1

Top Rated, Energy Efficient Refrigerators

In terms of quality, cost and energy efficiency, Kenmore refrigerators get high ratings from Good Housekeeping and Consumer Reports. They make many “no-frills” refrigerators which are Energy Star compliant. Kenmore fridges have factory-installed ice makers, which are less prone to break down than those built into the door. For example, a reasonably priced, mid-sized Kenmore fridge is available from Sears …

1

Wooden Hot Tubs

Wooden hot tubs are an attractive alternative to the plastic tubs that have come to dominate the marketplace today. These traditionally styled tubs are built with wood that contains natural anti-bacterial oils. SeaOtter Woodworks build their tubs by hand with Western Red Cedar. They are one of the few companies in the U.S. making wooden hot tubs. They support sound …

6

The Best Push Reel Mowers

Modern reel mowers are quite efficient at cutting grass using nothing but your own push power. Gas-powered mowers actually produce a stunning amount of air pollution considering their small size. Plus, spilled gasoline is a nasty toxin that has no place in your yard. Plus, both you and your neighbors will appreciate the lack of engine noise on a quiet …

2

The 12 Drawer Bed

The designer of this bed wants you to turn the “wasted” space under your bed into a convenient, dust-proof storage with this organizing system. This 12-drawer bed features four drawers on each side, as well as four drawers at the foot of the bed that extend the full length of the bed’s frame. The frame comes in double, queen, and …

1

Effective Masonry Heaters

Masonry heaters very efficient heating devices because they burn wood rapidly, without smoldering. The heat is stored in the masonry thermal mass, and then slowly radiates into your house for the next 18 to 24 hours. The house is never overheated, and air pollution is reduced dramatically. The other benefit of masonry heaters is that they produce radiant heat rather …

1

The Best Low-Flow Toilets

Early on, low-flow toilets got a bad rap — and justifiably so — their flushing ability left a lot to be desired. But today there are many low-flow toilets on the market that work well. Terry Love is a plumber who reviews low-flow toilets. He takes his job seriously, installing some of the toilets his own home were he can …

Top Rated Rice Cookers: Zojiriushi

Rice cooker reviews are little hard to find — the bigger consumer magazines don’t seem to cover them, but some other sources on the web do. Reviewers on Cool Tools and Sally’s Kitchen both recommend Zojirushi Rice Cookers. Popular in Japan, Zojirushi cookers are pricey ($150-$200). But they also have no-frills models for about $60.

Eco-House: Non-Toxic Products for Artists

Eco-House makes a range of non-toxic products for painters. No longer will they have to suffer from inhaling dire substances! Eco-House offers solvents, thinners and finishes. They have a turpentine substitute which combines the solving action of orange peel oil with highly purified mineral oils. By contrast, petroleum-based solvents have toxic aromatic and chlorinated hydrocarbons, which also cause their obnoxious …

Cellulose Tape: Biodegradable

Cellulose Tape is metaefficient because it is completely biodegradable. It is difficult to find, especially in the US. Almost all transparent tape sold here is made of acetate. One store, Green Earth Office does offer it. Brands such as Sellotape are available in the UK. Sellotape is made from wood pulp that comes from suppliers with extensive reforestation programs.

Printer Ink From Car Tires

Printer ink can cost as much as vintage champagne, so finding an inexpensive and eco-effective way to make would be great. Now three inventors from Derbyshire, UK, think they have just the solution: extract the carbon from unwanted tires to generate a cheap and plentiful supply.

11

Man Retrofits Freezer to Make an Ultra-Efficient Fridge

An off-grid experimenter in Australia, Tom Chalko, has retrofitted a chest freezer to create a fridge that uses only 100 watt-hours (0.1 kWh) per day! Why a chest freezer? Tom points out that vertical door refrigerators are inherently inefficient. As soon as you open a vertical fridge door the cold air escapes, simply because it is heavier than the warmer …

1

Auro Contact Glue: 100% Natural

Why are we featuring this dull looking tube of glue from Germany? Because it doesn’t suffer from the design flaw of every other household adhesive: toxicity. It is one of the few glues in the world that are derived solely from natural materials. How is this possible? This transparent glue’s main ingredients are dammar, latex, casein and orange oil. Dammar …

1

Using Eggshells To Build Walls In Japan

In Japan, there’s a product called “Shell Walls” which allows walls to be plastered with a paste made out of waste eggshells. Making full use of the eggshell’s porous structure, Green Techno 21 created Shell Walls which withstand humidity. The eggshell plaster is hazard-free and fireproof as it is made from natural calcium carbonate. After having their inner film peeled …

11

Centrifugal Clothes Dryer: Spin-X

Drying clothes with centrifugal force is efficient and quick. The centrifugal dryer Spin-X rotates at 3300 RPM (revolutions per minute) — using 1420 G forces. Most washing machines only spin at 500 RPM. The dryer removes a quart of water from clothes using the same amount of energy a regular clothes dryer uses in the first 15 seconds of operation. …

5

Non-Toxic Sippy Cups

These cups by SIGG are Swiss designed and are a bit different from regular sippy cups. They have a totally inert inner lining that won’t leach chemicals. This is important because kid’s cups receive a lot of washing and wear and tear, thus the plastic inside degrades quite a bit. The cups are extruded from a single piece of pure …

Salts: Natural and Uncommon

There are actually a wide variety of natural, gourmet salts out there: pink salt from the Himalayan Mountains, black salt from Cyprus, grey Celtic sea salt and red salt from Hawaii and Australia. Natural sea salts are nothing new, of course. They’ve been around forever. By contrast, white table salt is but a blink of the eye in the history …

5

Very Compact Ofuros (Japanese Baths)

Japanese soaking baths are built small but deep. These compact “ofuro” will fit in just about anywhere — even the smallest apartment. Diamond Spa makes the baths pictured here. We’ve no idea on the price, but the concept is good. If anyone knows where to get this style of tub at a reasonable price please let us know.

1

PaxFan: An Innovative Spiral Form

A fine example of biomimicry, the PaxFan is an innovative, spiral fan created by Jay Harman, an Australian inventor. His domestic exhaust fan is half as noisy and three-quarters more efficient than the average fan. Sierra Magazine reports: Harman spent a lot of his life watching water flow, both as a diver and as a sailor, one of those principles …

9

Presso: A Non-Electric Espresso Maker

The Presso is a manually operated espresso machine — no electricity is required. You make an espresso by adding hot water and ground coffee at the top. When you press down on the levers, the pressure pushes the water through the coffee, and it is deposited in your cup. You can make either a double espresso or two single espressos …