Right Buying

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The concept behind right buying is buying only what you need to minimize excess waste.  This is particularly important when purchasing household hazardous materials such as paint, lawn care products and home remodeling materials.

Is buying in bulk always the best choice?

Not always.  If you know you are going to use something in a large quantity and can save money by buying in bulk, then it makes sense to move forward with the purchase.  However, if you only need a small amount, consider purchasing a smaller size instead or gather of group of family/friends who also need the product so you can take advantage of any bulk purchasing savings.  Multi-packs are perfect for group purchases because they can easily be split up among the group.

I am going to paint my house.  What’s the best way to determine how much paint I am going to need?

Here’s a formula you can use*:

Step 1: Determine total square footage of the walls that need to be painted (length x width)

Step 2: Calculate the approximate area that is not going to be painted with your selected color such as windows and doors.  Generally speaking, allow 20 sq. ft. for every door and 15 sq. feet for every window.

Step 3: Determine the net sq. footage to be painted by subtracting your answer from Step 2 from your answer in Step 1.

Step 4: Determine the quantity of paint needed.  Generally speaking, one gallon of paint will cover about 350 sq. ft.  with one coat.  However, if you are painting walls that are unfinished, heavily patched or dark in color, plan on applying two coats of paint. (Refer to specific brand of paint for additional coverage guidelines.)

Example: Two walls need to be painted dark gray.  Both are 10’ high but one wall is 18’ wide and the other is 20’.  There is one door and two windows.

  • Total sq. footage: (18’+20’) x 10’ = 380 sq. ft.
  • Doors/windows: (20 sq. ft x 1 door) + (15 sq. ft. x 2 windows) = 50 sq. ft.
  • Net sq. footage to be painted: 380 sq. ft. – 50 sq. ft. = 330 sq. ft.
  • Total gallons of paint needed: 330 sq. ft./350 sq. ft. = .94 gallons
  • Due to dark color, walls will require two coats and therefore 2 gallons should be purchased

How else can I minimize the purchase of household hazardous materials?

Before buying new product, first visit Mesa’s Swap Shop.  Items that are dropped off at the Household Hazardous Materials (HHM) Facility such as paint, cleaners, lawn/pool care and automotive products which are in like new and useable condition, are made available at no charge to Mesa residents.  The Swap Shop is located inside the HHM Facility and is open during normal facility hours.