Every spring and fall we are bombarded with it: new leaf blowers.
We know they are noisy. (Maybe you don’t. You may not be ready for sound booms after three months at home.) And we can’t seem to get past the fact that they were designed to help carpet makers score better sales. (Whatever.)
They are also pollution-producing evil.
There’s just something about those stomping metal blades: Their vibrations rattle our windows or computers, sometimes at their windows. They shake the furniture. They sometimes roll on your apron. They make your dog twitch. They ruin what little space is left for functioning among all those Porta-Potties.
We hear you, all of you. It’s just too darn loud.
So, even though we hate it, and can’t stand it at all, we patiently wait on the patio as we walk to work, and leaf-blow down behind the bushes as the mail arrives.
That’s until October. That’s when the leaves start to fall and the autumn blowers take over. (It’s also about this time that a lot of people turn on their floodlights to work through the night, though not as much as they should. Oh, how I wish this would change: for the real time savings benefit, the removal of those floodlights before the leaves.)
And still, we complain about leaf blowers. It’s a weird topic. But maybe there’s a way we can sort out our complaints and get leaf-blowers to go away.
The Department of Energy provides some models of low-emission, green technologies, and I found an interesting link online called “The Ten Most Blue Technologies.” It lists technologies that could use at least 25 percent less energy than existing technologies. Everything from seeding a garden in the middle of the day to solar applications that look way cooler than a can of deodorant.
Two of these ideas might reduce or eliminate our year-round use of the leaf blower:
Grass dipping, by GE: this is something that’s been shown to reduce greenhouse gases; it also reduces all of those pesky indoor allergens.
Contact integration, by BP. This has been shown to provide — wait for it — a clean and pure air channel between the leaf blower and the grass that you’re (hopefully) burying in its grooves.
And did you know that two of these tech ideas are already being employed?
FLYVESTA has been around since 1989, and is a relatively light device that fits in just about any toolbox. It provides services like this: “I work a lot and am at home frequently. I use this to keep my house, yard and dog cleaner. It is small and light and is portable. It does all my vacuuming, sweeping and steaming.”
Another product we liked was the filtration system BLASTOVAFX from its maker, Less –TEK Green.
“ BLASTOVAFX replaces the need for scuba gear and gasoline,” says the company’s website. “This rain-powered filtration system cleans, salts and saltsys the indoor environment.”
We found that installing this system might be difficult: you actually have to remove the accumulated dirt, build up of dust and dirt particles, and some sand from the air. If you have the guts to do it, you might actually do some good in your home.