Repurposing every day items in your home is a great way to save money and to indulge your crafty side. However, it is not just your wallet or sense of creativity that will benefit from repurposing items. Read below to learn even more about why repurposing and reuse is beneficial to our earth and how you can repurpose items that you probably already have lying around your home.
Benefits of Reusing and Repurposing Every Day Items
The benefits of repurposing and reusing items that you use in your house on a day to day basis go far beyond just saving you money. When you repurpose household items, you are also helping to preserve the environment in a variety of ways. Read below to learn more about how simply repurposing items that you use at home can have a big impact on the health of the planet.
- Repurposing Items Helps To Prevents The Use Of New And Finite Raw Materials
When you repurpose items in your home, you are reducing the number of new items that have to be made by different suppliers. Suppliers will craft new items out of materials such as wood and unrecycled paper products which leads to harvesting more trees and often times to devastation deforestation. Items that do not require paper or wood and that are made of plastic, including water bottles and plastic wrap require the use of crude oil in as they are produced. Crude oil is a finite resource, meaning it will eventually run out. The less products we can use that require the use of crude oil, the longer the supply of this substance will last on earth.
It is recommended that you and your family always use reusable household items, instead of disposable items. However, if you find that it is necessary to use these disposable plastic objects, such as plastic spoons and forks, make sure that you wash and use them as many times as possible to help save earth’s supply of crude oil. Additional items that can be reused in order to preserve raw materials are paperclips and binders with metal binding. When you reuse these items, you are helping to reduce the use of metal, another raw material present on earth. In fact, binders are especially important to reuse or repurpose, as they require a few different raw materials inter production. As binders are manufactured, trees are used for the cardboard backing, oil is used for the plastic cover and iron or another metal is used for the binding. You can also opt to use binders from eco-friendly companies which will promise not to use any of these important resources in the production of their products.
2. Repurposing Items Helps To Save Energy
In the beginning stages of manufacturing new items, raw materials are shipped around in large trucks or airplanes which requires vast amounts of energy and fuel. After the products are finished, further shipment is required to get them to their final destinations, such as local stores, which requires further use of energy and fuel. However, it is not only these methods of transportation which require the burning of fossil fuels and the use of energy. The processes used to manufacture the products also use energy which will generally be provided by coal or natural gas. Coal and natural gas are also finite resources which are being unnecessarily used to create new products that could be reused or recycled by individuals everywhere. Although it may seem like repurposing or reusing a single item will not save much fuel or energy, as you continue to repurpose multiple items in your home, you are really helping to reduce the use of these finite resources, thus helping to preserve these precious materials and the health and future of the planet as a whole.
3. Repurposing Items Reduces Greenhouse Gas Emissions Which Contribute To Climate Change
Greenhouse gasses are emitted into the atmosphere when raw materials are burned to produce new products. Repurposed or reused items in your household do not require the burning of these raw materials, thus saving the environment from the damage of greenhouse gasses emitted when raw materials are burned to produce new products. Because climate change is one of the largest global threats faced by humans today, reducing the amount of new products your purchase by repurposing old ones will help to reduce your contribution to this looming threat and ideally provide future generations with a lasting planet and a healthy environment.
4. Repurposing Items Benefits Your Wallet
Outside of the many environmental benefits of repurposing items, there are personally beneficial reasons to reuse or repurpose items that you use every day in your household. One of these reasons is that repurposing items will save you money. Instead of purchasing single use items that will need to be repurchased when the single use items run out, purchase reusable items that you only pay for once and can use over and over again. Additionally, repurposing household items into different items is a way to not only upcycle the old item, but to also acquire a new item that did not cost you any money to purchase.
5. Repurposing Items Reduced The Amount Of Waste Sent To Landfills And Incinerators
Yet another benefit of repurposing or reusing items is that it reduces the amount of waste that is sent to landfills. For every item that is reused or repurposed, you are reducing your contribution to the overflowing waste that is present in earth’s landfills. Landfills emit greenhouse gasses into the atmosphere, such as carbon dioxide, which adds to the growing problem of global warming. Cutting down on the amount of waste you send to landfills can have a positive impact on the environment.
While you can take steps toward reducing your impact when acquiring new items that are either used or recycled, it is also beneficial to repurpose existing items that you currently use in your house hold. Read below to learn about some of the items you have at home which can be effectively repurposed.
- Disposable Razors
According to the Environmental Protection Agency, roughly two billion disposable razors will end up in earth’s landfills every year. This is most likely because after the razors have are at the end of their intended use of shaving, consumers will throw them in the garbage can. Fortunately, there are many other uses for these razors once you can no longer shave with them.
One alternate use for a disposable razor is to remove pills from sweaters and other articles of clothing. To remove pilling from your clothes using a disposable razor, simple lay the clothing flat and gently shave over the area where pilling is present. This shaves off the thin top layer of fabric where the pills are and after the pills are gone, your clothing will look like new! You can also use a disposable razor to remove sticky gunk from glass. Run the razor over any residue that you would like to remove from the glass and watch it effortlessly peel off. Do this gently, so that you do not scrape or damage the glass. Lastly, disposable razors are also useful tools in the kitchen. If you have a dish with some particularly stuck on food particle, use the disposable razor to gently scrape them off. To do this, wrap a dish towel around the razor’s head and scrub until the stubborn food scraps are cleared from your dishes.
2. Tissue Boxes
Once a tissue box has been emptied, it is common practice to toss it in the garbage can. However, before you throw away your seemingly useless empty tissue box, you should know that there are many different ways to repurpose these boxes into items that you can use around your home every day.
One way to repurpose an empty tissue box is to use it to store plastic grocery bags. You can even use the mechanism that makes tissues conveniently pop out of the top of the box to make your plastic grocery bags pop out, too! Just slide the bottom of each of the plastic bags into the handles of the next bag and put all of them into the box. Another way to avoid throwing out your empty tissue box is to use it as a trash can for your office, car, bathroom or living room. The small size of these boxes and their closed tops make them the perfect place to discard small pieces of trash wherever you decide to put them. Additionally, and perhaps a less obvious way to use an empty tissue box is to place them in drawers to keep items separate. Simply cut off the top of a few empty tissue boxes and place them in your drawers, Then, separate smaller items into each box and enjoy your new drawer dividers! This can also be used in drawers which hold small items of clothing, such as underwear.
3. Shower Curtains
Surprisingly, your old shower curtains can also be repurposed and used in a few different ways around your home. First, depending on the type of shower curtain you have, it can be repurposed and used as a picnic table cover for those fun family outings! It is best to repurpose plastic shower curtains or shower curtain liners for this use. You can also use an old shower curtain as a drop cloth while painting a room in your home.
Although it may seem like you are recycling your old clothing when you donate them to charity shops, these clothing items will often end up in landfills. In fact, there is approximately thirteen million tons of clothing sitting on America’s landfills today. Instead of donating all of your old clothing, such as t-shirts, you can repurpose these items to use around your home so that you can be sure they are staying out of landfills and being put to good use. One way to repurpose an old t-shirt is to cut it up into squares and use it as baby wipes or as a handkerchief. You can also turn an old t-shirt into a shopping bag by cutting the neck and sleeves out of the shirt, cutting strips along the bottom hem and tying them together.
5. Glass Jars
Glass jars can be repurposed and used in a variety of different ways. These jars are sturdy and durable, not to mention recyclable. Instead of throwing away that glass pickle jar after you’ve munched on all of its contents, wash it out and remove the label. You can then use the jar as a flower vase to display around your home or as a vessel to collect cooking grease. If you use the jar to collect grease, just throw it in the garbage once it is full.
Newspapers are not just good for reading! Once you have caught up on the daily news, you can save your newspaper and repurpose it for a few different uses in your home. First, newspapers can be used to absorb yucky odors in places like your shoes, diaper bags and your refrigerator. Just roll a piece of newspaper into a ball and place it in any of these locations to help eliminate unwelcome smells. Newspapers are also good to use as packing material during a move or for stuffing a box when shipping fragile items. One of the more surprising ways that you can repurpose newspaper is by using it to clean glass and mirrors. Instead of using paper towels, use a sheet of newspaper to wipe down and windows or mirrors in your home. Newspaper will not leave any fibers behind and will only leave your glass looking clean, shiny and streak free.
7. Egg Cartons
Old egg cartons, and specifically clear plastic egg cartons, are great for storing mini cupcakes or muffins after baking. Additionally, if you know anyone who raises chickens, you can ask them if they are in need of extra egg cartons to store their eggs. Paper egg cartons can be used to organize small items, such as Christmas ornaments, jewelry, office supplies, beads, buttons and more!
These repurposing tips can help you and your family to lead a more sustainable lifestyle while also saving you a bit of money. All of us at Natran Green Pest Control hope that we have inspired you to begin repurposing and reusing items around your home to benefit our earth!