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Save Money Doing These 5 Chores Yourself
There are some things that are so easy to do at home that it would be almost silly not to. Yes, we're all busy with work and family, but these five things take very little time and the savings add up. Companies have come out with so many do it yourself options and it has made life a lot easier and more affordable.
1. Dry Cleaning. Many items we take to the dry cleaner can be done at home in your own dryer. This job is made simple with Dryell. The initial box comes with a bag and dry cleaning sheets. After you use those sheets you can buy just replacement sheets. Each sheet cleans up to four items. You are saving time and money using this system. Instead of having to drop your clothes off and then pick them up, just stick them in the bag with a sheet and put in the dryer for 30 minutes. Shake them out and iron or steam to get rid of any wrinkles.
2. Steam cleaning. Vacuuming gets the day to day dirt out of carpets and rugs but it has been estimated there is a ton of dirt in the average carpet. Check out this article for a bunch of reasons to keep your carpet clean http://facts.randomhistory.com/2009/08/03_carpet.html. A seasonal steam clean can make your carpets cleaner but it can add up if you hire someone or rent an industrial cleaner. The industrial varieties are also bulky and can't get into smaller spaces like the commercial variety can. I have a small commercial Bissell that is simple to use and I can pretty much use it anywhere for a quick refresh. I boil the water for the next tank as I clean the carpet in one room. It really doesn't take too long and the results are impressive.
3. Oil change. This is an easy one. All you need is a good socket set, a jack, a strap or oil filter wrench, and jack stands. IN fact, if you can reach the oil plug and oil filter without lifting the car, even better. The best time to change the oil is about an hour after the engine has been running to operating temp. That leaves the oil nice and viscous but not hot. If you consider the normal operating temperature of oil is around 210 F, it is best to let it cool down a bit. Simply get access to the oil plug, place an oil tray underneath, loosen the oil plug being careful to maintain control of it when it starts becoming wobbly, and let the oil drain. When the oil has stopped draining, remove the oil filter with a strap wrench, replace with the new one, put the oil plug back on and tighten, then refill oil using the dipstick to find the right level. Easy, right? Even easier considering you can see the procedure on many YouTube videos.
4. Landscaping. This obviously has limits. If you have a sprawling mansion with proportional grounds, maybe this isn't feasible. Then again, if you owned something like that you probably wouldn't bother with this article. Many landscaping items can be taken care of by yourself. Get a set of pruning sheers and some bigger cutters. If you have tall trees, they make pruning sheers designed to cut tall branches. Weeds can be dealt with using some of the newer weed control sprays that keep weeds from growing back for up to a year. I recommend Ortho Ground Clear. It has a nifty battery powered nozzle.
5. Cleaning your car. If you have a hose, bucket, car wash and sponge, you can clean your car. Certain special products can enhance the clean, and a good wax will do wonders to protect your paint. All of these are affordable and some are available at the Dollar Tree. Fill the bucket with soapy water and get busy. Taking the car for a spin after you wash it can help dry the car faster and avoid water spots. The inside can be dealt with using Armorall interior cleaner and paper towels. Use smaller vacuum attachments on your home vacuum and hose out dirt and lint. Your car will be clean in no time with less expense.