Trash removal companies like 1-800-GOT-JUNK do more than come to your house and take away the stuff you don’t want. Professional trash removal companies actually assess what you have and sort the items based on what can be donated, recycled and ultimately has to be sent to the landfill. For hard-to-recycle items like electronics and mattresses, many franchises do the hard work for you, collecting items from multiple homes and then doing one big trip to recycle them. They also have relationships with nonprofit organizations and work hand in hand with them to receive furniture, building supplies and other items you may not even know you can donate. When you are strapped for time but have stuff to get rid of, using a professional service may be the greenest way to go.
After you've fried up a delicious batch of homemade donuts, what do you do with the leftover cooking oil? There's an old wives' tale that you can pour used cooking oil into the ground, where it becomes food for earthworms. But the reality is, used oil will likely move its way to waterways -- through storm drains or natural methods -- where it will be a contaminant. Oil and water don't mix and can poison lakes, rivers and the public water supply. Instead, try reusing the oil by cleaning it and filtering it through coffee filters. Or find a local recycler who can turn the oil into biofuel. If you need to get rid of it faster than that, mix it with kitty litter and place it in an airtight container to toss in the trash.
Buying in bulk from wholesale clubs can be a great way to save money and reduce packaging on some of your favorite everyday items. But buying in bulk can have its perils when the item you're buying has a short shelf life. When buying perishable foods in bulk, it's best to avoid items like ketchup, mustard, mayo and other condiments. Most families will not go through the entire supply before it goes bad; dollar for dollar, it's better to buy these items in normal-sized jars. One other item to avoid? Healthy brown rice. Brown rice has a shelf life of only six months because it retains its natural oils and fatty acids; when it goes bad, it takes on a rancid taste. White rice, which is free of those fats, has a shelf life of 30 years.