Author Archives: WestBoulevard

Green Living Tips to Help you Survive the Winter

Now that the holidays are over, it is time to get back on track, apply your New Year’s resolutions and enjoy the winter.  As the eco-friendly Kitsilano dry cleaners we would like to offer the following green living tips that will allow you to enjoy the winter and still reduce your energy consumption and your carbon footprint.

Clear the Air

If you find the winter air drier than usual or are looking at improving the quality of air that you breathe in your home, indoor plants may be the answer to both of these conundrums.  These plants will not only brighten up your surroundings, they will also trap heat in your home and release moisture back into the air as well as purify and clean the air.  Start 2019 right and put plants in your kitchen, bathroom, living room and bedroom.

Another answer to cleaner air is a humidifier.  It will keep the air in your home from getting too dry.

Here’s the Deal:

A diffuser can double as a humidifier and it will also fill your home with uplifting scents.

Go Seasonal

Many of your favourite vegetable and fruits can come from as far away as South America during the winter months.  The shipping and carbon footprint of these products is huge. Try to combat this and make an effort to enjoy and purchase seasonal produce and fruit.  Try to prepare meals with local ingredients.  Not only will you be enjoying a fresher meal, chances are it will be far higher in nutrition as well.

Change your Bulbs

The days are shorter in the winter; therefore, you will be turning your lights on more.  Use LED or other energy efficient lights to save money on your next utility bill.  Not only will you enjoy the cost savings provided by LED lights, you will also reduce your energy consumption and shrink your carbon footprint.

Pool It

Vancouver offers great public transit.  If at all possible, try to incorporate transit into your daily schedule and reduce your carbon footprint.  Sometimes public transit is not an option.  If this is the case, think about carpooling with work colleagues or friends.  Not only is this a more energy efficient approach, it may also offer perks such as HOV lanes and other time saving measures.

As a local eco-friendly business, we support all green initiatives and are proud to offer free pick-up and delivery service for your cleaning needs.  This service will not only free up time for you, it will also cut down on your fuel consumption and reduce your overall carbon footprint.

If you are interested in other ways to go green this winter or would like more information about our free pick-up and delivery service or some of the other eco-friendly cleaning options that we provide, please contact us today.  We look forward to working with you soon.

 

 

Going Green this New Year – Part 2

Do you want to be a part of a growing movement and positive change?  A green start to your new year is a great way to change your lifestyle, do your part for the environment and make a statement.  As Kitsilano’s premier eco-friendly dry cleaners we would like to suggest the following ways that you can achieve this green goal.

Make the Switch

Take a moment and look at all of your cleaning products, soaps, shampoos and even your toothpaste.  Chances are many of these products contain harsh chemicals that are not only harming the environment, they are also harming you and affecting your overall health.

When you are replacing any of these products, make sure to look for environmentally friendly items that will not affect your health.  Many of these products are the same price, so making the switch will not even cost you more.

The next time you are shopping take the extra time to look at the ingredient list. Some of the more harmful chemicals that you will want to avoid include:

  • Phthalates – often listed as fragrance and frequently found in hand and laundry soap and air fresheners. Try to use fragrance free or all-natural fragrances.
  • 2-butoxyethanol – often found in window, kitchen and multi-purpose cleaners. Is linked to kidney and liver damage. Try using diluted vinegar or Bon Ami products with natural cleansers.
  • Sodium Laurel Sulphate – found in different toothpastes. Has been tested as a pesticide but denied because of environmental damage. Use natural or sulphate free toothpaste.

Here’s the Deal:

At West Boulevard Cleaners, we understand the dangers of common household chemicals and instead of using PERC (tetrachloroethylene – which has been linked to cancer) to clean your clothes, we use an high tech eco-friendly product that will not harm you, your family or the environment.  We use very special cleaning products formulated to commercially clean your garments with water, better and more safely with water than with harmful chemicals.

We Recommend

For household uses such as washing your hands we recommend a mild liquid soap without phosphates. You can also use it for washing dishes when washing by hand. 17 states in the USA have banned phosphates from dishwasher detergents because they pollute lakes, bays and streams. They create algae blooms and starve fish of oxygen.

Lower your Emissions

One of the major contributors to climate change is greenhouse gases.  You can reduce your global footprint and reduce your emissions by driving less.  There are many ways that you can accomplish this goal.

  • Walk or cycle to the grocery store if it is near your home.
  • Use public transportation to commute to work.
  • Use carpooling when commuting.
  • Switch to an electric car to reduce your emissions to zero.

At West Boulevard Cleaners, we offer a free pick-up and delivery service for all your cleaning needs.  Not only will this save you a car trip or two, it will free up some extra time in your day.  Let us help you reduce your carbon footprint and clear your schedule.

A greener approach to your life is a positive change and a great New Year’s goal.  By replacing harmful chemicals in your house, you will not only be helping the environment, you will also be making a switch to a healthier lifestyle for you and your family.  Stop by or contact us today and see how our eco-friendly services can help you achieve your green New Year’s goals.  We look forward to seeing you soon.

 

Going Green this New Year – Part 1

There has never been a better time to go green, so why not start fresh this New Year and make it a part of your resolutions?  A greener approach to your overall life is not only a switch that will benefit the environment, it will also lead to a healthier life for you and believe it or not, may even save you money in the long run.  As the premier eco-friendly Kitsilano dry cleaners, we would like to offer you the following ways that you can lead a greener and healthier lifestyle.

Bundle Up

Turn down your thermostat.  This statement holds even more importance this year because of the gas shortage in B.C.  By turning down your thermostat a few degrees, you will not only be reducing your carbon footprint you will also save money.  Some other great energy saving tips that are simple and can be used in your day to day life include:

  • Turn your hot water tank down a few degrees. Again, you will hardly notice any temperature change and you will save money and reduce your gas consumption.
  • Get a smart thermostat. This will allow you to program when you use and don’t use heat.  You may also be able to get a tax rebate on this energy efficient piece of technology.
  • Take a shorter shower. Try to shorten your shower by even a few minutes to save money and energy.
  • If you are cold, bundle up. Find your favourite sweater and put it on or use a throw and snuggle up on the couch with a hot drink.

Fill It Up

Another great way to reduce your reliance on plastic is to invest in a water bottle for drinking.  Many major cities have outlawed one time plastic water bottles and invested in tier drinking water.  Luckily, Vancouver has excellent drinking water (far healthier and cleaner than the water you will find in plastic bottles).  The next time you are thirsty, fill up your water bottle and keep a plastic bottle out of the landfill or the ocean.

Be Choosy

As a consumer, you have a huge impact on driving and steering the business market wherever you want.  Make sure that you support and purchase from environmentally friendly vendors and businesses that also believe in green practices.

We at West Boulevard Cleaners only use eco-friendly cleaning products.  We feel that this choice will not only keep you and your family safe from the chemicals found in traditional cleaning solvents, but this approach will also keep our beautiful city and province green for future generations to enjoy.  It is a choice that we believe in and stand by.

Go green this New Year – it requires very little effort and a greener approach to your lifestyle will only impact you in positive ways.  We all love Vancouver because of its natural beauty, so why not try to keep it that way for future generations?  If you would like more ways to go green or would like to know more about our eco-friendly dry cleaning services, our friendly staff would love to talk to you.

 

Celebrating the Holidays Vancouver Style – Part 1

The magical holiday season is upon us once again.  That special time of year when you get together with friends and family for good times and good cheer.  Vancouver has so many different holiday venues that it may be difficult to fit them all into your already busy schedule.  As the premier drycleaners in Kitsilano, we would like to offer these can’t miss festive events that are sure to get you in the holiday spirit.

Vancouver Christmas Market

Although there are many different Christmas markets to choose from in Vancouver, the largest is the Vancouver Christmas Market.  This popular market is located at Jack Poole Plaza outside the Vancouver Convention Centre and runs from November 23 until December 24.  The Christmas Market is divided up into four zones to make it easier to find what you are looking for.

The zones are:

  • Christmas Tree Terrace – this zone is home to the information desk and first aid. Also located in this zone is the carousel and a giant Christmas tree that you can go inside.
  • Artisan Market – here you will find vendors selling a wide range of hand-crafted goods such as glasswork, distilled liquors and handmade chocolates.
  • Merchant Alley – the vendors in this section of the market offer imported, one-of-a-kind gifts such as beer steins or handmade soaps from Turkey.
  • Marktplaz Eats and Treats – this is your one-stop shop for all of your Christmas favourites as well as some more traditional and exotic Christmas food from around the world.

The Vancouver Christmas Market is a can’t miss event and a great place to get a head start on all of your holiday shopping.  For more information on the market, its hours and cost of admission, please visit:

https://vancouversbestplaces.com/events-calendar/festivals-and-events/vancouver-christmas-market/.

St. Paul Lights of Hope Celebration

The St. Paul Lights of Hope Celebration has been a Vancouver landmark since 1998.  This annual event is made possible by over 150 volunteers who set up over 100 000 lights and illuminated donor stars.  This celebration is a fundraiser for the hospital and last year raised over 3 million dollars.

Vancouver Santa Claus Parade

The Vancouver Santa Claus Parade is an annual event that attracts over 300,000 people and has over 2,500 participants.  Arrive early to get a great seat and ring in the holidays at this year’s Vancouver Santa Claus Parade.  For more information about the parade route and start time, please visit:

https://vancouversbestplaces.com/events-calendar/december/vancouver-santa-claus-parade/.

Festival of Lights at VanDusen Gardens

This popular attraction brings the VanDusen Botanical Gardens to life and is Vancouver’s longest running winter holiday attraction. With over 1 million lights spread over 15 hectares of garden, this light show is sure to entertain.  Make sure to carve some time out of your schedule for this amazing light show.  For more information, admission costs and some of the highlights of the light show, please visit:

https://vancouversbestplaces.com/top-attractions/vandusen-gardens/festival-of-lights/.

These are just a few of the can’t miss holiday attractions in Vancouver.  We offer a free pick-up and delivery service for all your cleaning needs, so if you can’t fit anything else into your busy schedule, let us help.  We would love to be a part of your holiday cheer.

Happy Holidays from West Boulevard Cleaners.

Green up your Fall

It is never too late to join the green movement.  By going green you can reduce your carbon footprint, reduce the amount of waste you create and believe it or not, maybe even save yourself a few dollars.  As Kitsilano’s premier eco-friendly dry cleaners, we would like to offer you the following ideas on how to go green this fall.

Conserve Energy

As the days get shorter and the nights get colder, you will probably end up using more energy to light and heat your home.  These are some ways to conserve or even reduce energy in the fall include:

  1. Turn off lights in a room when you are not using them.
  2. Consider switching your lights to more energy efficient lights such as compact fluorescent lights (CFLs). CFL’s use about 70% less energy than traditional incandescent bulbs. Incandescent means generating light from heat.  This is the way light bulbs have worked since they were invented by Thomas Alva Edison.
  3. Or even better than CFL’s, why not switch to LED light bulbs? They cost more than CFL’s but last longer.  If you run a single incandescent bulb 5 hours a day for two years, it will cost you around $32 (depending on your energy rates). Most of that money is spent on electricity. If you run a single LED bulb 5 hours a day for two years, it will cost you $12.
  4. Lower your thermostat or invest in a smart or programmable thermostat so that you are only heating certain rooms or using heat at certain times of the day.
  5. Use warm water instead of hot in your washing machine. Or even better, use cold water.  Lightly soiled items come just as clean in cold water.
  6. Hang dry the garments you don’t bring to us, perhaps on your shower curtain rod.

Use Less Water

Living in Vancouver, it may be hard to think about conserving water as all it does is rain in the fall and winter months, but reducing the amount of water you use can save you money in the long run and will reduce your impact on the environment.

  • Use shorter wash cycles on your washing machine, or invest in an eco-friendly washing machine.
  • Try to shorten your shower by even a minute. I’ve heard using a wash cloth is not only better for your skin, but if you put soap on your cloth instead of on your body you can spend less time in the shower.  You will not only conserve water, you will also save on your hot water bill.
  • Install aerators on your taps and a low flow shower head. Both will reduce your water consumption and may come with a tax rebate, saving you money.

Cut the Plastic

Cut back on your reliance with plastic.

  • Instead of plastic bags, use cloth tote bags for shopping.
  • Recycle excess plastic bags so that they don’t end up in a landfill or in our oceans.
  • Request paper bags when food shopping, as they are sometimes made with already recycled paper, and are easier to recycle.
  • Decline plastic covers if you can do without when purchasing clothes.

Save Fuel

One look at the cost of fuel in Vancouver will have you wondering how to conserve or get the most out of your next tank of gas.

One way is to look for companies that offer free pick-up and delivery services like we do.  This will not only save you time but also help you conserve fuel.  We are proud to offer a free pick-up and delivery service and our friendly and professional staff would love to be a part of your overall green initiative.

Take public transit to work and back if you can, or better yet, use a bicycle.

We are an eco-friendly cleaner that believes in the green movement.  This is the only planet we have.  Let’s do our best to keep it clean.  All our services are aimed at not only reducing our impact on the environment but also providing you with a quality eco-friendly cleaning service.

 

 

Dealing with Back to School Stains

Now that the mad rush of September is over and all the back to school shopping has been done, you may be noticing that some of those newly purchased school clothes are starting to come home with stains.  Unfortunately, kids will be kids, but as a parent, you want the most life out of these school clothes as possible and preferably a stain free life.

As the premier eco-friendly dry cleaners in Vancouver, we would like to offer you the following advice on how to keep your children’s school clothes stain free and looking like new for the entire school year.

Know the Schedule

Ask your child about their school schedule so that you can send them with the appropriate dress.  For instance, if it is an art class day, consider purchasing an apron or smock so that they can paint worry and stain free.  Make sure to send your child with appropriate gym clothes with the understanding that grass stains and other gym related wear and tear are going to be the norm.

Read Those Labels

Every garment in your child’s wardrobe comes with a care tag attached to it.  Make sure to read the label and understand what it means.  If a certain shirt needs to be washed in hot water, do not wash it in cold water.

Here’s the deal:

Incorrect label reading can not only ruin or shrink certain clothing, it can also set stains, making them a permanent fixture on your child’s favourite shirt.

Bring it to a professional

Sometimes the stain is just too big or the garment is just too precious to attempt a home remedy stain removal.  If this is the case, bring that stain to us. We offer professional grade dry cleaning and our friendly staff can remove even the most stubborn stains.

We know how busy this time of year is so we offer a free pick-up and delivery service to free up some of your precious time for those after school soccer practices or dance recitals.

Let us help you keep your child’s school clothes stain free and looking like new for the remainder of the school year.  We look forward to working with you today.

 

Dry Clean your Patio Carpets and Spice up your Indoors for Fall!

The start of the school year is always the first sign that summer is coming to an end.  Hopefully, we can get a few more good weeks of warm weather, but inevitably, the fall rains are just around the corner.

For many of us that means that it is time to take down the deck furniture, put away the kiddie pool and think about what you want to do with those outdoor carpets and blankets.

It’s a great idea to clean those carpets before you put them away for the fall and winter, so feel free to bring them to us and let us clean them with our eco-friendly dry-cleaning services.

Can I use that Outdoor Rug Indoors?

The answer is yes!  Today’s outdoor rugs are not those unsightly rugs of years past.  Rather, many of these rugs are attractive and come in a wide range of colours and patterns.  Once you have removed all the dirt and stains in your outdoor carpets, you can think about a place where they can be used inside your home.

I would like to suggest the following areas where that outdoor rug will find a new use:

  • Kitchen – A well placed rug in the kitchen may help add to the décor and give a change of scenery.
  • High traffic hallway – Most of today’s outdoor carpets are extremely durable and may save the carpet from the unneeded wear and tear of three seasons. If you have children it may also save your carpet from unnecessary stains.
  • Mudroom – Why not store dirty and wet shoes on your outdoor carpet and get double duty out of it rather than stain and ruin another carpet?
  • Entrance way – What better place for an outdoor carpet. You can continue to wipe your dirty feet on this carpet throughout the year.  With the right pattern or colours, it may brighten up this often-overlooked part of your home.

Here’s the deal:

With a little bit of imagination, you can quickly find innovative ways to use that outdoor carpet.

Outdoor Blankets

Those outdoor blankets that were keeping you warm as you gazed at the summer stars can also be quickly moved from outdoors to indoors.  Once you have brought your outdoor blankets to us for a thorough eco-friendly cleaning, it is time to find them a new home.

I would recommend that you put those warm, hardy blankets to beneficial use.  Outdoor blankets are a terrific addition to any room over the winter months and can be used as a throw on your bed when you’re looking for that extra layer of warmth.

Your outdoor blanket can also be used as a throw on your couch or favourite chair to keep that winter chill away.  Regardless of your choice, instead of purchasing new blankets for those cold months, why not save a few dollars and reuse your outdoor blankets inside.  You already own them anyway – this way you will save a shopping trip and some storage space.

I understand how busy many of our schedules are, especially in this transitionary time of year.  If you like the idea of bringing your outdoor coverings inside, but just don’t have the time to get your blankets and carpets dropped off, we run a free pick-up and delivery service.

Let us help you get those outdoor carpets and blankets clean so that they can keep you warm and dirt free for the fall and winter.  I look forward to seeing you soon.