Smart Recycling Tips for Sensible Home Owners - Sustainablog

Smart Recycling Tips for Sensible Home Owners

Old worn furniture that has been discarded and left outdoors with garbage

The domain of recycling extends far beyond those wheelie bins and plastic bottle initiatives. Reducing our consumption volumes, and switching to eco-friendly methods, are the first constructive steps in this direction. Disposing of  waste materials at home with these smart recycling tips would help in lowering expenditure, saving space and creating a congenial environment:

Focus on plastic to make a difference

Plastic water bottles and plastic bags account for the lion’s share of household waste. It is estimated by Clean Up Australia that 1 trillion plastic bags are used and thrown away every year, worldwide. Since prevention is always better than cure, it is highly recommended to focus on effective ways of reducing the usage of plastic.

  • When shopping, replace those plastic shopping bags with eco-friendly, re-usable bags.
  • Opt for food items which have less plastic packaging. Instead of small, wrapped portions, try buying in bulk.
  • If bottled drinks are indispensable for your household, purchasing larger quantities is always
  • wiser than buying several small plastic bottles.
  • Cut the bottoms of plastic bottles to make disposable funnels. The removed portions can be used as seedling trays / mini greenhouses for your seedlings.
  • Try using old plastic bags as covers or wrappers for storing fragile items.
  • Make fascinating toys for your kids using plastic bottles, with added colored paper.

Cutting down on paper saves cutting down a tree

Cutting down on your consumption of paper is a most thoughtful decision for the sake of the environment. Relying on your internet device for reading newspapers and journals, storing essential documents, receiving or paying your bills is easy and convenient.

Instead of purchasing personal copies all the time, why not borrow books from the nearest library? From old newspapers and magazines to telephone directories, catalogs, cards, wrapping papers, cardboard and cartons, make a note of all the unused paper products in your home which you wish to recycle. Some recycling tips for paper:

  • If you have a flair for art and craft, then use your own creativity to prepare decorative items by cutting pieces of cardboard or paper in various patterns and painting them.
  • Old newspapers can be reused in multiple ways. You can use them for stuffing leather handbags or hats for retaining their proper shape. They can be stuffed in damp shoes for drying or loose shoes for tightening.
  • Spread sheets of old paper between rows of plants to check the growth of weeds.
  • You can place them in between cracks or under doors to prevent the entry of harsh winds in winter.

Donate clothes

Old and functional items of clothing lying idle in your closet, can easily be donated to a charitable organization or consignment shops, so that they can be reused. Your unwanted clothes can meet the requirements of another individual, rather than being dumped in a landfill. You can also use old dresses for creating aprons, napkins, handmade bags or even patchwork or embroidered quilt covers.

Electronic devices

Professional help should be sought for unused items like electronic devices, which are difficult to recycle at home. Do not try to recycle or dispose of these yourself, unless you have clear information regarding the environmental or health hazards. E-waste often contains toxic chemicals.

Locate recycling centers in close vicinity to your home to deliver old television sets, PCs or cellphones. You might also consider donating these.

Give your furniture a new home

Recycling is the most effective way of de-cluttering your home by getting rid of unnecessary furniture. It doesn’t have to be time consuming, either. Today, there are professional teams available for managing your furniture recycling. These teams offer a wide range of recycling solutions for your chairs / desks / shelves / cabinets including reuse, resale and donations.

From dismantling your stuff to photographs, packing, transportation and storage, everything is taken care of.

Foils and CDs / DVDs

  • Old aluminum foils can be placed behind plants kept in the shade, for reflecting sunlight.
  • Leftover foils can be used for waterproof wrapping of old films or photos.
  • Old CDs or DVDs can be used for making funky coasters for your coffee table.
  • You can create interesting collages for your drawing room wall with reflective CDs.

Composting and greenery

Did you know that composting is one of the best and simplest recycling techniques at home? Collect your discarded fruit / vegetable peels and other kitchen wastes. Along with your garden trimmings, place them in a composter.

Compost can be really beneficial for your garden soil, due to its rich nutrient content. Much better than going to waste in a landfill. This also saves your wastebaskets from unnecessary burden.

Do you have more creative ideas for recycling? Let us know about them!

This post has been sponsored by Gumtree; image from BigStock

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