you do not have to remove the label. The recycling plant takes care of that for you.
  • Paper: Non-recyclable paper is tissue, waxed and carbon paper.
  • Plastic: Remove the plastic tops from the containers and make sure that they are rinsed out.
Green Waste

Trash and green waste are not the same things. Green waste is grass, woods, wood chips most things that you will find in nature. Trash is regular household waste. Don’t place rock, concrete dirt or any green waste in the trash bin.

Plastic Pollution

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Plastic is almost impossible to not use in something you have used daily. You can have a hand in reducing the amount of plastic that is being consumed every day. These plastic tips will help you understand that you may not completely escape the total use of plastic, but it will have a huge cut down in the amount you use daily or weekly. Some simple life choices and easy fixes can help reduce down the plastic pollution.

Reusable Grocery Bags

Those plastic bags at the grocery store are not only flimsy, they are a huge part of the plastic pollution. Reusable grocery bags are easy to store and come in different styles. Most grocery stores sell them at the check out for around one dollar. Keep some handy in your car at all times, so you will never forget them.

Forget About Plastic Bottles

Using plastic water bottles all day, everyday is piling up the plastic pollution. Stop buying the water bottles at the grocery store and start using reusable water bottles. You can always clean out the bottle and it slashes down your plastic usage. Reusable water bottles are always handy and you can have different ones with different colors and designs, unlike the boring, typical plastic water bottle.

Clean Out the Kitchen

The kitchen is most likely the number one place in your home that contains the most plastic. Go in there is get rid of the plastic that you do not need or can easily replace with a non plastic item. Trash the plastic wrap, plastic cups, plastic utensils and many more. All of those plastic things can be easily replaces with reusable lids and just cleaning your cups and silverware eliminates the use of plastic utensils.

Plastic Lifetime

Plastic can last a really long time and that has an impact on our planet. Here are some quick plastic lifetimes that may surprise you and change your mind on choosing plastic over the more green option.

  • Balloons: 6 months
  • Plastic bags: 10-20 years
  • Plastic bottles: 450 years
  • Styrofoam: 50 years

You can find out more tips on how to reduce your plastic usage at Fix.

Going Green For Fall

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Fall is here, but that does not mean living green is going to get harder or put the brakes on it. It just means a whole bunch of new tips that can prepare you to stay green living during fall. Green living may require some prep work during the fall, but the prep work can feel like fun activities that can be done with the whole family or can help you get some alone time. Going green does not have to end at fall.

Canning the Summer Garden

Prep those summer foods with some canning. The fall and winter weather can be a little harsh on anyone’s garden, so canning is a good alternative in order to keep those foods alive and fresh for you in the months to come. Canning is great for future meals and warm soups you can make during the fall. Canning can make a better difference in going green.

Clean the Furnace Regularly

Cleaning your home’s furnace regularly can have great results for you in the long run. This may not seem like a huge deal when going green, but it can be. The furnace can collect dust and become extremely dirty if it is neglected and sometimes can result in a fire. Get head starts and clean it.

Rake Leaves

Use a rake to clean up those leaves and leave the leaf blower at the store. Leaves can be a great source of mulch for other plants and can be added to a compost. Leaves are a good brown source of food that a compost loves to have. Raking leaves is a better alternative to blowing them with a leaf blower.

Bring Plants Inside

If you have not already done this tip then go do it now. Plants that cannot survive harsh winters needs to be brought inside your home. Bringing those plants inside can help keep them alive through the fall and winter. Keeping them in the house can replenish them and they will be seeing the next summer.

Happy Green Halloween

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Happy (Green) Halloween!

Ideas for a More Sustainable Holiday

Take this Halloween season and make it a goal to not be as wasteful. Here are some tips to still have a spooktacular—but sustainable—green halloween.

Halloween Costumes:

  • Costume Swap – have your children and their friends come together to peruse gently-used costumes for a new (to them) look for this year
  • Mix & Match – take different accessories and items from past Halloween costumes and have that be this year’s costume
  • Thrift Shop – Look for inexpensive hand-me-downs or venture to the back of your closet for items to include in your costume
  • Make Your Own – get creative with different puns—think “Smartie Pants,” “Cereal Killer,” “Black Friday,” etc.

Halloween Parties:

  • Use online instead of paper party invitations
    • You could also create a Facebook group
  • If you’re having a small party, use your normal dinnerware and power through an extra load of dishes that night
  • Use cloth napkins and tablecloths instead of the disposables
  • Make sure to have recycling bins out and visible
  • Borrow decorations from friends and family, or if you buy new ones properly store them to be used next year

Trick-or-Treating:

  • Walk, bike ride or carpool to your trick or treating spot
  • Bring an extra bag to pick up candy wrappers and other trash from littering the streets
  • If you’re worried about too much candy, introduce your kids to the “Halloween Fairy.” They can trade their treats for a gift – a toy, movie, game or gift card.

Pumpkins:

  • Find a beeswax candle to light up your pumpkin
  • Roast your pumpkin seeds instead of trashing them after carving your pumpkin
    • You could also save your seeds to grow your own pumpkins next year
  • Look for local pumpkin recycling after the holiday is over

Whether you choose to try one or all of these creative ways to reduce a little waste on Halloween, know that your small effort can lead to a big impact towards a greener holiday. Happy (Green) Halloween!  Give Bargain Dumpster a call if you ever need help with any of your clean out needs! (803) 573-0003

Let’s Get Creative: Furniture Upcycling

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Let’s Get Creative: Furniture Upcycling

No, that isn’t a typo. Upcycling – reusing objects that would otherwise be discarded and creating something new. If you feel like your furniture is outdated, consider repurposing it to achieve the new look you’ve been eyeing in the furniture stores or online.

Dresser Drawers to Shelves

If your dresser has seen better days, put a new coat of paint on it and create some bathroom storage for decoration or practical toiletries. You could take some scrap wood to build new dividers if you need the extra storage space as well.

Drawers to a Garden

Take a few drawers, drill some drainage holes and screw them together to create a vertical garden. Add some flavor to your project by mixing drawer styles and colors to create a super-personalized planter. Be sure to paint your drawers with paint that lasts if you’re planning on             keeping this project on your porch or balcony for the neighbors to see.

Headboards to Benches

If you can’t find a use for your headboard in the bedroom any more, repaint it and build a bench for another area of your house.

Dresser to a Outdoor Bar

Pull out the shelves from an old dresser and repaint it for a fresh look. Add a few pieces of wood to hang glasses if you’re feeling extra adventurous. 

Ladder to Shelves

Stand the ladder up to hold books and accessories or mount it horizontally on the wall for a more rustic-looking bookshelf.

Mirror to a Serving Tray

The reflective surface is perfect for a cocktail party tray. Paint the border a new color and screw on some cabinet handles for a creative serving tray. If you’re not entertaining every day, then use it to hold a candle or two on your coffee table for a new statement piece in your sunroom.

Grand Piano to a Bookcase

If you’re looking for a more adventurous project, consider taking apart your aging piano and creating a hanging bookshelf.

Set aside a weekend to try out an upcycling project, and before you know it your house will look totally different at little or no cost to you…or to the environment!

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