Keeping our environment clean and green is among the fastest growing concerns over the last few years. As our planet is warming up at an alarming rate, it is high time we should think about sustainable living.
The idea becomes much more practical when we adopt ways of green living on daily basis. Be it our homes, offices, or commercial buildings, opting for sustainable means of living can make a huge difference for our planet as a whole.
Being a homeowner, there are several ways you can make your home more energy-efficient. Not only this helps your environment but you will be paying less money for energy bills every year.
A lot of homeowners assume that making your home an energy-efficient place is very expensive. Some consider it very difficult to achieve and hence leave the idea of doing it. Here are some incredible ways to make your abode more energy efficient.
1. Conserve Water
When it comes to energy efficiency or sustainability, water conservation is one of the most important aspects. Unfortunately, it remains to be among the most ignored aspects but it is equally essential to reduce your water usage.
To start with, hire a plumber to fix all the leaky pipes and toilets in your home. Even a minor leak may be causing the loss of hundreds of gallons over the year. Add the associated risks of mold growth and structural damage and you will see the real damaged caused by a leaky pipe or roof.
Install a low-flow showerhead to minimize daily water usage. Keep the taps off when you are brushing or scrubbing the dishes. Think about your monthly water usage and find out ways you can reduce it for your home and family.
2. Install Smart Meters And Thermostats
Technology has provided us with some incredible solutions when it comes to energy conservation. Your house heating is one of the biggest ways you are using energy. During the colder months of the year, it can be very easy to leave your heating on for longer than you strictly need it.
The best approach to minimize this energy loss is to install a smart meter. These meters can be programmed so that the heating systems are turned on only during certain times of the day you need them the most. Smart home automation is helping households save energy costs every year.
3. Upgrade House Appliances
Old and outdated house appliances are major contributors to unnecessary energy loss. They can use as much as 50% more energy as compared to new models. Replace the old incandescent light bulbs with energy-efficient CFLs. This is quite an inexpensive way to improve the energy efficiency of your home.
The refrigerator, HVAC system & water heaters of your house must have an Energy Star rating. If that’s not the case, invest your money in replacing them. This may seem a bit expensive but what you can do is to replace one appliance at one time. Keep in mind that you are investing your money to save energy bills in the long run.
The water heater of your house must also be approved by EPA and The US Department of Energy. If you install tankless water heater systems, whether it is gas-fueled or electricity fueled, you would get credit on your next tax return.
4. Insulate The Walls, Doors, And Windows
The HVAC system of your house uses energy to keep your home cold during summers and hot during winters. If your house is adequately insulated, the heat loss is minimized and you will see a significant drop in your energy bills.
One of the smartest ways to increase the energy efficiency of your home is to use less energy and that is possible by insulating the walls, doors, and windows. Installing double glazing windows is another effective way to minimize heat loss. Cover the hardwood flooring of your house with area rugs to prevent heat loss from the cracks.
When you are purchasing new windows for your house, don’t forget to ask about the energy efficiency of the glass panels used in its construction. Getting smart window blinds also helps in making your home energy efficient.
5. Opt For Natural Cleaning Products
Commercial-grade cleaning products are generally made up of harsh chemicals. When you use them for cleaning your house on daily basis, consider the toxicity you are adding to the environment. The water will need much more purification to become suitable for use again and that certainly demands more energy.
If you want to reduce your carbon footprint and be gentle with your environment, opt for natural cleaning products. For day-to-day cleaning use products like vinegar, baking soda, and citric acids from fruits.
6. Install Solar Panels
If you are up for building an eco-friendly home, install solar panels. Consult a roofing professional to see if your roof is good enough to hold the weight of solar panels. The upfront cost of solar panel installation is still a cause of concern but if energy efficiency is your long-term goal it is a must-have thing.
If you live in an area with pretty good sunlight all year round, you may even be selling some of the electrical energy to the grid. It is a chance to become a prosumer.
7. Pay Attention To Recycling
It is a good idea to search for recycled materials. Whether you are purchasing building materials or shampoo bottles, take a look at the labels. See if it is made up of recycled materials or can be recycled in the future. Whenever possible, opt for products that are easy to recycle. This may seem a lot to do in beginning but as you make it a part of your habit, it will be a breeze.
The Final Word
These are not the only things you can do to make your home a greener one but among the most effective ones. Talk to the sustainability consultants to get practical ideas to improve the energy efficiency of your home without affecting the quality of life. Most importantly, stick to the changes you opt for.