Many of us are conscious about the environment and want to take steps not only to care for our home but to be more environmentally clean in the process. Here are four ways to help make your home more energy and waste efficient; and, of course, save as much money as you can on water, gas, electric, and maintenance bills. So it’s great to know that going green at home goes hand in hand with saving money.
Help the environment and reduce your electricity bill by being careful about your usage. Simple things like turning the lights off when you leave a room, or switching off the TV when you’re in another room can really save energy and money.
You can waste heaps of electricity too if you leave items on standby, like microwaves, cookers and DVD players. So when you leave the house or go to bed, make sure you switch them off.
Nowadays, you can also get energy-efficient light bulbs which use much less power than standard ones. And when it comes to washing your clothes, turn the temperature down to 30º degrees. Such simple changes can really make a big difference.
Water is a precious supply, so don’t waste it. When you’re brushing your teeth, always turn the tap off — you’ll be surprised how much water go down the drain in just two minutes. And try to go for short showers over deep baths. You can even fit a water saving device in the cistern of your toilet to reduce the amount you use when you flush.
There’s plenty you can do in the kitchen too. For instance, don’t put the dishwasher on with just a few items in it — hang on a while until you have a full load. The same goes for your laundry machine.
And in the garden, be careful about how much you water your plants and the lawn. Once a week is quite enough. And make sure you do it when it’s cool so the water doesn’t evaporate.
So much waste goes to the landfill each year, so do what you can to prevent that by recycling your garbage. Or even better, try not to create the waste in the first place by opting for items or food with less packaging. The trash from a pack of apples in a cardboard sleeve, wrapped in plastic, will create far more waste than loose ones in paper bag, for example. Check with your municipality to see what they will recycle, because every area will be different.
If you really want to think ahead to the future with a longer-term energy saving plan, you might want to consider solar panels. Once paid for and installed, they will provide free electricity to your home – and if you do create more electricity than you can use, you may even be able to sell it back to the Grid. Look around too as there might even be tax credits available to help you pay for them.
Then, once you have installed them, it’s worth making sure your home insurance has additional accidental damage cover, just in case something happens to them. It will cost you extra, but could well be worth it.
At our house, we’re fairly anal when it comes to reducing our footprint on the planet. It’s quite amazing how low our average gallons/water used each month are compared to the average American’s. As the article suggests, I’ve made it a point to shut off the water tap when I’m brushing my teeth. This isn’t really about me, but my father-in-law shuts off the water in the middle of his showers when he’s lathering up! I’ve been told it was a military thing from living overseas or something. ANYWAY, there are countless things you can do to save on your utility costs. The first step is really just being intentional with not being wasteful.
Knowing that you’re doing your bit for the environment will help to give you extra peace of mind, day in, day out.
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