We make finding a Home Improvement contractor easy.

Reuse to Save the Environment and Cash!

Reused Items Save Money

The outside boards of this greenhouse were first used as a fence and then as a "playhouse" for children. The windows were salvaged from a home improvement project that installed more efficient windows.

There are countless ways to reuse, from back packs to fire extinguishers, so here to help you on your quest to help save the environment and your cash is a condensed list of tips on what you can use around your home. (Keep in mind that if you have items that you just can't use you can always sell them at a garage sale, donate them to a community organization or send them to an exchange program.)

Prescription Drugs

  • Donate your unused medication to The Starfish Project thestarfish-project.org, which will send them to clinics in Nigeria .

Cell phones

  • Donate to The Wireless Foundation , which will refurbish your old phone and give it to a domestic-violence survivor. calltoprotect.org.

Tennis Shoes/Sneakers

  • Send your old sneakers of any brand to Nike's Reuse-A-Shoe Program nikereuseashoe.com , which takes your old sneakers, along with others, and turns them into courts of various sports for children around the world to play on. You can also give your old sneakers (must be in fairly good condition) to a needy athlete somewhere in the world by sending them to oneworldrunning.com .


  • Donate to The National Cristina Foundation, which will take your old computer and give it to people with disabilities, students at risk, and people that are at a financial disadvantage.
  • Donate to your local school or library who are almost always in need of more computers.
  • Donate to a friend with young children to use for educational cd-roms and games.

Books and Magazines

  • Create a fun and distinctive shelf using books or magazines as the supports. Place a board, plank or purchased shelf down and place the amount of books and magaines at each end for the height shelf you want. Then simply put another shelf on top of the books. use a level to make sure your shelf is flat particularly if you intend to build multiple levels.
  • Set up a book share program at work, church, your apartment building, child's school or just amongst your group of friends. Reusing books reuces the numbers of books eventually thrown away.

Wine Corks

  • Collect wine corks and attach them together to make a cork board of whatever size you desire. The corks can be held together by a frame, glued together or even held together by wire.
  • Use two wine corks to prop up the back of your laptop making it more comfortable to type. This cheap and very portable laptop stand works best if you use the "rubber type" cork.

DVDs and CDs

  • Send your old CDs or DVDs to zunafish to be swapped for someons else's old CDs or DVDs that you might be interested in.

  • Donate your old eye glass frames


  • Donate your old eye glass frames (metal or plastic, broken or in good condition) to neweyesfortheneedy.com or drop them off at LensCrafters, Target Optical, or other participating stores or doctor's office who will send them to givethegiftofsight.org .

Prom/Bridesmaid dresses

  • Donate your old prom dress or bridesmaid dress to operationfairydust.org or catherinescloset.org who will give it to a girl or woman in need of a dress.

Hangers (plastic/wire)

Return Coat Hangers

Don't throw away the coat hangers you get from the dry cleaners! Reuse them!
  • Donate to your local thrift store, laundromat, or dry cleaners.


  • Donate your old backpacks to The American Birding Association for scientists to use while tracking neotropical birds. americanbirding.org

Hearing Aids

  • Donate to your local Lions Club or to The Starkey Hearing Foundation sotheworldmayhear.org .

Padded Envelops with Bubble Wrap

Sports Equiptment

You can always donate your used equipment.

Newspaper Gift Wrap

Any kid (and many adults too) would be thrilled with a gift wrapped in their favorite comic!

Donate Pens and Pencils

Teachers are always in need of school supplies. Help the environment and education at the same time!
  • Save and reuse again for future packaging.

Tennis Rackets & Other Recreational Equipment

  • You can donate your sports gear to sportsgift.org, which will give it to children in need; and specifically for skis, you can send them to skichair.com , where they will be turned into Adirondack-style beach chairs.


  • Use as paper towels to wash your windows, or clean your oven.
  • Use them to absorb the odor in smelly luggage or plastic containers.
  • Use them as fire starters.
  • Use it as gift wrap.
  • Use to speed up the ripening process of fruit, by wrapping around the fruit.
  • Use as a drop cloth while painting.
  • Use as a liner for trash cans, vermicompost bins, or pet cages.
  • Use to prevent weed growth by laying down wet newspapers about a ¼ inch thick in your garden bed and cover with wood chips or mulch.
  • Use as garden seed starting pots. Simple and cheap all you have to do it fold the newspapers to the length of a soda can, roll the newspaper around the can until it is completely wrapped around, and then fold in one end of the newspaper.
  • Use for cooking fish on a campfire.
  • Use to make kids toys. Make paper hats, swords, scepters a paper tent and more...

Pens and Pencils

  • Send usable writing tools to iloveschools.com, which will give it to teachers with wish lists on the site.

Waste from Remodeling & Construction

  • Check with The Construction and Demolition Debris Recyclers Directory www.ciwmb.ca.gov/ConDemo/Recylers to locate facilities that collect specific types of construction and demolition debris for reuse or recycling.

Recent Green Home Improvement Articles

Increase Your Home Value

Green Roofing Description

Green Flooring Options

Eco-Friendly Bathroom ideas

Green Paint Information

Visitor Experience

We respect your Privacy!

Have a Tip to Share?

Care to share your green home tips with our readers? Tell Us About it!