How to reduce, reuse and recycle

Learn how to cut down on unnecessary waste and save money with these simple tips on how to be more sustainable around the home.

Reducing your waste

Reduce your use of disposable products by choosing alternatives that you can use again, such as drink bottles and food containers. This will save you money, as you won’t need to buy things like bottles of water when you’re on the go. Using food containers will also keep your food fresher for longer.

Instead of using plastic bags when shopping, use a reusable bag or trolley.

Another great way to reduce waste is to grow your own fruit, vegetables and herbs, as you’ll be cutting down on the packaging that comes with these items.

Spray painting old metal

Reusing old items and furniture

Instead of throwing broken items away, see if you can repair them. You’ll save heaps of money by not having to buy new furniture all the time.

Repairing items can be a fun D.I.Y. project and might be easier than you think. A simple way to revamp old furniture is to upcycle it using paint.

If you have clothes, furniture or household items you don’t want anymore, see if a family member or friend would like them or donate them to charity.

Recycling at home

If you have items that can’t be reused, then the next best thing to do is to recycle them.

An easy way to recycle waste at home is to place an indoor recycling bin in the kitchen. This will allow you to easily and correctly dispose of recyclable items on a day-to-day basis. You can use a cardboard box, storage container or crate. If you’re looking for something a bit more stylish, a twin compartment bin is ideal. This also helps you easily separate the recyclable waste from the non-recyclable waste.

If you want to take your recycling to the next level, place a recycling bin in your bathroom for empty shampoo bottles and toilet rolls.

Remember to always place the recyclable items loose in the bin. If you put this waste in a plastic bag then it can’t be recycled and all of your hard work is wasted.

Another easy way to reduce your impact is to buy products that are made from recycled materials, such as recycled timber or plastic. Have a look at the packaging to see if a product is wholly or partially made from recycled materials.

Outdoor compost bin

Outdoor composting

If you have a courtyard or garden, an outdoor compost bin is ideal. With an outdoor compost bin you can recycle large amounts of organic waste such as clippings, trimmings and leftovers into nutrient rich compost for your garden, saving you money.

Worm farms are also great if you want to recycle your organic kitchen waste. Worm farms can be stored indoors and outdoors and, like compost, will also provide nutrients for your garden.

You can even create compost with your pet’s poo.

Compost bin

Indoor composting bins

While outdoor composting is more traditional, for those with limited outdoor space there are other ways to avoid sending organic waste to landfill.

Indoor composting bins are small, compact and can be stored easily on your benchtop.

An indoor composting bin is also useful for those who have an outdoor compost bin, as you can store your compostable waste in the small bin and take it out to the big bin when full.

Health & Safety

Please make sure you use all equipment appropriately and safely when following the advice in these D.I.Y. videos. You need to be familiar with how to use equipment safely and follow the instructions that came with the equipment. If you are unsure, you may feel it is safest to consult an expert, such as the manufacturer or an expert Bunnings Team Member.

Grave health hazards are linked to asbestos, which may be in homes built up to 1990. Health hazards may result from exposure to lead-based paints in older materials and copper chromium arsenic (CCA) treated timber. For information on the dangers of asbestos, lead-based paint and CCA treated timber and tips for dealing with these materials contact your local council's Environmental Health Officer or visit our Health & Safety page. You can also use a simple test kit from Bunnings to indicate the presence of lead-based paint.
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