Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Easy Peasy Grey Water Recycling

Greywater recycling always seems like such a no-brainer. Using your expended washing machine, dishwasher, sink water for washing your car, watering the plants etc... seems so obvious and easy in theory. Of course, retrofitting your existing house to make this easy and more automated (because let's face it, unless its easy, we aren't going to do it) is actually kinda complicated and can get messy. Not to mention that its against many uptight town ordinances - apparently they would rather pay money to filter drinking quality water for you to shine up that '05 Ford Fiesta rather than you use the slightly tinged laundry water.

But here is a great concept that looks pretty easy to install, makes total sense and probably wouldn't come across the radar of your local housing inspector....not that we want to cheat the system, just cruise the edges;-)

The Sloan Aqus Greywater System filters your sink water and uses that to flush the toilet. How brilliant and easy. They claim that it can save a household upto 5,000 gallons/year. I presume that is based on not having low flush toilets and probably a family of 4 that drink A LOT! They do provide a water savings calculator on their site but you have to know what you pay for water per gallon, if you pay at all. Just the water savings, let alone any cost savings, to me, make it worth it. They also have lots of other water saving products for the shower and sink, must research those more! One of these includes a urinal system, something that Kyle would love to install in the new house. NO WAY - we are not building the Staples Center here...

Anyway, the Sloan Aqus is rumored to be in the $400 range, I am sure it wouldn't be hard to build something like this yourself if you have a Home Depot near and a nose for plumbing goop glue - its purple, its pretty.

I would love to install this idea in the new house. Aesthetically I didn't really want cabinets under the sinks but maybe there is a happy medium...stay tuned.

Source -  Inhabitat 

Friday, January 21, 2011

Opting Out

I get excited for the mail to come. Not that anything really exciting comes by mail anymore, unless its those ever so generous folks at Amazon who seem to adore Kyle and send him gifts all the time;-)

So the mailman comes and I cannot wait to see what has come, who loves us or what exciting things I am going to learn from my magazines. Yes, I have become a magazine addict and love my subscriptions. I have a good amount that come, mostly house stuff and building things. They are great and I keep them all as reference. But the guilt of all that paper being used on me does get me down. So I figure its time to cut down (again) on all the paper I receive but DON'T want. Like all those catalogs - who shops from a catalog anymore, I just go online. And the phone books (yellow pages) - Kyle LOVES these things. They drive me crazy, because I can never find what I am looking for, it still necessitates a phone call (I hate talking on the phone) and they take up so much room and you have to have one for every since town in the area. We have a ton and I have decided that enough is enough and we are opting out.

(This is a test to see if Kyle reads this blog without being prompted because he will throwing a hissy fit if he finds out I canceled all our phone books...stay tuned)

So - in case you all want to follow suit:

  • Opt out of Phone Books HERE
  • Opt out of Catalogs HERE
  • Opt out of Credit Card Offers HERE
  • Opt out of Direct Marketing HERE
  • Opt out of those Stupid Blue Valu-Paks that never have anything you are interested in HERE - Note:You need to enter the info exactly as it's printed on the Val-Pak you receive, so you may have to wait until you receive the next one. You can also email valerie@valpak.com with "Remove From Mailing" in the subject line. Again, you need to include your information exactly as it appears on the envelope.
  • And then try this DONOTMAILREGISTRY - hopefully it will cover all the other garbage the above links didn't HERE
DoNotMail claims that "...more than 100,000,000,000 pieces of junk mail are delivered each year—that’s more than 800 pieces per household. In fact, junk mail in the United States accounts for one-third of all the mail delivered in the world. Even though 44% of that mail goes to the landfill unopened (source: EPA), we still spend 8 months of our lives dealing with it all." source - Greenhab

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Architecture and Hygiene

I could never quite understand the Hygiene part, it always seemed a little bizarre but then I guess you have to be a bit bizarre to build homes out of shipping containers and that Adam Kalkin does very well. Adam's Old Lady House is just another example of his great work with containers. More a simplistic take, this is just a lovely, nestled arrangement that leaves a fabulous living space inside.

via Inhabitat