Use This – Not That: Alternatives To Plastic

Whether walking along the street or the beach, you’re bound to run into some shape or form of plastic. It’s a world wide problem. Plastic is everywhere we look…and there’s a reason for that. It’s convenient, durable and easy to dispose of. But as much as we might want to believe it, plastic cannot be an “Out-of-Site, Out-of-Mind” issue. Every piece of plastic ever made is still out there somewhere, and that’s not good for the environment and wildlife.

We have all seen pictures of birds and sea life tangled in plastic rings, bellies full of small pieces of plastic and straws lodged somewhere they can’t remove themselves. It’s the horrific reality these animals face daily, so why not do our part to prevent this from happening.

There’s a way to end the trend of plastic use by using their alternatives. While there may not be an alternative for everything, it’s not hard to start making some simple, eco-conscious decisions when it comes to our daily habits. 

Check out the Use THIS Not THAT graph below for some alternative ideas:

Rules we should all try to live by is choose reusable over single use and recycle, recycle, recycle! Like mentioned before, every piece of plastic ever made still exists, it takes an estimated 450 years for a single piece of plastic to decompose. Compare that to paper products, which decompose in 2-6 weeks.

So let’s end the trend of single-use plastics, and we can all do our part to take care of the environment.

How To Maintain Your Filtrol160

Your Filtrol160 should provide you with many amazing, productive years of filtering fun..but only if its maintained. If you are a proud Filtrol160 owner, then you know it is not a set-it-and-forget-it type products. The Filtrol requires a little bit of maintenance. Not everything below needs to be done each time you make a visit to your laundry room, but it’s always good practice to keep them in mind to ensure your Filtrol160 a long and happy life. 

Now here’s an HERE to get a larger version of the very helpful reminder checklist above, print it out and hang it right there next to your Filtrol160. If you’re really feeling adventurous, you could go the extra mile and laminate the checklist so you can use a dry erase marker on it. You’ll never forget to check in on your trusted filter again!   

The process of proper maintenance for the Filtrol is an important part of it’s performance. And as you have questions or need consultation on anything related to microfiber pollution, let us know. We’re here to help!          

Fish Outnumbered By Microfibers

It is said that by the year 2025, there will be more plastic than fish in our oceans. We’re not just talking water bottles, candy wrappers and plastic shopping bags. One of the leading contributors of plastic pollution happens to be microfibers.

When you hear the word microfiber, your thoughts most likely go right to those super soft cleaning rags you just had to buy at some house party. Unfortunately, the microfiber we’re talking about is the tiny plastic fibers used to make your clothing. Wait..PLASTIC? Yup, any clothing made with polyester, nylon, spandex, to name a few, is made with non-biodegradable plastic microfibers.

Bren School of Environmental Science and Management and popular clothing company, Patagonia, teamed up and conducted a number of studies focused on microfiber pollution. One study found that the United States alone, could be releasing more than 750,000 pounds of microfibers into oceans and steams, DAILY! 

There’s no way it can get to be that much? According to studies, only one load of laundry could release more than 700,000 plastic microfibers. Now I’m no good at math but just in the US, there are 325.7 million people, and even if half of those people do laundry regularly, that’s a whole lot of microfibers being shed and released into waterways.

All of us can bring those numbers down by doing something less painful then ditching most of your wardrobe because it’s made with fabrics containing synthetic fabrics that shed microfibers. By installing a lint filter directly to your washing machine discharge hose you will stop those microfibers dead in their tracks. There are different methods and products used to catch shed microfiber but we suggest trying the Filtrol 160 – Microfiber Lint Filter. It’s easy to install and maintain and by looking at the filter bag after just one wash you will be surprised by how much your clothes really do shed. 

Check out these videos to learn more about the Filtrol 160 today!

Top 4 Reasons Why You Should Clean Your Dryer Trap

It’s highly suggested that you clean your dryer lint trap after every use. It only takes a few seconds but it is still something we all tend to forget to do from time to time. Unfortunately, if this chore is continually ignored there could be some severe consequences to follow. Try to keep these following 4 reasons why to keep your dryer lint trap clean in mind the next time you take a nice warm fluffy load of laundry out of the dryer. 

1. Prevent Fires. 
Lack of dryer lint maintenance causes more than 15,00 fires each year! Dryers obviously run hot and dryer lint is extremely flammable, put the two together and you have a recipe for disaster. It’s a scary possibility so why not even go beyond just cleaning the lint off the screen and wash with soap water and rinse to remove any lingering lint and debris.

2. Prolong the Life Of Your Dryer. 
A clogged/full dryer lint trap will cause your drying time to run longer as the air flow is being restricted, causing your machine to work harder and less efficiently. This will slowly be shortening the life of your dryer. Nobody wants to have to replace an expensive appliance after a few short years of ownership.

3. Lower Energy Bills. 
Having a clean and clear dryer lint trap/vent will help keep the drying time of each load to a minimum. The benefits will show up on your next energy bill and you wont regret taking the few seconds to peel that thin layer of lint from the screen. Starting each load with a clean trap is a good rule to follow. 

4. Keep The Professionals Away. 
Having a professional come out to clear out a dryer vent can cost as much as a couple hundred dollars depending on the severity of the clog. Unfortunately, lint build up in your dryer vent duct is inevitable. Maintaining the lint at the source will lengthen the time in between the need to have the entire vent duct cleaned. 

It’s cleaned from the lint trap, now what? Rather then just tossing it in the garbage, how about recycling and reusing it. If your a DIY’er and would like some other ideas, here is just one of many links to find out ways to reuse dryer lint. 

Have A Unique Laundry Room?

Your laundry room is very unique in its own beautiful special way and don’t let anyone else ever tell you different. In all seriousness, most people could say that their laundry room is not identical to most people they know. So when it comes to adding something structurally in the laundry room, you want to make sure it will work with your particular set up,as some may have some obstacles to take into consideration. To help confirm if the Filtrol160 will work in your space we give general requirements needed for the installation. But with laundry set ups coming in all shapes and sizes we had to find a way to show all the different ways and places the Filtrol160 could be installed. 

Thankfully we have awesome customers that were kind enough to share photos of their Filtrol160 installations to further educate future customers on all the installation possibilities.

Whether your washing machine’s wastewater drains into a standpipe, wall box, wash tub or floor drain, as long as you have the space for installation, it can hook up to any of the mentioned plumbing configurations.

Below are just a handful of photos of customers installations: 

Think you may be interested? Quick read over the basic measurements and space requirements and see if the Filtrol160 would be a good fit for your laundry room.

-The Filtrol 160 Lint Filter is approximately 15” tall, from the top fitting to the bottom, 9″ wide and projects about 8″ from the wall You will NOT want to install the Filtrol 160™ under a low hanging cabinet. This could interfere with the removal of the filter for cleaning. You will need to have a minimum of 24 inches to be able to remove the canister from the wall mounted bracket, and still have proper drainage. If possible, the top of the Filtrol-160™ should not exceed 60 inches.

Get More Information About The Filtrol160 HERE


Email us with your questions HERE!!

Does My Washing Machine Have A Lint Trap?

It’s probably not the hot topic you and your friends were discussing the last time you had a night out. I don’t blame you, who wants to sit around and talk about lint traps at dinner, am I right? As boring and gross as it may seem, it’s something you may look for on your washing machine. 

Some people assume that if their dryer has a lint trap why would your washing machine need one? Others may think, if one washing machine has one, they all do, duh! Well unfortunately that’s not the case.

Most styles of washing machines do not have an interior lint trap, and for the ones that do, won’t even come close to snagging those tiny fibers that can cause environmental issues. I can only assume all of you are in agony not knowing if your washing machine has a lint trap or not. Read on to find out where to look for lint traps on your washing machine.

FIND THIS: The Owners Manual.This will be the easiest and quickest way to find out if your washing machine has a lint trap or not. You should be able to find information regarding the lint trap within the first few pages if not on the first. You could also research your model online or call the manufacture. 

CHECK HERE: That mysterious little door in the corner. On some washing machines models, in the front, there is a small door in the lower right corner. This is where, what they call, a Pump Filter will be located. Open door and unscrew the cap, pull out the cylinder shaped sleeve and empty. On some models may have this option located in the back behind the panel. 

FEEL THERE:Screen in the drum. Certain models have a removable screen filter located in the washing machines drum. To locate simply feel with your fingers along the top of the drum, if your machine has this lint trap you will run into it at this point, remove and clean off lint.

PULL THAT: Under the cap in agitator. Top loading washing machines may have a lint trap with in the agitator. If the cover of the agitator is removable there very well could be a lint trap inside. Pull the cap off and look into the cylinder, if there is a handle, pull out and filter should be attached. The filter can also be connected to the end of the removal cylinder. 

LOOK HERE: Inside the connection or hose.There should be a small metal screen at the fitting where the supply water hose connects.There could also be one at the end of the drain hose. 

So does your washing machine have a lint trap? If yes, awesome! Here’s the important question, How much is that lint trap really catching? Most lint traps on washing machines are meant to catch bigger materials and not so much the little ones. To ensure you are catching as much as possible an additional lint filter is strongly suggested, you may want to look into our Filtrol160 , an exterior lint filter that hooks up to most models of residential size washing machines. Let ours catch the lint theirs doesn’t. 

Happy Filtering Friends! 

Plastic on Your Plate (and in your beer)

Microfiber pollution, one that we are hearing a lot about but not one that we are seeing a lot of good solutions for, is making its way from our laundry baskets and into the food we eat and water (and beer) we drink.

According to this article from Wisconsin Public Radio, beers brewed with water from the Great Lakes were discovered to have micro plastics in them. In all, 12 beers from breweries around the Great Lakes were considered contaminated by plastic.

Micro-plastic pollution is becoming a universal issue. It’s not about under-developed countries or poverty or geography. In fact, of 159 water samples taken from around the globe, 81% of them contained micro-plastics. That means that microfibers do not discriminate. They’re getting washed down our drains from laundry and ending up everywhere. They’re in the water we drink and the water that our food drinks. They’re in the fields our crops (and our hops) are growing in. Plastics, in microscopic form, are everywhere.

To find the right solution for this giant micro-plastic problem, we have to look at its source. It’s happening from the billions of plastic bottles being used worldwide each year. It’s happening in our homes with the flushing of wastewater from our laundry tubs. It’s happening because we are repurposing plastic bottles, and because we’re ignoring it.

If each home, each manufacturing company, and each individual took seriously the problem and the opportunities to stop microfiber pollution in its tracks, we could start seeing a real change. Filtrol exists to stop microfiber pollution before it enters our ecosystem. It’s a laundry wastewater filter that can block up to 90% of the pollutants from ever entering our water.

To learn more, and to do your part, click here.

Microfibers in our Drinking Water

Is there plastic in my water? 

At Filtrol, we often say that recycling isn’t solving the plastic pollution problem; it’s simply changing it. When you consider that the 50 billion plastic bottles that are recycled each year are converted into the micro-plastics that make up polyester, it becomes clear that we’re not removing plastic from the environment when we throw our water bottles into the recycle bin. We’re repurposing it. We’re giving it a new form for a different use, but the synthetic materials that once made up our bottled water containers are still in our environment, only in smaller, harder to detect and easier to consume forms.

Here’s what micro-plastics mean for our drinking water:

The microfiber pollution that gets washed from our washing machines and into our rivers, streams, and waterways eventually makes its way through our city water treatment plants and back into our homes, running through our water taps and into our drinking glasses. Unfortunately, the filtration process at most city treatment facilities is only equipped to remove major toxins and large particles. They do not remove the majority of micro pollutants that are washed away through our laundry.

Some homes are outfitted with water filtration systems that are custom-engineered for their specific water. For instance, if your home has a reverse osmosis filtration system that you maintain regularly, it is equipped to properly treat your water. Reverse Osmosis systems can filter out micro plastics because they filter down to .001 microns. This basically means they filter out contaminants that are not visible to the human eye. While they are costly to maintain, they do a good job of protecting you from consuming the plastics that would be present if you drank straight from your tap. For those with portable filters like a Brita filter, you are not being protected from these plastics.

The Summary About Microfibers in Your Drinking Water 

Aside from costly solutions installed in your home, you aren’t going to effectively remove the plastic microfibers from your drinking water. And that’s just for the drinking water and doesn’t address the plastics found in our food.

This is why it’s important that we begin to move toward a bigger solution…one that stops plastic pollutants from ever entering our ecosystem, running through our treatment facilities, and back into our homes.

To see what Filtrol is doing to stop microfiber pollution before it contaminates our ecosystem, follow us on Facebook, read more from our blog, and find out more about our washing machine wastewater filter. To solve the problem in your home and put a stop to your family’s contribution to microfiber pollution, click here.

How Recycling is Killing Our Environment

If you recycle, you care about nature. If you don’t recycle, you don’t care.

The problem with this argument is that it assumes that recycling is universally good for our environment. We’ve been led to believe that recycling is always good all the time. In fact, implying that recycling has its drawbacks would probably make some environmentally-minded groups upset.

But there’s a bigger perspective. 

Recycling is not removing plastic from our eco-system. It’s repurposing it.

Recycling makes use of the plastic that’s already there in practical, usable ways. The process finds ways to convert otherwise useless waste into something worthwhile. When it comes to plastic, the process takes large, manageable waste and converts it to microscopic, unmanageable—almost undetectable— micro particles. Whereas water bottles can be picked up and thrown into a garbage bin, micro-plastics often find ways through water treatment processes and back into nature with minimal interference. They pollute our drain fields, our streams and rivers, our lakes and oceans, and our food.

Recycling is turning a big plastic problem into an even bigger, microscopic plastic problem.

Obviously the problem isn’t actually with recycling, but with plastic. And plastic isn’t going away. The recycling solutions that have been created to deal with plastic are simply making the best of the problem. And the problems that recycling is creating aren’t going away either. 

Just like plastic, the problems must be addressed if we’re going to protect our water, our food, our families, and our eco-system.

Click here to see how Filtrol is stopping microfiber pollution at its source.

Microfiber Pollution: What is it?

Some people have heard of it. But not everyone. It’s still a relatively unknown problem while its effects are becoming increasingly visible. Governments are beginning to hear about it from concerned citizens and some state and local governments are beginning to monitor it. Environmental groups are beginning to educate on it. Eco-friendly companies are beginning to address it. Some are trying to find solutions. Some aren’t quite aware that we need one. 

Microfiber Pollution.

In short, microfiber pollution is a term that refers to microscopic particles of plastic that get washed from our homes and into our streams, rivers, lakes, and oceans. They never break down and end up in our drinking water and food.

Microfiber pollutants enter our ecosystem through the recycling process.

About 47 billion plastic bottles get recycled each year around the globe. Those recycled bottles become the manufacturing building blocks for many common items found in our homes…many items that are in our own closets. Synthetic fibers like polyester and nylon are made of recycled plastic bottles. Fleeces. Sweatshirts and T-shirts. Denim. Sleeping bags. Winter coats. These, among other household items, all use the materials manufactured directly from the recycling of plastic bottles.

While it’s environmentally conscious on one hand to make good use of the waste that these synthetic materials are causing, it should not be ignored that there are side effects…setbacks to our innovations.

Just as plastic water bottles do not leave our ecosystem on their own, neither do the microscopic versions of them.

When bottles are recycled, they are shredded into tiny particles and eventually woven into threads for various synthetic fibers.They no longer exist in the form of the water bottle, but their materials don’t go away.

So when a load of laundry is cleaned, wastewater gets flushed from the machine and through the home’s drainage. It moves to a city’s water treatment plant before it is reintroduced into our environment. Hundreds of thousands of particles, contaminants to our eco-system, leave our homes with each wash, and their minuscule size allows them eventually pass right through the treatment process—without being filtered out. They end up back in our drain fields and waterways, entering the fish and game we eat and the water we drink.

Microfiber pollution. It’s microscopic in size but poses a tremendous threat. It is substituting healthy water for contaminated, plastic-soaked water. It’s in our food. It’s in our homes. It’s in our water. And that’s all because it’s in our clothes.

To find out more about what Filtrol is doing to stop microfiber pollution before it ever leaves your home, watch this video.