If you're reading this, you're undoubtedly interested in being environmentally responsible whenever possible. Many think going green is confined to reducing, reusing and recycling, but for the more seasoned readers out there, you know there's far more that goes into saving the environment than these three aspects. Indeed, a green lifestyle literally starts from the ground up, especially when remodeling your home. If you are thinking of greening your laundry room, here are a few things to keep in mind.
Environmentally friendly materials, like low VOC paint and flooring made from sustainable resources like bamboo or cork, all help your laundry area to be more eco-friendly. Don't be afraid to ask about the chemicals used to make the product, as well. Some eco-friendly flooring options have toxic chemicals added in the manufacturing process. These contaminants contribute to pollution even before they arrive at your home and can even damage your indoor air quality.
Choose the right appliances
One of the biggest hindrances to an eco-friendly lifestyle is your selection of appliances. Making wise purchasing decisions will help lower your carbon footprint. Investing in an energy-efficient washing machine and dryer will reduce your water, electricity and natural gas costs. In general, front-loading machines use less water than the top loading options, although you can find cost-efficient front loaders. While a green washing machine might cost more at the outset, you'll be doing your part to protect the environment while also lowering your energy bills. Over time, it will pay for itself. When it comes to your dryer, choose models that use less gas or electricity and opt to hang-dry washable items whenever you can.
Watch those chemicals
Does your laundry room use bleach? Most do, even though it's an environmental hazard. Waste bleach ends up in your sewer system or septic tank, where it creates trihalomethanes, a poisonous chemical that has been linked to cancer and certain birth defects. Traditional laundry detergent is not much better, containing toxic petroleum products that stay on the clothes long after they come out of the wash. Opt for less toxic chemicals, like a bleach made from hydrogen peroxide and homemade laundry detergent made from biodegradable products. By doing so, your family will be healthier and the environment will stay protected.
Once you have replaced your appliances and your toxic cleaners, there are a few more steps you can take to actively protect the environment while cleaning your family’s clothes. These include pre-soaking extremely soiled clothes, washing in cold water rather than warm or hot and only running the washer when you have a full load of clothes. Small steps can set you on the path to going green practically before you realize you're doing something good for the environment.
While many of these steps may seem like common sense, you need to be actively thinking about green steps in order to implement them well. By doing so, you will be doing all you can to help keep your laundry and your laundry room clean as well as green.
Jessica is interested in health and the environment. In her free time, she enjoys reading and blogging on behalf of Sears and other brands she trusts. Catch up with her on Twitter: @jessstark9.
Photo Credit Laundry Love