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Consumer Reports: Stay green with these home gadgets

Posted at 7:46 AM, Aug 30, 2022
and last updated 2022-08-30 09:44:41-04

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WTVF/CONSUMER REPORTS) — You know the expression — reduce, reuse, recycle. And while many of us recycle, you might wonder what else you can do to reduce waste. Consumer Reports has some ideas.

How about swapping out your light bulbs? That's just one easy swap you can make in your home that can help you reduce your waste and save you some money!

Our daily habits can sometimes be a burden on our budget, and the environment. Some easy swaps can help your wallet and the planet. Consumer Reports’ Dan Wroclawski says to start simple.

"Replacing your old incandescent bulbs with new LED light bulbs. These can make a big dent in your electric bill. Another way to take those savings further is to actually replace them with smart bulbs," Wroclawski said.

You can program Smart Bulbs to automatically turn on and off at specific times of the day.

"Having all those lights just turn off automatically, that’ll help you eke out those extra savings," Wroclawski said.

Smart bulbs can be pricey. One from Wyze offers automation at a lower cost compared to many of the other bulbs Wroclawski checked out.

Next up, if you need that daily dose of soda or seltzer, you can save money with a soda maker. Say you drink a liter of seltzer a day, and it costs about 90 cents. Swap that for this
$80 SodaStream Terra and in four months, it'll pay for itself.

Finally — this swap might be tougher: Paper towel alternatives. Consumer Reports' Paul Hope recently tried several of them.

"My family and I were going through close to two dozen rolls of paper towels a month. Reusable paper towels offer a paper-free alternative that’s better for the earth and that saves money," Hope said.

The MioEco towels are biodegradable, absorbent and offer a textured surface that is great for scrubbing tougher messes. But Hope says you don’t need to spend that much money to reduce your paper waste. He actually prefers these 12 by 12 regular washcloths. They’re versatile, absorbent and budget-friendly. When they get too stained, instead of tossing them, Hope repurposes the washcloths for outside use.

If you drink a lot of soda or seltzer, not only can investing in a soda maker save you money but it can also help reduce plastic or aluminum waste.