3 ways to make your bathroom shine

3 ways to make your bathroom shine

Getting the bathroom ready for company takes a little more effort than hanging holiday-themed guest towels. It’s time to polish the porcelain and scrub the tub. Fortunately, the experts at Consumer Reports are seasoned grime fighters who test cleaning products all year long. Here are some of the products they recommended this year and others you can skip.

Paper towels
Sponges can be magnets for bacteria and a bathroom is germy enough. Try cleaning with paper towels that you can … (read more)

5 ways to keep food fresher

5 ways to keep food fresher

Manufacturers tout lots of freshness technologies, including Viking’s “Plasmacluster Ion Air Purifier,” which is claimed to generate ions to eliminate airborne bacteria and mold spores. And Whirlpool says its “Producer Preserver” absorbs the ethylene gas that accelerates ripening. But you don’t need such fancy features to guarantee freshness. Here are some simple tips to help make food last in any refrigerator.

Be sure temperatures are cold enough. Use an appliance thermometer if your refrigerator doesn’t have a built-in one. The refrigerator should be … (read more)

5 ways to save energy and money right now

5 ways to save energy and money right now

Boston scored a win over New York this week and it wasn’t on the baseball diamond. Instead, Beantown won top honors for its efforts to advance energy efficiency. New York took third place after Portland, Ore., in the rankings from the American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy. While the report focuses on the actions of the nation’s 34 largest cities, citizens everywhere can do their part and save money too. Plugging leaks and insulating your home are two of … (read more)

Five ways to get an exterior paint job that lasts

Five ways to get an exterior paint job that lasts

Painting the outside of your house is a big job and one you probably don’t want to undertake yourself. But a new coat of paint can add value to your home so it’s worth the investment. And avoiding some tempting shortcuts can ensure you a paint job that lasts 10 years or longer. Here’s some tips from the paint pros at Consumer Reports.

Don’t buy by brand alone. Frequent reformulations to improve performance and lower emissions may mean that … (read more)

Five ways to save on paint that the stores don’t tell you

Five ways to save on paint that the stores don’t tell you

You’ll pay about $ 32 a gallon for the top-rated satin, flat, or semi-gloss paints from Consumer Reports’ latest tests. Benjamin Moore interior paints also performed very well, but cost twice as much. You can spend less but too often the most inexpensive paints are no bargain. Many require additional coats for hiding so you might have to spend more to get good covering. We asked our experts if there’s a way to save money and still … (read more)

5 ways to meet Obama’s energy-saving challenge to the nation

5 ways to meet Obama’s energy-saving challenge to the nation

Many of the goals outlined by President Obama last night in his State of the Union speech will take time, and the cooperation of Congress, to meet. But work on his challenge to Americans to save energy at home can begin right away by taking such simple steps as plugging a leak, changing a lightbulb, setting your thermostat to match your schedule and washing only full loads of laundry and dishes.

Promoting an “all-of-the-above plan” that includes wind, solar, … (read more)

Seven ways to celebrate America Recycles Day

Seven ways to celebrate America Recycles Day

November 15th is America Recycles Day, a national event started by the Keep America Beautiful organization, in partnership with the Environmental Protection Agency and various state agencies and manufacturers. Of course, recycling has to happen year round to be effective, but the goal of the event is to encourage communities and individuals to renew their commitment to the cause. With that, here are seven recycling reminders.

Limit food waste. Americans throw out 14 percent of the food they buy, according to … (read more)