Day by day, millions of Americans are looking for ways to reduce their carbon footprint and do what’s best for the environment. We’re recycling more than ever, becoming more educated on waste, and trying to curb our energy use. It’s no longer the job of the “tree-hugger” to care for planet Earth, we’ve all got to do our part.
Laundry is an environmental nightmare. It takes water, energy, and chemicals to clean your clothes. But for many of us, going back to the dark ages of scrubbing our jeans over a bucket and washboard is not a legitimate alternative. So here are three small tips that can make a huge impact on your home’s waste. Green laundry is within your reach.
1. The PureWash Pro
The PureWash Pro is a pre-filter that is installed in conjunction with your washing machine. The cold water line is connected to the PureWash and then a second water hose runs from the PureWash to the washing machine. Cold water enters the filter and is infused with Activated Oxygen – also known as Ozone.
Activated Oxygen features an extra molecule of oxygen that cleans and sanitizes. Ozone, combined with cold water, breaks down the cell walls of micro-organisms and kills bacteria over prolonged exposure. This enables the PureWash system to thoroughly clean fabrics better than detergents and even remove organic stains and odors. Your clothes come out fresher, softer, and without the residue of harsh detergent chemicals.
The benefits are threefold:
- All laundry can be cleaned with cold water – no matter the color or stain content. This means no need for the hot water heater to run, conserving energy (and saving you money!)
- No more need for detergent – laundry detergents, even those labeled as “Green” or “Organic” still contain soaps, chemicals, and surfactants. These contaminants end up in our water run-off, damaging the environment. With the PureWash Pro, the Ozone removes stains and freshens & softens fabrics without detergents! Clothing comes out smelling fresh, like it’s been washed by the rain and sun. You also save money by no longer buying expensive detergents or softners.
- Activated Oxygen kills mold & mildew – everyone is familiar with the stinky smells a washing machine can emit. Mold and mildew build up in the gaskets and workings of your washing machine over time, spreading toxic germs and smells to your clothing. It also can damage your machine causing you to replace it years before necessary. But Activated Oxygen actually kills mold and mildew and prevents them from growing. There’s no need to use extreme chemicals to treat it or to send your machine off to a landfill.
2. Fresh Air & Sunshine
You’ve heard the facts before, but running your drying machine is an enormous drain on your electric.Dryers require constant heat and movement to function, demanding a lot of power. Just how much? According to EnergyStar.gov, dryers account for about 12% of your household energy usage.
What’s really frustrating for those in the know is how unnecessary a drying machine really is! Mother nature already provides heat and movement for free. It’s called fresh air & sunshine! Air drying your clothing is a simple solution for green laundry. Anyone can do it! Here are a few of our favorite products to get you started…
- A Retractable Clothesline – If it’s aesthetics you’re worried about, then a retractable clothesline is for you. The base unit can be mounted indoors or outdoors and houses five, 34ft cables. The pull features a latch that will connect to the opposite side once extended. The connector can be installed on a wall or traditional clothesline pull. When your laundry is finished, simply unlatch the cables and the base coils them back in. This kit includes everything you need.
- A Portable Drying Rack – One thing that can be a hindrance to air drying your clothing is the weather. You can’t control rain or snow, but you can control where you set your clothing to dry with a portable drying rack. Move indoors or out, to a sunny spot or near the fireplace. This Siena unit also folds compact for easy storage and is designed to accommodate hanging or flat drying surfaces.
3. At Home Dry Cleaning
What if we told you that your laundry came with a side of…cancer? According to statistics, 85% of dry cleaners use a chemical known as PERC (perchloroethylene or tetrachloroethylene.) The problem? The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the National Academy of Sciences both confirm that PERC is a “likely” cancer-causing human carcinogen. PERC toxins have been found in our air, soil, blood, and even breastmilk.
Dry cleaning pieces of your wardrobe should be avoided at all costs, but millions of Americans are putting their health (and wallets) on the line every day. It’s time to treat your clothing at home with a little elbow grease and the right tools. Skip the chemicals and opt for powerful steam!
- A Quality Steam Cleaner – The best way to treat clothing is moisture. Moisture releases wrinkles and revives fabric fibers. It also helps alleviate odors and loosen stains for treatment. Water is pretty much all you need, and extra hot steam is the best form. A high-quality steam cleaner will properly treat the majority of your wardrobe pieces. This Vivio model features a metal steam head (meaning it will have a long life,) a 13oo watt brass heating element, and a 1-gallon water tank.
- A Quality Steam Iron – What people most love about taking their clothes to a dry-cleaner is how crisp and pressed the finished product is. But this is nothing you can’t accomplish at home with a high-quality iron. The Senza pictured here acts as both steamer and powerful iron. This combination is ideal for pressing “dry-clean only” pieces. The continuous steam can be activated horizontally or vertically and the iron can be detached to act independently from the steam station.
Make The Change – Be The Change!
Even adopting just one of these Green solutions to your daily laundry will make an impact on your carbon footprint. And the best part is, you may just find you love the results even more than before!