Welcome to Gwinnett Clean & Beautiful’s first installment of “Trim the Waste” – a blog series designed to provide you with tips on how to reduce, reuse and recycle in the various rooms of your home. We begin in one of the most popular rooms of the house. No matter what you call – restroom, john, the loo, necessary room, potty, powder room, the throne room or little girl’s room – there are a number of simple ways to “trim the waste” in this room:
- Recycle your shampoo, conditioner and shower gel bottles. Don’t just toss them in the trash! Many of these bottles are comprised of High Density Polyethylene (type 2 plastic), which is recyclable. Other items that you can recycle in your bathroom include soap boxes, tissue boxes and toilet paper rolls. An easy reminder for guests and family members is to place a clearly marked recycling bin next to your trash bin inside the bathroom. For some added inspiration, check out the 1st Place Winner of the Keep America Beautiful “I Want to be Recycled” video contest: “Potty Talk”.
- Provide hooks upon which family members can hang their towels. A bath towel can be used more than one time. Simply dry off and hang it back up for tomorrow’s shower. Just imagine the water you’ll save by NOT washing your towels after just one use.
- Place a watering can in the shower with you. Rather than sending all of that water right down the drain, the watering can will catch some of the shower water for you to use to water your houseplants or flower bed – once its cooled to room temperature.
- Invest in a low-flow toilet. According to LovetoKnow.com, the incorporation of a low flow toilet in a home could save 22,000 gallons of water per year for a family of four. Not only will this aid in water conservation, it could also equate to some nice savings on your water bill annually.
- Invest in a low-flow showerhead. According to National Geographic, with a low-flow showerhead, you can save 15 gallons of water during one 10-minute shower. Are you more of a bathtub bather? You may want to reconsider that next soak. It takes about 70 gallons of water to fill a bathtub, so showers are generally the more water-efficient way to bathe.
- Swap a cloth for paper towels. When cleaning mirrors and countertops, consider using a reusable microfiber towel instead of roll after roll of paper towels.
- Don’t commit a flush faux pas. Just because it CAN go down the drain, doesn’t necessarily mean it SHOULD. There are certain items you really shouldn’t flush down the toilet. According to Waste360.com, chief among them are baby wipes, hard surface cleaning wipes (such as Lysol or Clorox), paper towels and feminine hygiene products. Because they don’t biodegrade in water, they tend to gum up the works at wastewater treatment plants. Only a very small percentage – about 7% – of wipes are actually considered flushable and break down in the system on their way to the plant. Better to err on the side of caution and toss them in the trash.
Stay tuned for future editions of “Trim the Waste” to see which rooms of the home we visit next!