Practical Green Tips from Our Readers

Sabrina Lopez
May 3, 2015
5 min read

We took to social media to find out some of the practical ways our social media friends here in the Valley are striving towards green-ness, and from water and energy conservation efforts to composting advice, they didn’t disappoint.

Check out some of the fantastic tips we received, and let us know if you have others to add!

Green Living AZ - Reuse contaminant-free rainwater and household water from dishwashing, laundry, sink, and shower usage by installing a greywater recycling system. While this water may not look clean due to traces of dirt, food, grease, and other household waste, it is a safe and efficient way to irrigate your yard.

Rachel Strand Roudebush-Anderson - Turn your thermostat up while you're gone during the day or programming it—that way, you waste less on air conditioning and save money on your bill. Also, change your AC filters every month, even if it is a "3-month" filter. It truly does cut down on your AC cost.

Green Living AZ - Use low-VOC (volatile organic compounds) products to paint your house and seal or stain your wood. Products with a high level of VOCs can lead to air quality issues and serious health concerns.

Alison Luther - Raise green kids by setting a good example. Explain why you shut off the lights when you leave the room and don't leave the water running and why you brush your teeth. Make recycling a family activity, and repurpose simple items into craft supplies for art projects. Ride bikes to the park instead of driving. Lead by example, and consider it an investment in our environment’s future!

Rachel Strand Roudebush-Anderson - Installing attic fans in your home is an inexpensive way to keep your house cooler. Remember, heat rises, and your AC ductwork is in your attic—therefore, your air conditioner is working harder to keep the whole house cool. The rest of your house will also be cooler if your attic is cooler.

A few from our team at Sun Valley Solar Solutions:

Cut down water waste - Put two inches of sand inside two empty plastic water bottles. Fill those bottles with water and seal them, then place them into your toilet tank for a DIY float booster. It’s easy to save up to 10 gallons of water daily!

Say no to air fresheners - Many contain toxic chemicals, including Formaldehyde, Phenol, Methylformamide, and Butanoic acid. Instead, opt for essential oils for fragrance, baking soda to soak up acidic odors, and vinegar to neutralize alkaline odors.

Shop local and reduce your food miles - U.S. produce typically travels at least 1,500 miles before arriving on our grocer’s shelves, gobbling up barrels of crude oil and spewing pollutants and greenhouse gas emissions in their wake. Look for restaurants and local markets offering meats and produce raised and grown in your local area. A few in Phoenix include  Singh Farms, Chow Locally, and the variety of vendors at the Central Farmers Market.

Go paperless - The average American receives 41 pounds of junk mail yearly, nearly half of which is unopened in a landfill. Enlist the help of companies like to eliminate up to 90% of junk mailings. In five years, this could result in 1.7 trees saved, 700 gallons of water conserved, less global warming emissions, and 350 hours of free time gained!

Get concentrated - Choose concentrated cleaning products that use up to 60% less packaging than traditional formulas while cleaning just as well. Look for brands like Mrs. Meyer's Clean Day and Seventh Generation that offer environmentally-friendly products with multi-surface, double-duty power.