Quite possibly one of our best eco-friendly and money-saving materials scores during construction, we found three hundred used sliding glass doors at Hood’s. Most likely salvaged from a demolished or updated office building, these doors were marked for ten bucks a piece, and by purchasing all three hundred, we were able to negotiate the price down to three bucks each. After selling the aluminum frames which we didn’t need to a recycling center, our overall cost came to less than two dollars each!
We used the first twenty-eight of them in the façade of the house, and we used even more of them in our bedrooms, handrails and the fire egress hallway. You can’t buy a stick of 2 X 4 lumber or a sheet of drywall for the price we paid for this glass. Besides, it gives an aesthetically pleasing effect to our façade and handrails, allows us an open view of the rock in the fire exit, and we love reusing materials whenever possible, both for economy and for reducing our environmental impact.
These orphaned doors can be found easily at places that deal in salvaged materials. All too often, when one piece of glass breaks, it’s easier to replace the whole door and frame than just one section of it. When buildings are demolished for new construction, hundreds of matching windows and doors hit the market at once.
Even after using as many as possible in our construction, we still have quite a few left. Some will make great spares, to replace windows that break down the road. We’re also looking forward to someday building a large greenhouse with our leftovers, and possibly enclosing a hot tub room in the back of the cave.