What Rooms Need a Green Makeover In Your House? | Seventh Generation
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What Rooms Need a Green Makeover In Your House?

Author: Seventh Generation

Green MakeoverPlease help our Chief Inspired Protagonist, Jeffrey Hollender, research his new book. Reply to this post and tell him what you worry about in the living room, dining room, kitchen, nursery, bathroom, basement, home office, garage, and yard.

Planet Green, to be published in January 2011 by Random House, will help you create a blueprint for a conscious home -- a home that is free of harmful chemicals, and that offers a more sustainable way to live.

We'll pick 5 posters to receive a free copy of the book when it publishes!

Also, be sure to enter Seventh Generation's Search for Mother Nature Contest and tell us their story to win a $5,000 Green Home Makeover from Seventh Generation. Click here for the details.

photo: D. Sharon Pruitt


Eva Rubin picture
Eva Rubin
This will just depend on what do you want where you can feel comfort and relaxing. In my case, I also want my room to become eco friendly and the specialist from ocblindcleaners.com told me it is best for my room to turn into green to make it more attractive and comfortable.
AArmstrong picture
We are in the process of remodeling the living room. It is fairly easy and convenient to find eco-friendly building supplies, but when it comes to the furnishings, couch, entertainment systems, etc. it is not as easy to find these products, especially in person. There is the internet but it is sometimes hard to see size or comfort from the pictures....
mvernon picture
I moved into a new house last year and what worries me are the things I can't see. We made the easy changes like switching to no VOC paint, green cleaners, etc... but what I can't see is the air escaping out cracks, poorly weaterstriped doors, or through the attic. My furnace runs and I wonder where the heat is escaping, throwing my money out the window and burning unnecessary fossil fuels. I worry about poor indoor air quality like carbon monoxide and combustion byproducts from my 25 year old furnace and sealing my home so tight that I could be at risk for backdrafting or moisture accumulation. I investigated a home energy audit and was shocked by the $2,000+ price tag. There are more weatherization ideas than I have time or budget to do. I need assistance in prioritizing my project list to reduce my energy consumption, improve my air quality, and prevent mold and moisture. My yard. I have a well and septic system and live on a small lake. The water cycle is very evident - what goes down my drain goes into my drinking water and the lake I swim in. I worry about the chemicals being applied to the lawns, the chemicals going down the drains by my neighbors, the invisible toxics that will persist for decades. It is the cumulative impact of all of our choices that will result in real change.
Paula Fockler picture
Paula Fockler
I think a green bedroom is in order at my home. I moved into my house a year ago, there had been many changes/upgrades by the previous owner. I since learned that the drywall came from china where it wasn't regulated. In the past year I have come down with various illnesses, some where serious and required medical attention/hospitilization. I know there are plumbing problems as well, resulting in a few floods in the bedroom. I think there is mold in the bedroom now, as most of the illness is fungal in nature. Since a great part of a persons life is spent sleeping, it stands to reason that a toxic bedroom makes for an unhealthy person. I appreciate any input you may have. As a fulltime student, it's difficult for me to find the resourses to have all of this changed.
pumpkinpie9 picture
I worry about everything in my house and the effect it's having on my family. We've changed the cleaning chemicals to eco-non-toxic and I keep changing consumable items as I find them in a more friendly form. However, the carpet, underlay, windows, doors, and furniture all concern me. Mostly the roof area and insulation are my main area of concern. The insulation is a traditional fiber glass type and I wonder if it's contributing to my teenagers' cough and breathing issues. Her bedroom is upstairs and directly below the attic. We had a ceiling fan installed in her room but all I see is dust everywhere. Are the insualtion and fiberglass particles causing this? Is my child breathing this into her lungs? We can't even afford new air conditioning let alone new insulation which is why we had the ceiling fan installed. This will be our 2nd year without working A/C in our house and that creates the question of will we get mold? Living in a high humidity area we worry about that too. After suffering yet another layoff we do what we can but it's never enough. What are regular families on very tight budgets supposed to do about safety greening their homes?
cricket5 picture
Because we spend so much of our time slumbering away in our bedrooms, I think that we should start there. Just what chemicals are leaching into us from our pillows, mattresses, dresser, linens, etc. while we are sleeping? That would be a good place to start! Just saying, lol.
karimasajadi picture
The 1st greenest room to be remodeled should be kids room. They are smaller and more vulnerable to the chemical hazards, since their brain and the rest of the body is still developing. Go organic as much as you can afford (paint, mattresses, etc)! Use wood furniture instead of plastic. Use natural carpets instead of synthetic. Get rid of all unnecessary electric appliances in that room (TV, computer, radio, electronic devices). Clean the room with water (it really works) or with organic cleaning supplies. Make sure thir beds are not positioned next to vents - they blow God knows whatright into their airways. Limit their TV/computer time as much as you can. Go to parks with them and play with them there! And you both will benefit from it!!!
edorman1 picture
I suppose the biggest concern for me is my children's bedrooms. When I was expecting, the greatest joy in my life was to plan paint colors and draperies and color schemes that would prepare the world to greet them. However, I did not know (or, should I say, remained ignorant) about low VOC paints or even why I would choose them. Now, I wonder if there is something specific that I need to do to take the paint off--or, because my house is older and we cannot verify whether or not there has been lead-based paint underneath, what are our options? It is scary, and this is where my beautiful children spend most of their time....breathing, playing, and dressing. Am I doing right by my children? What can I do to help them? The children's bedrooms are my greatest source of worry about how I can make them eco-friendly. Erin
kesaia picture
I really look forward to this book! I have some of the same concerns as hillarylouise, although we finally did paint 4 of our rooms with zero VOC paint and have been so happy with the results. One of my biggest concerns in our home right now is energy-efficiency and especially with electronics in our home office. We have 3 sons, 2 computers that are nearing the dinosaur stage, a DS, 2 ipods, and various electronic games. I'd love to set up some type of system for them to charge efficiently and I'm wondering if it's time to replace those old computers (I would send them to a recycling program) with more energy-efficient ones? How do you know when that time is right? I'm also confused about which items are best-served by rechargeable batteries since I've heard they are not always best for things like smoke detectors and alarm clocks. I have the same question in the laundry room with our very old washer and dryer. Are these really recycled or do the places that take them away just dump them in a landfill? When does it make sense to replace them for better energy efficiency? I'm really curious about the best hot-water heater for the planet. Ours is starting to leak sediment into the water and I'd love to know the best options for families - solar? tankless? We bought our house with vinyl siding. Is this dangerous for our family's health? If yes, what can be done with it so it doesn't harm the environment? What other structural items should we take a look at to replace that might be harmful (insulation, etc.) and what are good replacements? In the yard, what do you do with weeds that you pull? I have a compost pile, but I'm always concerned with putting weeds into it - I don't want a weed pile! Is there an eco-friendly way to get rid of clover in your lawn? I love the clover, but my neighbors don't and it does spread into their yard. I think I've taken up more than my fair share of questions, but feel free to contact me if you'd like to hear more! :) Best wishes with your book!
hillarylouise picture
I worry about the fire-retardant chemicals in our mattresses and carpets but I'm not sure what my options are for replacing them. I wonder about the chemicals in the paint on our walls, but don't know whether the "green" version has the same level of quality or if it is worth the extra cost. I don't know how to get my kids' white clothes white without bleach. I would like to find a line of glass food storage containers so that I can go from fridge to microwave without microwaving plastic.
CondoBlues picture
The room that needs the green makeover most in my home is the room you don't think of first - the guest room. It's the room that got all of the not so green leftovers as I went through the other rooms in the house. Of course reusing and repurposing what you have is the greenest choice of all but sometimes items like mattresses should be replaced with a safer option.