Becoming eco-friendly, or “going green,” is becoming a much more popular option these days. As scientists learn more about the world around us, we learn more about how to save our environment in our everyday life, including in our home environment. Here are the best ways to go green, saving the environment (and your money) in the process!
1) Improve the Insulation in Your Home
Studies show that windows are the leading cause of making your home hotter in the summer and colder in the winter. This can cause you to overuse your air conditioning unit or heating unit in your home, wasting both energy and money. Glazing or double-glazing your windows can help keep the sun and its heat out of your home.
Though blinds are a popular option for windows, these are less effective with protecting against the cold than installing shutters would be. Shutters, like the kind featured at the Global Roller Shutters website, are made of solid material, rather than cloth or bendable plastic. This can help regulate the temperature on the inside of your home by keeping light and heat from passing through your windows entirely.
Another way to easily insulate your home is through the use of area rugs on hardwood floors. Hardwood floors are easily susceptible to allowing hot or cold air slip through their cracks, but an area rug can cover up these cracks, helping to trap any air inside the home.
2) Plant Trees and Shrubs Around Your Home
Tall trees and shrubs introduce more flora to your environment. They can also help shade your home so that the sun’s rays are blocked from shining through your windows.
Planting trees on the west or northwest sides of your home can prevent the sun from entering your home in the mid-to-late afternoon.
You may also plant trees and shrubs to shade the air conditioning unit itself, helping it run more efficiently by keeping it cooler during the day.
3) Install Solar Panels on Your Roof
Harnessing solar energy has become advanced enough that you are now able to install solar energy panels on your own, personal roof. Solar panels are a popular option for those looking to reduce their carbon footprint, as solar panels do not use coal or fossil fuels to produce energy. They are also cost-effective in the long run in this way.
Many people believe that solar energy is only efficient in sunny areas. However, even if you live in a cloudier area, solar energy can still produce up to 20 percent of the energy produced on a sunny day.
You may also use more solar panels to offset the lack of energy on a cloudy day or install hybrid panels that use a power grid when there is not enough energy available.
4) Create Your Own Compost Bin
Food waste, such as leftovers or scraps, don’t need to be thrown away. Instead, you can create or buy your own compost bin to turn this waste into a productive, nutrient-rich soil for any yard or garden.
Composting can help recycle natural food items and return them to the earth where they originally came from. This saves the waste from being trapped in harmful landfills full of plastic bags.
5) Minimize Your Hot Water Use
Only 0.5% of the world’s water is usable, so its use can be a big expense for your wallet and for the environment. You can achieve minimal water usage by reducing shower time by three minutes, turning off the water while brushing your teeth, and installing low-pressure shower heads and other smart devices that help to save water.
Leaky faucets are also a leading cause of water waste, so making sure leaks in your home are fixed correctly can be a big contributor to helping save your money and reduce unnecessary water harvesting.