How To Make Things Last Longer

There are many reasons why you might want to make something last longer. For one thing, making something last longer means you can enjoy it more – having to throw something out because it’s broken or isn’t fashionable anymore is the end of being able to use it, after all – when it’s gone, it’s gone. 

Another good reason for wanting to make things in and around your home (including your home itself) last longer is that it will save you money. Every time you get rid of something, you’ll generally have to replace it with a new version. The more often you have to do this, the more it’s going to cost you, so it makes sense that making something last longer means you won’t have to spend so much – there’s less to buy. 

Then there’s the environment. Throwing things away means more has to go to a landfill, and that’s terrible for the planet. If you can make things last longer, that will happen less, and the pollution and waste that would otherwise be caused can be limited. 

As you can see, there are all kinds of reasons to make things last longer, but how can you do it? Surely, everything just has a limited lifespan, and that’s it? Well, yes and no. Everything does have a limited lifespan – nothing’s going to last forever – but you can extend that lifespan and enjoy all the benefits we mentioned above when you learn how to make things last longer. With that in mind, let’s take a look at the different areas you need to work on and what you can do. 

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Household Items 

So, you’ve got a home, and it’s full of things… some of those things will be decorative, some will be functional – you might even have some things that are both. However, no matter what it is, if you want it to last longer, proper maintenance is crucial. If anything in your home came with a maintenance booklet or instruction manual, that’s the place to start when it comes to understanding how to take care of it better. It could be that some items, like blenders or coffee makers, have to be flushed through on a regular basis. Or perhaps it’s your smoke alarm that has to be checked on a monthly basis. It could be your TV or your toaster. It could be anything. The point is, if checking it over regularly and making small repairs where needed is going to make it last longer (which it will), that’s what you need to do. 

Once something has reached a certain point, of course, there’s no saving it – no amount of maintenance will bring it back to its glory days when it was functional or useful or wasn’t stained and old and so on. In that case, you can still make it last longer by upcycling it. Turning an old item or piece of furniture into something new with some hard work and imagination can completely transform it and make it last so much longer (even if it looks very different or works in a new way compared to before). 

Of course, one of the best ways to make any of your household items last a lot longer is to buy the best quality you can in the first place. Many people don’t like to spend a lot on items if there’s a cheaper version available, but the problem is that unless you’re very lucky and really do land on a complete bargain, it’s highly likely that those cheaper versions just aren’t going to last as long as the more expensive but better quality ones will. What does that mean? It means you’ll actually end up spending more on replacements over a lifetime, and you might have to spend more on maintenance too. So, if you want something to last longer (without too much money being thrown at it), buy good quality right from the start. 


Your vehicle is not a small investment, and even if you buy a used car, it’s still going to cost you quite a lot of money. So the last thing you’ll want to happen is for it to break down and cost you even more money, or to stop working altogether. If that happens, you’ll have to pay for a new car, and that might not be something your budget allows for, leaving you in a tricky situation, to say the least. 

That’s why regular maintenance is once again an important part of making your car last longer. You’ll know that every car needs to have an annual MOT once it gets to three years old, and unless you go through this test once a year, your car won’t be deemed roadworthy, which means getting tax and insurance becomes impossible and driving the vehicle becomes illegal. With this test coming up every year, it’s wise to ensure that your car meets all the criteria when it comes to your tyres, your brakes, your windscreen wipers, and all the other things that will be tested. That way, you can use it for longer (so it lasts longer). 

However, there are other maintenance considerations to take into account when it comes to your car. As well as an MOT, which tests for roadworthiness, you’ll also need to have the car serviced at least once a year (or after a certain number of miles, depending on what comes first). This is also known as a tune-up, and it means a mechanic checks everything in your car and, with your permission, puts right any small (or even major) problems. The beauty of having your car serviced on a regular basis is that issues can be spotted and dealt with before they become problems that mean the car has to be scrapped or becomes too expensive to deal with, forcing a sale. To make your car last longer, regular servicing means it’s always working at its very best. 

Finally, keeping your car clean is another way to make it last longer. On a practical level, when you clean your car, you’ll remove anything on the paintwork that could cause rust or other issues, but from a psychological point of view, when you keep your car looking great, you’ll be prouder of it, and take better car of it, plus you’ll probably drive it more carefully (and carefully driving is sure to help make it last longer!). So clean it regularly, get the interior cleaned too, and don’t forget your alloy wheels; diamond cut alloy wheel repair can make everything seem like new again. 


Your clothes go through a lot when you think about it. They have to deal with all weathers, they’re pulled around all the time, they’re constantly washed and shoved into wardrobes and drawers or left on the floor, and they’re susceptible to all kinds of problems, including poor quality, insects, fading, becoming out of shape, stains, and even being caught or snagged on bushes, door handles (which is so annoying!) and so on. As we said, they go through a lot, so it’s no wonder you have to replace them so often. 

Of course, there are some great ways to make your clothes last longer, and although it’s no guarantee – spills and accidents do happen – it might make a difference, saving you money and stopping too much from going to a landfill. 

The first thing to do is to read the labels you’ll find on every item of clothing. Those labels aren’t just there to tell you which way is front and which is back; they’re there to give you plenty of instructions so you can wash the clothing in the right way. Some clothes need a cold wash, whereas others can manage a warmer one. Some have to be dry cleaned or hand washed. Others can’t be put in the tumble dryer or washed with clothes of a different colour. If you take all this into account and wash things in the right way, they’re sure to last longer. 

Storage is also important. Storing clothes that should be on a hanger in a wardrobe in a chest of drawers means they’ll get much more creased up than they should, and that means more ironing. Heat can damage clothing, so if there’s a way to avoid ironing your clothes (without walking around wearing everything creased), you should take it, and sometimes that’s as simple as storing things properly. It’s also important not to store things in direct sunlight; the sun can fade the colours on a piece of clothing, and that will generally make it unwearable. 

What do you do right now if you find a hole in a piece of clothing, or there’s a stain you can’t get rid of, or a button missing, and so on? Most people would probably just toss the item in the bin and buy something new, but as we’ve seen, that’s bad for the planet and your bank balance. 

The best thing to do is to learn how to make repairs and even alterations (if something no longer fits, make it fit, don’t throw it out). In that way, you can make the garment last for much longer, and that’s an especially good thing if it’s just a tiny tear or loose button, for example. 

Flush the Fashion

Editor of Flush the Fashion and Flush Magazine. I love music, art, film, travel, food, tech and cars. Basically, everything this site is about.