When summer rolls around each year, it’s easy to get caught up in the desire to clean, fix, and replace things around your home. After all, you’ve spent the long, cold winter months cooped up inside, noticing everything that needs work. Now that the warm weather is here, it’s only natural to want to address some of those glaring issues you’ve been staring down for ages.
However, before you dive in, it’s worth taking the time to consider which home projects are going to benefit both yourself as well as the environment we all share. With that in mind, here are a few suggestions for summer home projects that will be good for both you and the planet.
It’s no secret that waste and pollution are major concerns these days. One quick and easy way to cut down on the amount of waste that you and your family create is making a compost pile. This allows you to avoid throwing away many things like greens, eggshells, and coffee grounds. Not only does composting save such items from going into the dump, but — once composted — they can ultimately be used to help your gardens thrive.
Air-Dry your Clothes
It should come as no surprise that running a hot dryer for hours on end is a net negative for the environment. However, before you go and drop a bunch of cash on a new, high-efficiency dryer (more on high-efficiency appliances later) you might want to consider setting up a clothesline instead.
All it takes is finding two spots to anchor your line, and before you know it, all of your clothes will be drying in the breeze. There are multiple benefits to air-drying clothes, including saving money on your electricity bill, preserving the environment, and even avoiding clingy dryer static and wrinkles.
Recycle your way to Better Security
Everyone has that home office, basement, or other space littered with piles of boxes and papers. After all, running a home can involve quite a bit of paperwork. If you find that mountain of bills and receipts has gotten out of control, it might be time to sort through everything and declutter. But before you start throwing boxes of shredded paper into the trash, consider finding a facility that allows you to shred and recycle your paperwork all at once.
Shredded paper typically can’t be recycled in an average recycling bin. However, going to a certified location to dispose of your unwanted paper doesn’t just safeguard your personal information, it also ensures that your potential waste ultimately gets recycled instead. Once the old paperwork is disposed of, it can be helpful to plan in some time to shift all of your bills and communications to a paperless option, too!
Fix those Drafts
The winter can be the perfect time to notice cold drafts creeping through the doors and windows, but it’s certainly not the right time to leave those apertures wide open as you fix them. Once the warmer weather comes, though, it’s easy to forget that those drafts exist until the next cold season arrives and makes them difficult to address, yet again, without flooding the house with cold air.
Summer is the perfect time to head around your house with some weatherstripping and a caulk gun in order to seal up any cracks and crevices that might have been causing you grief before you forget where they are. Not only does this make your home cozier and snugger, but it can save up to 10% on your heating and cooling costs as well.
One way to help preserve water and keep your gardens well hydrated is to create a setup to collect rainwater. This can be as simple as positioning a rain barrel under a spout. Before you know it, you’ll have all of the water needed to keep your garden lush without ever turning on the tap.
Switch Out your Lightbulbs
Another worthwhile project to invest a little time and money this summer is swapping out your light bulbs for LED alternatives. While it may seem like a worthless project to take on if your other light bulbs are still working, the truth is that LED bulbs are incredibly efficient, using as much as 75% less energy than their incandescent cousins. If you swap out your bulbs, you should start to see a difference on those electricity bills immediately, and it won’t be long before the new bulbs have paid for themselves.
Replace your old Appliances
While replacing light bulbs is a quick and easy task, try conducting an audit of your various appliances if you’re looking for a larger project to take on. This will let you determine which of them are ready to be replaced. In general, most upgraded appliances will run more efficiently than older models simply because they’re newer and more efficient. In addition, though, if you take some time to do some extra research, you can even find models that are exceptionally eco-friendly.
Decorate with Greenery
Last but not least, one project that is always easy on the eyes, as well as the air, is incorporating greenery into your indoor environment. Plants like gerbera daisies and mums are excellent candidates to purify your air and add a splash of colorful fun to your decor all at once. If houseplants aren’t your jam, consider a windowsill garden. All the joy of gardening, none of the back-breaking bending!
Improving your Home and the Earth
There are many different ways to improve your home during the summer months. Whether you’re fixing drafts, sprucing up the decor, upgrading appliances, or a host of other activities, remember that it’s easy to maximize the benefits of your labor by tailoring your efforts to keep the Earth in mind as well as your living spaces.
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