• Yes, appliances designed to clean things actually need to be cleaned, too. Your automatic dishwasher needs a thorough cleaning once in a while to deodorize the inside and prevent your glassware and dishes from picking up an unpleasant odor. To clean your dishwasher, liberally sprinkle baking soda all over the interior. Then fill a large dishwasher-safe glass with white vinegar and place it right-side-up inside. Run it through a hot cycle (empty) to remove grease and grime and deodorize all in one run.


• Turns out houseplants do more than just help purify the air inside your home. Having a few easy-to-care-for plants also can help lower stress, as being around plants can help you feel calm and relaxed. A Texas A&M study found that having houseplants can increase memory and attentiveness by as much as 20%, too. And caring for houseplants gives you a sense of calm when the world can feel chaotic, since the act of caring promotes a relaxed mood and an overall comfortable spirit.


• If you've moved your workout routine from a gym to something indoors at your own home, there's no need to buy pricey equipment; you can use things you already have. One of the easiest DIY workout hacks is to reuse empty laundry detergent bottles as weights. Just fill them with water and tightly screw the cap back on. Depending on the size, these detergent bottle weights can equal around 8 pounds. And since they have a handle, they make convenient free weight and kettlebell replacements.


• Plumbers can agree: Tree roots that infiltrate your pipes can cause a massive problem for your entire home's plumbing system. One thing you can do to prevent tree roots from growing in your pipes: Flush rock salt down your toilet. Once a month, pour a cup of rock salt into your toilet and let the mixture dissolve overnight. In the morning, flush the toilet. The salty mixture will come in contact with tree roots and naturally kill them. This monthly habit can go a long way in keeping your pipes clean, healthy and free of any tree roots.


• Taking vitamins every day is an important investment for many people, but these pricey supplements can go to waste if you store them in the wrong place. According to CBS News, it's important to keep your vitamins away from high heat and humid places. That includes on countertops or cabinets near stoves, dishwashers or in bathrooms used for showers. Not only can they go bad, but the chemical composition of the vitamins can change, too. Store your supplements in a cool, dry place, like inside a pantry or in a drawer in a powder room, for easy access and safe storage.


• Salad spinners are handy kitchen tools to help wash greens and use centrifugal force to spin them dry. But they are also handy for a whole host of other cooking ingredients. Want to remove the seeds from canned tomatoes? Just empty the can and break up the tomatoes a little bit, then spin away. Need dried canned beans for a recipe? Just rinse and spin so your hummus isn't too watery. And you don't even need to use the spinning part. Use the inner basket to soak delicate fruit like berries, then lift them right out of the water.


• Do you ever buy fresh pomegranates and pop out all the ruby-colored seeds inside to use for salads or snacks? The rind that's left is something you shouldn't automatically toss into the compost bin, because it turns out you can make a healthy pomegranate tea with the peel! Bring water to a boil in a small pot and turn off the heat, then steep the peel in the water for at least 30 minutes to get the maximum flavor and benefits. Since pomegranates are high in antioxidants, this is a healthy tea that helps the body detoxify. You can add a little natural sweetener, like honey to the tea, too.


Danny Seo is an environmental lifestyle expert. His creative ideas have made him America’s leading authority on modern, eco-friendly living.