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    Green the Garage

    For most of us, the garage serves many purposes. We use it to store tools and lawn and garden equipment, organize home improvement projects, and protect our bikes and cars. Put the 3 Rs into practice by using your garage to serve yet another purpose—promoting the health of the environment and your community—with these simple tips.

    Rent tools and appliances. Consider how often you will use the next tool you are about to buy. If it is something you will rarely use, rent it at your local home improvement store or nursery instead of buying it.

    Recycle used oil. Motor oil from your car, truck, motorcycle, boat, or lawn mower can be re-refined into new oil, reconditioned and processed into fuel oils, or used as a raw material for the petroleum industry. Imagine: if all do-it-yourself oil changers in America recycled their used oil, it would be enough for more than 50 million cars a year.

    Organize a garage sale. Host or organize a neighborhood garage sale. Sell all the usable items that would otherwise end up in the trash. Offer broken, but fixable, items for free or at a very low price. Set an example for sustainable living in your community.

    Help with materials for a home.  Help create a home for someone in your community. If you are remodeling your home, local charities could benefit from what you no longer need. Organizations such as Habitat for Humanity accept donations of housing materials and tools that are in good, working condition. Check with your local government or community organizations to find out what they accept.

    Consider a car donation. Donate your old car or truck to charity for reuse. Donated vehicles are usually sold to raise money for charities in your community or used to help those who cannot afford a car of their own. Plus, your donation may be tax-deductible. Citation: US Environmental Protection Agency’s Practice the 3 R’s